South Your Mouth ~ The Mississippi Blues Trail

Journey of Foods & Sounds of the Delta. Explore the local cuisine which has made the area famous! Visit FAME Studios, Muscle Shoals Studio, Crossroads of the South, and the Grammy Museum. Attend the Viking Cooking School, tour historic antebellum homes, and discover something new in the City of Soul.

Duration
13 Days /12 Nights

Group size

Customization
Available!

Tour Pricing Estimated Inclusions: 12 nights' hotel accommodation; 12 breakfasts; 7 lunches; 10 dinners; admissions, entrance, and guide fees as stated in the itinerary, including taxes & gratuity. Except gratuity for guide fees is not included on adult tours unless otherwise requested.


Highlights Include:
  • Fame Studios
  • Shoals Studio
  • Southern Food
  • Crossroads of the South
  • Grammy Museum
  • Tupelo
  • Viking Cooking School
  • Antebellum Home
  • African American Museum
  • City of Soul

Day One:
  • Arrive in Tuscumbia, Alabama in time for lunch at Super Hero Chef, the brain child of celebrity chef Darnell Ferguson who has appeared on The Food Network several times and recently won the 2018 Ultimate Thanksgiving Cook off. This is a superhero-themed restaurant that serves urban eclectic American cuisine, and breakfast all day. Enjoy a Candy’d Bacon Egg & Cheese Sandwich or Banana Pudding encrusted French Toast! Other choices include Ferguson’s famous burgers like The War Eagle & much more.
  • After lunch, visit The Alabama Music Hall of Fame which honors all styles of music and is dedicated to the preservation and celebration of Alabama’s musicians and the state’s great musical heritage.
  • Later in the afternoon, enjoy a tour of Fame Studios. See the Recording Studio that recorded artists like Aretha Franklin with “Do Right Woman” & “I Never Loved a Man” which went on to win a Grammy for Album of the Year. Many others recorded here like Wilson Pickett who fired off a string of classic recordings here including “Mustang Sally,” and “Hey Jude” which featured Duane Allman.
  • Check into our local hotel and enjoy some down time before we depart for our Rooftop dinner with 360 degree views.
Day Two:
  • Check out and depart for a big, bad breakfast at, where else? Big Bad Breakfast! This restaurant guarantees you’ll never look at breakfast the same. Whether it’s the house-cured Tobacco/Brown Sugar Bacon, Crispy Southern-fried Chicken, or original Grit Girl Grits, you’ll be talking about coming back before you leave!
  • Then we’ll tour Muscle Shoals Recording Studio where many famous artists recorded hits like Lynyrd Skynyrd, The Rolling Stones, Bob Segar, Duane Allman, Cher, Little Richard and dozens more!
  • Next, tour the W.C. Handy Home & Museum. W.C. Handy, widely recognized as the Father of The Blues, was born in Florence, Alabama in 1873. Here you can feel the Blues down to your toes standing beside the very piano that shook with “St. Louis Blues” for the first time. Enjoy lunch on own in downtown Florence.
  • Don’t miss having a scoop of ice cream and coke float at Trowbridges. There are many great restaurants located here to choose from, such as 306 Barbecue, Rosie's Mexican Cantina and many others.
  • Next, we’re going to mix our music tour with a taste of Frank Lloyd Wright architecture and see The Rosenbaum House, followed by a visit to the home of Helen Keller.
  • Return to our hotel to enjoy some down time. We celebrate our last night in Florence with dinner and bowling in an upscale boutique establishment. Enjoy delicious Southern foods and live entertainment featuring many of the famous songs recorded in Muscle Shoals.
Day Three:
  • After breakfast we depart and head West towards the Mississippi Delta. With a short stop to enjoy learning about the Railroad history at the Crossroads of the South and the strategic railroad importance during the Civil War and later the Norfolk Southern and Kansas City Southern Lines.
  • Just before lunch we’ll stop at the Coca-Cola Museum which houses 1,000+ pieces of Coke memorabilia collected in the 100+ years of the Bottling Works located here.Afterwards, enjoy lunch in the oldest drugstore soda fountain in Alabama founded in 1865 which still looks the same! Enjoy an original “Slugburger” and “Coke float” or a milkshake.
  • After lunch we continue to Tupelo, home of the King! Arrive to Elvis Presley’s Birthplace Museum and see his birthplace home and childhood church.
  • Tonight, enjoy a private dinner event in the old Greyhound Bus Stop featuring local barbecue and an appearance by an Elvis Presley performer!
Day Four:
