Travel Destination: Nashville, TN
Creativity is the heart and soul of Music City and there’s never a shortage of inspiring things to do.
For country-music fans, singers and songwriters from all over the world, Nashville is the ultimate destination. But Nashville isn’t just country music, it is a lively city, breaking out with new businesses, a dynamic food and cocktail scene, and bright lights. It’s growing every day and brimming with rich history, culture and fun. It is one of the cities that I’m proud to call home.
So let me start by caveating that this doesn't include everything to do in this wonderful city, but I’ve provided a few crowd pleasers as a starting point.
Top Nashville Attractions:
The Ryman Auditorium, home of the Grand Ole Opry from 1943 to 1974, is again being used to host performances of the famous radio show. Originally opened in 1892 as the Union Gospel Tabernacle, the Ryman - often referred to as the "Carnegie Hall of the South" - has been restored and now also features regular classical concert series, bluegrass shows, musical theater, and television tapings. The building also serves as a museum with a variety of exhibits relating to its rich past. Guided and self-guided tours are available, and be sure to try your hand at cutting a record of your own in the Ryman's Recording Studio. Fun backstage tours are available.
While you’re downtown, head to lower Broadway – just wander straight towards for the AT&T tower that looks like a cross between Batman and the Eye of Sauron – and you’ll find the Honky Tonk Highway. It’s a musical hub in Music City, and once you visit, you’ll see what we mean.
The Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum is set in a stunning building in the heart of downtown Nashville, its tall windows resembling the keys of a piano. The museum features a multi-media display of historical performances, costumes, instruments, gold records, and memorabilia.
Also, while not strictly country-music related, the Musicians Hall of Fame and Museum is worth visiting for its displays and exhibits related to recorded music and its stars.
The area surrounding famous Music Square in downtown Nashville, Music Row is the heart and soul of the nation's music industry.
Music Row is where you'll find such important landmarks as RCA Studio B, the recording facility credited as the birthplace of the unique "Nashville sound," which defined so many big hits of the 1960s.
With exhibits that rotate every six to eight weeks, no visit to the Frist Art Museum is ever the same—but you’re always guaranteed to leave inspired. Housed in an art deco building, Nashville’s hub for visual arts displays works from local, state, and regional artists as well as national and international exhibitions.
A short distance from the city center, the Belle Meade Plantation, built in 1845, is a handsome old Southern mansion in Greek-Revival style. During the two-day Civil War Battle of Nashville in 1864, Union and Confederate forces fought in the front yard of the mansion, and evidence of gunfire can still be seen in its tall stone columns. Guided tours are available, along with culinary experiences and other fun seasonal programs. The gardens and grounds of the mansion are also worth exploring and consist of a number of early 19th-century buildings.
Travel safely, and enjoy music city!