Home of Ole Miss and Faulkner’s mansion, tailgate parties, and literary readings, Oxford, Mississippi, is South with a capital S. It’s a little over an hour’s drive from Memphis. Leaving the busy interstate and turning onto the state road, you’ll see the requisite fast-food restaurants for a quick break and the only outlet strip mall for hundreds of miles. It’s the last stop before your journey back in time and sensibility. Continue east for about twenty minutes to Oxford, where the local farms, vegetable stands, and used-truck lots that speckle the northern Mississippi border give way to the sprawl of the University of Mississippi campus, known to natives as Ole Miss.
There’s a lot to do here: fabulous boutique shopping around the square, educational but entertaining exhibits at Ole Miss, fine and casual dining, and, of course, Rowan Oak and all the other tidbits that gave us Faulkner’s Yoknapatawpha County. Because Oxford is about an hour and a half from Memphis, you can make your trip in one day, but the distance also makes this a great overnight trip: It’s just far enough away with such charming inns that it’s well worth the splurge for a guest room.
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