I’m just getting over my BBQ hangover and live music obsession as I post this guide to getting the most out of music city. The great thing about Nashville is you can spend as little or as much time as you need to get a good taste of what it has to offer. Here is my guide to 3 days in Nashville and what to do:
Arrive Friday, grab an Uber and stay at the Gaylord Opryland Resort which is a 15 min drive from the airport. This resort boasts 9 acres of beautiful rooms, gardens, pools, restaurants and shops. It even has its own riverboat cruise throughout the Delta wing. I’ve heard it’s absolutely breathtaking during Christmas and I plan to go back in the future during the holiday season. They even have a Summerfest for kids during the summer months. It’s a great resort to add some extra specialness to your trip.
Hang by one of its indoor or outdoor pools, explore the resort or go shopping next door at the Opry Mills outlet mall for a reprieve from the heat (in the summer).
At night take in a country music show at the famed and storied Grand Ole Opry. The shows are divided into sets where each performer plays 2 songs, which really keeps the show moving and showcases more talent. Before the show, grab food from the food trucks and sit out on the patio while listening to live music. This was one of my favorite nights in Nashville, even if you aren’t a country music fan you can appreciate how talented these musics are in a historical place for the industry.
Wake up and head to 12 South for some locally roasted coffee at the Frothy Monkey. They have a great brunch menu along with some fabulous sandwich’s (I recommend the Besty or the Royale). Stay for some shopping at Reese Witherspoon’s Draper James and pick up a new pair of jeans at Imogene and Willie’s where you might run into Keith Urban or Sheryl Crow.
In the afternoon head downtown to the Country Music Hall of Fame and take a tour of their current exhibits. Learn about the early performers all they way to the current superstars like Blake Shelton and Carrie Underwood. It’s a great place for children with an arts and crafts area as well as an interactive space to produce their own music album.
Grab dinner at Acme’s on broadway from a diverse menu of BBQ, pot roasts, tacos and even sushi! (Our Uber drive explained to us why there is sushi in the middle of an Acme restaurant and how it had to do with someone going out of business, I love tidbits like this!).
Some other recommendations for food are Wildhorse Saloon, where they have country line dancing, and Rock Bottom Brewery, which boasts a beautiful rooftop to enjoy the sights and sounds of broadway while eating your dinner. There are many others, but like I said if you have more days, I would try more places!
Saturday night is for bar hopping along broadway and dancing to all the amazing bands. Rippy’s has a great upstairs to watch the band rock out, but I also loved Tootsies where some of the band performed on top of the bar! Check out The Stage or The Tin Roof as other fun options and Valentine’s if you are looking to take a break from the country music genre.
Wake up and head to The Gulch area to Adele’s for a beautiful brunch buffet of farm to table food. Adele’s is also a viable option for dinner or lunch and many country superstars and celebrities are said to frequent here. I didn’t see anyone while I had Sunday brunch with my family but I loved the food and decor inside!
Afterwards take a tour of the Ryman Auditorium since it’s Sunday after all and it’s referred to as Mother Church. This had to be my favorite spot to tour because I loved the video presentation that comes before the general admission tour, I didn’t know a lot about its origin. I also loved that it was a setting in the feature film Walk the Line.
Stay along broadway and head to Honky Tonk Central for your last dose of live music while enjoying another beer and BBQ sandwich.
Catch a show at the Bluebird Cafe on the last night but be prepared to wait in line. It’s a very small venue and it’s recent use on ABC’s Nashville has made it very popular. It’s a great way to experience an intimate performance from some up and coming stars in country music.
Additional tip: I was dying to get a pair of cowboy boots and went to Boot Country to take advantage of the Buy 2 get 1 Free pair. I recommend this deal if you are shopping with multiple people as I was with my sister and cousins.
Time to fly out but if you are still hungry and craving one more BBQ burger, stop at Tootsies’ location in the Nashville airport. They also offer live music which is a nice touch while waiting for your flight back home 🙂
There are many other things to do in Nashville but if you follow this guide I know you will leave with a great sense of what music city has to offer!
Bonus tip: Nashville is my favorite city to take an Uber in! All the drivers were super nice and insightful with interesting tidbits and tips about their beloved city. I highly suggest using the app as your main transportation system 🙂 One driver even told me Nashville is now the #1 Bachelorette party destination in America. You’ll definitely notice that on your next trip, you can’t throw a nickel in a bar without hitting one 😉
Come back on Wednesday for my Dessert First Post where I list 3 places to get your sweet tooth fix 🙂