Can You Guess the Southern City From a Visual Clue?



By: Laura DeFazio

7 Min Quiz

Image: Chumbley Photography / Moment / Getty Images

About This Quiz

By most estimations, "The South" includes Texas, Louisiana, Alabama, Mississippi, Georgia, Florida, Arkansas, Tennessee, Virginia, North Carolina and South Carolina. (Some lists also include the border states of Missouri, Kentucky, Delaware, Maryland, Oklahoma and/or West Virginia, but for the purposes of this quiz we're mostly sticking to the others.) Each of these states has a capital, plus other cities of historic and cultural importance. Their skylines are distinct, their physical geographies are unique and the natural landscapes surrounding each varying immensely. Still, it might not be as easy to distinguish the images as you think!

Some of the pictures will test your recognition of prominent landmarks or well-known attractions. Some will display local wildlife. Some will relate to important events in history (the Civil War is big in The South, as you probably know, as is the Civil Rights Movement.) Others will pertain to the culture; food is rich and flavorful below the Mason-Dixon line (think barbeque ... yum ...) and each city brings its distinctive flavors to regional specialities. Music is part of the fabric of southern life wherever you go, but different genres and styles are more associated with certain areas.

So are you an expert on the human geography of The South? Take the quiz and see how you fare. Either way, you'll pick up a lot of interesting facts along the way. 

The Parthenon here is a full-sized replica of the ancient original in Athens, Greece. However, this city is most famous for its country music scene. Do you know what it is?

Tennessee's capital, Nashville, is known as the "country music capital of the world." Some famous country musicians who currently live there are Faith Hill, Tim McGraw, Billy Ray Cyrus and Martina McBride.


Spaceship Earth is located where on Earth?

This giant sphere is the iconic symbol of Epcot, one of Disney World's four kingdoms. (The others are Animal Kingdom, Magic Kingdom and Hollywood Studios.) Disney World is located in Orlando, Florida, not to be confused with Disneyland in Anaheim, California.


This southern city flies the Flag of Acadiana, which bears three fleur-des-lis (a symbol of French royalty), a Spanish castle and a gold star on a white field in honor of Our Lady of the Assumption. Do you know which it is?

Lafayette is a culturally rich city in Louisiana's Acadian region (AKA, "Cajun Country"). The French Acadians were expelled from the British Canadian maritime provinces in the 18th century and migrated to then-Spanish Louisiana under the watchful eye of their patron saint, Our Lady of the Assumption. French is still spoken there today.


The Alamo is a UNESCO World Heritage site and perhaps the most famous Spanish mission in US history. Do you know which southern city it's located in?

The infamous Battle of the Alamo was fought in 1836 between Mexico and Texans, who were fighting for independence. Mexico won, and the vast majority of Texans were killed. The few survivors were women, children and/or slaves.


This city's skyline is defined by "The Christ of the Ozarks," this gigantic statue of Jesus. Can you name the city?

Made by Gerald L. K. Smith (who also worked on Mount Rushmore), the statue stands at 65.5 feet in height. The mountainous town of Eureka Springs is also known for its picturesque cottages and winding streets and stairways.


Mardi Gras isn't just one day in this city; it's an entire season. There are over 70 parades, beginning on January 6th and ending the "Fat Tuesday" before Lent, whenever that happens to fall in a particular year. Where are we?

Mardi Gras parades are organized by "krewes" (some big, some small, some historic, some new) of residents who band together every year to make elaborate floats and costumes. The Krewe of Joan of Arc traditionally kicks the season off on January 6th (Twelfth Night) with a parade in honor of the teen martyr. Zulu, St. Anne and Rex are just a few krewes that march on the day itself.


Margaret Mitchell's iconic novel "Gone with the Wind" (later adapted into an Academy Award-winning film) was set in and around this southern city. Do you know it?

"Gone with the Wind" is a historical novel that takes place over the Civil War and Reconstruction. It follows the story of Scarlett O'Hara, a southern belle who lives on the plantation her father owns and centers around themes such as slavery, war and coming-of-age.


Blues lovers from near and far make the pilgrimage to this southern city to visit the home of Muddy Waters and the Delta Blues Museum. Do know which it is?

