Welcome to Nashville
For country-music fans and wannabe songwriters all over the world, a trip to Nashville is the ultimate pilgrimage. Since the 1920s the city has been attracting musicians, who have taken the country genre from the ‘hillbilly music’ of the early 20th century to the slick ‘Nashville sound’ of the 1960s to the punk-tinged alt-country of the 1990s.
Nashville's many musical attractions range from the Country Music Hall of Fame to the revered Grand Ole Opry to Jack White’s niche record label. It also has a lively university community and a blistering hot restaurant scene.
The Country Music Hall of Fame in downtown Nashville traces the history of country music while museums dedicated to Johnny Cash, George Jones and Willie Nelson delve into their personal stories. The weekly country music show the Grand Ole Opry, first broadcast on a Nashville radio station, celebrated its 90th birthday in 2015.
The Modern Scene
The music scene today is as vibrant as ever: seven days a week the neon lights and beer-perfumed air of Lower Broadway draw crowds of grinning music lovers into its rumbling honky-tonks, while just to the south the vast undulating roof of Music City Center imprints a giant guitar shape onto the skyline. The Grand Ole Opry wows guests at Opryland and Ryman Auditorium, while hordes of country music fans descend on the city for the CMA Music Festival, featuring live performances by today's biggest stars. The country-music television drama Nashville filmed in and around the city for four seasons beginning in 2011.
Another reason Nashville is hot? A half-dozen burgeoning neighborhoods packed tight with unique shops, indie coffeehouses, innovative bakeries, new breweries and distilleries, and a surprising number of bright murals ready to provide a backdrop for your selfie. East Nashville is home to the city's artisan scene while 12th Ave S brings the shoppers with its stylish boutiques, vintage collections and gift shops. A worldly array of restaurants fills the Gulch, while people-watchers fill patios in Hillsboro Village. Each neighborhood has a distinct personality, but they're all linked by a common commitment to Southern hospitality.
The Great Outdoors
If you need a break from bachelorette party shenanigans or a boring convention panel, step outside for natural distractions aplenty. An ever-growing network of pedestrian and bike-friendly greenways links Nashville's city parks, which unfurl over rolling hills and lush riparian landscapes. B-Cycle bike-rental stations are conveniently placed at greenway trailheads. Nature and outdoor centers inside the larger parks offer kid-friendly activities and nature walks. In total, the city park system sprawls across more than 12,000 acres in 108 parks. Kayaking and canoeing trips on the gentle Harpeth River are well-suited to families.
Top experiences in Nashville
Food and drink
Bastion in Wedgewood-Houston & South NashvilleModern American
Catbird Seat in Midtown, Music Row & 12SouthInternational
Rolf & Daughters in Germantown & North NashvilleEuropean
Husk in Downtown & the GulchSouthern US
Smiling Elephant in Wedgewood-Houston & South NashvilleThai
Martin's Bar-B-Que Joint in Midtown, Music Row & 12SouthBarbecue
Grilled Cheeserie in Midtown, Music Row & 12SouthAmerican
Etch in Downtown & the GulchModern American
Pharmacy in East NashvilleBurgers Beer Garden
Gabby's Burgers in Wedgewood-Houston & South NashvilleBurgers