  • After breakfast and check out, we’ll enjoy a guided tour of Tupelo to see where Elvis went to school, visit downtown Tupelo and the Hardware Store for unique Elvis souvenirs and enjoy lunch in a “Dive” and afterwards enjoy a milkshake served at Elvis’s favorite Drive In.
  • We’re off to Oxford, home of William Faulkner. Enjoy touring his home before we listen and learn at a “Blues 101” class that educates us on The History of the Blues and the many influences which created the style of music and the influences it has had on other genres.
  • Next we’re off to our one-of-a-kind Historic Hotel built from Cotton Row buildings which remained after the end of the era. Dinner is served “Rooftop” while your luggage is delivered to your luxury rooms. Enjoy live blues entertainment by an authentic, local Juke Joint Entertainer. Dine on The Delta Meat Market ground breaking cuisine featuring foods rooted in Mississippi Delta culinary traditions.
Day Five:
  • After an included breakfast, we depart for the Delta Blues Museum and an authentic “Juke Joint” lunch and entertainment at “Ground Zero.”
  • Then, we’ll stop at a Pottery Studio and shop where we will marvel at this famous pottery concentrating on both artistic and functional pieces since 1954.
  • Return to Cleveland for free time to enjoy the many boutique shops located along Main Street and visit the Railroad Museum if you wish.
  • Dinner and the evening are on own to enjoy any of the many restaurants and gathering places located in the downtown area. There is so much to discover!
Day Six:
  • After breakfast and check out, we’ll visit the Grammy Museum focusing on the musical achievement of Mississippians.
  • En route to our next stop on our musical journey, we’ll make a stop to a place widely recognized as where Delta music was born. The musicians who lived on and around this farm invented a new style of singing and playing guitar. Here, they sang, played and wrote the haunting songs that influenced music from jazz to rock and roll.
  • Enjoy a guided tour of A Journey of Foods & Sounds of the Delta of the farm and visit the Cotton Gin located here.
  • Enjoy lunch included in Indianola, where Southern favorites come buttered, browned, sizzling and spiced just right—and with a side of warm bread.
  • Next, we’ll visit BB King Museum & Delta Interpretive Center, a Delta Blues museum with the mission to “empower, unite, and heal through music, art and education, and share with the world the rich cultural heritage of the Mississippi Delta.
  • Late afternoon, depart for the Home of the Viking Cooking Range and where “The Help” was filmed.
  • Check into our upscale hotel and enjoy some time to enjoy your luxurious accommodations before we depart to enjoy music in the Tavern of 6 share cropper shacks and enjoy Catfish, beer (BYOB anything other than beer). Listen to Acoustic Blues Music.
Day Seven:
  • After breakfast, enjoy a guided tour of Greenwood to see many of the homes that were in the movie “The Help,” see The Tallahatchie Bridge made famous by Bobbie Gentry’s song, and visit Money, Mississippi where Emmit Till was murdered in the 1950s and was that spark that galvanized the Civil Rights Movement. Also learn about Robert Johnson, the Blues artist that “Sold his Soul to the devil at the Crossroads,” and who died at a plantation located here. The Rolling Stones, Robert Plant, Eric Clapton and others gave much credit to Robert as one of their main influencers.
  • Enjoy lunch on own in downtown Greenwood and free time to shop the unique shops along Main Street.
  • Next we’re going to the Viking Cooking School where we will enjoy a cooking demonstration while sipping on wine and enjoying some Southern nibbles. Time is allocated to shop in the Viking Cooking School offering a wide array of Viking cookware, cutlery and appliances.
  • Relax at your luxurious hotel before we depart for dinner at a Juke Joint that has hosted such icons as Ike Turner, BB King, Ray Charles and James Brown. Enjoy Southern eats and live music.
Day Eight:
  • After a leisurely breakfast, depart to our next visit, The 1927 Flood Museum to learn about one of the greatest natural disasters this country has ever known.
  • Enjoy lunch at a 1950s historic diner that was featured on the Food Network featuring secret homemade hot sauce and dressings which you can purchase to take home. Ask for the homemade salsa or jams to taste which are made from fresh local produce. Feast on the homemade foods, and enjoy the friendly services and atmosphere.
