34 Fun Things to Do in Memphis | 2024 (with Photos)

Ana Dimic

Ana Dimic - Travel Writer

Published: June 29, 2023

Hey! How’s it going? I’m Ana, an avid traveler and Memphis enthusiast. Discover the hidden gems and must-see attractions in this vibrant city through my personal recommendations and captivating photos.

Fun Things to Do in Memphis, TN

If you're planning on visiting Memphis, TN, you'll find plenty of exciting things to do in this vibrant southern city. From its rich music heritage to its mouth-watering BBQ scene, Memphis has something for everyone.

Whether you're a history buff, an outdoor enthusiast, or simply looking for a fun-filled vacation, this city won't disappoint.

We've put together a list of 34 fun things to do in Memphis, ranging from exploring iconic landmarks to enjoying some of the city's most unique attractions and the best of the best American soul and blues music.

So, sit back, relax, and get ready to plan your next adventure in Memphis.

Most Recommended Thing to Do


Top Choice Hotel

The Peabody Memphis.

Our Top Choice Restaurant

Flight Restaurant & Wine Bar

Our Top Choice Bar for Nightlife

Beale Street

Best Time to Visit

Ideal weather and fewer tourists: spring or fall.

Average Temperature

Memphis temperatures are usually hot and humid.

Transportation Options

Buses, taxis, ride-sharing, cycling, walking, car rental options.

Average Cost ($, $$, $$$)


My Top Recommendation

Memphis, the vibrant city known for its rich musical heritage and mouthwatering BBQ, offers countless experiences to make your trip truly memorable. Start your day by exploring the legendary Beale Street, immersing yourself in the lively atmosphere, and listening to soulful blues tunes that echo through its historic walls.

For a taste of Memphis's cultural heritage, make sure to visit Graceland, the iconic home of the legendary Elvis Presley, where you can step back in time and walk through the life of the King of Rock 'n' Roll. Wrap up your day by indulging in a hearty BBQ feast at one of the city's renowned restaurants like Central BBQ or Gus's World Famous Fried Chicken, and savor the flavors that have made Memphis a culinary destination.

What You'll Need to Bring

  1. Comfortable walking shoes, as Memphis is a city best explored on foot.
  2. Lightweight and breathable clothing, especially during the hot summer months.
  3. Sunscreen to protect your skin from the strong sunshine.
  4. Camera or smartphone to capture the city's vibrant sights and moments.
  5. Cash or credit cards for shopping, dining, and entertainment.
  6. A map or GPS device to help navigate the city's streets and attractions.
  7. Any necessary medications or personal toiletries.
  8. An open mind and adventurous spirit to fully immerse yourself in the city's unique culture and experiences.

What Not to Miss

Beale Street and Sun Studio

What to Avoid

  • High-crime areas

  • Excessive public displays of wealth

  • Going out alone late at night

  • Leaving valuables unattended

  • Engaging with aggressive panhandlers

  • Straying too far from tourist areas without local guidance

  • Ignoring safety precautions in crowded areas

  • Overlooking the importance of using sunscreen and staying hydrated in hot weather

  • Disrespecting local customs and cultural sites

  • Overindulging in Memphis' famous barbecue and fried food without balancing it with healthier options

1. Meet the Animals at Memphis Zoo

Memphis Zoo

Memphis Zoo is a popular attraction for visitors and locals alike. With over 3,500 animals representing more than 500 species, there's plenty to see and explore.

Admission prices vary depending on the season and day of the week but typically range from $10-$15 for children and $15-$20 for adults.

Memphis Zoo is home to the world's first giant panda bamboo forest exhibit, which houses two giant pandas named Le Le and Ya Ya.

2. Relax at Shelby Farms Park

Shelby Farms Park

Shelby Farms Park is one of the largest urban parks in the country and a must-visit destination when in Memphis TN. The park offers over 40 miles of scenic paths for hiking, biking, and dog walking trails.

Visitors can enjoy stunning views of the lake, take part in outdoor activities like kayaking and paddleboarding, and even catch a glimpse of some wildlife. The park also hosts several events throughout the year, from concerts to farmers' markets.

