Explore Nightlife on Beale Street in Memphis, Tennessee

Play hooky and take a long weekend trip to Memphis, Tennessee. Feel the beat and explore Beale Street, home of the blues. Plus, pay homage to the king himself, Elvis Presley, at Graceland.

By Jenna deJong | Art Direction by Fried Design Co.

Jan 2019

Beale Street in Memphis, Tennessee
Photo courtesy David Meany Memphis CVBSpend some time exploring the nightlife and indulging in great eats on Memphis’s Beale Street.


3 p.m. Overton Square

Stretch your legs and walk through a beloved local favorite, Overton Square. A little more relaxing than the hubbub on Beale Street (which we’ll explore later), this spot has thrived in the last five or six years, boasting live music events, movie productions, theatre performances, shopping and restaurants. 

5 p.m. The Peabody Memphis 

Go big and stay in the hotel with the famous lobby ducks call home, The Peabody. A must for visiting rookies, this hotel is located downtown and is a 10-minute walk to Beale Street. Plus, renovations on 464 guestrooms and suites were recently finished, just in time for your long weekend getaway. 

Pork ribs and brisket at Rendezvous in Memphis, Tennessee
Photo courtesy Charlie Vergos RendezvousGet your BBQ fix at Rendezvous.

7 p.m. Charlie Vergos Rendezvous 

Going to Memphis without tasting some barbecue is like going to New York City without visiting Times Square. Picking a place that best represents is difficult, but you cannot go wrong at Charlie Vergos Rendezvous. A one-minute walk from your hotel, the restaurant features pork ribs and brisket and has a little history to boot.


9 a.m. National Civil Rights Museum 

Located at the site where Martin Luther King, Jr. was assassinated, the National Civil Rights Museum has been featured on the History Channel and has permanent exhibitions about the 1961 Freedom Rides, slavery in America, Rosa Parks and more. 

Noon: The Arcade Restaurant 

As one of Memphis’s oldest restaurants, this diner is on the National Register of Historic Places and has been in the scenes of multiple movies. Memphis Magazine named The Arcade Restaurant one of the “Top 50 Memphis Restaurants.” Breakfast is served all day. 

3 p.m. Stax Museum 

Memphis is the birthplace of numerous types of music, including soul. Second only to Motown in sales and influence, soul music has been responsible for starting the careers of legendary musicians like Isaac Hayes, Booker T. & The MGS and Carla Thomas. Visit Stax Museum ( to learn all about it.

7 p.m. Felicia Suzanne’s

Make a reservation online or call ahead to reserve your spot at one of the tastiest spots in the city, Felicia Suzanne’s. With an eye toward sustainable and local products, the restaurant has a menu inspired by the south and offers entrees like shrimp and grits. Sit on the patio during warmer months. 

9 p.m. Beale Street 

Another absolute must is visiting this wild and crazy strip, Beale Street, home to more than 30 iconic bars and restaurants. Popular in the 1920s, the strip’s mysterious vibes can still be felt today. After 11 p.m., patrons must be 21 or older. 

Elvis memorabilia at Graceland in Memphis, Tennessee
Photo courtesy Andrea Zucker Memphis CVBBefore you drive home, you've gotta stop at Graceland to pay tribute to the one and only, Elvis Presley.


10 a.m. Graceland 

If you are even remotely interested in Elvis Presley, don’t forget to make a stop at his home on your way out. Varying ticket options let guests roam different parts of Graceland including the mansion, a career museum, automobile museum, Elvis’s airplanes and tons of exhibits.

Noon: Gus’s World Famous Fried Chicken 

This family affair—which has 27 locations across the country but started in Memphis—has been operating for more than 60 years. Its famous hot and spicy fried chicken is considered a must-try for visitors. Expect to get a slice of white bread with your meal, a tribute to Gus’s World Famous Fried Chicken’s original owners and their original sandwiches.

Three Museum Ticketing Options for Memphis 

The Music, The Movement

What it is: a partnership with Stax Museum of American Soul Music and The National Civil Rights Museum 
Tickets: purchase at either museum 
Price: $25 for adults, $22 for seniors and students, $20 for children 

The Backstage Pass

What it is: visit the Memphis Rock ’n’ Soul Museum, Graceland and the Stax Museum of American Soul Music 
Tickets: purchase at Stax Museum of American Soul Music or the Memphis Rock ’n’ Soul Museum 
Price: $84 

Memphis Hop On

What it is: a tour where guests see 11 Memphis attractions in one day. Admission of each attraction isn’t included in the price but includes more than $70 in discount coupons. 
Tickets: visit to buy tickets
Price: $20-30

More to Explore


Interested in making the trip? Learn about everything that Memphis, Tennessee has to offer!