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When You’re Ready To Get The Band Back Together Again, Memphis Will Be Waiting

October 17, 2020 Visit USA No Comments Email Email

Although international travel is still currently off the cards, this hasn’t stopped the great southern city of Memphis from pushing forward and adapting during these difficult times. The city has slowly started to reopen its doors, and has began the process of preparing to welcome back international guests – when the time is right to do so, of course.

Celebrated for its rich history, iconic landmarks and vibrant music scene, Memphis offers so much to do and see both in and around the city. The city continues to roll out a series of moving and important exhibitions and events, and the latest exhibition at the National Civil Rights Museum, The Negro Motorist Green Book from the Smithsonian, is no exception. Opening in Memphis this week and offering an immersive look at the reality of travel for African Americans in mid-century America, the exhibition includes a variety of objects ranging from business signs and postcards to an original “Green Book” – the indispensible resource that detailed the venues and facilities that welcomed African Americans; information that at that time was not only helpful but also potentially lifesaving. Full details of the exhibition can be found here.

Once travel returns next year and taking a road trip of our own becomes possible, exploring all that Memphis and its surroundings has to offer by car is one of the best possible ways to enjoy the sights. Now is the perfect time to start planning for some road trip therapy, and road trippers should take a short drive out of the city to the famous town of Tupelo MS, better known as the birthplace of Elvis Presley. Another stop that is a must is the small town with big vibes named Cleveland MS, which also houses the only Grammy Museum outside of Los Angeles.

Closer to the city centre, there are also many cool and quirky neighbourhoods waiting to be explored. Just a few minutes’ drive from downtown is Memphis’ very first neighbourhood, The Pinch District, as well as one of Memphis most vibrant neighbourhoods, the Cooper Young District, filled with a storied history of art, music, and markets. The Crosstown Concourse is also one to see, with the lively arts district centered around the old Sears Crosstown building, which is now filled with dozens of newly opened restaurants, shops and art galleries. South Main Arts District is another filled with an abundance of history, and plenty of places to eat or grab a drink. This particular neighbourhood is also home to the National Civil Rights Museum and the Blues Hall of Fame – both iconic and important historic centres for the city.

Despite lockdowns and slowed tourist numbers, Memphis has also continued to invest in new hospitality advancements. The new luxury Canopy Memphis Downtown hotel recently opened its doors to guests, with the flagship hotel boasting 174 guest rooms, including pet friendly options available. Along with this, is Memphis’ brand new dining concept, Curfew Memphis, which occupies the main floor lobby of Canopy Downtown hotel. Curfew brings a unique dining concept to Memphis, offering a fusion between a prominent sports bar and American tavern.

Of course there are traditional favourites that you can’t go past when visiting Memphis. The famous Peabody hotel is a great one for all ages to visit, and would typically attract thousands each year who gather to watch the famous Peabody duck march. For the music buffs, Beale Street has always been a must-visit, offering a selection of blues and jazz bars and clubs, all of which are ready and waiting to welcome back international guests.

Aware of the new normal, especially when it comes to travel, the city of Memphis has come together in order to implement safety and social distancing measures, not only at popular locations, but also across the board. The famous Graceland has recently opened its estate back up to visitors, with strict social distancing measures in place, as well as requiring that that all visitors a face mask upon entry. The exciting Railgarten, which is popular among locals, offering an adult playground with a diner, tiki bar, live music and many indoor and outdoor ping-pong tables, has also adopted similar measures to ensure visitors can safely enjoy the space.

With Memphis slowly starting to reopen its doors, the city and its locals want to remind all of their international friends, that when the time is right to do so, they will be waiting to welcome back visitors with open arms. So, when you’re ready to get the band back together, Memphis will be waiting.

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