A Road Trip to Mississippi

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Come along on a tour of the hot spots that make the Southern state of Mississippi shine.

From the blues trail of the Delta to the calming waters of the Gulf Coast, there’s so much to see in the Magnolia State. Take a trip through Mississippi, and discover everything it has to offer.

Tupelo
Start your journey with a stop at Tupelo, birthplace of the king of rock ’n’ roll, Elvis Presley. Walk through the humble two-room dwelling where Elvis was born and where he lived his first few years. The landmark is the centerpiece of Elvis Presley Park, where you’ll also find Elvis’s childhood church, a memorial chapel, and the Elvis Presley Museum, among other historical markers.

When you head downtown, be sure to check out Tupelo Hardware Co., where Elvis’s mom bought his first guitar. Then, grab a bite to eat at one of the town’s many locally owned restaurants. Sweet Tea & Biscuits Café is the charming tearoom and lunchtime stop of two sisters overflowing with warm Southern hospitality. Regulars sit around playing bridge, participating in book club, or polishing off pieces of coconut pie.

For dinner, swing by South Restaurant, known for its unique spin on Southern cuisine. Try one of the delicious appetizers on the menu, like the cornmeal-fried green tomatoes with a fried egg, Peruvian peppers, and Tabasco hollandaise. Or indulge in the house-made smoked catfish with crispy chips.

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Oxford
Not far from Tupelo is the historically significant college town of Oxford. It is home to the University of Mississippi, Nobel Prize–winning author William Faulkner, and a thriving culinary scene, so be sure to give yourself plenty of time to explore.

Walk among the students as you tour the beautiful Ole Miss campus. Visit the iconic Lyceum, the oldest building on the university’s grounds and the only one of the original structures on campus that remained after the Civil War. Behind the Lyceum is the Freedom Trail marker and the Civil Rights monument honoring James Meredith, the first African American to attend the university after integration.

Then, immerse yourself in literary history at the home of William Faulkner—his beloved Rowan Oak. The author spent more than 30 years here, penning some of his most famous novels. Visitors can see where he found his inspiration and can take a tour of the house, where the outline for A Fable is handwritten on the study wall.

Top off your visit to this culturally rich town by exploring the Historic Downtown Square. You’ll find art galleries, restaurants, and shops like the independent bookstore Square Books. John Beard Award winner John Currence’s City Grocery is a favored spot for fine dining—the shrimp and grits gets raves.