One of the most famous bluesmen of all time, Muddy Waters, had an illustrious career both in his native Mississippi and up north in Chicago. Today, Clarksdale is a hub for live blues of the highest caliber.


Sixth Street and Rainey Street are two of the biggest spots for nightlife in this hip city. Can you guess it?

One of the south's most liberal cities, Austin is full of artists, musicians and young transplants of all sorts. It definitely has a lot to offer, although some longtime residents complain that it's becoming a bit of a caricature of itself.


The Castillo de San Marcos is a 200-year-old fort located in this city, nicknamed "the Ancient City."

St. Augustine is the oldest continuously inhabited European settlement in the continental US. Spanish explorer Juan Ponce de Leon landed there in 1513, and it was officially founded as a city in 1565.


Although the old capitol building burned down in 1923, visitors to Capitol Park can still view remnants of its striking 19th-century architecture. Where are we?

Named after a Choctaw chief and originally spelled "Tuskaloosa," this city was incorporated in 1819 and served as Alabama's capital from 1826 to 1846. It was nicknamed "Druid City." (Not, oddly enough, for the Stonehenge-y looks of Capitol Park, but for the water oaks lining its streets. The Celts were known oak-worshippers.)


One of this city's most visited attractions is Craighead Forest Park, a 692-acre sprawl with campgrounds, walking trails and sporting opportunities galore. Can you name the city?

Jonesboro is the fifth-largest city in Arkansas and home to Arkansas State University. The city was also the location of the Westside Middle School school shooting in 1998, a tragic occurrence that resultant in the deaths of five people.


Home of NASA's manned spacecraft center, this city goes by the moniker "Space City." Can you name it?

Houston got its nickname in 1967 when it became home to the Lyndon B. Johnson Space Center. (Hence that old saying, "Houston, we have a problem.") It's also the only major U.S. city with no zoning laws.


The largest aquarium in the world is home to more than 100,000 sea animals. Do you know where it's located?

That's right; the Georgia Aquarium in Atlanta is the largest in the world, both in terms of the number of fish and amount of water (more than one million cubic feet.) It opened in 2005, largely thanks to a donation made by one of the co-founders of Home Depot.


The epitome of southern charm, this city is know for its 22 lovely historic squares and streets lined with oaks draped in Spanish moss. Can you name it?

With its parks and fountains and quaint historic architecture, Savannah is a true southern belle. The city is widely known for its art scene. Visitors also enjoy the open-carry policy that allows them to stroll around admiring the art and beauty, cocktails in hand.


The Lincoln Memorial graces this capital city, which sits at the historic border of "The North" and "The South." Can you name it?

Washington D.C. was specifically constructed to serve as the U.S. capital as part of an agreement to appease the pro-slavery southern states; they'd taken issue with the seat of government previously being so far to the north, first in Philadelphia, then in New York City. Northern Maryland and southern Virginia each ceded a small amount of land to found the District of Columbia.


This city is an important stop on the U.S. Civil Rights Trail. Visitors can pay homage at the home of slain activist Medgar Evers and visit the acclaimed civil rights museum that preserves the memory of Evers and other freedom fighters.

Medgar Evers was the first state field secretary of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP). He was assassinated in 1963, and after extenuated legal proceedings, his killer was finally sent to prison in 1994. President Barack Obama dedicated Evers' home as a National Historic Monument in 2017.


Louisiana's oldest city is known for its six-week Christmas festival, tasty meat pies and for being the filming location of "Steel Magnolias," starring Sally Field. Can you name it?

Even older than New Orleans (as residents are fond of reminding visitors), Natchitoches was founded in 1714 by a French explorer named Louis Juchereau de St. Denis. Beyond just being the oldest city in Louisiana, however, it's actually the oldest (European) permanent settlement within the boundaries of the entire Louisiana Purchase, which is over one-fifth of the area of the whole United States.


Just to the west of this capital city is where you'll find Pinnacle Mountain State Park. Do you know which it is?

