EAT, STAY, PLAY: TUPELO
Tupelo is known by music fans the world over for its most famous native son: Elvis Presley. With fresh, local food and a tradition of live music, Tupelo has plenty to offer its visitors. The city recently committed $11.5 million to build a bike- and pedestrian-friendly trail connecting the downtown area to the Birthplace and East Tupelo. Southern Living Magazine named Tupelo to its list of “50 Best Places in the South Now.”
The Neon Pig Cafe won Thrillist’s “Best Burger in the U.S,” by international reader vote. Thrillist’s description of the Famous Smash will make your mouth water: “The aged filet, ribeye, strip steak, sirloin, and Benton’s bacon blend gets a dose of savory hoisin and tangy Mississippi comeback sauce, plus melted cheddar, pickled onions, pickles, and more of that smoky bacon. It all goes on a hefty ciabatta bun that’s built to soak up all those delicious juices.” The Neon Pig has a butcher shop and small market onsite.
Kermit’s Outlaw Kitchen on Main Street is the sister restaurant to The Neon Pig. Its menus change weekly based on the current harvest from local farms. They include items like Coriander Braised Brisket and Fresh Parm Fries.
Located conveniently next to the Hilton Garden Inn (see below), the Fairpark Grill serves lunch, dinner, and Saturday and Sunday brunch. A warm atmosphere and friendly staff will make you feel at home as you enjoy menu items like local craft beer, Baja fish tacos, and homemade Snickers bar pie.
Hilton Garden Inn, 363 E. Main Street
Holiday Inn Express Hotel & Suites, 1612 McClure Drive
The Elvis Birthplace draws fans from around the world to visit the humble, two-room shotgun house where Elvis was born in 1935. On the beautiful grounds are a state-of-the-art museum with exhibits focusing on Elvis’ early years, a Mississippi Blues Trail marker, and a memorial chapel. Elvis’ childhood church, where he first encountered Southern gospel music, was moved to the grounds; a well-produced multimedia presentation lets visitors experience the Assembly of God Pentecostal services of the 1940s.
At the Blue Canoe, order from the extensive craft beer list and the gourmet bar menu, which includes fare such as Caribbean edamame tossed in Jamaican jerk seasoning, and fried chicken sliders with buffalo sauce and whipped bleu cheese. Enjoy live music by talented performers most nights of the week.
Tupelo Hardware is a local, family-owned business in downtown Tupelo where Gladys Presley bought her son, Elvis, his first guitar in 1945, as a birthday present. The boy strummed the new guitar for a while, before his mother paid $7.75 and a 2% sales tax. The rest is history!
Photo: Tupelo Hardware
This post was written by the staff of Visit Mississippi and highlights some of our favorite destinations. To learn about other top Tupelo visitor attractions and to plan your trip, see tupelo.net. For more Tupelo itineraries, see the Americana Music Triangle driving trail from Tupelo to New Orleans.