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geetee062 May 17th, 2016 08:32 PM

Memphis to New Orleans
My wife and I will be spending 2-3 days in Memphis in late October before having a week to drive down south through Mississippi. I was thinking of visiting Clarksdale, Vicksburg and Natchez before making it to New Orleans for a couple of days. But am open to any other suggestions. I realise that this does not really do Mississippi justice by just visiting these towns but I at least want a taste of what she offers.

We want to travel the most scenic route if possible and happy for any advice given.

We are from Australia and have no real idea of what roads to take.

Gardyloo May 18th, 2016 06:53 AM

I think your basic plan is sound.

Between Clarksdale and Vicksburg you want to stick to the Great River Road - MS Highways 1 and 465 - rather than US 61.

Don't miss ribs and tamales at Abe's BBQ at the Crossroads in Clarksdale. And for a little glimpse of Sodom on the Mississippi, have a gander at Tunica, just north of Clarksdale. Don't sell your souls.

tomfuller May 18th, 2016 06:54 AM

How are you getting to Memphis? US 61 is otherwise known as the "River Road".
I'm guessing the rental car company in Memphis would rather have you bring the car back to Memphis instead of dropping it in New Orleans.
Take about 2.5 days driving down 61 into New Orleans (Metarie).
Spend 2 days in New Orleans and then head north on I-59 as far as Meridian.
Take US 45 north from Meridian to Tupelo and then US 78 back to Memphis to return the car.
If you didn't want to fly into Memphis, you could take the Amtrak train "City of New Orleans" from either Chicago or New Orleans to get to downtown Memphis. The station is across the street from a restaurant that was an Elvis hangout.

ekscrunchy May 18th, 2016 08:58 AM

Here is a recent story about eating in the region; I'd like to do a similar trip myself one day soon:

geetee062 May 19th, 2016 06:11 PM

Thanks everyone for your assistance and suggestions.

tomfuller we are actually picking up the rental car in Nashville for the commencement of our journey, spending some time in Memphis before following the Great River Road to New Orleans as a one way trip.

Now a further question. Is it viable to spend a day/night in each of Clarksdale, Greenville ,Vicksburg and Natchez or better to spend partial days in each and then move on to other locations seeing that they are in reasonably close proximity to one another?

ellymae13 Jul 7th, 2016 01:06 PM

What an interesting road trip! I lived outside of Memphis for two years, participating in a teaching program, and I met my husband in Clarksdale--he proposed to me at Clarksdale High School (where we both taught).
Neither one of us is from that area, so we did quite a bit of exploring and driving. I've made the drive from Memphis to New Orleans in one easy day of driving. But I hope you enjoy your explorations--the Mississippi Delta is unlike anywhere else.

In Clarksdale, you should definitely go to Ground Zero at night, and plan to stay up late. They often have local musicians come onstage late in the night. :) You could do a partial day in Clarksdale and Greenville. You could take a full day to explore the civil war battlefield in Vicksburg (driving and hiking through are permitted.)

Can I ask why Greenville is on your list?

Also, I recommend visiting Greenwood, MS. It's a very interesting town, with a beautiful downtown. They have a gorgeous and delicious fine dining (with private booths) at the restaurant, Giardina's.

I also recommend "Hey Joe's" a sit-down hamburger place in Cleveland, MS (about 40 min from Clarksdale) with some of the best hamburgers I've ever eaten. It's a really relaxed and chill environment.

Finally, do you have your hotel reservations planned out? The Delta is a very different place, and there are not many tourists going through, and there aren't many hotels south of Memphis (outside of Tunica and Clarksdale). You could also stay in Clarksdale for a few days, and drive around the area to explore, using it as a base point for some days trips, before continuing onto New Orleans!

I hope you enjoy some of the spectacular sunsets in the Delta. They're breathtaking.

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