Historic attractions and parks abound in Memphis, including Elvis Presley's preserved Graceland mansion, which offers a free-admission meditation garden open at select times. Many area art and culture museums offer free admission daily or at select times throughout the month, with diverse, music-focused cultural festivals populating the city's downtown district throughout the year. For lower-cost transportation to major attractions, visitors can ride the city's MATA public transit system, which offers bus and trolley services. Some attractions are free only on certain days – please check before you go.

Nearby trips: Best Beaches, Best Weekend Getaways, Best Day Trips

1.The March of the Peabody Ducks

The March of the Peabody Ducks
© The March of the Peabody Ducks

The March of the Peabody Ducks is one of Memphis' most unique and iconic attractions, dating back to 1933 at the city's landmark downtown Peabody Hotel. The legend of the Peabody Ducks dates back to the early 1930s, when the hotel's general manager and a friend placed several live decoy ducks in the hotel's indoor fountain upon return from a hunting trip in Arkansas. The act expanded into a daily tradition, aided by circus trainer Bellman Edward Pembroke, who taught the ducks a now-famous march through the fountain. More than 80 years later, five North American mallards still parade through the hotel's fountain at 11:00am and 5:00pm daily, as part of public performances that can be viewed without hotel stay. Between shows, the ducks live within a $200,000 Royal Duck Palace located atop the hotel's rooftop.

118 S 2nd St, Memphis, TN 38103, Phone: 901-529-4000

Fun day trip ideas close to me: Ohio, From San Francisco, Weekend Getaways from NYC, Texas, CA quick trip, Oregon, Florida

2.Levitt Shell

Levitt Shell
© Levitt Shell

Levitt Shell, originally known as the Overton Park Shell, is a famed open-air amphitheater within Memphis' Overton Park, best known as the site of the first paid concert by legendary popular music performer Elvis Presley in 1954, widely considered to be the first modern rock-and-roll concert. The bandshell was originally constructed in 1936 by the City of Memphis with assistance from the Works Progress Administration, designed by architect Max Furbringer to mimic similar bandshells in New York City and Chicago. Since its renovation and renaming in 2008, the shell has hosted more than 50 free concerts throughout the year, offered Thursdays through Saturdays during the spring and fall months. Free concert films are also showcased during the summer months at the amphitheater by the organization Indie Memphis.

1928 Poplar Ave, Memphis, TN 38104, Phone: 901-272-2722

Things to do near me: Sarasota, From Boston, OR, NC, AK, Boulder, From Houston, NJ, GA, Orlando

3.Memphis Brooks Museum of Art

Memphis Brooks Museum of Art
© Memphis Brooks Museum of Art

Memphis Brooks Museum of Art is a free-admission art museum located within Memphis' Overton Park, home to the state's largest and oldest collection of world art. The museum was originally founded in 1916 and is housed within a Beaux Arts-style National Landmark building originally constructed in 1913 and expanded several times throughout the 20th century. 29 art galleries showcase a collection of over 10,000 works of art, with international pieces spanning from antiquity through the present day. Works include pieces of art from ancient Greece and Rome and works of modern and contemporary art from Europe, Africa, the Americas, and around the world. Major works on display include pieces by Renoir, Winslow Homer, Robert Henri, Childe Hassam, and Nancy Graves. The museum is open to the public Wednesdays through Sundays during the morning and afternoon hours.

1934 Poplar Ave, Memphis, TN 38104, Phone: 901-544-6200

Long weekend getaways with friends near you, what to do in: Poconos, NY, TN, MI, OC, New England, Cleveland, All Inclusive, Charleston, IL, VA, San Diego, TX

4.The Center for Southern Folklore

The Center for Southern Folklore
© Courtesy of Kim - Fotolia.com

The Center for Southern Folklore is a Memphis cultural organization that was originally founded in 1972 by Judy Peiser and William Ferris to promote the arts and culture of the American South, with a focus on the region's folk, rockabilly, and country music heritage. The center is free and open to the public, hosting a significant audiovisual recording library and collection of historical photographs and artifacts. Photography and folk art exhibits are showcased at its Heritage Hall, which also hosts performances by regional Memphis musicians and dancers. Works by regional folk artists are sold at the center's Folklore Store, which also hosts live performances. Each year, the center hosts the annual Memphis Music and Heritage Festival over Labor Day, celebrating the arts and culture of the Delta region.

