By Ilona Kauremszky

Q: I wanted to drive to Memphis, Tennessee from Toronto in April. Where can I get some info on roads, accommodations and attractions?

A: Before heading out on any road trip, it's important to ensure your car is running smoothly and, spring is a perfect time for a tune up. Once you've got the automobile in order, you're almost ready to head south. But, first you'll want to consider the best route.

If you wish to get a package deal prior to your trip, the Canadian Automobile Association offers its members several benefits including a Tour Book which has U.S. listings of accommodations, attractions and restaurants. Drop into a branch and depending on your needs, they can map out routes based on scenic, direct or even a more personalized trip.

These customized routes are prepared with all the most updated info on events, attractions as well as construction areas to avoid. Contact them about a week prior to your departure date with your query and no sooner because they wish to provide the latest roadside construction info. For CAA rates and membership information, contact 1.800.268.3750.

Otherwise, you may wish to travel a route that many motorists have used to reach Memphis. The trip total is about a two day car ride and averages 757 miles, depending on the number of pit stops. Use the Ambassador Bridge to enter the United States via Windsor, Ontario and pay an entry toll of $3.00. That's about it for tolls, provided you stay on this path. Take I75 South to Cincinnati where you'll drive 20 miles south of Cincinnati, Ohio to Interstate 71 South to Louisville, Kentucky.

Here, you'll want to follow Interstate 65 South to Nashville, Tennessee and stop into the land of the Grand Ole Opry. I checked the Grand Ole Opry schedule by visiting their web site, and as far as April performances, John Anderson will be performing on April 21st.

For schedule and other info, contact the Grand Ole Opry at (615) 889-3060. Once the blue grass is out of your soul, you're ready to head into Elvis country. Take Interstate 40 until you get to Memphis, Tennessee and you've made it. Now all you have to find is Graceland and that's located at 3717 Elvis Presley Boulevard. Adult tickets are $16 US. For more Graceland info, contact (800) 238-2000.

If you're really an Elvis lover, the birthplace of the King of Rock'n'Roll is located in nearby Tupelo along Interstate 78. During your road trip, road maps and accommodation info can be picked up through the many tourist information centres located along the way.


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