Central Station . 545 S. Main, at Calhoun
This station was originally called Grand Central Station and opened in 1914. It thrived during the era of the passenger train. In fact, more than 50 times a day trains came and went from the station. The station was owned by the Illinois Central Railroad but was also used by a number of other railroads. The success of this station led to rapid business development in the surrounding area. Restaurants, shops, and hotels sprung up to accommodate travelers coming to and going from Memphis. A notable business is the Arcade Restaurant, across the street from Central, which is still in operation.
Throughout the 1960's, passenger trains declined in popularity and by the early 1970's Amtrak operated the only train running through Memphis. Central Station was falling into disrepair. In 1995, the Memphis Area Transit Authority purchased the station and by the end of 1999 had completed renovation on it. Today, Memphis Central Station is used by Amtrak's City of New Orleans and is a stop on MATA's trolley line. The upper floors of the station were converted into moderately priced apartments appropriately named Central Station Apartments. There is also a banquet/reception hall in the station and on Saturdays, the "Farmer's Market" is held beneath the station's pavilion. And there is one platform still in daily use
The new Memphis Railroad and Trolley Museum opened inside the downtown Central Station in 2012. This museum spotlights Memphis' rail history, including the street railway system. It will be developed and run by the Memphis Society of Model Railroaders, a 75 member, 50 year old organization of train enthusiasts. A highlight of the museum will be a developing miniature model of Memphis with running trains and trolleys.Related to:
- Historical Travel
The buses run quite often during rush hour but during the middle of the day it is like every 15 to 30 min. Some lines run every hour. It is best to go to the website to see when to get the bus.
You can ask for a round trip ticket for a reduced price.
If you are a senior or disabled it is best to contact transit before coming to Memphis. You will have to send copies of your identification to them and then they will send you an approved card so that you can ride the buses at half price.Related to:
- Budget Travel
Definitely the most comfortable way to get here. The coach is a lot more comfortable than on any bus or plane, plus you have a dining car, a cafe car and a lounge car. Can't beat it. Unless you're willing to pay for a sleeper car, but that's expensive.
Horse-drawn Carriages in Downtown Memphis
If you can afford a ride around town in a horse drawn carriage, then I suppose it could be fun. Personally, I think they are overpriced, but they seem to be popular with the tourists. There may be different companies with slightly different rates, and I noticed some drivers bring along their pet dog who rides beside them in the driver's seat. The carriages are everywhere downtown, some fancier than others. Unless you plan on them picking you up from your downtown hotel, it is probably not necessary to book in advance.
Carriage Tours of Memphis Rates:
Half-hour tour -$45.00
One-hour tour - $75.00
One-way shuttle available on request
Group Tour Rates available on request
Monday thru Friday 5 pm - 1 am
Satuday and Sunday Noon - 1 am
Other hours available with advance reservations
Carriages are stationed at
the following locations
1. The Peabody Hotel - 149 Union Avenue
2. Memphis Marriott Downtown- -250 N. Main across from the Memphis Convention Center
3. Beale Street - at Second and Third Streets
4. The Rendezvous - Nov. 6th Alley
(across from the Peabody Hotel)
5. Holiday Inn Select - 160 Union Avenue
6. The Butcher Shop - 101.S. Front Street
For more information, see the website below:Related to:
- Family Travel
- Luxury Travel
There is a regular (well, once every hour), inexpensive shuttle bus that connects most of the Memphis sights (Sun Studios, Graceland, The Peabody Hotel, Civil Rights Museum etc). Try as I might I can't find an online presence for it, but you'll get time tables at all the major tourist attractions. THE best way to travel around! Fast and economical.Related to:
- Budget Travel
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