We are a 30-something couple from Scotland, looking for advice on planning a US trip from Chicago to the Deep South.
We’ve done things slightly backwards, as flights are already booked arriving in Chicago on 27th August and departing from Atlanta on 13th September, so that gives us 17 nights to join the dots.
Our interests on this trip include music (Blues, Jazz, Cajun, Soul, Country, Hip Hop), good food, architecture, wildlife, parks, gardens, museums, history.
Current rough itinerary is as follows. Difficult to judge the distances & travel times involved. Does this seem too ambitious for the number of days available?
Chicago, IL – stay 3 nights
- Art Institute, view skyscrapers
- Original plan was to take overnight sleeper train (for better experience, views & less environmental impact) from Chicago to either Memphis or New Orleans; but I fear this may take too long so we may, reluctantly, take an internal flight to NOLA
New Orleans, LA – stay 3 nights, pick up a hire car for rest of the trip
- Take riverboat trip(?)
- Drive north via Baton Rouge, LA to experience a little of Cajun country
Natchez, MS – stay 1 night
- View antebellum houses
- Take Natchez Trace Parkway / Highway 61 north
Vicksburg / Jackson, MS (optional) – stay 1 night
Clarksdale, MS – stay 1 night (in Shack Up Inn)
- Red’s Lounge, Ground Zero Blues Club
Memphis, TN – stay 2 nights
- Sun Studio, Stax Museum, possibly Rev Al Green’s church service
Muscle Shoals / Huntsville, AL (optional) – stay 1 night
Nashville, TN – stay 3 nights
- Grand Ole Opry, Bluebird Cafe
Chattanooga, TN (optional) – stay 1 night
Gatlinburg / Sevierville / Pigeon Forge / Cherokee, TN (optional) – stay 1 night
- Fiona has a bit of a Dolly Parton obsession, so Dollywood is a possibility!
- Drive through Great Smoky Mountains National Park
Atlanta, GA – drop off hire car (expensive one-way fee?), fly home late evening
Any and all comments/suggestions welcomed, including places to eat/drink/be merry! Thanks
Neil & Fiona
Recent ActivityView all United States activity »
- 1 Fodor's Travel QA Test_20170119115046
- 2 LAX Time Between Terminals
- 3 28 Day Road Trip to the Northwest from Chicago
- 4 Change planes in Atlanta
- 5 Any Estero Island/Ft Myers experts?
- 6 Fodor's Travel QA Test_20161230120556
- 7 Palm Springs restaurant suggestions.
- 8 Suggestion for Las Vegas to Yosemite in July
- 9 Fodor's Travel QA Test_20170119111907
- 10 Florida beach vacation
- 11 Trip to USA in July
- 12 sight seeing Las Vegas to Palm Springs to Sante Fe
- 13 Beaches in Incline Village
- 14 Fodor's Travel QA Test_20170119110010
- 15 San Diego to Oregon road trip itinerary
- 16 Key West luxury hotels
- 17 USA Trip in 4 Weeks
- 18 Coffee in Boston?
- 19 Scenic vistas along the road the big island Hawaii
- 20 Florida vacation
- 21 Later Winter around Mobile
- 22 a short trip to san francisco
- 23 Orlando Travel Guide – Theme Parks Not Included
- 24 Early 2017 Broadway Banter - "Come From Away"
- 25 Has anyone rent US travel WiFi before?
Itinerary suggestions for Chicago-New Orleans-Atlanta trip