From the 1540 conflict between the native Chickasaw Indians and famous explorer Hernando De Soto, to the fierce battle between the North and the South during the Civil War, Tupelo enjoys a colorful, exciting history that is just waiting to be explored. The Tupelo National Battlefield, a must do for history buffs, marks where Confederates lined up to attack Union forces.
Tupelo emerged after the Civil War, and established itself as a railroad and power-manufacturing town. When visiting Tupelo's historic downtown, it is easy to get a feel for times gone by. Multi story brick buildings sporting colorful awnings sit along tree-lined streets and house a variety of goods. Original art, endless antiques, interesting bookshops, and eclectic to fine eateries are just some of Tupelo's best finds.
Did we mention this is also the birthplace of Elvis Presley? There's no doubt that Tupelo is proud of its famous rock and roller. The Elvis Presley Park and Museum, set on 15 acres, features The King's birthplace, a diverse collection of memorabilia, a chapel, and garden walk. The Elvis Presley Festival, held annually in June, celebrates the accomplishments of this Tupelo famous native and celebrates the first time he came home to perform after becoming a huge hit. A re-created "homecoming parade", food, fun, and an abundance of music fill Tupelo's downtown. Real Elvis fans should consider the Elvis Presley Self-Guided Driving Tour, which features some of the important places in the life of Elvis.
Another fun and unique stop is Tupelo Buffalo Park. As the name implies, this park features buffalo- in fact, the park boats the largest buffalo herd East of the Mississippi River. Huge buses, fitted with monster truck lifts, offer visitors a fabulous up close and personal tour of these massive animals. A special kid friendly section, features a petting zoo full of pigmy goats, ponies, sheep and a variety of other welcoming animals. Exotic animals such as tigers, bears, and reptiles complete the park.
The Natchez Trace Parkway began as early "interstate" as much as 8,000 years ago, connecting current day, Natchez, Mississippi to Nashville, Tennessee. The Parkway's Visitors center is located in Tupelo, and offers a diverse selection of displays and exhibits as well as fascinating information on the history of this old road.
Tupelo is located in northeastern Mississippi, at the intersections of highways 78 and 45.