Nashville travel guide

Music City

Nashville Tourism | Nashville Guide

You're Going to Love Nashville

The home of country music, Nashville, Tennessee is the place to come if you want to hear live music every night of the week. Head to atmospheric honky tonks like Robert’s Western, blues bars like Bourbon Street Blues & Boogie Bar, or to the Grand Ole Opry itself, where legends like Merle Haggard and Patsy Cline once played.

The food is great too. Dine on southern fried chicken at Hattie B’s Hot Chicken, try a slug of bourbon at Whiskey Kitchen, or explore the city’s growing craft beer scene at Craft Brewed.

Head to beautiful plantations like the Hermitage for a taste of antebellum life, stroll around Centennial Park with its replica of the Parthenon, or take the kids to Nashville Zoo at Grassmere.

Whether you want a music-packed trip, a family vacation, or a week of fine dining, Nashville delivers.

Top 5 Reasons to Visit Nashville

1. Country Music

The Grand Ole Opry is country music’s most important venue, and it’s still a wonderful place to catch the latest acts. But there are smaller bars too totake in great country music, like Robert’s Western World, Tootsie’s Orchid Lounge, Legend’s Corner, and Layla’s

2. Food

Local specialties include smoking hot chicken (try the menu at Prince's Hot Chicken Shack), meat and three (Arnold’s Country Kitchen is the place to go), andbiscuits, both in savory and sweet varieties.

3. History

You can visit elegant pre-Civil War plantations like the Hermitage, which was the home of President Andrew Jackson. Head to the Belle Meade Plantation forthe best museum of southern history and tours that include free wine tasting.

4. Festivals

Nashville isn’t all about the Opry and honky tonks. There are also plenty of outdoor festivals like the July 4th fireworks, June’s CMA Music Festival, andthe Bonnaroo Music and Arts Festival in nearby Manchester.

5. Elvis

While Elvis made his home in Memphis, he spent years in Nashville building his career. Visit RCA Studio B where he recorded 150 tracks or pick up copies ofElvis posters at Hatch Show Print.

What to do in Nashville

1. See a Music Concert at the Grand Ole Opry

Founded in 1925, this Nashville landmark has launched the careers of hundreds of best-selling country artists. Every week, there are at least threeshowcases, where the best current talent struts its stuff.

2. Spend an Evening in the Broadway Honky Tonks

After seeing the polished artists at the Opry, head to Broadway and experience the rougher side of country at honky tonks like Layla’s or Honky TonkCentral.

3. Take a Plantation Tour

The antebellum south was famous for its beautiful plantation architecture, and several of the finest examples are in the Nashville area. Don’t miss theHermitage, home of U.S. President Andrew Jackson.

4. Visit the Country Music Hall of Fame

Country music has a proud history, and often a heart-breaking one too. Re-live the lives of tragic artists like Patsy Cline or Hank Williams and celebratetheir music at the Country Music Hall of Fame on Nashville’s 5th Avenue.

5. Get Outdoors

Get some fresh air in Centennial Park, see the beautiful flowers at Cheekwood Botanical Garden or take the kids to Nashville Zoo, home to gibbons, macaws,and even kangaroos.

ParthenonParthenon
Tennessee State CapitolTennessee State Capitol
Midtown / West End / Music RowMidtown / West End / Music Row

1. See a Music Concert at the Grand Ole Opry

Founded in 1925, this Nashville landmark has launched the careers of hundreds of best-selling country artists. Every week, there are at least threeshowcases, where the best current talent struts its stuff.

2. Spend an Evening in the Broadway Honky Tonks

After seeing the polished artists at the Opry, head to Broadway and experience the rougher side of country at honky tonks like Layla’s or Honky TonkCentral.

3. Take a Plantation Tour

The antebellum south was famous for its beautiful plantation architecture, and several of the finest examples are in the Nashville area. Don’t miss theHermitage, home of U.S. President Andrew Jackson.

4. Visit the Country Music Hall of Fame

Country music has a proud history, and often a heart-breaking one too. Re-live the lives of tragic artists like Patsy Cline or Hank Williams and celebratetheir music at the Country Music Hall of Fame on Nashville’s 5th Avenue.

5. Get Outdoors

Get some fresh air in Centennial Park, see the beautiful flowers at Cheekwood Botanical Garden or take the kids to Nashville Zoo, home to gibbons, macaws,and even kangaroos.

ParthenonParthenon
Tennessee State CapitolTennessee State Capitol
Midtown / West End / Music RowMidtown / West End / Music Row

Top activities & attractions in Nashville

Where to Eat in Nashville

For the best southern fried chicken in Nashville, head to Hattie B’s in Midtown. A broader southern soul food selection is available at Arnold’s CountryKitchen, Lockeland Table is a little more experimental (but still offers traditional American fare), while Bro’s Cajun Cuisine is an excellent seafoodrestaurant.

Most popular restaurants in Nashville

American
Excellent (1007 reviews)
$$$$
Contemporary American
Excellent (869 reviews)
Gastro Pub
Excellent (768 reviews)
Contemporary American
Excellent (743 reviews)
American
Excellent (670 reviews)
Italian
Excellent (558 reviews)

When to visit Nashville

Nashville in February
Estimated hotel price
$94
1 night at 3-star hotel
Nashville in February
Estimated hotel price
$94
1 night at 3-star hotel

The best time to visit Nashville is between May and July, when the temperatures are high, but not too hot, and many of the major music festivals take place.Winter is a cheaper time to visit and the honky tonks will still be buzzing, while early spring and fall are great times to enjoy the plantations withoutlarge crowds.

