Peabody Hotel has some unique permanent guests in the famous "Peabody Ducks," who live on the hotel’s rooftop and perform a march toward the Grand Lobby twice daily. The tradition dates to 1933 when the general manager returned from a hunting trip and placed several live duck decoys in the hotel’s fountain. The guests’ positive response prompted their stay.
Twice each day, the Peabody Ducks are led by their "Duckmaster" (an official position in the hotel) from their home on the roof, down in an elevator, across a red carpet, and over to the Italian travertine marble fountain. During off hours, travelers can visit the ducks in their marble and glass rooftop “Royal Duck Palace.” Many Memphis city tours include a stop at the Peabody Hotel to see the famous web-footed residents.
Things to Know Before You Go
- Watching the march of the Peabody Ducks is a must for families with kids and first-time visitors to Memphis.
- Bring along your camera for a photo op as the famous fowl waddle by.
- The ducks march through the hotel twice per day.
How to Get There
The Peabody Memphis sits in the heart of downtown, about 15 minutes from Memphis International Airport. It’s within walking distance of several notable attractions, including the Memphis Rock ’n’ Soul Museum, Gibson Guitar Factory, and FedExForum. A self-parking garage is available a block away. Or, take the 101 bus to Union-Main/Tro NB and walk one block east on Union Avenue.
When to Get There
The Peabody Hotel Ducks march daily at both 11am and 5pm, from the rooftop in the morning and back to it in the evening.
A Bit of Peabody Duck Trivia
Peabody ducks—five North American mallards—are all raised by a local farmer, and each team of ducks only lives at the hotel for three months before returning to the farm to live out their lives in the wild. The hotel’s restaurant, Chez Philippe, might be the only French restaurant in the country that never serves duck on its menu.