If you're planning to visit Memphis, be sure to add Shelby Farms Park to your list of must-see attractions. Note that if you love to cycle, there is a BMX park in Memphis, TN as well.

3. Feel Lucky at Southland Casino Racing

Southland Casino Racing

Southland Casino Racing is a popular entertainment destination located in West Memphis, just across the river from Memphis TN. Visitors can enjoy a variety of fun attractions, from casino games to live racing events.

The venue has also hosted several celebrity guests over the years, including actor and comedian Martin Lawrence, who visited the casino in 2021.

With its lively atmosphere and exciting entertainment options, Southland Casino Racing is a great spot to check out for anyone looking for a thrilling night out in Memphis.

4. Visit Graceland – The Home of Elvis Presley

Graceland – The Home of Elvis Presley

Graceland is the former home of the legendary musician Elvis Presley. The estate has become a popular tourist attraction, allowing visitors to tour the iconic mansion and see artifacts from Elvis's life and career.

The mansion includes features like the Jungle Room, a TV room, and the Meditation Garden where Elvis and his family are buried. This place has a rich history.

Elvis Presley Blvd is a street in Memphis that runs from downtown to the south of the city, passing by Graceland along the way. The boulevard is named in honor of Elvis, who called Memphis home for most of his life.

Along the street, visitors can find a variety of Elvis-themed attractions, including gift shops, restaurants, and museums. One of the fun things to do here is to visit Elvis Presley's Memphis complex, which houses several museums dedicated to the singer's life and legacy. This is a treat for music fans.

5. The Rock n' Soul Museum

Rock n' Soul Museum

The Rock n' Soul Museum is an essential stop for anyone interested in music history and the soulful sounds of Memphis TN. Located on Beale Street, the museum celebrates the city's rich musical heritage, exploring the origins of soul, rock n' roll, and blues music.

Exhibits showcase the contributions of legendary musicians like Elvis Presley, B.B. King, and Johnny Cash, and visitors can even step inside a recreated recording studio to experience the magic of Memphis music-making.

The museum also includes a tribute to the Blues Hall of Fame and is one of many must-see Memphis attractions for music lovers of all ages. You will find some extremely rare pieces of music memorabilia here.

6. Have Fun at Beale Street – The Night of Your Life in Downtown Memphis

Beale Street

Beale Street which is located in downtown Memphis is the place to be for anyone looking to have a night of fun and excitement in Memphis TN. This historic street is home to a vibrant nightlife scene, with numerous bars, clubs, and restaurants offering live music and delicious food.

Visitors can dance the night away to blues, jazz, and rock n' roll tunes, sample some of the city's famous BBQ, or simply soak up the energetic atmosphere.

Whether you're looking for a wild night out with friends or a romantic date night, Beale Street promises to deliver a memorable and entertaining experience.

7. Tour the National Civil Rights Museum at Memphis TN 38103

National Civil Rights Museum

This is the best way to learn about the civil rights movement, from the 17th century to Martin Luther King Jr and the present day. The National Civil Rights Museum in Memphis TN 38103 is moving, important, and informative.

Housed in the Lorraine Motel, the site where Martin Luther King Jr. was assassinated in 1968, the museum features exhibits that explore the struggle for civil rights in America, from slavery to modern-day issues.

The National Civil Rights Museum in Memphis is a powerful and thought-provoking destination that tells the story of the American Civil Rights Movement. Visitors can learn about the key events and figures of the movement and reflect on the ongoing fight for social justice.

The National Civil Rights Museum has the best interactive exhibits and this is a must-visit attraction for anyone interested in history and the pursuit of equality.

8. Wander Around the Memphis Botanic Garden

Memphis Botanic Garden

The Memphis Botanic Garden is a serene and beautiful oasis located in the heart of the city. This 96-acre garden is home to a wide variety of plants and flowers, including a Japanese garden, a butterfly garden, and a wildflower meadow.

Visitors can stroll along tranquil paths of the Memphis Botanic Garden, relax in scenic outdoor spaces, and admire stunning works of outdoor art.