A nature lover's paradise, this park boasts well over 2,000 acres of diverse terrain. Pinnacle Mountain is the crowning centerpiece. The city of Little Rock is also historically important as a site of civil rights protests and activism.


Enjoy stunning views of this city and the surrounding areas from the Geo-Deck atop Reunion Tower. Where are we?

The spherical observation deck nicknamed "The Ball" sits 470 feet in the air and is full of telescopes, high-zoom cameras and interactive exhibits. It was built in 1978 and has become a key part of the city's skyline.


Take a stroll down the Battery Promenade or Waterfront Park to enjoy fountains, greenery and views of the harbor. Where are we?

Charleston was founded in 1670 as a British settlement and named for King Charles II. Today it's a major U.S. city as well as a lovely historic town known for its horse-drawn carriages, cobblestone streets and houses painted in pinks and yellows.


This city is nicknamed "City of Oaks" for (you guessed it) its oak trees. Its Oakwood District is also known for its beautiful historic homes. Can you guess it?

Raleigh is a popular place for families to live because of its green spaces, quaint neighborhoods, high quality of life and affordability. It's not a city that's known for its nightlife or public transportation system.


It wouldn't be at all uncommon to stumble upon a drum circle in this artsy, Blue Ridge Mountain city. Do you know which one we're talking about?

Quirky little Asheville is home to various locally owned bars, breweries and cafes. A popular stop for touring musicians of all genres, it's particularly known for its bluegrass and Appalachian-style music scene.


The country's largest collection of diesel and steam locomotives is on display in this city's transportation museum. It's a fitting place to house them, as this major railroad hub of yore made westward expansion possible in the 1800s.

Be sure not to confuse Roanoke, Virginia, with "the Lost Colony" of Roanoke Island, North Carolina. The latter refers to the hundred-plus English settlers who arrived on Roanoke Island in 1587 and were found to have disappeared without a trace when more supplies arrived in 1590. History still doesn't know what happened to them.


Bob Dylan sang that he was stuck inside of this city "with the Memphis blues again." Can you name it? (We'll give you a hint: it's not Memphis.)

One of the oldest cities on the Gulf Coast, Mobile is located in the tiny piece of Alabama that dips down to touch the Gulf of Mexico. Its residents are known for really getting into the spirit of Mardi Gras, although the celebrations are somewhat overshadowed by those of their neighbors two hours away in New Orleans.


This city's beautiful, sandy beaches make it a popular vacation destination. In fact, it has so many beaches that there are lists circulating the internet of its 10, 15 or even 20 "best" beaches! Can you name it?

To name just a few of Miami's popular beaches, there's Haulover, SoFi, Crandon, Matheson Hammock, 12th Street, 8th Street, Surfside, Lummus and Bill Baggs. Miami is also known for its Latin music, Cuban food and clubbing scene.


This city served as the capital of the Confederacy during the Civil War. Its Monument Avenue, although listed on the National Register of Historic Places, is controversial these days, what with its statues honoring pro-slavery Confederate veterans. Do you know the city?

The debates surrounding the statues (in Richmond as in other southern cities) involve questions like, "Can we in good conscience continue to display monuments dedicated to pro-slavery forces?", "Do we act as if history didn't happen by taking them down?" "Can the Confederate statues represent aspects of regional pride separate from slavery, or are they unconditionally intertwined?", etc.


Beale Street has increasingly become a tourist trap over the years, but it's still possible to hear some great blues and rock there, especially during the annual Beale Street Music Festival. Where are we?

Although both Nashville and Memphis are major Tennessee music hubs, the former is more associated with country music and the latter with blues and rock. Memphis is often called "the birthplace of rock 'n' roll," and it's where you'll find Elvis' home, Graceland.


Tourists visiting this iconic city can take a ride along the Mississippi River on the Steamboat Natchez. Where are they?

Visitors can experience some local history and culture with dinner and live jazz during a river cruise. This incarnation of the Natchez is actually the ninth and was built in 1975, but its form stays true to the 18th and 19th-century steamboats that roved up and down the river.


Located just outside of this capital city, St. Marks Wildlife Refuge was originally created to protect migratory birds, including the endangered whooping crane. Today, it's home to over 300 species of birds and tons of other wetland creatures like gators, snakes and otters.

