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Things to do in Nashville

Things to do in  Nashville

Welcome to Nashville

Nashville may sound like twangy country music and smell like barbecue, but this Tennessee city is swinging past stereotypes and fast becoming the hipster-hub of the South. Think street art, coffee shops, craft breweries, farm-to-fork dining, and of course, plenty of live music (not limited to country)—all happening along the banks of the Cumberland River in the foothills of the Appalachian Mountains. Come for the Parthenon, a full-scale replica of its counterpart in Athens, and stay for literally everything else.

When to visit

After cold, snowy winters, locals and visitors alike look forward to warmer weather. Spring, particularly April, is packed full of festivals, including the Cherry Blossom Festival, Wild West Comedy Festival, and Nashville Film Festival. While summer brings higher temperatures and a bit of humidity, it’s still a great time to get in on the outdoor music scene, especially at Ascend Amphitheater or Carl Black Chevy Woods Amphitheater.

Getting around

Nashville’s MTA bus system can get you around, but it’s slow, so renting a car makes the most sense for quickly traveling around the car-friendly city. Bike rentals and walking are another alternative, and ride-sharing apps are essential if you forgo a rental. Also, if you're staying at a hotel, check to see if they offer a shuttle service to or from the airport before shelling out the cash for a taxi.

Traveler tips

The Johnny Cash Museum is about a 3-minute walk from Paradise Park Trailer Resort, a trailer park–themed bar where a Doublewide Cheeseburger gets you two 1/3-pound beef patties on a bun with a side of tater tots or sweet potato fries. If you’re more of a daredevil, try Nashville’s original hot chicken at Prince’s Hot Chicken Shack at one of the two locations: 123 Ewing Drive or 5814 Nolensville Road.

Top 10 attractions in Nashville

#1

Downtown Nashville

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This is Music City and Nashville’s lively downtown doesn’t disappoint. Sounds resonate from popular pit stops like the Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum, the Ryman Auditorium venue and so-called “Mother Church of Country Music,” the Johnny Cash Museum, the Musicians Hall of Fame and Museum and the Tennessee Performing Arts Center to countless small venues tucked in the over 200 bars and restaurants of downtown Nashville. Buzzing with creative-types, Nashville’s heart is also a hub for art galleries and studios, theater and museums including the lauded Frist Center for the Visual Arts. A downtown Art Walk spanning a 10-block by 10-block maze of sidewalks along the western shores of the Cumberland River lists over 75 stops, and the first Saturday of each month residents and visitors come out in droves to explore the city’s art scene after hours.More
#2

Country Music Hall of Fame & Museum

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Few things are as deeply connected with the South as country music, so while you're in Nashville (known as "Music City") it's apropos to check out the world famous Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum. With its mixture of historic video clips and recorded music, dynamic exhibits and state-of-the-art design, regular menu of live performances and public programs, the museum is filled with fascinating attractions. You don't have to be a country music fan to appreciate the museum's significance. All that is required for enjoyment is an appreciation for musical history and culture.More
#3

Ryman Auditorium

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The historic home of the Grand Ole Opry, the Ryman Auditorium is one of the must see sites that makes Music City famous. Built in 1892 (and initially serving as a tabernacle) it was used for the Opry broadcasts from 1943 until 1974. After the Opry moved to a larger venue, the Ryman sat largely unused until it was reopened as a performance hall and museum in 1994. Today, the Ryman is a popular 2,362-seat live performance venue as well as a National Historic Landmark. Both country music stars and legends in other genres have graced the Ryman stage throughout its long and proud history. Among the many notable stars to have performed there include Elvis Presley, Bruce Springsteen, Bob Dylan, Van Morrison, Willie Nelson, and Patsy Kline. Taking a tour of the Ryman allows you to walk in the same steps of music royalty, seeing the backstage area and dressing rooms that hosted these many stars.More
#4

