Do you love great food and live music? Then put a visit to Nashville on your list of travel destinations. Exploring a new city can be a lot of fun. There’s always something unique to discover, and Nashville is no different. From downtown Honky Tonks to delicious barbecue, the best things to do in Nashville offer a new adventure around every corner.
You don’t have to wait for a milestone like a birthday or anniversary to book your next trip. Although many of us like to associate holidays with these happy moments. Actually, Those who travel to celebrate special occasions are happier and more successful than those who don’t, according to a new study. A survey of 2,000 American adults examined their thoughts on historical travel and found that while 48 percent save travel for special occasions, another 40 percent think you should travel as much as you can.
Nashville is also one of the best places in the country to see live music, especially country music. Live shows are more than just fun and exciting. A recent study says that concerts may be better for your mental health than doing yoga.
Don’t forget your cowboy boots! (opens in a new tab) StudyFinds was compiled a list of the top five things to do in Nashville the next time you visit based on reviews from ten expert websites. As always, we’d love to see your recommendations in the comments below!
List: The best things THE Do it in Nashville, for Travel Experts
1. The Grand Ole Opry
One of Nashville’s top attractions, the Grand Ole Opry is a musical treasure trove. NOMADasaurus notes, “it’s a musicians dream to be invited (yes, invited) to play on the hallowed stage. In Nashville, playing here is the definition of ‘making it’.
“The Grand Ole Opry is radio’s longest-running show, dating back to 1925, attracting some of the most talented singer-songwriters of all time,” according to Upgraded Points.
Visitors come from all over the world to be in the audience of this radio program. “You can get tickets to see the Grand Ole Opry taping, a dream for country music fans. If you’re not a country fan, check out the upcoming shows. Artists from all genres of music play at the Opry House,” adds Travel Lemming.
“In addition to catching a show, you can also sign up for an Opry tour. There are backstage tours during the day as well as backstage tours after the show,” Goats On The Road points out.
2. Museum tour
Nashville is also home to some great museums. Another standout is the Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum, which contains approximately 2.5 million artifacts.
“Music and history lovers can mix and mingle with the exhibits found in the Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum. Read plaques dedicated to the best of country music — from Patsy Cline to Reba McEntire to Alan Jackson — and walk among artifacts like Johnny Cash’s guitar and Elvis Presley’s ‘solid gold’ Cadillac limo,” according to US News & World Report.
Travel Addicts points out that the museum, “made an effort to pay tribute to the county’s music heritage, while also having a focus on contemporary and even crossover artists. While there is a permanent collection, some of the exhibits rotate.”
The Johnny Cash Museum is another fantastic stop for music fans. The Vacationer notes that it is “one of the best music museums in the world and filled with the largest comprehensive collection of Johnny Cash artifacts and memorabilia.” Johnny Cash’s handwritten letters, instruments, clothing and other personal items are on display. The museum features a small theater that plays clips of movies and TV shows that Cash appeared in, and has an interactive exhibit that showcases his music in various formats. Be sure to book your tickets online to avoid lines as the museum can get busy,” according to Upgraded Points.
3. Visit Broadway
This lively area of Downtown Nashville features bars, clubs and great sounds. Music fills the air as you walk down the street. The tents sparkle with ornate neon signs. Many of today’s top country artists own bars and restaurants in this part of town.
Affectionately referred to as the Honky Tonk Highway, the bars and clubs here are defined by the presence of live music, long hours and no cover charge. With a music culture that encourages big stars and unknown acts to take the stage, no matter how small, this means bar-hopping is the way to go,” suggests Expedia.
Be sure to stop by Tootsies Orchid Lounge, the oldest honky in Nashville. Travelers Worldwide notes that it is, “a valued destination for tourists. Many famous musicians have passed through the hall’s doors, including Willie Nelson and Patsy Cline. Due to its popularity, it always has an extremely long wait in the evening to get inside. However, once you get inside, you’ll have a great time with live music and plenty of drinks.”
Day or night, Broadway is an experience like no other. Plus, you can find some great shops to score a souvenir cowboy hat and pair of boots.
4. Ryman Auditorium
Known as the Mother Church of Country Music, this historic music venue is located in downtown Nashville. “Founded in 1892 as the Union Tabernacle Gospel Church, this 2,362-seat venue was once the home of the Grand Ole Opry,” according to the Family Destinations Guide.
The Ryman features exceptional acoustics, beautiful architecture, stained glass windows and church pews to sit on. “Self-guided tours are available daily that allow you to explore the auditorium and exhibits. You can also take a photo on stage. For an additional fee, you can take a guided tour that also lets you go behind the scenes,” notes Travel Lemming.
“If a tour isn’t your speed, you can get a ticket to one of the shows (local and beyond) that still happen here almost every night of the week,” adds Travel Addicts.
5. Go to Centennial Park
No, you’re not in Greece, but you’ll want to check out this cool replica of The Parthenon located in Nashville’s Centennial Park. Structure “it was only meant to be temporary – it was built for the Tennessee Centennial Exposition in 1897 – it has since become a beloved attraction, housing models of the statues found in the original structure as well as an impressive art collection. Travelers praise the well-kept grounds, quiet atmosphere and grand building, recommending an evening visit to see it lit up,” according to US News & World Report.
“Enter the main hall upstairs to see the large statue of the goddess Athena. Take a tour and stroll through the four fine art galleries. Fun fact: the statue of Athena is the tallest indoor statue in the Western Hemisphere,” adds The Vacationer.
Honorable Mention: Food
Nashville is known for its incredible food. Get a hot chicken joint from Hattie B’s. “There are several Hattie B’s locations in Nashville, including one near Music Row. Provided you don’t go overboard on the spice level, eating hot chicken is definitely one of the tastiest things to do in Nashville,” Goats On The Road points out.
If you’re still hungry, one of my favorite places for some old-fashioned barbecue is Martin’s Bar-B-Que Joint. Their pork is a great delight. What about the ribs? They fall right off the bone.
Would you like some breakfast? The Pancake Pantry has some of the best flapjacks in Tennessee, with endless flavor combinations. Another must try is Cookie Love. You can build a breakfast around their specialty biscuits and add some hot chicken to it.
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Note: This article is not paid for or sponsored. StudyFinds is not affiliated with or partnered with any of the brands mentioned and receives no compensation for its recommendations. This post may contain affiliate links.
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