Other endangered species living at St. Marks include the flatwoods salamander and the West Indian manatee. Visitors can enjoy hiking, biking and horseback riding. St. Marks Lighthouse (which is still in operation) is the second-oldest in the state, built in 1842.


Known as "the Hub City" for its proximity to Jackson, New Orleans, Mobile and Gulfport, this city is home of the University of Southern Mississippi. Can you name it?

Usually called by its nickname "Southern Miss," the University of Southern Mississippi is a public research university known for its academics, its golden eagle mascot (called "Seymour de Campus") and its reputation as somewhat of a party school. The University of Mississippi (aka "Ole Miss") is in Oxford, Mississippi.


This capital city is home to the tallest capitol building in the U.S. (Maybe it's compensating for the state's low elevation.) Can you name it?

The Capitol Building in Baton Rouge is 460 feet to its tip. Baton Rouge ("red stick" in French) was named for an actual red stick there that caught the eye of French-Canadian explorer Pierre Le Moyne d'Iberville in 1699. (The story goes that it was planted by the Bayougoula and Houma tribes to mark the boundary of their hunting grounds.)


Archaeology buffs, hold onto your hats: Ocmulgee Mounds National Historic Park bears evidence of 17,000 years of continuous human habitation. Which southern city is it located in?

The looming earthworks here represent the remains of a Mississippian-culture village, one structure of which was carbon-dated to the year 1015. The Mississippian people were the most recent of several cultures to inhabit the area; the earliest we know of (as evidenced by their characteristic Clovis stone projectile points) were the Paleoindians around 17,000 years ago.


This city isn't called "Circus Town" for nothing; it became the winter headquarters of Ringling Brothers and Barnum & Bailey Circus in 1927. The legacy continues in a historic circus museum and contemporary big top happenings. Where are we?

The Ringling Brothers purchased Barnum & Bailey after Bailey passed away, forming Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey in 1919. Sarasota became their winter base as of 1927, and in 1948, the Ringling Museum of the American Circus opened. Today, the Historic Circus Museum is housed at the Ringling Museum of Art, and its offerings have expanded immensely.


This city's Sunsphere was built for the 1982 World's Fair. Can you name the city?

The structure is 266 feet high, and one of its floors features a free-and-open-to-the-public observation deck that gives visitors 360-degree views of the city. The sphere's glass panels are layered with gold dust, and each cost about $1,000.


Do you know which city is home to the country's oldest, largest Civil War park?

The Battle of Lookout Mountain and the Battle of Missionary Ridge are known together as the Battles for Chattanooga. They took place in November of 1863 and resulted in Union victories. Chattanooga shares the park with Chickamauga, Georgia, 9 miles to the south.


In 1997, Tiger Woods won his first Masters Tournament in this city (where the competition is held every year), breaking several records. Can you name the city?

Woods won his first Masters in 1997 at the tender age of 21. This made him both the youngest person to ever win the tournament and the first non-white person. He has won three additional Masters since, plus many other prestigious golf tournaments.


This city's NBA team is called the Hornets. Interesting, its police cars also bear hornets' nest insignias. Where are we?

Charlotte's love of hornets dates back to the American Revolution. In 1780, British general Charles Cornwallis found the city to be a stronghold of resistance to the Crown, causing him to gripe that it was a "veritable hornet's nest of rebellion."


One of this city's major attractions is its boardwalk, which runs alongside Resort Beach for 3 miles. Can you name it?

Sunbathers flock to the beach during the warmer months. The boardwalk is a prime spot for walking, jogging, skateboarding, exploring restaurants and perusing souvenir shops and candy stores.


Texas' Capitol Building is a great place to visit if you want to admire some architecture, stroll around over 20 acres of greenery and perhaps take a free tour. Where is it located?

With its hip bars and growing reputation as a music mecca, it's sometimes easy to forget that Austin is also the seat of government in Texas. It was made the capital of the Republic of Texas in 1839, and (except for a two-year period in the 1840s) remained the capital throughout Texas' history as a republic and a state. It was originally named Waterloo.


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