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Tennessee will delight us with the different landscapes that compose it’s shape. From the mountains in the east, the elevation decreases to create the Tennessee Valley before climbing again to form the Cumberland Plateau. On the western side of the Plateau, in Middle Tennessee are the Nashville Basin and the Highland Rim that surrounds it. West Tennessee is dominated by the Gulf Coastal Plain which extends from the Western Tennessee River to the Mississippi River along Tennessee’s western border. In 1776, Tennessee became the 16th state to join the Union.  Tennessee earned its nickname, “The Volunteer State”, during the War of 1812, when thousands of Tennesseans responded to Governor Willis Blount’s call for volunteer soldiers. In honor of the moniker, the U of Tenn mascot is the “Volunteer”. Although the Univ. is in Knoxville, passionate fans of “ Vols” football cover the entire state.  Tennessee’s place in the nation’s music history is legendary and covers the width of the state. Nashville in the center of the state is called “Music City USA” because of its role in churning out music industry stars, but also because the historic Grand Ole Opry, the world’s longest running live radio program airs from Nashville.  From it’s urban to rural areas, Tennessee offers plenty of enjoyable options for us that visit. The minute we arrive in this beautiful state, we are officially very special guests. Natural beauty is everywhere, providing a marvelous backdrop for our many and varied adventures. We’ll make our way along the tree lined streets of scores of small towns with unheralded names like; Fisherville, Three Way, Bells, Bethel Springs, Selmer, Savannah, Leipers Fork, College Grove, Wartrace, Bell Buckle & Rover.


Day 1 Saturday, Oct. 20
We journey south through Iowa to Keokuk in the southeast corner along the banks of the Mississippi. We’ll enjoy our first of many meals together at the appropriately named Hawkeye Restaurant.
Incl Meals: Dinner
Hotel: Hampton Inn, Keokuk, IA


Day 2 Sunday, Oct 21
We break up this travel day a little with a Sunday morning pause at the Gateway Arch in downtown St. Louis along the Mighty Mississippi. A stop at Union Station provides a variety of choices for lunch on your own before an included mega treat at world famous Ted Drewes Frozen Custard. Even the freeway travel along I-55 is delightful as it cuts its way through the rocky ledges on this autumn afternoon. The Drury Plaza of Sikeston Missouri is our relaxing home this evening. Here you begin to appreciate the hospitality and convenience of light & delicious hot buffet dinner & breakfast offerings, that set the Drury Hotel’s apart from others.
Incl. Meals: Breakfast, Dinner (& Ted Drewes treat)
Hotel: Drury Plaza, Sikeston, MO


Day 3 Monday, Oct 22
Today is exciting. Later this morning, after a few more miles of travel, we begin our marvelous Tennessee Trails adventure. Fittingly, we enter the state at the very Southwest corner in the city of Memphis.  The Pink Palace Museum, a 36,000 ft mansion constructed of pink marble, offers a glimpse of 20th century Memphis and it’s rich cultural and musical history. Of course no visit to Memphis is complete without visiting Graceland. Elvis Presley is one of the most influential legends of our generation and touring his iconic home is a magical look back to those memorable times. Lunch is on your own at one of the 50’s style eatery’s at Graceland.  We leave the big city behind to enjoy a stay in peaceful Collierville.  Memphis is famous for BBQ and Corky’s is the original and best “Real” BBQ.
Incl. Meals: Breakfast, Dinner
Hotel: Hampton Inn, Collierville, TN


Day 4 – Tuesday, Oct 23
Exploring the backroads begins in earnest today. Historic Town Square of Collierville is Americana at it’s best, decorated with Victorian era pride. Countryside highways take us to picturesque Arlington for morning coffee.  Green Frog Pioneer Village has all the elements of a rural southern village. This pastoral setting features a simple pioneer homestead, country church, blacksmith’s shop and arboretum. Marvel at the awesome 1915 cotton gin which is the centerpiece of the Cotton Museum of the South. Another classic and historical courthouse square greets us in Trenton. You will be amazed at the world’s largest collection of night light teapots in the Trenton Teapot Museum complete with an expert presentation.  Mid- afternoon we arrive at Casey Jones Village in Jackson. The Train Station graphically tells the heroic story of legendary Casey Jones. Tour Casey’s historic home, shop at Brooks Shaw’s Old Country Store and our beautiful home for the evening is the all suites accommodations of the Comfort Suites, conveniently located right at Casey Jones Village. Just a few steps away we experience the incredible world famous buffet at the Old Country Store.
Incl. Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Hotel: Comfort Suites, Jackson, TN


Day 5 Wednesday, Oct 24
Our course this morning takes us through the main streets of: Jackson by the 1938 Greyhound Bus Depot, still in use today; Henderson; Bethel Springs, the birthplace of Rockabilly Music. Brush up on your Rockabilly history over included morning coffee at the iconic Rockabilly Café in charming Selmer. This is also the heart of Civil War times and a major part of that history is Shiloh. Before spending a little time at the Shiloh Battlefield, we have a unique and delightful lunch at Catfish Hotel along the banks of the Tennessee River, one of the only major US rivers that flows north. The autumn foliage is prolific with color and the setting is unforgettable. Crossing over the Pickwick Dam we make our way through Savannah, Olive Hill & Waynesboro to the Natchez Trace National Parkway. Over the next 60 miles enjoy one of the most beautiful and peaceful drives in America, free from the distraction of signs, stores, billboards and traffic. We stop along the way at the Meriwether Lewis National Monument. Our wonderful accommodations for the next five nights will be the brand new, incredible Drury Plaza in Franklin, TN. So unpack, relax and enjoy!  Hot buffet meals each morning and evening are featured at this showplace for the Drury family of hotels.
Incl. Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner (plus am coffee)
Hotel; Drury Plaza, Franklin, TN