The Memphis Botanic Garden also hosts a range of events and educational programs throughout the year, from plant sales and workshops to concerts and seasonal festivals.

Whether you're a nature lover, a gardener, or simply seeking a peaceful escape from the city, the Memphis Botanic Garden is a delightful destination.

9. Memphis Music Hall

Memphis Music Hall

If you loved the Rock n' Soul Museum and need more rock n' roll in your life, head over to the Memphis Music Hall. This is a must-visit destination for music lovers and anyone interested in the cultural history of Memphis.

The Memphis Music Hall showcases the lives and work of Memphis' most famous musicians, including Elvis Presley, B.B. King, and many more, through exhibits, artifacts, and interactive displays.

The Memphis Music Hall is near the National Civil Rights Museum, so you can cheer yourself up there after a morning of learning and reflecting.

10. Grab a Bite at The Arcade Restaurant

Arcade Restaurant

The Arcade Restaurant is a beloved Memphis TN institution that has been serving up classic Southern cuisine since 1919, making it Memphis' oldest restaurant.

Located in the heart of downtown, the Arcade Restaurant is renowned for its delicious breakfasts, burgers, and milkshakes, as well as the restaurant's vintage decor and friendly service.

With its rich history and old-school charm, the Arcade restaurant is a must-visit destination for foodies and history buffs alike. Try the country-fried steak - it's to die for.

11. Have a Drink at B.B. King's Blues Club in Downtown Memphis

B.B. King's Blues Club

Having drinks at B.B. King's Blues Club is a fun and lively experience that captures the spirit of Memphis' vibrant music scene. Visitors can enjoy a wide selection of beers, wines, and cocktails while listening to live music from some of the city's best blues performers.

The club's energetic atmosphere, friendly staff, and rich musical heritage make it the perfect spot for a night out with friends or a romantic evening with a loved one.

12. Experience Skydiving and Take a Leap of Faith


Skydiving in Memphis TN is an exhilarating and unforgettable experience that offers breathtaking views of the city and surrounding landscapes.

Whether you're a seasoned skydiver or a first-timer, the thrill of jumping out of a plane at 10,000 feet is like no other.

As you fall through the sky, you'll feel a rush of adrenaline and a sense of pure excitement that you'll never forget. Skydiving is an unforgettable adventure that's sure to be the highlight of any trip to Memphis.

13. Say Hello to the Famous Peabody Ducks at The Peabody Hotel Lobby

Famous Peabody Ducks at The Peabody Hotel Lobby

One of the most iconic Memphis attractions is the Peabody Hotel as well at Memphis TN 38103. This historic hotel is known for its timeless elegance and Southern charm.

The hotel's most famous residents are the Peabody ducks, who make their grand entrance twice daily by marching down a red carpet from the hotel's rooftop fountain to the Peabody Hotel lobby.

This quirky tradition has been a beloved part of the hotel's history for over 80 years, and visitors from all over the world come to witness it.

Whether you're a first-time guest at the Peabody Memphis or a seasoned regular, watching the famous Peabody ducks is a must-see experience that you'll never forget. So, make sure to visit the Peabody Hotel.

14. Visit The Beauty Shop Restaurant

Beauty Shop Restaurant

The Beauty Shop restaurant in Memphis is a popular destination known for its unique combination of delicious food and retro-chic decor.

Housed in a former 1950s beauty salon, the restaurant features vintage salon equipment, quirky artwork, and a lively atmosphere that's perfect for a night out with friends or a romantic dinner with a loved one.

The menu is full of tasty Southern-inspired dishes and inventive cocktails, making it a favorite among locals and tourists alike. With its one-of-a-kind ambiance and mouth-watering cuisine, the Beauty Shop is a must-visit destination for anyone visiting Memphis.

15. Golf and Games Family Park – Fun for All the Family

Golf and Games Family Park

Golf and Games Family Park in Memphis is the perfect destination for families looking for a day of fun and adventure. With a wide range of attractions and activities, including mini-golf, go-karts, laser tag, bumper boats, and more, there's something for everyone to enjoy.

The park's colorful and vibrant atmosphere is sure to put a smile on everyone's face, and the variety of games and challenges will keep the whole family entertained for hours.