119 S Main St, Memphis, TN 38103, Phone: 901-525-3655

More romantic getaways, honeymoon: Cincinnati, MD, OR, HI, Retreats, Asheville, Indoor Amusement Parks, WI, San Francisco

5.Elmwood Cemetery

Elmwood Cemetery
© Courtesy of Tonya Thompson - Fotolia.com

Elmwood Cemetery is one of Memphis' most historic cemeteries, originally established in 1852 on 40 acres of land approximately two miles from the city's center. Since then, the cemetery has expanded to more than 80 acres, serving as the final resting place for more than 75,000 residents of the city, including some of its most notable politicians, artists, and civil rights leaders. Since 2002, the cemetery has been listed on the National Register of Historic Places, serving as the city's oldest cemetery. The beautiful garden cemetery is home to large stands of gorgeous ancient trees and sweeping vistas, with monuments and mausoleums such as the Stokes Columbarium dotting its landscape. Other attractions throughout the cemetery include the NRHP-listed Morgan Bridge, the 1866 Phillips Cottage, and the Victorian Gothic-style Lord's Chapel, which may be rented for funerals and private special events.

824 S. Dudley Street, Memphis, TN 38104, Phone: 901-774-3212

More kid-friendly fun things to do near me today: Iowa, WI, From New Orleans, ME, ID, FL, LA, From Minneapolis, From Dallas, FL, Carlsbad, CA, Charlotte, Williamsburg, LA, PA

6.Lichterman Nature Center

Lichterman Nature Center
© Courtesy of Peken Rame - Fotolia.com

Lichterman Nature Center is a 65-acre arboretum and nature center in East Memphis, open to the public for free each Tuesday afternoon beginning at 1:00pm. The center offers a variety of indoor and outdoor exhibits, including interactive exhibits showcasing animal specimens and fur swatches. Exhibits on the surrounding area's natural habitats are showcased at the Backyard Wildlife Center, while nature-themed gifts and educational materials are sold at the center's nature store. Outside, a three-mile nature path traverses a wildlife observation area, showcasing native flora and fauna, including amphibian, reptile, and mammal species. Public special events are hosted at the center annually, including an Earthfest and a Discovery Days event.

5992 Quince Rd, Memphis, TN 38119

Top-rated things to see near me, beach and last minute resort ideas: Charleston WV, Pensacola, Baton Rouge, Encinitas, Colorado Springs, Dayton OH, Dauphin Island, Provincetown, VT, VA, Atlanta, From Chicago, CA, AZ, From NYC, GA beaches, CO

7.The Art Museum at the University of Memphis

The Art Museum at the University of Memphis
© The Art Museum at the University of Memphis

The Art Museum at the University of Memphis is the main art museum of the University of Memphis campus, originally opened to the public in 1981 as the University Gallery. Since 1994, the museum has showcased a permanent collection of art and artifacts spanning from antiquity to the present day, including ancient Egyptian works, traditional African art, and modern and contemporary pieces. The museum is open to the public Mondays through Saturdays during business hours, with the exception of times the university is closed to the public. Free admission is offered daily, with free guided tours of museum exhibits available for small groups with advance registration.

