One of the best ways to see Tennessee’s historical landmarks, nature parks and attractions is by travelling from Memphis to Nashville on an epic Southern road trip. Start this journey by visiting Memphis’ parks and museums before hitting the road to Nashville, where you can watch a live music performance on Broadway Street and jump right into the party scene.
Travelling by road in Tennessee is a great way to discover more than you expected, as there’s so much to see along the way, so pack your bags and hit the road from Memphis to Nashville.
- Memphis to Nashville/Nashville to Memphis distance: 209 miles (337 km)
- Driving time: approximately 3 hours 15 minutes
- Memphis to Nashville
- Top 3 Tours And Tickets
- 20 Places To Visit On A Memphis To Nashville Road Trip
- 1- Graceland
- 2- Stax Museum of American Soul Music
- 3- National Civil Rights Museum
- 4- Beale Street
- 5- Overton Park
- 6- Shelby Farms Park
- 7- Fort Pillow State Historic Park, Fort Pillow
- 8- Tina Turner Museum, Brownsville
- 9- Chickasaw State Park
- 10- Casey Jones Home & Railroad Museum
- 11- Cypress Grove Nature Park
- 12- Tennessee Safari Park
- 13- Discovery Park of America
- 14- Eiffel Tower Park
- 15- Coal Miner’s Daughter Museum
- 16- Dunbar Cave State Park
- 17- Double Arch Bridge
- 18- Tennessee State Capitol
- 19- Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum
- 20- Broadway Street
Memphis to Nashville
Top 3 Tours And Tickets
- Nashville to Memphis Day Trip – If you’d rather not self-drive, here’s a tour that will take you from Nashville to Memphis, including a VIP tour at Graceland and admission to Sun Studios.
- Memphis Mojo Tour – Shake, rattle and roll your way around Memphis on a guided bus tour of music hotspots. A must-do for music lovers.
- Nashville Hop On Hop Off Trolley Tour – See the sights of Nashville at your own pace.
20 Places To Visit On A Memphis To Nashville Road Trip
Situated on a beautiful 13.8 acre (5.6 ha) estate, Graceland is the former home of rock & roll legend Elvis Presley.
Located near Memphis, Graceland was opened as a museum to the public in 1982 and is one of the highlights of the south, listed on the National Register in 1991.
This National Historic Landmark is the most visited privately-owned house in the United States, welcoming over 650,000 visitors through its doors annually.
It receives more visitors than the White House or Hearst Castle.
Trapped in a time capsule just as it was the last day Elvis lived in the home, Graceland is a must-visit destination during any trip to Tennessee.
Graceland is at 3717 Elvis Presley Blvd, Memphis, TN 38116. Fans may want to treat themselves to a private Elvis walking tour around Memphis and skip-the-line tickets to Graceland.
2- Stax Museum of American Soul Music
In Downtown Memphis, the Stax Museum of American Soul Music is a museum dedicated to the history of soul music and where you can learn about the role soul music played in Memphis’ culture.
The Stax Museum sits on the historic site of the former Stax records, which played an instrumental role in launching the careers of musicians like Richard Pryor, Otis Redding and Carla Thomas.
Opened in 2003, the Stax Museum of American Soul Music is filled with memorabilia and artefacts related to soul music and soul artists.
The museum is a fantastic destination for fans of this popular music genre.
The Stax Museum of American Soul Music is at 926 E McLemore Ave, Memphis, TN 38106-3338. This guided musical bus tour is a great way to shake, rattle and roll your way through Memphis. It includes a visit to Stax Studio.
3- National Civil Rights Museum
Honouring and remembering the lives and impacts made by American Civil Rights leaders, the National Civil Rights Museum is at the site where Martin Luther King Jr was assassinated in 1968.
One of the fascinating places to visit in Memphis, the National Civil Rights Museum was opened in 1991 and is part of the National Civil Rights Museum complex spread out across Memphis.
Providing education to visitors about the American Civil Rights Movement stretching from the 17th century to today, the museum is an interesting place to tick off your road trip list when travelling between Memphis and Nashville.
The National Civil Rights Museum is at 450 Mulberry Street, Memphis, TN 38103. Join a guided city bus tour to get your bearings as you drive past iconic sights like the National Civil Rights Museum.
4- Beale Street
The main artery and beating heart of Memphis, Beale Street, stretches for 1.8 miles (2.9 km) from East Street to the Mississippi.
The whole street is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. It’s the home of blues music and the city’s best bars, clubs and music venues.
That’s why this street is always buzzing with people looking for the city’s best nightlife and attractions.
