Expect dramatic entrances in Columbus, Mississippi, the city where Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright Tennessee Williams was born and where today his childhood home serves as the welcome center. Here, the doors open with a flourish to a magnificent array of gorgeous historic homes, drawing visitors deeply and delightfully into living history and culture. From grand interiors to the great outdoors, Columbus greets you in style: On a spectacular waterway, even the glittering trophy fish make a scene when they break the gleaming surface. And about that fantastic Columbus cuisine that appears at your table? Expect award-winning culinary performances.
Known across the South as the “City that Has It All”, Columbus offers a getaway that packs more into every day – and every evening – thanks to an inviting selection of accommodations including historic B&Bs. This is a city that has always offered kindness and hospitality: In fact, many historians agree that the nation’s first Memorial Day may have been born here, when the ladies of Columbus generously decorated the graves of both Union and Confederate soldiers in the days just after the Civil War. Today, at beautifully evocative Friendship Cemetery, you may just be greeted by an “apparition” from the past – at least if you arrive during the festivities of Spring Pilgrimage.
Now in its 76th year, Spring Pilgrimage draws visitors from across the nation and around the world eager to experience the 16-day celebration of history, culture and cuisine, highlighted by one of the South’s most significant collections of historic homes. And talk about grand openers, Pilgrimage’s opening event, Catfish in the Alley, replete with catfish cooking and sensational blues performances, is a true show stopper, celebrating the city’s rich African American culture that thrived on “Catfish Alley” in Historic Downtown Columbus.
Of course, visitors don’t have to wait to savor great food and historic charm and culture. Historic homes are open year-round, and the dining scene in Columbus offers a delectable experience for every taste and palate. Those who want to catch their own tasty entrees migrate to the mighty Tennessee-Tombigbee Waterway, home to some of the Southeast’s most popular fishing tournaments. The Tenn-Tom, along with vast reaches of lakes and parks, make Columbus a recreational paradise. And for those who get a kick out of soccer, the Burns Bottom Soccer Complex, host to high-profile youth league tournaments, is an unusually satisfying venue.
With its wooded surroundings and meandering creek, Burns Bottom feels like a world apart. Next door to the soccer complex, the city’s Riverwalk hugs the Waterway, melding scenic views with recreational fun, while the beautifully restored Tombigbee Bridge offers a walk into history. And just a short stroll away in Historic Downtown, on-trend shopping and antique-to-boutique selections await.
This blend of historic beauty and architectural splendor has made Columbus a premier destination. And then there’s the legendary hospitality: The City that Has it All is all about you. Yes, entrances in Columbus are dramatic and inviting, making exits the hardest part. Plan encores.