142 CFA Building, Memphis, TN 38152, Phone: 901-678-2224

Top things to see near me, family weekend breaks in April, May, June: East Coast Beaches, SC, Beaches near Orlando, Last Minute, Palm Springs, Portland, Bar Harbor, Destin, Houston, Newport Beach, NH, Flagstaff, Minneapolis, Jacksonville

8.Shelby Farms Park

Shelby Farms Park
© Courtesy of Kurt P. - Fotolia.com

Shelby Farms Park is one of the United States' largest urban parks, spanning more than 4,500 acres, over five times the size of New York City's famed Central Park. The park sits on land that formerly belonged to the Nashoba Commune, which was later used as a penal farm until its conversion into a recreational area in the 1970s. Today, it offers a chance to observe wildlife in its natural habitats, including a herd of over 45 bison that graze on 56 acres of pasture lands. Hiking and biking trails are offered throughout the park, including wildlife observation trails for watching deer, turtles, beavers, and birds. Two lakes at the park offer opportunities for boat rowing, with rental boats available to visitors. A 120-acre off-leash dog area is also provided for visitor use, along with an 18-hole disc golf course and a BMX racing track.

6903 Great View Drive North, Memphis, TN 38134, Phone: 901-222-7275

Luxury resorts & family weekend hotels to visit in July, August, September around me: Best caves in the U.S., SD, Taos, NH, East Coast, DE, Disney, Portland, Martha's Vineyard, From D.C., Destin, MA, AK, Vegas, From LA, Hot Springs, Midwest , KY, Dream vacation spots, Southwest vacations

9.The Pink Palace Museum and Planetarium

The Pink Palace Museum and Planetarium
© The Pink Palace Museum and Planetarium

The Pink Palace Museum and Planetarium is the Mid-South's premiere family science and history museum, attracting more than 240,000 annual visitors of all ages. The museum, which is housed within the former mansion of Piggly Wiggly store founder and supermarket entrepreneur Clarence Saunders, is open to the public for free Tuesday afternoons beginning at 1:00pm. Permanent exhibits include a replica of the original Piggly Wiggly grocery store, a miniature circus attraction, and exhibits on Memphis' music scene, cotton industry, and civil rights movements. Collections of 15th-century indigenous pottery are also showcased, along with dinosaur fossils and taxidermies. The museum is affiliated with the Pink Palace Family of Museums, which also encompasses the Lichterman Nature Center and the Coon Creek Science Center.

3050 Central Ave, Memphis, TN 38111, Phone: 901-636-2362

What to do near my location downtown in winter, summer: Wedding venues in Illinois, MA, VA, CT, MD, NJ, TN, AR, Raleigh, Canada, WV, RI, MT, Indianapolis, London, From Kansas City

10.A. Schwab General Store

A. Schwab General Store
© A. Schwab General Store

A. Schwab General Store is historic Beale Street's only remaining original business, originally opened to the public in 1876 by Jewish immigrant Abraham Joseph Schwab. As the oldest operating store in the Mid-South, the family-owned store has become a major Memphis tourist attraction, spanning two floors and selling unique, quirky merchandise and home goods, including Memphis-area souvenirs and folk art items. Visitors can explore the second-floor Beale Street Museum for free, which houses artifacts connected to the historic thoroughfare and its role in blues music history. Other attractions at the store include a turn-of-the-century replica soda fountain and cafe area, which serves light sandwiches, Sweet Magnolia ice cream, and sodas crafted with homemade syrups.

63 Beale St, Memphis, TN 38103, Phone: 901-523-9782

What is there to do near me, cheap family vacation activities, bar, cafe, wedding venues: Washington beaches, Duluth, Water parks in Texas, New Braunfels, Long Island, Birmingham, Carmel, WA, UT, MN, AR, From LA, Day trips from Seattle, Chicago, Milwaukee

11.Graceland Meditation Garden

Graceland Meditation Garden
© Courtesy of white_bcgrd - Fotolia.com

Graceland Meditation Garden is the premiere free attraction at Graceland, the preserved former mansion and estate of legendary rock music performer Elvis Presley. The mansion, which is located on 13.8 acres in Memphis and is preserved today by Presley's daughter Lisa Marie, is one of the city's biggest tourist attractions, offering home tours for a ticketed upcharge. Walk-up and drive-up visitors can explore the meditation garden, which serves as Presley's burial site, each morning between 7:30am and 8:30am. All guests must enter the garden's gates by 8:30am and must leave the garden before daily tours at Graceland begin. Visitors should note that the garden is not open to the public on Thanksgiving or Christmas Day.

