Interesting stops between Chicago and Dallas (via Memphis)?
April 9, 2009 6:41 AM   Subscribe

Quick, interesting stops between Chicago and Dallas (via Memphis) along I57, I55, I30? Quirky, tasty, fun, and beautiful are all invited.

This is my first time driving from Chicago to Dallas. Taking the route that goes through memphis - (I57, I55, and I30). Looking for interesting short places to stop off along the way - whether it be shops, restaurants, historical places, WHATEVER. Anything great or quirky or beautiful to break up the drive. Thanks!
posted by brandsilence to Travel & Transportation (10 answers total) 4 users marked this as a favorite
Best answer: Lambert's in Sikeston, MO.

Let me re-iterate.


You will eat more than you have ever eaten in your life.

It is some of the best down home cooking you will have.
posted by deezil at 7:01 AM on April 9, 2009 [1 favorite]

Along I-57 in southern Illinois, there are several wineries -- it makes a nice pit stop to pull off the road for a bit, and having the wine at home is a nice reminder of the roadtrip later. Two I know I've bought (and enjoyed) wines from previously are Genkota and Pheasant Hollow.

There's always Meramec Caverns down near St Louis. The drive through the Ozarks is just pretty on its own. Stop at a Sonic and get tater tots and a limeade. Ogle the tall frigging trees in Arkansas. If you want to get off the beaten path a little bit, stop in at Hot Springs National Park (in Hot Springs AR, near Malvern off I-30) and get out of the car a little while to walk up the mountain (or check out the vintage spas on Bathhouse Row - one of them has a museum of the freaky therapeutic stuff people used to use, loads of which involved electricity in what would seem to be unwise ways). Marvel at the difference between Illinois' winter-bepotholed roadways and Texas' smooth, snow?-what's-snow? asphalt.

Dang, now I want to go on your roadtrip too!
posted by sldownard at 7:04 AM on April 9, 2009

Memphis! We're about half-way, right? And would be a great place to spend the night, or even a couple of days. The Civil Rights Museum where Martin Luther King was killed is interesting and moving. We have pandas at the zoo. There's a beautiful downtown baseball stadium with a Triple A team if you like that stuff. Graceland. Everyone should see Graceland once in their lives. I personally love Beale Street because I'm a fan of Delta Blues. Eat barbeque, drink cold beer. If you decide to stop here, memail me with dates and I'll give you some specifics.

I can vouch for Lambert's and Hot Springs, too. Those suggestions are right on.
posted by raisingsand at 10:40 AM on April 9, 2009

Yeah, if you do decide to stop at Lambert's let me know, and I miiiiiight be able to get over there. I love meeting up with random strangers on the internet.
posted by deezil at 10:51 AM on April 9, 2009

Ive never been to Memphis, but if I ever go I'd check out the Stax Records Museum
posted by canoehead at 11:57 AM on April 9, 2009

Also in Memphis: I lived there for seven years, but haven't been there in almost as long, so raisingsand can verify whether these are still good bets: Pink Palace Museum. Cooper-Young for the nightlife--less touristy than Beale Street. Interstate Barbecue. The Center for Southern Folklore for roots music. If you like microbrews, there are worse places to go than Bosco's for beer.

But, yeah, if you're not going to spend more than a day or two in Memphis, then definitely the National Civil Rights Museum, and there really isn't any place quite like Graceland.
posted by Halloween Jack at 12:25 PM on April 9, 2009

Oh, and Sun Records. Mercy, how I do go on.
posted by Halloween Jack at 12:26 PM on April 9, 2009

Not exactly on the route, but there is always Metropolis, IL.
posted by gjc at 6:00 PM on April 9, 2009

Response by poster: Thanks for all of the great suggestions!!!

While we didn't have time to stop in Memphis, we're definitely going to plan the next trip with a day and a half for Memphis and at least a day for Hot Springs National Park. We did have time to stop and eat at Lamberts, which was completely awesome. The food was great and the experience was amazing. I was thinking about it for days.
posted by brandsilence at 10:17 AM on April 14, 2009

You will think about Lamberts and then have the urge to go about every 6 months now. You're welcome!
posted by deezil at 8:20 AM on April 15, 2009

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