From B. B. King’s Blues Club to the FedEx Forum, Beale Street is the place to be if you’re looking for fun and entertainment in Memphis. This Memphis city tour includes a drive down Beale Street to the Memphis Riverboats.
5- Overton Park
In Midtown Memphis, the 342-acre (138 ha) Overton Park is an urban retreat home to various Memphis attractions such as the Memphis Zoo, the Memphis Brooks Museum of Art, and the Memphis College of Art.
Opened in 1906, the park was named after John Overton, one of the founding members of Memphis.
An outdoor oasis for joggers, picnickers, and families with children, Overton Park is a tranquil place in Memphis for some relaxing time before you hit the road.
Overton Park is at 1914 Poplar Ave, Memphis, TN 38104-2806.
6- Shelby Farms Park
Open every day of the year, Shelby Farms Park in Memphis is one of the largest urban parks in the United States.
The 4,400 acres (1,781 ha) park has nature trails, greenery, lakes and even a herd of buffalo, making it a unique outdoor urban park.
The park’s Lake’s Edge Gift Shop is an excellent place to pick up quality souvenirs, and the park’s restaurant offers decent food.
Shelby Farms Park is free to visit and is a fun day out.
Shelby Farms Park is at 500 N Pine Lake Dr, Memphis, TN 38134-7970.
7- Fort Pillow State Historic Park, Fort Pillow
Situated on the Tennessee-Arkansas border, the Fort Pillow State Historic Park is renowned for its historical significance and natural beauty.
On the Mississippi River banks, Fort Pillow State Historic Park sits on the original site of Fort Pillow, a Confederate stronghold during the US Civil War.
The 1,642-acre (664 ha) Fort Pillow State Historic Park is a must-visit destination for every history buff, with the park’s museum detailing the famous battle at the fort in 1864.
Fort Pillow State Historic Park is at 3122 Park Rd, Fort Pillow, TN 38041.
8- Tina Turner Museum, Brownsville
Born in Nutbush, Tennessee, the Tina Turner Museum sits within a small schoolhouse that the singer attended when she was a child.
The museum pays homage to the musician who moved to Brownsville with exhibits of items that belonged to Tina Turner.
On display are stage outfits, unique photographs, gold and platinum records and other paraphernalia.
It’s free to enter the museum, and you might also want to drop into another museum (next door) to learn more about Sleepy John Estes, another famous Tennessee musician.
Tina Turner Museum is at 121 Sunny Hill Cove, Brownsville, TN 38012.
9- Chickasaw State Park
Chickasaw State Park is 1,378 acres of nature that was once the home of the Chickasaw tribe.
The Federal Government acquired the land in 1818 and created the park to protect the area.
Chickasaw State Park is one of the most popular parks in west Tennessee, and its main attraction is the beautiful Placid Lake, a lovely area for picnics.
Chickasaw State Park is at 20 Cabin Lane, Henderson, TN 38340-4128.
10- Casey Jones Home & Railroad Museum
This unique museum pays homage to local hero Casey Jones, who risked his life to save others after a head-on collision.
The locomotive engineer died trying and today, the Casey Jones Home & Railroad Museum tells the tale of the infamous crash and Jones’ life.
It’s part of N.C.& St. L. Depot and Railroad Museum and has exhibits worth checking out, including a replica of the train that Casey Jones operated.
You’ll also learn how the railroad that cut through Tennessee influenced the outcome of the Civil War.
Casey Jones Home & Railroad Museum is at 30 Casey Jones Lane, Jackson, TN 38305.
11- Cypress Grove Nature Park
Cypress Grove Nature Park is a scenic area filled with grassland, marchland and cypress forests.
It’s a great place to stretch your legs, breathe fresh air and wander along one of the nature trails.
There’s an easy 1.9-mile (3 km) trail from the main entrance to the lake.
Cypress Grove Nature Park is at 866 Airways Blvd, Jackson, TN 38301.
12- Tennessee Safari Park
Driving through Tennessee Safari Park will make you feel like you’re on an exotic African safari as you spot antelopes, zebras and giraffes.
You’ll also see bison that naturally roam this area as well as emus, ostriches and llamas.
If you’re visiting with kids or love wildlife, purchase a snack bucket at the entrance to feed the animals.
Tennessee Safari Park is at 618 Conley Road, Alamo, TN 38001.
13- Discovery Park of America
In the outskirts of Union City, the Discovery Park of America is a museum and heritage park situated on a stunning 50-acre (20 ha) parcel of land that’s complete with a 100,000 square foot (9,290 m2) museum.
