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Top Activities in Memphis

See all 31 things to do in Memphis

Memphis Attractions

Beer, barbeque, and the blues: These are just a few of the quintessential elements of Music City. Memphis, Tennessee is known for its rich contribution to rhythm and blues, and it’s true that anyone with a song in his heart or a melody in her soul will appreciate its deep musical roots. Still, things to do in Memphis span across lots of interests, including food and sports. Whether you are on a mission to stay active on your getaway or just want some R&R, Memphis can meet your vacation expectations.

Areas & Neighborhoods in Memphis

The life blood of Memphis isn’t restricted to downtown, and if you ask locals where the heart of the city is, you will probably get lots of different answers. Whether you want to eat during your entire vacation, or reserve some time for a historical tour, there is a Memphis neighborhood to catch your interest.

Midtown — Some people say Midtown is Memphis, and its passionate defenders have a lot to make their case with. From the Memphis Zoo to mouthwatering truffle fries at local eateries, you can easily fill a day here. Don’t miss out on the eccentric shops and antique stores in the Midtown antique and design district.

Downtown — The Downtown core of Memphis is one of the most walkable areas of the city, and you won’t be left wanting for places to go. Shopping, nightlife, and notable sites like Beale Street and Sun Studios are all downtown.

East Memphis — If you’re ready to slow things down a bit, keep in mind that many fun things to do in Memphis happen at an easy Southern pace. East Memphis hosts quite a few of them, from walks through the Dixon Gallery and Gardens to leisurely horseback rides at Shelby Farms.

Germantown — Germantown is largely residential, but visitors can still take advantage of generous parkland and good food.

Things to See in Memphis

Some of the best attractions in Memphis, TN won’t leave you tired out. For a relaxing day among fresh blooms, head to the Memphis Botanic Garden where you can meander around in nearly 100 acres. The butterfly garden attracts its namesake in large numbers, so bring your camera. Other things to see in Memphis keep you actively entertained. The Orpheum Theater, Hattiloo Theater, and other artistic venues are always putting on impressive performances throughout the year. Of course, you shouldn’t leave town without exploring some music history. Take a gander at the exhibits inside famed Sun Studios, which now serves as a museum.

Sightseeing in Memphis

If you want to experience the heart and soul of this Tennessee city, a few activities simply can’t be missed. Visit Graceland to pay homage to Memphis’ most famous son: Elvis Presley. Cap off your day with a trip to Beale Street, where you can let local musicians blow you away. Things to do in Memphis, TN also include: shamelessly stuffing yourself silly with barbeque, visiting the ducks at the Peabody Hotel, and embarking on walking tours. Memphis tours, which are also offered by bus, are an efficient way to see a lot of the city in a short amount of time.

Things to Do in Memphis with Kids

There's fun for the whole family no matter where you go in Memphis. Here are a few family friendly experiences to try together that are certain to make your escape unforgettable:

Free Things to Do in Memphis

Taking a break in Memphis on a budget? The following can be seen for nothing.

Magevney House - If you're intrigued by history and heritage, this is one attraction you really shouldn't miss.

Mud Island River Park - This vibrant place is a popular hangout for both locals and visitors.

Peabody Ducks - Make room in your must-see list to check out this place of local significance.

St. Peter Catholic Church - Gain an insight into the local religion at this spiritual place.

Court Square - If you like digging about the garden, this place will satisfy your inner green thumb.

Explore The Neighborhoods of Memphis

Downtown Memphis

Downtown Memphis is a destination visitors seek out for is abundant dining options, interesting museums, and live music. You might want to check out attractions like FedEx Forum or Beale Street while you're exploring the neighborhood.

Live MusicEntertainmentDancing

East Memphis

East Memphis is beloved for its popular shops. Take some time to explore sights in the area like Pink Palace Museum and Liberty Bowl Memorial Stadium.

ShoppingEntertainmentLive Music

Midtown

Theaters, live music, and museums are just a few things travelers enjoy about Midtown. Check out Memphis Zoo or Minglewood Hall while you're exploring the area.

ZooTheatersEntertainment

Whitehaven

The ample dining options and great live music are top of the list for many visitors to Whitehaven. A stop by Graceland or Full Gospel Tabernacle Church might round out your trip.

Friendly PeopleMuseumsWalking

South Memphis

You'll enjoy the restaurants and museums in South Memphis. You might want to make time for a stop at Stax Museum of American Soul Music or Mason Temple.

ShoppingCultureMonuments

Uptown

Uptown is known for its ample dining options, and you can make a stop by Bass Pro Shops at the Pyramid and Cannon Center for Performing Arts while in the area.

ChurchesCathedralsHistorical Buildings

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Frequently Asked Questions

What to do in Memphis on a sunny day?

What to do in Memphis on a rainy day?

There's no need to splash your way through a wet day when there are so many wonderful indoor activities to try:

What is Memphis famous for?

Graceland lives up to its reputation as an iconic attraction that you just can't miss.

What should I not miss in Memphis?

Put these sights toward the top of your to-do list to get the most out of your trip:

  • Memphis Zoo
  • Orpheum Theatre
  • Sun Studio
  • Stax Museum of American Soul Music

Are there cheap things to do in Memphis?

If you're vacationing on a budget, be sure to add the following low-cost tours and activities to your to-do list:

What can you do in Memphis for free?

Your getaway in Memphis needn't send you broke with free attractions like these to discover:

  • Beale Street
  • University of Memphis
  • Wolfchase Galleria
  • Beale Street Landing