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Old 01-17-2016, 10:05 AM   #1
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Cool Graceland

I am setting up a motorhome class a trip from southern NJ to Graceland. I will take the route through Harpers Ferry, Lexington KY, Newport TN, Nashville, Graceland and back North through Bowling Green. Do you have any advice through experience what to do, where to stay, or avoid? I am staying at all KOA parks accept for Graceland.
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Old 01-17-2016, 11:39 AM   #2
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I am setting up a motorhome class a trip from southern NJ to Graceland. I will take the route through Harpers Ferry, Lexington KY, Newport TN, Nashville, Graceland and back North through Bowling Green. Do you have any advice through experience what to do, where to stay, or avoid? I am staying at all KOA parks accept for Graceland.
Last summer I hit some of the areas you are in your trip. On I-81 my first stop was Endless Caverns RV Park at the Caverns. Just over 5 hours for me and just under 4 hours for you. Quiet place in the summer and ended up taking the cavern tour. Our next stop was at Greenville, Tn at Across the Pond RV Park - nothing fancy just a good cheap overnight stop and then headed to Nashville. On the way we took a side trip to Danridge TN to the Bush's Beans tour. Added about a half hour plus the hour we were there. Plenty of RV parking.

At Nashville we stayed at Two Rivers Campground almost next door to the KOA and it cost a lot less. There are three campgrounds adjacent to each other on Music Valley Drive. You are a short distance to the Gaylord Hotel and the Grand Ole Opry and about a 15-20 minutes to the center of town. Plenty of parking in town. We saw shows at the Rymon and the Grand Ole Opry, took back stage tours of each place, stopped in Tootie's Orchid Lounge for Happy Hour, went to Centennial Park saw the Parthenon, visited the Country Music Hall of Fame, toured RCA Studio 3 (a must if you are going to Graceland), had BBQ at the Peg Leg Porker BBQ, had breakfast at the Nashville Biscuit House, toured the Civil War Fort Negley, had Hattie's B Hot Chicken for lunch, stopped at the American Pickers' Antique Archaeology store, and on Friday afternoons they have an open house at the Sirius Radio Highway Channel studio above the information bureau. We waited in line about an hour to go upstairs and join the "party" for our 20 minutes and to be on the air. Still have a ton of stuff to see and do. This was our second time there and will not be the last.

Next we went to Memphis we stayed at the Tom Sawyer RV Park on the flood plain of the Mississippi across the river from Memphis. It was an easy 20 minute run to Graceland. There is an RV Park at Graceland but we felt the chance to stay right on the Mississippi was worth not staying there. Tom Sawyer was a nice quiet place all you heard was the barges going up and down the Mississippi. At Graceland we took the VIP tour and as expensive as it was it was worth it. The place is a little bit gimmicky with small museums or exhibits inside stores or exiting into stores but considering the totality of everything there time was well spent. We had an early dinner at Bar-B-Q Shop after seeing it on the top 5 BBQ restaurants in American on TV. Best barbecue ever. As we only stayed two nights we just drove down Beale Street and stopped for a few minutes at the Lorraine Motel which is where the National Civil Rights Museum is. Missed a lot may come back on another trip but not at the top of list.

As far as the other locations went South from Memphis and looped around through Texas and Louisana and came back to Tennessee and stayed at Pigeon Forge for three nights. It was simply crazy busy and really didn't enjoy it as much as we would if we went a different time. Ended up touring the Smokey Mountain NP and skipping the attractions and lines in Pigeon Forge. The place has potential so we'll put on the list for a shoulder season trip.
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Old 01-18-2016, 10:35 AM   #3
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Thanks RobMat, I enjoyed the detail. I have saved your response and will refer to it as a guide to my trip. Thanks.
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Old 01-18-2016, 10:44 AM   #4
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Hi Voyager35L,
About the only thing I view differently from Robmat's post is the Nashville CG. I've stayed at all three CGs on this road. The KOA is by far the best. CW is next door. If going to the Opry, make your reservation now. I recommend this because seating front row center is where I want to be. In Lexington, KY there is the Kentucky Horse Park. The CG is next to the park. Water and electric, no sewer and a lot of trees.
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Old 01-18-2016, 10:47 AM   #5
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Thanks RobMat, I enjoyed the detail. I have saved your response and will refer to it as a guide to my trip. Thanks.
We just spent 2 day in Memphis at the Graceland RV park right behind the heartbreak hotel in Sept 2015. The park was clean and quiet and right across from Graceland, good rates too. We did not have a toad on this trip so it was very convenient for all the Graceland activities to stay there, although we did consider the river park mentioned above. Took a Cab to beale street and enjoyed the day and food. I have been to Graceland several times and always enjoy the tour. It has changed over the years and of course like most things very commercialized, but the house is pretty much as Elvis lived in it and still fascinating to see a bit into his life and home. Have a great trip
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Old 01-18-2016, 11:13 AM   #6
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We stayed at the RV park right behind the Heartbreak Hotel. Very convenient to the mansion (really a big house...).

I would suggest you splurge and buy the VIP pass for $80 that includes the planes. Lines can get very long and VIP takes you to the front of the line both waiting for the shuttle bus and at the house. Otherwise you are waiting in a sea of Elvis fans - some of whom solemnly believe that Elvis is STILL alive...
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Old 01-18-2016, 12:54 PM   #7
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Harper's Ferry, History and the AT, C & O Canal, tubing, kayak, canoeing, Weaverton Cliffs is good spot for snack when walking.
If cutting through Urbana, MD try Black Hog BBQ.

Memphis, eat at Charles Vergos' Rendezvous and Interstate Barbecue and a riverboat tour.
Graceland, not a Elvis fan but it was a nice tour, my companions enthralled with him.
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Old 01-19-2016, 07:33 AM   #8
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We stayed at the RV park right behind the Heartbreak Hotel. Very convenient to the mansion (really a big house...).

I would suggest you splurge and buy the VIP pass for $80 that includes the planes. Lines can get very long and VIP takes you to the front of the line both waiting for the shuttle bus and at the house. Otherwise you are waiting in a sea of Elvis fans - some of whom solemnly believe that Elvis is STILL alive...
He's NOT ????
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Old 01-19-2016, 08:59 AM   #9
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Keep the suggestions coming folks. You are like my personal tour guides. I am printing out the suggestions and putting them into my folder. I noticed Two Rivers CG is closed due to flooding. Anyone need any suggestions for the NJ, Pa. or DE. area just ask.
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