The Discovery Park of America creates an environment where visitors of all ages are encouraged to learn and explore various subjects, including history, science, and nature.
It’s an indoor-outdoor attraction that’s a must-visit during any trip through Tennessee.
Discovery Park of America is at 830 Everett Blvd, Union City, TN 38261.
14- Eiffel Tower Park
Complete with a 60-foot tall (18 m) replica of the original Eiffel Tower, the Eiffel Tower Park in Paris, Tennessee, is the main attraction in this Tennessee city.
It was built in 1990 to celebrate the annual ‘Memphis in May’ festival.
The park’s Eiffel Tower was moved from Memphis to its current location following the Memphis in May festival that year.
Eiffel Tower Park is filled with all sorts of activities and amenities, such as public swimming pools, Frisbee golf courses and pavilions to make your visit to the park fun and entertaining.
Eiffel Tower Park is at Eiffel Tower Lane, Paris, TN 38242.
15- Coal Miner’s Daughter Museum
The Coal Miner’s Daughter Museum in Hurricane Mills is a museum that honours the life of country music legend Loretta Lynn.
Situated on Lynn’s property, the Coal Miner’s Daughter Museum exhibits various memorabilia and artefacts collected or belonging to the singer, including her many awards and mementos.
The museum is free and is highly recommended, especially if you’re a fan of classic country music.
Coal Miner’s Daughter Museum is at 44 Hurricane Mills Rd, Hurricane Mills, TN 37078.
16- Dunbar Cave State Park
A scenic nature park with prehistoric origins, the Dunbar Cave State Park has been important to Mississippian Native American tribes since the 14th century, as evident by the cave art dotted throughout the park’s cave system.
The Dunbar Cave State Park is spread over 144 acres (58 ha) of picturesque Tennessee nature and is free to enjoy.
A stunning park with deep roots in Native American culture, the Dunbar Cave State Park is a fantastic place to stop by on your way to Nashville.
Dunbar Cave State Park is at 401 Old Dunbar Cave Rd, Clarksville, TN 37043.
17- Double Arch Bridge
The bridge was awarded the Presidential Award for Design Excellence in 1995 and is one of Tennessee’s most impressive engineering marvels.
It’s the major thoroughfare for those travelling along Tennessee Highway 96.
At 1,572 feet (479 m), the Double Arch Bridge spans the width of the Natchez Trace Parkway’s Birdsong Hollow and stands over 155 feet (47 m) above the ground at its highest point.
The Double Arch Bridge is well worth driving over as you travel ever closer to Nashville.
Double Arch Bridge is at Natchez Trace Pkwy, Franklin, TN 37064.
18- Tennessee State Capitol
Perched atop Capitol Hill, the highest point in Nashville, the Tennessee State Capitol is the legislative seat of power for the Volunteer State.
Designed by renowned architect William Strickland and completed in 1859, the capitol is a designated National Historic Landmark and is one of only 12 state capitol buildings without a domed roof.
The Greek Revival-style building is made from locally quarried marble and hosts guided 45-minute tours of the capitol to the public.
The building is the home of Tennessee’s Senate, the House of Representatives and the Governor’s Office.
The facility is also the location of James K. Polk’s tomb, the 11th President of the United States.
Tennessee State Capitol is at 600 Charlotte Ave, Nashville, TN 37243-9034. The most flexible way to see the sights of Nashville is to join a double-decker bus sightseeing tour or a hop-on hop-off trolley tour.
19- Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum
One of Nashville’s top attractions, the Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum, was established to celebrate and share the history of country music and its impact on Tennessee and the world.
Situated in Downtown Nashville the Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum was opened in 1967 and has grown into a massive facility with exhibition, retail and events spaces.
An excellent site to visit for country music fans, the Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum is bound to be the highlight of any road trip through Tennessee.
The Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum is at 222 5th Ave S, Nashville, TN 37203. Skip the line and buy your admission ticket online.
20- Broadway Street
Broadway Street is Nashville’s main thoroughfare and the epicentre of all the city’s nightlife, historical landmarks, and tourist attractions.
Known for its live music and honky-tonk scene, Broadway is one of Tennessee’s most famous streets, rivalling the popular Beale Street in Memphis in both annual visitors and the sheer amount of bars, clubs, museums, and restaurants.
Broadway Street was originally named Broad Street, and it was one of Nashville’s first roads, which ran from east to west.
Much of the success and fame of Broadway Street can be traced back to Jimmie Rodgers, who started performing in bars on Broadway Street as early as the 1930s, inspiring other famous musicians of the time to do the same.