Fancy exploring the American South and stepping into a culture reminiscent of the past? Let American Queen Voyages riverboat cruise from Memphis to New Orleans transport you there.
The heart of the American South — the lower Mississippi — is a land of stories and deep culture. What better way to explore this than on a classic paddle steamer?
The first stop is Memphis, name one of the World’s greatest places 2021 by TIME. Check out Elvis’ estate — Graceland — and eat some authentic Tennessee barbeque in the birthplace of rock’n’roll.
American Queen Voyages offers a pre-departure package that sets you up in Memphis in style. The first night, stay at the Sheraton Memphis Downtown Hotel in the heart of the city. Guests can explore everything Memphis has to offer from fine dining to an incredible entertainment scene.
The riverboat departs the next day. Today you begin your cruise of the mighty Mississippi — the boat itself is part of the draw. Passengers can book spa days, indulgent massages or simply mingle with the other guests — all while taking in the views of America’s heartland.
Starting at $2,200 per person for the cruise, rooms on America Queen Voyages’ riverboat range from indoor cabins to luxury suites with a private veranda to laze your way down the river.
On the fourth day of the cruise, history buffs will be especially delighted to explore Vicksburg, Mississippi. This town saw major battles during the American Civil War and houses many museums to explore Civil War-era America.
The next stop is Natchez, Mississippi — founded in the 18th-century, this is the oldest town on the banks of the Mississippi. It has incredibly preserved historical buildings with a quaint feel, and plenty of unique shops and restaurants to explore.
Heading down to the Bayou, the second half of the journey explores Louisiana’s unique cities and Creole culture. St. Francisville was an old settlement founded on the bluffs of the Mississippi which houses old plantation homes among the rolling countryside.
From here it’s back to the big city — Baton Rouge, Louisiana. Louisiana’s capital city has much on offer. Stunning architecture and Creole cuisine are the names of the game here. Be sure to check them out on a walk around the downtown area.
From Baton Rouge the boat sails to Nottoway Plantation — a 19th-century plantation home steeped in as much grandeur as it is history. Set among the backdrop of 200-year-old Oak trees, this 3-story 64-room mansion is sure to inspire feelings of awe.
Finally, the riverboat pulls into New Orleans — the jewel of the South. This city is as authentic and vibrant as they come. Go out on Bourbon St. for the obligatory NOLA night out or enjoy the complex history and culture of the city’s French Quarter for a day. American Queen Voyages offers a post-cruise package that will set you up in central New Orleans.
This nine-day cruise can be done in reverse up the Mississippi as well. What becomes apparent after you step on the cruise is there is no better way to explore the American heartland than by sailing down its main bloodline — the mighty Mississippi.