Thursday, June 4, 2015

Day 7: Oxford, Tupelo & Birmingham

As per usual, we were up early once again so we got on the road once we packed up the car.  We knew we had a big day ahead of us (think Buffalo park).  We wanted to at least drive through the Ole Miss campus (when in Rome Oxford) and I have to say it was a beautiful campus.  Not as beautiful as say Virginia Tech, but who can be!  After we saw the campus and attempted to see William Faulkner's home (it was not yet open for the day), we headed out of town just a short ways away to Tupelo.  

Tupelo is most notably known as Elvis' birthplace but we had far higher expectations for the Tupelo Buffalo Park.  So how this all evolved was like this: On our previous road trip, my goal was to see a Buffalo, I figured it would be easy, we were going through North and South Dakota and half of the mid-west, should be simple enough, right?  WRONG!  We searched high and low and I finally found my buffalo in the zoo?  Seriously?  I could do that in Norfolk.  Not to be discouraged, we were planning this trip and initially planned to go through Jackson,Mississippi (a la "The Help"), but realizing there was not a ton to do there and it would take us an additional 4+ hours, we were looking for cities more North and I found Tupelo.  When a google search revealed there was a Buffalo Park, where you could actually feed Buffalo's, I was sold.  CJ took a tiny bit of convincing but I think she was pretty sold as well.  Thus, I present Tupelo Buffalo Park (and Zoo)....

a ZONKEY--a Zebra/Donkey mix

Hello Deer!

So you pay admission to go to the zoo and then can pay an extra $3 for a tram/bus ride that takes you to the Buffalo fields to fed the Buffalo and other exotic animals--PAY IT!  In fact give them like $10, it is totally worth it.  The day we were there, there was, of course, a school group or 4 (seemed par for the course at this point in our trip), so we could have gone on the earlier bus ride with about 1 billion children (okay maybe it was more like 50-70, but still), but we decided to wait for the next ride out which was going to be another hour or so.  So we had to kill some time, but man it was worth it.  When we got in line the next time around, it ended up being just CJ and I.  The guy was super nice and took us out on the open car train instead of the bus--I wanted to have better pictures and he was really great to answer all our questions and let us spend extra time feeding the animals.
That's what I'm talking about!

Turns out Buffalo do not really like to be hand-fed, crazy right?  So we got to put food in their troughs and watch them up close.  Though the zebras nor buffalo like the hand fed method.  The horses and camels did not mind so we made fast friends with the horse and camel.  It was by far one of my favorite things from our trip and I would highly suggest this to anyone even remotely close to Tupelo!

After leaving the buffalo park we went to a local restaurant, then of course drove by Elvis' childhood home before heading onto Birmingham for the night!

Hello Alabama (another new state for me)!!!

We got to meet up with another of CJ's friends in Birmingham where we had some epic chicken barbecue with "white sauce" (Virginia needs to get this white sauce action) then grabbed ice cream before heading back to the hotel for the night.

You can bet there is more Civil Rights History coming your way tomorrow....

No comments:

Post a Comment