The 10 Best Museums in Memphis

Memphis, a city steeped in history, culture, and soulful melodies, offers a treasure trove of museums that are as diverse and vibrant as the city itself. Whether you’re a history buff, art enthusiast, or a family looking for an educational adventure, the museums in Memphis serve up a hearty slice of knowledge with a side of fun. Let’s dive into the top 10 museums that are must-visits in the Home of the Blues.

1. National Civil Rights Museum

At the top of the list is the profound National Civil Rights Museum. Housed in the former Lorraine Motel, where Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. was assassinated, this museum offers an immersive experience into the American civil rights movement. With interactive exhibits, historical artifacts, and emotional narratives, it’s a place where the past echoes loudly, urging us to reflect and learn.

2. Memphis Rock ‘n’ Soul Museum

Created by the Smithsonian Institution, the Memphis Rock ‘n’ Soul Museum is a Celebration of musical pioneers who overcame racial and socio-economic barriers. From the rural music of the 1930s to Memphis’s role in the civil rights movement, the museum showcases the birth of rock and soul music that shook the world.

3. Graceland

No trip to Memphis is complete without a visit to Graceland, the iconic home of Elvis Presley. More than just a mansion, Graceland is a journey through the life of the King of Rock ‘n’ Roll. Explore his lavish living quarters, personal jets, and the Meditation Garden where Elvis and members of his family are laid to rest.

4. Stax Museum of American Soul Music

Located at the original site of Stax Records, this museum is a haven for soul music lovers. It’s packed with over 2,000 exhibits of musical memorabilia, including Isaac Hayes’ custom Cadillac Eldorado. The Stax Museum not only celebrates the music but also the artists who created the unique “Memphis Sound.”

5. Memphis Brooks Museum of Art

Art aficionados will Revel in the Memphis Brooks Museum of Art, the oldest and largest art museum in Tennessee. With a collection spanning over 10,000 works, including Renaissance masterpieces and contemporary art, it’s a visual feast that inspires and educates visitors of all ages.

6. The Children’s Museum of Memphis

For families, The Children’s Museum of Memphis is a wonderland of interactive exhibits. Kids can explore a skyscraper, dig for dinosaur bones, or even pilot a flight simulator. It’s a place where learning comes alive, and the power of play is celebrated.

7. The Pink Palace Museum

The Pink Palace Museum, with its grandiose mansion turned museum, offers a quirky mix of history, science, and technology. From a replica Piggly Wiggly store to the state-of-the-art CTI 3D Giant Theater, it’s a museum that has something for everyone.

Art and nature blend beautifully at the Dixon Gallery and Gardens. This museum boasts an impressive collection of Impressionist and Post-Impressionist paintings, surrounded by 17 acres of lush gardens. It’s a serene escape that nourishes the soul.

9. Mud Island River Park and Mississippi River Museum

Mud Island River Park offers a unique museum experience with the Mississippi River Museum. Here, you can walk along a scale model of the river, explore maritime history, and learn about the ecological importance of the mighty Mississippi.

10. Belz Museum of Asian and Judaic Art

Last but not least, the Belz Museum of Asian and Judaic Art is a hidden gem. It houses an extensive collection of Chinese art and Judaica, offering a window into the cultures and traditions of these ancient civilizations.


  • What are the operating hours for the National Civil Rights Museum?

    The museum is open from 9 AM to 5 PM, with extended hours on certain days. It’s always a good idea to check their website for the most up-to-date information.

  • Can you purchase tickets to these museums online?

    Yes, most museums in Memphis offer the convenience of online ticket purchases. It’s a time-saver and often comes with the perk of avoiding long lines.

  • Are there any free days to visit these museums?

    Several museums offer free admission on certain days or times. For example, the Memphis Brooks Museum of Art has “Pay What You Can” Wednesdays. Always check the museum’s official website for these opportunities.


Memphis is a city with a rich tapestry of history, art, and music, and its museums are a testament to this cultural heritage. From the solemn halls of the National Civil Rights Museum to the groovy vibes of the Memphis Rock ‘n’ Soul Museum, there’s a wealth of knowledge and entertainment waiting to be discovered. Each museum offers a unique Lens through which to view the city’s soul. So next time you’re in Memphis, make sure to immerse yourself in these top 10 museums – they’re not just attractions, they’re experiences that will stay with you long after you’ve left the Home of the Blues.

Kurby Team

The Kurby Content Team is a diverse group of seasoned real estate experts dedicated to providing insightful, reliable information for homebuyers, real estate investors, and real estate agents. With backgrounds ranging from real estate brokerage, property investment, and residential home buying, our team combines decades of experience with a passion for demystifying the real estate world. We at Kurby are committed to helping you make informed, successful real estate decisions. Whether you're a first-time homebuyer, a seasoned investor, or a real estate professional, count on the Kurby Content Team to deliver the most relevant, actionable real estate content you need.