Day 6 Thursday, Oct 25
The Battle of Franklin is considered by many historians as the most pivotal event of the Civil War. This captivating story will unfold as we visit the authentic sites of The Lotz House, Carter House and the Carnton Plantation. Witness wood floors still stained from the blood of wounded soldiers and bullet riddled brick walls of the homes. Franklin has been named one of America’s Dozen Distinctive Destinations. Downtown is listed as a Great American Mainstreet, featuring commemorative brick sidewalks, beautiful landscaping, lovely Victorian architecture and stunning renovated historic buildings. Enjoy lunch on your own and unique shopping. We’ll welcome a little break at our hotel where the convenient hot buffet is ready for us before we board the bus for a fantastic evening of entertainment. Off we go to Nashville, “Music City USA” to it’s very roots, the Ryman Auditorium for the fabulous Opry Country Classics Show. This is music as we fondly recall from ‘back-inthe-day’. Wow!  Sleep well tonight knowing more great stuff is yet to come.
Incl. Meals: Breakfast, Dinner


Day 7 Friday, Oct 26
We had a big day yesterday so a relaxing morning is welcomed. Back up to Nashville, we board the General Jackson Showboat for a lunch cruise on the Cumberland River. Up front seating affords us a grand experience at one of the best variety music shows you’ll ever see. After the cruise we visit downtown Nashville and the world class Country Music Hall of Fame. No trip to main street Tennessee is complete without dining at The Loveless Café and that’s just what we do. This evening relax in the welcoming surroundings of our hotel.
Incl. Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner


Day 8 Saturday, Oct 27
A morning drive over scenic country roads takes us through unhurried & picturesque villages unscathed by the advance of time. Our destination is Bell Buckle. What a treat. You will enjoy this little hamlet in the heart of the Tennessee hills and our lunch experience is one you will long remember. While we partake of some of the best homemade cooking ever, we are audience to a real Live Radio Music Show. This afternoon we visit Arrington Vineyards, a lovely and pleasant setting, for wine tasting and relaxing. Our tasteful, light buffet is conveniently available at the Drury Plaza.
Incl. Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner


Day 9 Sunday, Oct 28
This morning we’ll have some time for relaxing and reflecting before we board our coach to Fontanel, Barbara Mandrell’s “Home of All Things Country.” Savor lunch at The Farmhouse Restaurant featuring home cooked southern style food, much of it coming from local farms and producers. Tour the beautiful mansion, farm and grounds. Later we visit the Belle Meade Plantation rich in history, horses and hospitality. Dinner is offered back at the hotel and this is the evening we’ll have to gather our stuff and pack for the two day journey back home
Incl. Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner


Day 10 Monday, Oct 29
Today is strictly a travel day with well-paced rest stops for coffee and lunch. Our farewell dinner is served at Central Station Restaurant as we visit over all our memorable experiences over the past week.
Incl. Meals: Breakfast, Dinner
Hotel: Hampton inn, Normal, IL


Day 11 Tuesday, Oct 30
Our interstate travels today will bring us home with incredible memories to relive the rest of our lives.
Incl. Meals: Breakfast
Accommodations this evening: Home!

Motorcoach Per Person Pricing Information

Double: $2,299
Single: $2,899
Triple: $2,179
Quad: $2,069

Motorcoach Travel Protection Per Person

Double: $149
Single: $177

Travel Bucks

$35 Travel Bucks per person earned with this tour

Deposit Due

$100 deposit per person due at time of reservation. Full payment due 30 days prior to depart.

Passport Needed


Price Includes

25 Included Meals, Hotels & Activities
As stated, Luxury Motorcoach

The average temperature while R&J is visiting is 69°
Travel with R & J Tours to a warm destination where it is...
Minneapolis, Mn
Tennessee Trails: Backroads of America
Motorcoach Departure Date:
Motorcoach Return Date:

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Tour Highlights

· Gateway Arch St. Louis
· Pink Palace of Memphis
· Elvis Presley's Home Graceland
· Corky's Original BBQ, Memphis
· Green Frog Village
· Trenton Tea Pot Museum
· Casey Jones Village
· Rockabilly Cafe
· Shiloh National Battlefield
· Catfish Hotel
· Tennessee River Pickwick Dam
· Natchez Trace National Parkway
· Meriwether Lewis Nat. Monument
· Civil War sites:
Lotz House, Carter House and Carnton Plantation
· Classic & historic downtown Franklin
· Opry Country Classics Show at the Ryman Auditorium
· General Jackson Showboat; Lunch Cruise & Show
· Country Music Hall of Fame, downtown Nashville
· Loveless Café
· Bell Buckle, TN
· Live radio show at the Bell Buckle Café
· Arrington Vineyards
· Fontanel Barbara Mandrell's Home
· Farmhouse Restaurant
· Belle Meade Plantation
· Beautiful autumn colors

Travel with R & J Tours to a warm destination where it is...
Minneapolis, Mn
Tennessee Trails: Backroads of America
The average temperature while R&J is visiting is 69°
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