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Road trip - Memphis to Orlando

k17
Australia
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Road trip - Memphis to Orlando

My husband and i (early 30's) are driving from Memphis to Orlando in April, over two days (leave memphis thurs AM, arrive orlando fri PM). I'm hoping someone might be able to suggest an interesting route? (Ie. off the main highways, for at least some of the trip).

We enjoy seeing real "Americana", small towns, quaint scenery and historical or quirky sites along the way as well as eating good old home style cooking at cute little diners etc. I have seen some people suggest that a diversion up to Chattanooga might be better than the more direct routes through Alabama, but I don't have any burning desire to visit Chattanooga unless the scenery that way would without-a-doubt be worth it.

Grateful for any advice! (Will also post in road trip forum)

Memphis, Tennessee
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1. Re: Road trip - Memphis to Orlando

Ugh! That drive to Orlando is so long that we usually take the shortest route. Its about a 16 hour drive when you stop just for meals and restroom breaks. Also, you'll lose an hour going there as you cross from Central to Eastern time zones.

That said, there's not much in the way of scenery going through Alabama. Hwy. 78 to Birmingham is a four lane divided highway. You could stop in Tupelo to see Elvis's birthplace, their car museum and their strangely unique buffalo park. Birmingham to Montgomery is interstate with not much to see, but there's a stretch from southern AL to northern FL that's four lane (for the most part) that goes through some small towns.

Going through east TN, including Chattanooga is much more scenic with beautiful mountains.

Have you considered flying? I've seen some amazing rates from Southwest during fare sales. We really think the next time we head for Orlando, we may fly if we can get a good deal. We absolutely love road trips in our family, but that drive is not very interesting and we are always looking forward to fun in Orlando.

scotland
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2. Re: Road trip - Memphis to Orlando

Tupelo would be a great stop! But it's only at the start of the journey,

Manchester, United...
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3. Re: Road trip - Memphis to Orlando

I agree with the other posts, Tupelo for Elvis's birthplace. Also, east Tn, is worth the trip, it has beautiful scenery and really needs to be seen.

Memphis, Tennessee
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4. Re: Road trip - Memphis to Orlando

I had one other thought for you that's a less direct route to Florida. You could take Hwy. 61 south out of Memphis all the way to Vicksburg, MS before heading east. This is known as the Blues Highway. Do some research online and see if this might interest you more than Chattanooga. It will add considereably to your drive time to FL.

k17
Australia
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5. Re: Road trip - Memphis to Orlando

thank you all for taking the time to reply! we got a good deal by pre-paying the hire car, so flying is not an option now. but we love driving, so im looking forward to the trip even if it doesnt sound too scenic :) i think tupelo will be a great brunch stop, and we'll push through on the interstates fro there. thanks again!

Memphis, Tennessee
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6. Re: Road trip - Memphis to Orlando

You're so welcome.

7. Re: Road trip - Memphis to Orlando

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