When you think of USA what comes to your mind? A well developed and advanced nation with state-of the- art technology and huge skyscrapers? Well, there is a lot more to USA other than the skyscrapers and advanced machineries. If you move to the southern part of the states, also known as the Deep South, you will encounter a completely different aspect of this wonderful country. These include the states of Alabama, Georgia, Louisiana, Mississippi, and South Carolina. Adjoining regions of East Texas, North Florida and the Florida Panhandle are also considered part of this sub region. Some other regions may also be included.
Deep South was called so because it differed from its northern counterpart which was dependent on plantation type of agriculture during the pre-civil war era. Deep South mainly produced cotton for its earnings. With the passage of time, of course, the usage fell into controversy and is mostly discontinued.
If you are planning a holiday to enjoy a nice quiet meal in a small town with fresh air and natural beauty and aiming for some sight-seeing and adventurous trips, the southern part of USA is a good choice. The cultural influences of the south will take your breath away by providing you a diversity that is rarely seen. This sub region was colonized by the Christians and later immigrants from South East Asia and North America added Hinduism, Buddhism and Jewish cultures. This is mainly an English speaking region with different vernaculars and people fond of growing and preparing different forms of tea.
Visit the following places while in the deeper south:
Memphis is one of the majestic cities that have a host of museums and tourist attractions like Hard rock café. Ever heard of Isaac Hayes, Otis Redding or the Staple Singers? The Stax museum is the world’s only soul museum with records of these classically original singers. It has seen the bankruptcy of Stax records, the deterioration of the building and finally it was restored into a museum. Memphis in May and Carnival Memphis are the summer festivities of this place and promote their musical and culinary heritage.
You can visit the internationally famous and now a US national heritage landmark, the Sun Studios, where artists like Johnny Cash, Elvis Presley, Carl Perkins, Roy Orbison, Charlie Feathers, Ray Harris, Warren Smith, Charlie Rich, and Jerry Lee Lewis recorded in the mid-to-late 1950s. You can also visit the home of Elvis Presley, the Graceland, at the Elvis Presley Boulevard.
After visiting the museums and studios like a gentleman, it is time to become naughty at night. Beale Street is the ideal place to enjoy a night life full of food, music, lights and people with a lot of varieties of drinks that you can enjoy.
The most populous city in Deep South and the capital of Georgia offers what most cities in the Deep South cannot, an opportunity to hike for miles crossing thousands of feet and sections of jungles. The Appalachian trail, or A.T from Springer mountain to Maine is a world renowned choice for foot walkers. It provides a hiking experience that is unmatched in the entire southern USA with mesmerizing natural views and water bodies.
The Peabody hotel named after Peabody ducks is a luxurious historic hotel famous for the march of the celebrity ducks and celebrities who have stayed here. This hotel is an active epicenter for Cotton Carnival and Memphis in May during the festive season and a hub for weddings, balls, bar mitzvahs and prom parties.
The tour to Dollywood.
Dollywood, unlike Hollywood and Bollywood, is a theme park for amusement of families and children. From Rudolph reindeers to smoky mountains and Water Park to resorts, every activity that you can possibly enjoy in a theme park is right here.
Also dubbed music city is the home for the country music hall of fame, Grand Ole Opry. If you are a music aficionado, you must visit this place to satisfy your soul of visiting the holy birth place of great music.
Nashville has a lot of parks with artificial beauty embedded in the construction. One such example is the original replica of The Parthenon which is reconstructed to scale in the Centennial Park.
Visit New Orleans.
A port with a modest population and mix of cultures, New Orleans was named after the Duke of Orleans who influenced its European culture. Take a tour of the port by their famous steam boats which float the port at frequent intervals. The view of the city from the waters is breathtaking and completely different from what you would notice just being on the roads.
As you move to the state of Mississippi you will encounter a lot of mansions and gardens built in the pre-war era.
Natchez is the oldest civilized settlement on the Mississippi River that is a central tourist attraction because of its mansions and parks. Some notable ones you may like to visit are the Auburn at Duncan Park, the Octagonal Longwood or Nutt’s Folly at Lower Woodville and the Greek revival architecture based, the Melrose. These designs portray a mix of older concepts with the modern technology.
Tupelo is the birthplace of Elvis hosting a lot of guitar and Elvis’ scriptures even today. The city has been hit the worst by natural disasters ranging from severe famines and droughts to tornadoes and yet has survived to showcase the life of Elvis Presley.
The oldest university that taught and promoted English, the Oxford University, got its name by virtue of being located in this epic city. The Radcliffe Camera is a building that was built to house the science library of Oxford University is a must watch especially from an architectural point of view since it is inspired by English Palladian style. It is situated inside the Oxford University campus.
The skyline of Cleveland from Lake Erie gives view to the most amazing buildings, the Key Tower, the 200 Public Square and the Terminal tower. Cleveland is full of architectural beauties like the St Theodosius Orthodox Cathedral and the True Holiness Temple which serves as the congregation of African Americans.
The poor monkey lounge or Po’ Monkey’s lounge was once home to farmers who used to drink, rest and dance here. It is also known as one of the last juke joints of the south.
The mysterious Mississippi
Mississippi River is known for its steam boat cruises. The magnificent, multistoried steam boats give a view of the river as well as the cities and provide a whole new perspective to the Deep South. You will travel through the Mississippi, Ohio and Cumberland rivers experiencing the rich, diverse and rare American history and cultural heritage. You can choose the cruise route yourself from the various options available such as:
- Lower Mississippi
- Upper Mississippi
- New Orleans round trip
- The Ohio trip
These routes differ in spots covered and duration of the cruise. Be sure to pack accordingly before you set out into the horizon. You cannot cover everything that this sub region has to offer your senses in one trip. You have to cover as much as possible and to achieve that, researching your destinations is always helpful. Choose your destinations wisely keeping in mind the historical importance they carry, the variety they offer and the interest they tickle in you.