Yep, it’s only $19 to book a flight to Tupelo, Mississippi, if you are lucky enough to get a super-saver ticket on Contour Airlines. And, there are several flights a day, most of which range between $29-$59. So, if you miss the special price, you’ll have to pay more … but not much. Nashville, this pretty much means that you can fly to Tupelo for dinner for practically less than the cost of an Uber downtown or the price of parking. WHAT?! This is crazy. But, crazy good … as long as there are things to do in Tupelo. And, yes there are. Tupelo is actually one of our favorite small towns in the South.
The $19 super-saver specials pop up a couple days before a non-sold out flight. You’ll want to follow Contour Airlines on Facebook so that you are alerted when these deep discounts exist: facebook.com/contourairlines.
Of note, if you are an Ole Miss fan: I know your wheels are already spinning as it’s an easy 50-minute drive to get from Tupelo to Oxford for game day. Book your reservations early and have fun at The Grove!
Why go to Tupleo, MS? It’s Elvis’s birthplace, part of the Americana Music Triangle, has a rich history found in the Heritage Trail Enrichment Program (Chickasaw, Civil Rights & African American, and Civil War), amazing restaurants, charming shops and plenty to do outdoors.
Here are nine itineraries waiting for you to explore.
So, what if you only have 24 hours in Tupelo? I asked Jennie Curlee, with the Tupelo Convention and Visitors’ Bureau, to help us plan a great trip and she did just that. Enjoy:
24 Hours in Tupelo, Mississippi
Locals love this breakfast spot for fried chicken and biscuits slathered in homemade white gravy. A Tupelo delicacy, the Connie’s blueberry donut is deep fried and dunked in icing and has been served there for over 38 years.
Johnnie’s Drive-In is a full-service drive-in restaurant, serving up the same diner food that Elvis loved. Guests can even sit in the “Elvis Booth,” the very same place where The King himself sat. Try the dough burger, a North Mississippi specialty that was introduced during the Great Depression when meat was scarce.
Open from 8 a.m. to 9 p.m. daily (except on Sundays, when they close at 4 p.m), Neon Pig is a butcher shop, market and cafe. They serve a large variety of craft beer, and they happen to have won the prize for #1 burger in America by Thrillist. That means you just may have to try the Smash Burger. Just sayin’…
Kermit’s Outlaw Kitchen (KOK), housed in a 140-year-old building in downtown Tupelo, creates new menus weekly based on the bounty of fresh meat and produce available in North Mississippi. All of KOK’s meats are processed and broken down at their sister restaurant, which happens to be the Neon Pig.
For those who like their supper served with a side of live music, the Blue Canoe is for you. With an eclectic bar menu that includes fried black-eyed peas and chicken and waffles, they have more beers on tap than anywhere else in North Mississippi. A live music hotspot, the likes of the Alabama Shakes and Gary Clark, Jr. have graced the stage there.
As just stated, Blue Canoe promises great live music, but Tupelo also has a live music calendar on their website because, as Jennie says, you have to hear great live music when you’re in the birthplace of The King!
Tupelo is home to three distinct shopping districts: Midtown District, The Barnes Crossing Shopping District and Downtown Tupelo, which is home to many of the city’s unique shopping venues, including:
- Caron Gallery – a local art gallery specializing in Mississippi artisans
- Reed’s – a 125-year-old department store
- About the South – a gift shop focused on Southern goods, gourmet foods and art
- Tupelo Hardware Co. – Gladys Presley purchased Elvis’ first guitar there, and they still sell guitars today, along with everything else you might need from a hardware store!
Tupelo’s Midtown District is home to more than 25 locally owned specialty stores, including:
- Jody’s Flowers – A unique flower shop that sells McCarty Pottery from the Mississippi Delta and unique specialty items
- Corner Shoe Store – The place to go for children’s shoes, clothes and accessories in Tupelo
- Mary McGuire’s Bakery – A local bakery where the custom-created sweets are as yummy as they are beautiful
The Barnes Crossing Shopping District includes the Mall at Barnes Crossing and a plethora of nationally known stores.
For the Elvis Fan, a visit to the Elvis Presley Birthplace and Museum is a must, as well as Tupelo Hardware Co. in downtown Tupelo, and the Elvis’ homecoming statue in Fairpark. All three of these stops are included on the 13-stop Elvis’ Tupelo Driving Tour.
Tupelo is also home to the largest private collection of cars east of the Mississippi River at the Tupelo Automobile Museum. Over 100 classic and antique cars are on display in this museum dedicated to the automobile.
Tupelo is the headquarters of the Natchez Trace Parkway, the 444-mile scenic byway that extends from Nashville, TN, to Natchez, MS. Guests can visit the Natchez Trace Parkway Visitor Center in Tupelo and discover the parkway’s history and inhabitants.
Tupelo also has a lot of Civil War history. Mississippi’s final stands in the Civil War were fought in and around Tupelo. The Battle of Brice’s Crossroads and the Battle of Tupelo/Harrisburg are interpreted in the 2,500-square-foot interpretive center, just minutes from the Battle of Brice’s Crossroads National Battlefield. Take a drive through history by visiting significant sites of these battles that took place more than 150 years ago. Check out the website for the Mississippi’s Final Stands Civil War Interpretive Center.
WHERE TO STAY
The Hilton Garden Inn is located in the heart of downtown Tupelo, along the Elvis Presley Birthplace Trail that connects the city’s top attraction with its hub for local shopping and dining.
As stated before, take Contour Airlines from Nashville as it’s cheap and direct. Get to Tupelo in time for dinner, and the 4:30 p.m. flight is perfect as it’s only a one-hour flight, gate to gate. It’s really just about 45 minutes in the air.
There are plenty of flights back, but choose a late afternoon or evening one to be able to fully enjoy Tupelo.
It’s less than four hours for anyone who wishes to drive, as it’s a beautiful drive, to Tupelo, MS. Perfect for a weekend escape.
That was a pretty great 24 hours, huh?! If you are ready to start planning your trip, the best resource around is Tupelo.net.
Find more weekend getaways and vacation ideas HERE.