Data provided by weatherbase
Temperatures
Temperatures
Average
Fahrenheit (°F)
Data provided by weatherbase

How to Get to Nashville

Plane

Flights to Nashville International Airport are the simplest way to visit Nashville. To get into town from the airport, take a shuttle bus provided by JarmonTransportation or pre-arrange a taxi or limo with one of the many companies present at the airport. Expect to pay around $30 for a taxi to downtowndestinations.

Train

If you want to take the train, the nearest station is in Memphis, which is linked to New Orleans and Chicago via the City of New Orleans service.

Car

I-40 passes through Nashville, linking the city with destinations to the east (like Philadelphia or New York) and the west (like Memphis). I-65 also passesthrough Nashville, connecting it to northern and southern destinations, so the city is fairly easy to reach by car.

Bus

The Greyhound stop is at 1030 Charlotte Ave and the company provides connections to most major American cities. Megabus also run services to Nashville fromChicago and regional cities like Knoxville, and their buses stop on Commerce St.

Airports near Nashville

Airlines serving Nashville

United Airlines
Good (69,479 reviews)
American Airlines
Good (47,659 reviews)
Lufthansa
Good (28,397 reviews)
KLM
Good (3,805 reviews)
Delta
Good (30,733 reviews)
Air France
Good (4,361 reviews)
British Airways
Good (23,342 reviews)
Turkish Airlines
Good (23,608 reviews)
Iberia
Good (6,161 reviews)
Qatar Airways
Excellent (11,528 reviews)
Air Canada
Good (25,043 reviews)
Emirates
Excellent (15,773 reviews)
Brussels Airlines
Good (2,481 reviews)
Scandinavian Airlines
Good (5,444 reviews)
TAP AIR PORTUGAL
Good (5,579 reviews)
Alaska Airlines
Excellent (30,305 reviews)
Finnair
Good (3,874 reviews)
Spirit Airlines
Okay (63,082 reviews)
JetBlue
Excellent (20,174 reviews)
Etihad Airways
Good (6,759 reviews)
Show more

Where to stay in Nashville

Popular hotels include the Comfort Inn, the Courtyard Nashville, and the Holiday Inn, all of which provide comfortable, reliable accommodation at reasonable prices. For a more up-market vacation experience, The Hermitage Hotel is a gorgeous 19th-century hotel, while The Hutton Hotel, is a smaller boutique option with a focus on gourmet food and high-quality service. At the other end of the scale, Music City Hostel is a great place for backpackers to sleep.

Popular neighborhoods in Nashville

Opryland – As the name suggests, Opryland is clustered around the Grand Ole Opry. It’s also the best place to stay if you intend to shop thanks to Opry Mills, whereyou’ll find major retailers like H&M and Ralph Lauren. There are plenty of musical attractions in the area. Visit the Willie Nelson Museum, take in an Elvistribute act and round everything off with a southern feast at Nashville Palace.

Downtown – The business core of the city, Downtown hosts the city’s artistic institutions, including the Frist Center for the Visual Arts, while major touring actsusually find space for a concert at the Bridgestone Arena. Check out Broadway as well, home to the city’s best honky tonks, including Tootsie’s andLayla’s.

Midtown – Known for its restaurants, Midtown is a safe area that has plenty of hotels. Check out the seafood specialties at South Street Original Crab Shack and stayfor the rock and roll shows or go up-market with the gourmet Italian food at Giovanni Ristorante. Vanderbilt University is next door too, and it’s worthtaking a walk on campus to see its 19th century architecture and sculpture gardens.

Most popular hotel in Nashville by neighborhood

Where to stay in popular areas of Nashville

Most booked hotels in Nashville

Courtyard by Marriott Nashville Airport
Excellent (8.8, 195 reviews)
$186+
Gaylord Opryland Resort & Convention Center
Excellent (8.6, 3796 reviews)
$389+
Loews Vanderbilt Hotel
Excellent (8.5, 522 reviews)
$244+
TownePlace Suites by Marriott Nashville Airport
Excellent (8.2, 144 reviews)
$166+
Nashville Marriott at Vanderbilt University
Good (7.9, 460 reviews)
$244+
Four Points by Sheraton Nashville Airport
Good (7.9, 210 reviews)
$158+
See all hotels

How to Get Around Nashville

Public Transportation

Nashville MTA runs an efficient bus network that serves the whole city center. Basic fares are low at $1.70 for a single journey, and you can save money with$5.25 day passes. Buses tend to finish around 5 p.m., so taxis might be better if you go out in the evening.

Taxis

Basic taxi fares are $3 for the pick-up, then $2 for every additional mile and $1 for each extra passenger. Uber is cheaper, with a base fare of $1 and then$0.93 per subsequent mile.

Car

Major car rental agencies like Hertz, Enterprise, and Avis are present in the city. Expect to pay around $30 per day for a normal sized vehicle. Parkingcosts around $6 per hour in surface lots and over $10 in most garages, although many locations have cheaper rates after 5 p.m.

The Cost of Living in Nashville

Shopping Streets

Opry Mills is a massive outlet mall filled with big names, including H&M, Coach, and Kate Spade. Gruhn Guitars on 8th Avenue is the place to look for musicalinstruments, while Imogen & Willie in 12South is a popular custom denim boutique. Green Hills is another district that’s full of high-end clothing stores,including Dillard’s and Macy’s.

Groceries and Other

Nashville isn’t an expensive city. 12 eggs cost around $2.40 while a bottle of wine is $14. The best places to shop for groceries are supermarkets likePublix, Kmart, Safeway, Wal-Mart, and H.G. Hill and there are also Whole Foods and Trader Joe’s outlets in the center of town.

Cheap meal
$12.00
A pair of jeans
$41.12
Single public transport ticket
$1.70
Cappuccino
$4.23
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