Mississippi River Cruises From Memphis

Julie Green


Any visit to the city of Memphis should include a river cruise to get a taste of the sights and history connected to the waterway. There are a variety of options available to tourists depending on the amount of time the visitor has. The paddlewheel riverboats carry you to the world of the river-life. A Mississippi River boat cruise can make your time in Memphis something special that you will remember forever!

The Memphis Pyramid
The Memphis Pyramid

If you only have a portion of a day to spend on the river there are short sight-seeing cruises available that originate in Memphis. Such cruises last about an hour and a half and give you the opportunity of seeing the bluffs of the city standing over the water’s edge. As the pleasure journey continues you will hear the stories of the local Native American, the explorers and the riverboat men who make Memphis their home. You will learn of the battles that were fought in the region during the Civil War. And of course, you will see from the river such Memphis landmarks as the Mud Island River Park and the Memphis Pyramid. Mud Island Mississippi River Museum In Memphis TennesseeThese are Tennessee landmarks and they should not be missed.

You can make dinner a special occasion while in Memphis by choosing a dinner cruise on a riverboat. Visually you will enjoy the spectacular view of Memphis under the evening sky, while the boat moves on the river. After you have feasted on your meal of Southern cuisine, you can enjoy dancing to the live music on the dance floor. A two hour dinner cruise on the Big River will make for a memorable highlight of a visit to Memphis. Eating on a river boat on the Mississippi? Good fun!

Valentine's Day Dinner Cruise On The Mississippi River
Valentine’s Dinner Cruise…

If you expect to be in Memphis during a particular holiday, you can make reservations for special occasion cruises. Valentine’s Day offers the opportunity for a truly romantic evening on the river, with dinner and dancing and with prior arrangement, candy, champagne and balloons for your loved one. During the Holiday Season, the dinner menu features traditional holiday fare of ham or turkey and dressing. If you want to celebrate New Year’s Eve on the river, there is a longer three-hour cruise available highlighted by a midnight champagne toast. All of the special occasion cruises need to be reserved in advance, however, so it is not a spur-of-the-moment option for the traveler.

Memphis Paddlewheel Boat
Memphis Paddlewheel Boat

If you wish to experience a longer adventure on a Mississippi riverboat, there are several multi-day cruises that can be had departing from Memphis. Even though you will be sailing on a vessel built on the form of the historical paddlewheels, the amenities are entirely modern for your comfort. You can enjoy the gracious staterooms as the river flows by.

Cruises originating from Memphis will take the river-adventurer to St. Louis, going past Civil War battlefields and sites noted for being part of the famous Underground Railroad. If the possibility of ghostly encounters appeals, there is a visit to the “most haunted city in America.” St. Louis will greet you as the gateway to the West at the end of the trip of eight days.

Cumberland River In Nashville Tennessee
Cumberland River – Tennessee

Perhaps Nashville appeals to you as a destination for a Memphis-begun cruise. This journey takes you through the Cumberland River region. Famous Civil War sites will speak to you, especially the Fort Donelson National Military Park in Dover, where Ulysses S. Grant demanded unconditional surrender of the Confederate forces.


Vicksburg Mississippi Civil War Cannon
Civil War Cannon – Vicksburg, Miss.

New Orleans stands at the lower reaches of the mighty Mississippi, an obvious destination for a riverboat cruise. The eight day excursion will take you past noted sites besides those of Memphis, including Natchez, Vicksburg in its Civil War glory, the Oak Alley Plantation, and the celebrated New Orleans itself.

The possibilities of adventures on the great Mississippi River call to the visitor to Memphis, with the memories of the past in the reassuring sound of the massive paddle-wheeled boats. Consider a riverboat cruise for your next visit to Memphis. A Mississippi River cruise from Memphis will leave you with memories that will surely last a lifetime.

Beale Street In Memphis Tennessee
Beale Street – Memphis, TN


My name is Julie Green and I am the head writer, content contributor, and chief, cook, and bottle washer too! My goal is to provide you information about the Mississippi River.

It’s a wonderful place that I call home. I’d like to think I know a thing or two about this area!! Please stop by often and pay us a visit.


Image of a paddle steamer on the Mississippi River near New orleans at dusk

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