3734 Elvis Presley Boulevard, Memphis, TN 38116, Phone: 800-238-2000

Cool places to go in spring, summer, fall, public beach near me, landmarks: Wichita, CT, CA, NM, GA, NC, OH, UT resorts, ME, KS, CT, NC, MI, MS, IA, LA, DE, AR, Cruise vacations, CO

12.The Greenline

The Greenline
© Courtesy of mmphoto - Fotolia.com

The Greenline is a seven-mile trail that connects Memphis' Midtown district to nearby Shelby Farms Park, transforming the route of a former railroad line track area into a walking and cycling trail. The flat, paved trail encourages Memphis residents to remain active and engage in outdoor exercise and is a favorite for visitors and area residents alike. Entrance points to the trail are offered at Tillman, Graham, Podesta, and Highland Streets, Waring and Sycamore View Roads, High Point Terrace, and Farm Lake. The rails-to-trail line is managed by Shelby Farms Park, which also offers walking and biking trails throughout its 4,500-acre campus, along with areas for horseback riding, children's playgrounds, and a number of protected wildlife population areas.

500 N. Pine Lake Drive, Memphis, TN 38134, Phone: 901-222-7275

Free things to do near me & must see tourist attractions in December, January, February, March: MN, SC, Northern CA beaches, Holland, MI, Leavenworth WA, Beaches near DC, Day trips from Las Vegas, California wedding venues, Mexico, NC

13.South Main Trolley Nights

South Main Trolley Nights
© South Main Trolley Nights

South Main Trolley Nights is a regular cultural street festival held within Memphis' eclectic and historic South Main neighborhood, located one block from historic Beale Street in downtown Memphis. The neighborhood is known as a central hub for the arts, home to the birth of the rock and roll genre and the world's first modern supermarket. The festival was inaugurated in 2000 and is held on the last Friday of each month, presented by the South Main Association. Visitors can explore the neighborhood's galleries and shops during the event, many of which remain open late and offer special exhibitions and events. Live music performances are showcased at several locations, and many restaurants in the area offer food and drink specials for the duration of the event. During the winter holidays, a holiday market is offered in conjunction with the event, featuring artisan vendors and live holiday music performances.

Phone: 901-270-0106

Fun & cheap vacations, free points of interest: Things to Do in Tennessee, Places to Visit in Tennessee, Holiday Trips

14.Overton Park

Overton Park
© Courtesy of Georges - Fotolia.com

Overton Park is a 342-acre urban park in Memphis' Midtown district, best known as the site of the famed Levitt Shell, where rock performer Elvis Presley gave his first paid concert. The park is the home of the Memphis Zoo, which showcases more than 3,500 animals for a ticketed upcharge, and the nine-hole Overton Golf Course, which was constructed in 1926. Massive outdoor recreational spaces may be accessed for free, including hiking and jogging trails and an off-leash 1.3-acre dog recreation area. Lovely formal gardens span between Morrie Moss Lane and Veterans Plaza, while more than 32 tree species are showcased at the 172-acre Old Forest Arboretum. Other attractions include the free-admission Memphis Brooks Museum of Art and the 142-acre Tennessee State Natural Area.

1914 Poplar Ave #202, Memphis, TN 38104, Phone: 901-214-5450

Top sights, weather, 24 hour restaurants, 48 hours in, beaches near me: Things to Do in Florence, Family vacations, Otago, Shawano, Sherman

15.The Wolf River Greenway

The Wolf River Greenway
© Courtesy of DonLoucas - Fotolia.com

The Wolf River Greenway is a pathway in development along Memphis' Wolf River, eventually intended to span 36 miles from the northern portion of Mud Island to the nearby cities of Collierville and Germantown. The project's initial phase, opened to the public in 2010, stretches between Walnut Grove and Shady Grove Roads as part of the Germantown City Greenway system, spanning more than two and a half miles. It is managed by the Cities of Memphis and Germantown, with an additional 23-mile section currently in development to link the trail to Mud Island in downtown Memphis. The greenway's trail is open to walkers, cyclists, skateboarders, and inline skaters, with a speed limit of 10 miles per hour maintained throughout. Well-behaved dogs are permitted on leashes along the greenway.