Whether you're a thrill-seeker or just looking for a fun way to spend the day, Golf and Games Family Park is a great choice for families.

16. Have a New Adventure at Jumping World

Jumping World

Jumping World in Memphis, TN is a fun destination for kids and adults alike. This is a great place to go if you want to get the children out of the summer sun for a couple of hours.

The indoor trampoline park offers a variety of activities, including trampolines, basketball hoops, tumbling lanes, dodgeball, a battle beam, and foam pits, providing hours of entertainment and exercise.

Dixon Gallery and Gardens

Dixon Gallery and Gardens is a popular tourist destination in Memphis, known for its impressive collection of art and stunning outdoor spaces.

Visitors can explore the museum's galleries, which feature works by artists from around the world, as well as wander through the beautiful gardens, which showcase a variety of plants and landscapes.

With its peaceful atmosphere and world-class art, the Dixon Gallery is a must-visit destination for anyone exploring Memphis.

18. Learn More at the Children's Museum of Memphis

Children's Museum of Memphis

The Children's Museum of Memphis is a popular attraction for families visiting the city. The museum offers a range of exhibits and activities designed to engage and educate children of all ages.

Visitors can explore the history of Memphis through interactive exhibits, or unleash their creativity in the art studio. The museum also features a variety of educational programs and events throughout the year, making it a great destination for school groups and families.

With its focus on learning and fun, the Children's Museum of Memphis is a must-see destination for anyone looking to experience the best of the city's museums. This Memphis museum will make a huge impact on your Memphis tour.

19. Have Fun at the Tom Lee Park

 Tom Lee Park

Tom Lee Park's location on a slope is a unique feature, which provides visitors with a spectacular view of the Memphis cityscape, stretching from the Memphis Bridge to the Memphis Pyramid.

This makes it a popular spot for tourists to visit and take in the breathtaking view of the city. Visit the park on Riverside Dr for views of the water and a tranquil place to unwind.

20. Take a Photo of the Memphis Pyramid

Memphis Pyramid

The Memphis Pyramid is a multi-purpose arena located in downtown Memphis, Tennessee. Originally built as a sports and entertainment venue, it was redeveloped as a Bass Pro Shops retail store in 2015.

The pyramid is 32 stories tall and its unique shape makes it a recognizable landmark in the Memphis skyline. In addition to its retail and entertainment offerings, it has also been used for concerts, sports events, and conventions.

The Memphis Pyramid is a must-visit attraction for tourists and locals alike, offering a unique shopping and entertainment experience. The sheer size and variety of attractions make it a must-visit destination in Memphis.

21. Visit the Bass Pro Shops Pyramid

Bass Pro Shops Pyramid

But it is not enough to look at the pyramid from the outside. If you are in the market for fishing and hunting equipment, this is your store.

The Bass Pro Shops Pyramid in Memphis is a unique shopping and entertainment destination, featuring a giant aquarium, bowling alley, and even a wilderness-themed hotel.

With 600,000 gallons of water features and the largest collection of waterfowl and hunting-related equipment in the world, this is a hunter's paradise.

The architectural design of the pyramid-shaped building is awe-inspiring, and visitors can explore the vast selection of outdoor gear and apparel or take part in fun activities such as archery and rock climbing.

22. Go on a Picnic with a View of the Mississippi River

Picnic with a View of the Mississippi River

Having a picnic with a view of the mighty Mississippi River is one of the most enjoyable activities in Memphis. There are several museums located near the river, including the National Civil Rights Museum, the Mississippi River Museum, and the Mud Island River Park.

A picnic would be a great way to relax and enjoy the views before or after visiting these exciting museums. The best time for picnics is during the spring and fall when the weather is mild, and the colors of the leaves are vibrant.

So pack a basket, grab a blanket, and head to the river for a fun-filled day in Memphis.

23. Visit the Memorial Park Funeral Home and Cemetery and go on a ghost tour

Memorial Park Funeral Home and Cemetery

Memorial Park Funeral Home and Cemetery is a serene final resting place in Memphis, TN. It features the famous Crystal Shrine Grotto, an underground cavern filled with dazzling crystals and minerals. This unique attraction draws visitors from around the world.