  • After lunch, cross the mighty Mississippi to Arkansas to enjoy a tour of a mansion gem in the Delta which escaped remodeling in the 20th century and retains many of its original architectural features.
  • Next, tour the last Antebellum mansion along the River in the Mississippi Delta, where we will enjoy some pre-dinner wine and appetizers as we tour this beautiful plantation home.
  • Dinner is served with one of the most unique, original and delicious Honky Tonk meals you’ll ever have!
Day Nine:
  • After breakfast, we’ll check out and depart for Natchez, Mississippi! Enjoy a tour of Stanton Hall, an Antebellum classical revival mansion and one of the most opulent mansions to survive in the Southeastern United States.
  • Lunch is served in the Carriage House. Meet Guide and enjoy a tour of Natchez. Pass by many Antebellum homes of this charming and beautiful town. Stop at several locations such as First Presbyterian Church and the African American Museum. Check into the Historic Grand Hotel located on the Mississippi.
  • Enjoy a stroll along the riverfront to see the many ships pass by and perhaps a beautiful sunset.
  • Dinner tonight will be a very special location within one of the most magnificent Antebellum homes found anywhere.
Day Ten:
  • Enjoy breakfast before our touring today. Our first stop is Longwood, also known as Nutt’s Folly; a historic Antebellum octagonal mansion that is a fascinating house with equally fascinating history.
  • Then we’ll visit the Delta Music Museum where a guided tour will enlighten us. Learn how Conway Twitty became a baseball star, why Aaron Neville wears a St. Jude earing, how cousins Jerry Lee Lewis, Mickey Gilley and Jimmy Swaggart played the game “unconquered.” Located in Ferrida, Louisiana, home of Jimmy Swaggart, Jerry Lee Lewis and Mickey Gilley, the museum endeavors to educate the public on the musical heritage of the Mississippi River Delta Region.
  • Meet our tour Guide and depart for a working farm and cotton plantation to learn both old and new cotton farming methods, selected by Rand McNally as a “must see site” as one of the Top 3 attractions in Arkansas, Louisiana & Mississippi. Learn the history of Gospel and Jazz and enjoy a musical performance including “Ole Man River” and more.
  • Enjoy lunch on own and some shopping time along Natchez’s quaint Main Street before our afternoon of touring.
  • Later in the afternoon, return to The Grand Hotel and enjoy the evening on your own to explore local restaurants and taste the flavors of Natchez.
Day Eleven:
  • Arrive Enjoy breakfast prior to checking out and depart for the capital of Mississippi, Jackson, called “The City of Soul” because Jackson has birthed many historical marks that have shaped the country from Civil Rights to Civil War, to music, to world class museums.
  • Enjoy lunch at one of the many restaurants located in the historic Founders District including barbecue, New Orleans style seafood or old-time drugstore soda fountain.
  • This afternoon, visit two of Jackson’s world-renowned museums, the Mississippi Civil Rights Museum and the Mississippi History Museum.
  • Enjoy our evening meal in a historic Colonial Revival mansion, circa 1908.
Day Twelve:
  • After breakfast, meet our local Guide who will take us on a Discovery Tour of Jackson. We’ll see such sites as the Medgar Evers House and the Greyhound Bus Station.
  • Enjoy a tour of the Governor’s Mansion and tour Malaco Records, one of the country’s largest gospel, blues and contemporary Southern rhythm and blues music recording studios.
  • Enjoy lunch on own before our last tour experience for the day, a visit to the Eudora Welty House and Gardens, which gives you a wonderful sense of what Mississippi is all about.
  • Return to the hotel and rest. Enjoy the best Farewell dinner you’ll ever experience at a top Jackson restaurant given 5 Stars by Open Table reviews. Housed in a historic 1898 building that once was a grocery store, this farm-to-table menu promises to be one of the best you’ll have ever experienced.
Day Thirteen:
  • Enjoy breakfast at the hotel prior to checking out. Depart for home.

*Base rate does not include motor coach transportation, airfare, airport transfers, driver gratuity, guide gratuity, (student groups exempt) or any upgrades or add-ons unlisted from itinerary as stated. Personalized itineraries with custom pricing and/or additional transportation can be created and added based on client needs and upon client’s request. Estimated prices may vary based on day of arrival, time of year, and other conditions. MARS will customize quotes or personalize itineraries for FREE.


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