P.O. Box 11031 Memphis, TN 38111-0031, Phone: 901-452-6500

Top 10 & family things to do, Italian, seafood restaurant, conference venue, waterfalls: McDonald's hours, Things to Do in Springfield MO, Sedona To Grand Canyon, Seville To Granada

16.Beale Street Historic District

Beale Street Historic District
© Courtesy of SeanPavonePhoto - Fotolia.com

Beale Street Historic District preserves one of America's most iconic urban business districts of the 20th century, known around the world as a hotspot for blues and rock and roll music. The street, which was originally founded in the 1840s and rose to prominence as a popular African-American cultural district at the turn of the 20th century, spans approximately 1.8 miles between the Mississippi River and East Street in downtown Memphis. Its major three-block span is preserved as a National Historic Landmark and is home to a famed neon row of blues nightclubs, restaurants, and shops, considered to be a major melting pot for musical acts across genres, associated with iconic acts such as B.B. King, Muddy Waters, and Louis Armstrong. Each May, the Beale Street Music Festival serves as the kickoff for the citywide Memphis in May celebration, bringing major popular music performers to the street's Tom Lee Park.

Beale St, Memphis, TN 38103, Phone: 901-526-0117

Top 10 sights to see by car, good restaurants near me: Syracuse, Weirton, St. Croix Falls, Kennewick, Michigan Beaches, Best beaches in Massachusetts

17.Rajun Cajun Crawfish Festival

Rajun Cajun Crawfish Festival
© Courtesy of Yuriy Korzhenevskyy - Fotolia.com

Rajun Cajun Crawfish Festival is the unofficial celebration to start spring in Memphis, hosted each year in mid-April along Wagner Place and Riverside Drive near Beale Street in the city's downtown district. More than 18,000 pounds of crawfish are served at the free-admission festival, which hosts a wide variety of food, drink, and art vendors. Unique crawfish-themed special events are hosted throughout the day, including crawfish bobbing events, crawfish eating contests, crawfish races, and an annual crawfish toss. Live music performances are hosted on three stages, featuring nationally-known artists across several genres. A children's play zone is also offered, along with an annual Louisiana Gumbo Cook-off, which features cash prizes and gumbo tastings.

Wagner Pl, Memphis, TN 38103, Phone: 901-577-2500

Places to eat near me, coffee shops, flea, farmers market, tropical honeymoon trip finder, sandy beach by car: Things to Do in Northern Virginia, Las Vegas Airport Restaurants, Detroit Airport Restaurants, Jim Thorpe

18.Bass Pro Shops at the Pyramid

Bass Pro Shops at the Pyramid
© Bass Pro Shops at the Pyramid

Bass Pro Shops at the Pyramid offer a chance to explore Memphis' iconic Great American Pyramid, which was constructed in 1991 as a 20,000-seat sporting arena, located along the banks of the Mississippi River near Mud Island. Though the 321-foot Egyptian-themed venue ceased operating as a sporting arena in 2009, it was reopened in 2015 as a megastore for national chain retailer Bass Pro Shops, offering 535,000 square feet of shopping and unique visitor attractions. Visitors can stay at the 103-room Big Cypress Lodge hotel, housed within the pyramid, or explore the Ducks Unlimited Waterfowling Heritage Center, an interactive wetlands educational museum. A nautical-themed restaurant, archery and shooting range, bowling alley, and aquarium are also hosted at the pyramid, along with an observation deck at the structure's tip which may be reached by riding the world's tallest freestanding elevator. Visitors should note that while the pyramid is free to enter, many attractions require a purchase or ticketed upcharge.

