Musical Tennessee

Walk in the footsteps of music icons past and present on this journey from Nashville to Memphis

Day 1-2: Nashville is Country Music Central

Tennesse records

Day 1: Start a visit to Nashville with some country music education at The Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum, which follows the journey of musicians from the likes of Taylor Swift to Shania Twain. A highlight is a tour of the historic RCA Studio B, known as the birthplace of the ‘Nashville sound’. Stand where Elvis Presley, Dolly Parton, and others recorded.

After a whistle-stop tour it’s time for some live music with a visit to Nashville’s most famous strip – Broadway. With flashing neon signs and music blasting out of every window, Broadway is the home of country music and an evening spent hopping from one honky tonk bar to another is a must.

Day 2: After a late night of great music and food kickstarting the day with coffee in a leafy neighbourhood is just the ticket. 12 South is the place to window shop and admire historic homes whilst The Gulch is home to lifesized murals, boutique hotels and trendy restaurants.

But back to the music! Take a tour of the inspirational new National Museum of African American Music before seeing a show at the Grand Ole Opry, a Nashville right of passage. The weekly concert offers the chance to see both country legends and rising stars. Or book tickets to The Listening Room Café for an intimate evening with some of Nashville’s songwriters.

Day 3-4: Singing the blues in Memphis

Tennesse beale
Tennesse sun

Day 3: Drive three hours west of Nashville and stop in Memphis, a city that is not the best known but should be a must for any music fans.

Get acquainted on a Memphis Mojo Tour, guided by a professional Beale Street musician, and then head to unassuming Sun Studio, which is where a young Elvis Presley began his music career.

Learn the history of the studio and stand in the spot where Elvis Presley, Johnny Cash and Jerry Lee Lewis recorded.

At the Peabody Hotel, watch the famous daily Peabody Duck March. Twice a day the Duckmaster escorts the hotel’s resident ducks to and from the lobby fountain. It’s a tradition that has been going for 80 years.

In the evening enjoy live music at one of the many bars lining Beale Street before dining in Elvis’ booth at Arcade Restaurant.

Day 4: Put on your blue suede shoes and head to Graceland, the former home of Elvis. See endless costumes, artifacts, cars and personal mementos from the Presley family as well as visiting the Graceland mansion. Follow this with a visit to the Memphis Rock ‘n’ Soul Museum.

While in Memphis, be sure to try out the barbecue cuisine that the region is known for. Rendezvous is a local favourite and serves ribs piled high. Wash these down with a local beer at Wiseacre Brewery.

Book it with… Newmarket holidays

A nine-day Elvis Presley’s Memphis, Nashville and New Orleans trip includes two nights in Memphis staying at the Guest House at Graceland, tours of Graceland and Sun Studios and time spent in Nashville, priced from £1,819pp.