Tennessee State Capitol

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The Tennessee State Capitol stands tall on Nashville’s highest hill as a symbol of its time, virtually unchanged since its construction in 1859. The structure is the masterpiece of notable architect William Strickland, who passed away during construction and was laid to rest in the building. The National Historic Landmark was built in Greek Revival style and is one of few state capitols without a dome. It was modeled after an Ionic Greek temple. Though classic in design, at the time it was considered innovative in construction.More
#5

Music Row

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No trip to Nashville is complete without a visit to Music Row. Along with being the spot where many big names got their start in the music business, it offers numerous choices to hear live music from possible future recording stars. RCA Studio B is the first thing on most visitors list. The famous recording studio recorded hits from the likes of Roy Orbison, Dolly Parton and Chet Atkins. Elvis recorded more than 200 songs here. Music lovers will enjoy seeing all of the old houses converted into music companies and offices. Not far from Vanderbilt University’s campus, it’s the type of place where you can happily wander, especially on a sunny day.More
#6

Nashville Riverfront Park

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Riverfront Park’s prominent position on the riverfront near the heart of downtown Nashville makes it hard to miss. A visit is worthwhile for the fresh air and stunning views of the river and the Tennessee Titans’ Nissan Stadium across the way. Visitors and locals alike come for family fun, recreation, and relaxation, as well as for free summer concerts and festivals hosted throughout the year.More
#7

Frist Art Museum

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Lavish cream and green marble floors and wall paneling, high ceilings with and cast iron doors surround guests with the art deco charm of the Nashville’s original post office completed in 1934. The historically significant building kept its original charm through a public/private partnership-driven revamp into the non-profit Frist Art Museum in 2001. The space now holds art exhibitions, interactive art workshops as well as a gift shop and café.More
#8

Centennial Park

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All of America’s great cities have a fantastic urban park. New York’s Central Park, San Francisco’s Golden Gate Park, and Nashville’s Centennial Park. The lush green landscape provides a needed escape from the towering skyscrapers and bustling city life. The most notable, and possibly most out-of-place feature of the park is the Parthenon replica, built to scale. Commissioned for Nashville’s celebration of the nation’s 100th birthday, it also commemorates Nashville’s reputation as the “Athens of the South” because of its many universities and arts scene. Don’t just admire this architectural feat from the outside, the builders took this replica project to its fullest extent. According to Ancient Greek history, the Parthenon was built to house an ivory and gold statue built by Phidias to honor the goddess. Its size can’t be described as anything but breath-taking, and it’s mind-blowing to think about this being built during the B.C. era.More
#9

Belle Meade Historic Site & Winery

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Step back into the Old South and get a feel for what it might have been like to live on a plantation in the 1800s. Located 6 miles (9.5 kilometers) west of Nashville, the Belle Meade Plantation is a historic plantation mansion whose grounds now function as a museum. First bought in 1806, and continually expanded throughout the 19th century, the Belle Meade Plantation became world renowned as a first-rate horse breeding establishment. Buyers from around the world flocked to the plantation for its annual yearling sales, hoping to purchase one of their champion thoroughbred horses. A tour of the mansion reveals Belle Meade's rich history and offers insight into the distinct Southern culture of the Antebellum and Reconstruction eras.More
#10

Grand Ole Opry House

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A must-attend event while in "Music City," The Grand Ole Opry is a weekly country music stage concert that has highlighted the genre's biggest stars since 1925. Originally a radio broadcast, the Opry is the longest running radio program in history. Dedicated to honoring country music, the event showcases different artists each night to perform songs in genres including country, bluegrass, folk, comedy, and gospel. Considered the "Show that Made Country Famous," the Opry is famous for its multi-generational approach and ability to adapt with the changing times. This approach continues today as it features both legendary performers and contemporary chart toppers. An American icon, the Opry is regularly listened to by millions of internet and radio users and visited by hundreds of thousands of people from around the world.More

Trip ideas

How to Spend 2 Days in Nashville

How to Spend 2 Days in Nashville

Top activities in Nashville

Nashville Trolley Tour

Nashville Trolley Tour

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Grand Ole Opry Show Admission Ticket

Grand Ole Opry Show Admission Ticket

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US$93.75
Nashville Evening Trolley Tour