In addition, the cemetery offers ghost tours, where visitors can hear spooky stories and legends about the site.

Funeral Home and Cemetery is a beautiful and peaceful place to reflect and remember loved ones. It is an important part of Memphis' history and a must-see destination for those interested in the city's unique and fascinating past.

This place is listed on the National Register of Historic Places so it's worth the visit.

24. Check out the Birthplace of Rock and Roll - Sun Studio

Sun Studio

Sun Studio in Memphis, Tennessee, is a historic recording studio known as the "Birthplace of Rock 'n' Roll." Opened in 1950, it was where Elvis Presley, Johnny Cash, Jerry Lee Lewis, and other legendary musicians recorded some of their earliest tracks.

Today, visitors of Sun Studio can take a tour of the studio and see the original recording equipment, as well as memorabilia from the era.

The studio also hosts live music events and performances by up-and-coming artists. Sun Studio is a must-visit attraction for music lovers and anyone interested in the history of rock 'n' roll.

25. Explore the Stax Museum of American Soul Music

Stax Museum of American Soul Music

Located in Memphis, TN, the Stax Museum of American Soul Music is a must-see destination for music lovers. This unique museum offers visitors the opportunity to explore the amazing history of soul music and its impact on American culture.

It is situated in the heart of Soulsville, USA, just a short drive from the Mississippi River. The museum features an impressive collection of exhibits, including costumes, instruments, photographs, and rare recordings.

The best time to visit is during the summer months, when the museum hosts a series of live performances and concerts, making it a fun and unforgettable experience for all visitors.

26. Visit the Autozone Park in Downtown Memphis

Autozone Park

AutoZone Park is a minor league baseball park located in downtown Memphis, Tennessee. The park is the home of the Memphis Redbirds, a Triple-A affiliate of the St. Louis Cardinals.

The stadium is known for its stunning architecture and modern amenities, including luxury suites, club-level seating, and a grassy berm area in the outfield for families to relax and enjoy the game.

It has been named one of the best minor league ballparks in the country, with its unique blend of modern design and classic baseball charm. Autozone Park is a popular attraction for locals and tourists alike, drawing visitors year-round for games and events.

27. Get Inspired at Memphis Orpheum Theater

Memphis Orpheum Theater

Memphis Orpheum Theater is located in downtown Memphis, specifically at 203 S Main St, Memphis, TN 38103. The Orpheum Theater in Memphis is a historic theater that has been beautifully restored and hosts a variety of concerts, plays, and events.

Its stunning architecture and history make it a must-visit destination for tourists and locals alike, especially for those who appreciate the arts and culture.

28. Hang Out at Mud Island River Park

Mud Island River Park

Mud Island River Park offers a unique outdoor experience in Memphis with its replica of the Mississippi River, Riverwalk, and outdoor amphitheater.

Visitors can take a monorail ride to see the river model, explore the museum exhibits, and enjoy scenic views of the Memphis skyline.

The Mud Island River Park also hosts various events and concerts throughout the year, making it a popular attraction for both tourists and locals alike.

29. Go Back in Time While Exploring the Victorian Village

Woodruff-Fontaine House Museum

The Victorian Village in Memphis is a must-see destination for history buffs and architecture enthusiasts. This historic neighborhood is home to some of the most beautifully preserved Victorian mansions in the city, including the Woodruff-Fontaine House Museum, which is open for tours.

The area is also host to several cultural events and festivals throughout the year, making it a vibrant and lively place to explore. The Mallory-Neely House as well as the Magevney House are history museums built into old homes that can be visited here.

30. Explore the Slave Haven Underground Railroad Museum

Slave Haven Underground Railroad Museum

The Slave Haven Underground Railroad Museum is a must-visit attraction in Memphis for those interested in the history of the Underground Railroad and the turbulent history of slavery in the US.

The museum features a unique glimpse into the lives of those who escaped slavery and showcases artifacts and exhibits that highlight the struggle for freedom.

