Next week me and 2 of my friends are flying out to Chicago from the UK and taking 3 weeks to drive down to New Orleans. We have already planned Chicago - St Louis - Nashville - Memphis, we are all into blues and jazz music so we are chasing that kind of stuff! But we are trying to work out the best route from Memphis to New Orleans. We don't intend to drive it all in one go so little (or big!) towns worth checking out or staying in on the way will be much appreciated!
I am unsure if the image I tried to attach is visible to you but its basically a map displaying the 3 routes (Memphis - N.O) we drew up;
Route 1 heads east through the national parks towards Birmingham, Alabama, down to Mobile and then along the coast to N.o
Route 2 follows the Mississippi River down to Jackson, then again down to N.O
Route 3 heads West over to Dallas, Texas (a longer drive I know, but we have the time), then down to Houston before of course heading back across to N.O
Any suggestions welcome - Cost and time are not an issue, the main things we are looking for are views on route, anything music related, museums worth checking out, lively nightlife (bars, clubs, gigs, events etc) and any hidden gems (restaurants, national parks, viewpoints, diners) that we should know about.
Thanks for your help in advance! Whichever route we take we cant wait to visit this beautiful country.