1 Bass Pro Dr, Memphis, TN 38105, Phone: 901-291-8200

Romantic weekend getaways near me, spring break, places to live, for married people, elope, elevation, fish restaurant, living, breakfast: Anacortes, Benton City, Blaine, Small vacation ideas, SoHo, Bristol, Things to Do in Alexandria VA


© Courtesy of logan - Fotolia.com

GPSMYCITY offers self-guided walking tours throughout many of Memphis' most noted attractions and landmarks, available via the GPSMYCITY app on the iTunes and Google Play smartphone app stores. Visitors can choose from eight different self-guided walking tours available for download on the app, which all include detailed walking tour maps and information on all attractions along the walk. The app works with existing smartphone navigation services to aid visitors in finding walking tour locations throughout the city. Tours include famous architecture walking tours, nightclub walking tours, museum and art gallery walking tours, and tours of sites related to rock performer Elvis Presley. For visitors looking to conserve smartphone data plans, all app data is also available offline.

Weekend trips, what are spa resorts known for, last minute travel guide, what is a great day trip destination: Kayaking in Tennessee, Tennessee breweries

20.Memphis Made Brewing

Memphis Made Brewing
© Memphis Made Brewing

Memphis Made Brewing is one of Memphis' premiere craft microbreweries, originally opened to the public in 2014 in the city's Cooper-Young neighborhood. Three year-round brews are offered by the company, including its Cat Nap IPA, European-style Fireside Ale, and Junt Cream Ale. Free brewery tours are offered at the company's tap room each Saturday and Sunday at 4:00pm, elaborating on the brewery's operations and beer-making techniques. Seasonal and limited-release beers can be purchased after tours, including taproom-only offerings. Food trucks are frequently parked on site at the brewery, with free parking offered at the company's lot on York Avenue.

768 Cooper St, Memphis, TN 38104, Phone: 901-207-5343

Romantic places near me this weekend, all inclusive, live music, unique shopping in town, nightlife for tourists: Tennessee vacation, Cabins in Gatlinburg

21.Jimmy Ogle History Walking Tours

Jimmy Ogle History Walking Tours
© Courtesy of Natalia Bratslavsky - Fotolia.com

Jimmy Ogle History Walking Tours offer five free guided walking tours throughout Memphis, elaborating on the city's history, architecture, and cultural significance in the American Mid-South. Tours are hosted by popular Memphis history buff and public personality Jimmy Ogle and explore areas of the city's downtown district and famous neighborhoods. Tours are offered weekly, with many showcasing little-known facts about the city's connection to blues, rock and roll, and soul music. Most tours depart on Tuesday mornings, though visitors should check Ogle's website for current tour information. Ogle also appears at a number of public special events throughout the year and is available for hire for private special events and small group presentations.

Phone 901-604-5002

Day trips from, guided vacations, essential facts, solo destinations, vacation spots for seniors, pictures: Murfreesboro, Clarksville, Pigeon Forge Trolley, Things to Do in Kingsport TN

22.Downtown Memphis Murals

Downtown Memphis Murals
© Courtesy of Alessandro Biascioli - Fotolia.com

Downtown Memphis Murals highlight a unique collection of vibrant street art and murals located throughout the city's downtown district, organized into a popular walking tour by the Downtown Memphis Commission. Visitors can explore murals as part of a self-guided walking tour throughout the city or choose select murals to visit for highly-Instagrammable photo opportunities. Murals highlighted on the walking tour include Damon Lamarreed and Pugs Atomz's Sound of Memphis mural, the Artery Murals in Barboro Alley, Jeff Zimmerman's A Note For Hope mural, and a number of cleverly-painted phone box murals throughout the city. Beautiful colorful murals are also located at sites throughout the city's South Main neighborhood, Beale Street Historic District, and Uptown region.

Book your trip, outside & indoor activities, kid friendly popular scenic places, what's near me, excursions, art, tours, towns: Things to Do in Memphis, Wedding venues in Memphis, Best time to visit Memphis

22 Best Free Things to Do in Memphis, TN