Nashville Evening Trolley Tour

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Recent reviews from experiences in Nashville

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First time to Nashville
Kathy_K, Feb 2021
Explore the City of Nashville Tour by Golf Cart
If you haven’t been to Nashville before, it’s a good way to see parts of the city you wouldn’t know to visit.
star-5
Great Experience
Shamika_P, Feb 2021
Belle Meade Guided Mansion Tour with Complimentary Wine Tasting
I would Definitely recommend this place to others to visit when they’re in Nashville.
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Best one yet
Taylor_W, Jan 2021
Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum Admission
So it was really neat to be able to see the history and the outfits our favorite artist wore.
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joyride makes my day
Gina_L, Jan 2021
Mural Art Tour of Nashville by Golf Cart
by far the best way to get to see Nashville.
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BEST EXPERIENCE IN NASHVILLE
Vanessa_H, Jan 2021
Evening/Sunset/Night Helicopter Tour of Downtown Nashville (approx 15 mins)
The service was outstanding, we will come back in the summer.
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Get Ideas for Nashville places to visit
Stacey_P, Dec 2020
Best of Nashville City Tour on Double Decker Bus
The tour guide was knowledgeable, and even with a major road shut down, the tour company made it a great experience, and we got ideas about what to see throughout the rest of our week in Nashville.
star-5
Awesome Tour!!
Soraya_F, Dec 2020
Nashville Trolley Tour
Love Nashville and the tour is a great way to see everything!!!
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A great tour
Amy_P, Dec 2020
Nashville Trolley Tour
Got to see so much of Nashville in one tour
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Would do over and over
Matthew_K, Dec 2020
Explore the City of Nashville Tour by Golf Cart
Glad to see everyone helping out and being great neighbors.
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Nashville at night!
Janniece_H, Dec 2020
Nashville Pub Crawl: Nashville's #1 All-Inclusive Pub Crawl (Drinks Included)
A great way to see the city and nightlife of Nashville.
star-5
Great way to get an overview of Nashville
Sylvia, Dec 2020
Best of Nashville City Tour on Double Decker Bus
Cory our guide was very knowledgeable about the venues we saw , good recommendations for where to eat and what to do after the tour We made our tour in December and were given good advice about where to go to see the best Christmas lights.
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homes
john_a, Dec 2020
Nashville "Homes Of The Stars" Narrated Bus Tour with 30+ Celebrity Homes
It was neat to see the celebrity homes and the tour guide gave good information along the way.
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Fun & relaxing!
Stephanie_G, Dec 2020
Guided Segway Tour of Downtown Nashville
This was such a fun & relaxing way to see Nashville!
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Fun experience
Michelle_W, Nov 2020
Nashville Evening Trolley Tour
I would do this tour at the beginning of your vacation because it gives you some great ideas of things to see and do while you are in Nashville.
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A great Nashville treat
George_B, Nov 2020
Guided Segway Tour of Downtown Nashville
Loved to see people having fun.
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Mrs
Donna_A, Oct 2020
Grand Ole Opry House Guided Backstage Tour
Would love to see a show there.
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Homes of the Stars
Tom_Y, Oct 2020
Nashville "Homes Of The Stars" Narrated Bus Tour with 30+ Celebrity Homes
It was interesting to see the various areas in Nashville where the stars live.
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Fun, unique, beautiful and impressive.
Patricia_B, Dec 2020
Nashville to Jack Daniel's Distillery Bus Tour with Tastings
It was lovely to see the countryside outside of Nashville and the small town of Lynchburg was adorable and quaint.
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Highly recommended to understand why Nashville became what it is today
JimStem, Nov 2020
Nashville's RCA Studio B & Country Music Hall of Fame Admission Ticket Combo
I never had the chance to see Studio B before, so it was super special to visit with my aunt (his widow) the day before and then visit Studio B.
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Must-Do Excursion for Whiskey Lovers
Johannah_W, Sep 2020
Nashville to Jack Daniel's Distillery Bus Tour with Tastings
This option was perfect for a couples getaway vacation in which we were able to visit Lynchburg and have a date night in Nashville the same day.

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