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Celebrated as the birthplace of rock and roll, and the home of blues, Memphis is a city that's filled with music. There are places of musical pilgrimage, bars with live music that spill onto the street and festivals for arts and culture. It's rich in Southern hospitality too, with a food scene that's dominated by sticky barbecue delights that'll feed your soul. Thanks to the city's position along the Mississippi River, outdoor enthusiasts are entertained as well, with high-flying adventures, kayaking and kilometres of biking trails to follow.
You can expect a Memphis hostel to offer plenty of social space, like a common room and even an outdoor terrace, where you can meet other travellers. They often have free Wi-Fi to keep you connected and air con for warm summer months. To help you stick to your budget, there are also hostels in Memphis that offer a free breakfast where you can fill up on local favourites like bagels.
Memphis' neighbourhoods capture the city's vibrant spirit. Downtown, you'll find the iconic neon lights of Beale Street and the Sun Studio. In Crosstown, South Main and Binghampton, there are microbreweries to drink at and old buildings being converted into cool creative spaces filled with Memphis spirit. Cooper-Young in Midtown is cosmopolitan yet casual with boutique shops, speciality eateries and happy-hour hangouts. East Memphis is a haven for outdoor sports, from zip-lining through the treetops to kayaking.
In Memphis, the top sights to see revolve around its rich musical heritage. As well as paying homage to The King at Graceland, you can tour the Sun Studio, learn about American soul music at the Stax Museum and soak up the electric vibes on Beale Street while watching street performers. There are also free concerts to see at the Levitt Shell Theatre, or you can park up and watch movies all night from the comfort of your (rented) car at the Malco Summer Drive-In outdoor cinema.
Memphis International Airport is around 15km from the city centre. Jump on a public Memphis Area Transit Authority (MATA) bus that runs hourly to the Airways Transit Center, where you'll find Greyhound services. Memphis' Amtrak Central Station is found downtown. Around the city, there's a free Sun Studio Shuttle that travels between three of Memphis' best music attractions. MATA runs a citywide bus service or you can hire a bike and make use of the city's kilometres of trails, bike lanes and shared-access roads.