Ruth, whale watching in Iceland. Photo taken October 4, 2012.
Where are Kevin and Ruth right now? Osgoode, Ontario, Canada. Just south of Ottawa.

And where are they going next? We leave November 1st for a six week trip to Romania and Moldova.

Friday, November 5, 2010

Memphis, day 2 - Graceland

We don't do touristy things very often, but when we do, we try to do them as inexpensively as possible. Sometimes that makes things even more interesting.

So we're in Memphis and we're not huge Elvis fans, but we do enjoy his music so we thought it might be fun to do the Graceland "experience".

The VIP tour is $64 per person. Ummmm. NO.

The Platinum tour is $34 per person. Still pricey.

The regular tour (and cheapest available) is $30 per person. For the extra $4 for the Platinum tour you get to see the automobile museum and the airplanes. Oh, and they have a fashion exhibit and an exhibit of his movies. I found a coupon online that allowed you to do the Platinum tour for the cost of the regular tour. So the whole things cost us $60 even. For whatever reason there was no tax on top of that. Maybe it was all included, not sure.

So we go to hop on the city bus to get there. Left here about 9:30am this morning. Walked about 5 minutes to the first bus stop, and waited. And waited. And waited. We were certain we couldn't have missed the bus, and there was one other fellow waiting as well. Finally we asked him about the bus and he said he had seen it go the other way and that it should have arrived here by now. But it didn't. Then, we told him the route we were taking to Graceland, which involved transferring to another bus half way through.

He cautioned against using that route. We didn't think anything of it when we were looking at doing the transfer, but there are some parts of Memphis that are a little sketchy. So he suggested we walk another two blocks, catch a bus that goes to the downtown terminal and transfer to the Graceland bus from there. It took a little longer, but was considered a bit safer. It helps to talk to the locals!

Memphis demographics go something like this...62% black, 34% white. But people riding the bus are 98% black and 2% white. Ruth and I were the 2% that day. Okay, there might have been 1 or 2 others, but obviously the white people in this town do not ride the city bus! Anyhow, we had fun on the bus.

So we got to Graceland about noon. I expected the whole thing to be a little more out in the country, and I guess maybe 50 years ago it was. But I think if Elvis were still around today he would have sold that property a long time ago. The entire "mansion" and property is on one side of the 5 lane road, and all the tourist crap is on the other side, as well as his two airplanes that were brought here in the mid '80's. I put mansion in quotations because it's not nearly as big as I thought it was going to be.

So the mansion and property are pretty much stuck in 1975. I think that was the last time Elvis did renovations to the estate and much of it has been left exactly the way it was when he lived there up until his death in 1977. You remember the 70' fridge, green sink, shag carpet. Lots of mirrors on the ceilings and carpet and fabrics on the walls.

The piano room, just off the front living room.

This was called Elvis' parents room, although his mother died in 1958, so it was unclear to me if this was now the way the father had kept the room, or if it was done up this way for show.

Elvis' television room. I guess he would have liked the picture in picture available on todays sets!

The back of Graceland

Many of Elvis' costumes and awards are on display

R.I.P. Elvis

After the mansion tour, you go back across the road where you can see the inside of both Elvis' airplanes, as well as the automobile museum where there are about a dozen of Elvis' cars on display.

Then we took the bus back and arrived at Sherman around 4:40pm.

It was a decent day, but I have a hard time thinking we got $60 worth of value. I guess when you do touristy things, that's the price you pay. I kind of think it should have been priced at maybe $13.95 each, but that's just me.

Tomorrow, we'll head back on the bus to go downtown and wander around there.

November Expenses:
Fuel: $ 75.00
Groceries: $77.34
Booze: $18.62
Overnight: $15.00
Entertainment: $60.00
Motorhome Expenses: $1.75


  1. I agree. It doesn't seem to have been worth the price. I think we'll skip the tour when/if we get to Memphis.

  2. Lived in TN for years but never went to Graceland. Looks rather disappointing. Now, what can I do with that 60 bucks we saved.

  3. That is a lot of money, but at least you got to see the famous Graceland!

  4. A lot of these famous people 'museums' are very overpriced. I guess it's to be expected with all the people still trying to make a buck off of their 'cash cow'.

    It's still nice to be able to say you've been to Graceland!

  5. Karen and Al...I guess if you are a big Elvis fan it wouldn't seem disappointing, but we are happy we did and we did find it interesting, just overpriced.

    Margie and Roger...There is definitely lots in Memphis that I am sure you could spend that $60 on. We did enjoy the tour though.

    Gail...That's the way we are looking at it. It would be hard to say that you went to Memphis and didn't visit Graceland.

    Michelle...Thanks Michelle!

    Rick and Paulette...Yep, it's one of those things "if you build it they will come". Yes, it is nice to say that we saw Elvis Presley's home.

    Kevin and Ruth

  6. Thanks for sending me this link! My wife really wants to see Graceland and is a HUGE fan so we'll be paying the high price of entry. :)


  7. Hi Kevin and Ruth, I'm Erik's wife Ronda (above). Thank you so much for the information. I am an Elvis fan and I have heard good and bad concerning Graceland. I guess to me, I just want to say I've been there. I was 15 when he died and cried like a baby. If it cost a little more to do it, then I'm okay with it. I hope not to be too disappointed. I know when we went to Hannibal, Missouri, (huge Mark Twain fan here)..the area that they had for the tourists was very small, and outside of it was totally dilapidated. It was so sad...but we tried to make the best of it. We have fond memories of it, so I hope when this is said and done I can say the same thing. :-)

  8. Hi Erik and Ronda,

    We enjoyed Graceland, we just didn't think it was worth the $30 per person! I'm sure you'll enjoy it as well. make sure you get a discount coupon of the internet!


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