Visitors can take guided tours of the historic home, learn about the courageous individuals who helped others escape slavery, and gain insight into the profound impact of slavery on American history.

31. Research Legendary Music History and Music Studios

Ardent Studios

Memphis, TN is known for its rich music history, and several legendary music studios played a significant role in shaping the city's music scene. You can do a self-guided walking tour of all of these iconic places in a day in Memphis.

Sun Studio, where artists like Elvis Presley, Johnny Cash, and Jerry Lee Lewis recorded their hits, is a must-visit for music lovers.

Stax Records, which produced music from Otis Redding, Sam & Dave, and Isaac Hayes, is now home to the Stax Museum of American Soul Music.

Ardent Studios has recorded many famous artists, including Led Zeppelin, and Royal Studios, where Al Green recorded his hits, is still producing music today.

32. Take the Kids to the Pink Palace Museum

Pink Palace Museum

The Pink Palace Family of Museums is a popular attraction in Memphis, featuring a variety of exhibits on natural history, cultural history, and science.

Visitors can explore the museum's permanent collections, including dinosaur fossils, African-American history, and regional geology. The museum also features a planetarium, an IMAX theater, and a historic mansion that once belonged to a wealthy Memphis family.

Overall, the Pink Palace is a great destination for families and anyone interested in learning more about the history and culture of Memphis. Jade Museum is also great for the little ones.

33. Go to the Orpheum Theatre

Orpheum Theatre

The Orpheum Theatre in Memphis is an iconic theater that has been entertaining audiences for over 90 years. Its stunning architecture, intricate interior designs, and state-of-the-art technology make it a must-visit destination in Memphis.

The Orpheum Theatre hosts a variety of shows, including Broadway productions, concerts, and film festivals, attracting audiences from all over the world.

Moreover, the Orpheum Theatre is dedicated to supporting arts education in the community and provides educational programs for students and teachers. There is no doubt that the Orpheum Theatre is an important cultural institution in the city.

34. Withers Collection Museum

Withers Collection Museum

Finally, the Withers Collection Museum and Gallery is a photography museum dedicated to the work of Ernest Withers, who captured the history of the civil rights movement through his camera lens.

Visitors can see a collection of his photographs and learn about his impact on the civil rights movement. It is a must-visit for anyone interested in history and photography.

FAQs Regarding Things to Do in Memphis

Let's take a look at some frequently asked questions about fun things to do in Memphis.

Is there a miniature circus in Memphis?

Yes, there is a miniature circus in Memphis called the "Circus Museum and Hobbies" located at 1959 Madison Avenue. It features a large collection of miniature circus models and dioramas, as well as other hobbyist items such as model trains and planes.

Can you go inside the Crystal Shrine Grotto?

Yes, visitors can go inside The Crystal Shrine Grotto. It is located in the Memorial Park Cemetery in Memphis, and it is open to the public during the cemetery's visiting hours. However, it's important to note that the grotto is a part of the cemetery and should be treated with respect. Visitors should be mindful of the surroundings and follow any rules or guidelines that may be posted in the area.

What is the best place for photographers in Memphis?

A beloved spot for photographers, the South Main Arts District boasts a perfect blend of vintage trolley cars, restaurants, and colonial townhouses, making it an ideal place to capture stunning pictures. You will get your perfect picture in South Main Arts District.

Is the Nash Museum worth the visit?

Yes, the C.H. Nash Museum at Chucalissa is worth visiting for those interested in Native American history and culture. The museum is located on the site of an ancient Mississippian culture village and features exhibits on the daily lives, beliefs, and practices of the people who lived there. Visitors can see artifacts such as pottery, tools, and weapons, and explore a reconstructed Mississippian house.

Summing Up: Fun Things to Do in Memphis

Memphis is one of the most amazing places in the States. There are so many fun things to do in Memphis, it is hard to mention them all. Wherever you go, you will want to start on Beale Street.

From Memphis Brooks Museum and picnics in East Memphis to Elvis Presley's legacy and the delicious local food, you will never be bored.

Hopefully, you have been inspired by this list to start planning your ultimate Memphis getaway. Keep this list with you so you can check off items as you explore.