Those after the full surround-sound experience of the South, can’t do better than this musical masterpiece. With its intro in Atlanta, often overlooked in favour of noisier neighbours Nashville and Memphis, you’ll discover a hotbed of musical talent, from hip- hop to gospel. It’s also lled with big-city attractions, like World of Coca Cola and Inside CNN tours. The pull of the musical maestros soon takes hold, and Nashville tempts you with its Country Music Hall of Fame and Grand Ole Opry – you could always crank up the radio for a detour to the Chatanooga Choo Choo or Jack Daniels distillery on your way. Moving to Memphis, country and western makes way for the birthplace of the blues. It may have sealed its fame in the Elvis years, and time at Graceland’s a must, but the blues still play proud in Beale Street’s bars. Tuning in to jazz stations instead puts you in the New Orleans spirit, as you drive through Natchez and Baton Rouge to The Big Easy and famously ornate Bourbon Street. But the sounds of the South aren’t all you’ll experience: there’s the taste of barbecue and gumbo; Vicksburg’s military connections; Pensacola’s Gulf beaches; Floridian capital, Tallahassee; and interludes among the antebellum homes of grandiose Savannah and Charleston.
The romance, rhythms, and rich cinematic and civil history of the American South come together on this feature-packed 15-day road trip.
Taking you from the civil war to the civil rights movement, you’ll start your Deep South discoveries in Atlanta, visiting the childhood home of Martin Luther King and Stately Oaks Plantation, which inspired local legend Margaret Mitchell’s epic Gone With The Wind.
The Road to Tara museum will transport you to the 19th century with its movie memorabilia and costumes – but you’ll feel it first-hand strolling through the South’s most beautiful cities, including Augusta, Savannah, Montgomery, and Charleston, where you could even have your own ‘Scarlet O’Hara moment’ with a carriage ride.
Scenes from other movies unveil themselves too – from the Avenue of the Oaks at Boone Hall Plantation, which appeared in The Notebook, to the Antebellum architecture of Beaufort, as seen in Forrest Gump.
The rich history of the South is more dramatic than any film though, and you’ll discover the cotton trading sites and stories of Savannah; tales of Rosa Parks’ bus boycott in Montgomery; and accounts of the 1960s civil rights marches in Selma.
Of course, this is the great American South – so be prepared to party too. With five nights in New Orleans, Nashville, and Memphis, you’ll have time to experience the region’s crowd-pulling honky tonks, blues bars, jazz clubs, and country music venues and to hit famous local sightseeing spots, like Elvis’s Graceland, the Chattanooga Choo Choo, and the Antebellum mansions around Natchez.