The Music in Music City
Nashville is a city with a foundation built on more than 200 years
of musical roots. Today, those roots have grown firmly into a platform for which the city heralds its signature product. And Nashville's most popular attractions all share one common characteristic, the city's most famous export: music. The Grand Ole Opry, the world's longest-running radio program, made Nashville a household name.
Touting the music that has made Music City famous, the Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum, more than just a storage house of country's colorful past, is dedicated to the preservation of music and to music education, and included with the cost of admission are many interactive musical programs.
For over 100 years, the Ryman Auditorium has been home to musicians, actors, and comedians. So that guests can experience the Ryman as the stars do, the facility offers backstage tours plus special visitor opportunities for guests to record a song in an onsite recording booth in the auditorium.
Seen simply as an art museum by many, the Frist Center for the Visual Arts, a center specializing in exhibiting premiere collections on loan from other galleries around the world, is a place where the entire community can embrace all forms of art, including music, as on select Thursday and Friday evenings, the Frist becomes a musical forum as well as an art gallery.
For almost 80 years, country music has been synonymous with Nashville; however, within the last two decades, many genres of music other than country have made their impact. From gospel spirituals and bluegrass to modern pop and blues, Nashville is Music City - the only Music City. The area known as Music Row developed into a powerhouse for the recording industry, and one studio on Music Row took center stage nationally. Known as the Home of 1,000 Hits, RCA Studio B became legendary as artists like Elvis Presley, Dolly Parton, Roy Orbison, and the Everly Brothers all recorded there.
There is a vibrant classical movement in Nashville. The Grammy-nominated Nashville Symphony performs year round and now sells more CDs than any other American Orchestra. The symphony has its home in a new state-of-the-art symphony hall with acoustic designs influenced by the best symphony halls in the world. Not your typical chamber orchestra, the Nashville Chamber Orchestra collaborates with pop artists and songwriters to create movements that push the symphonic boundaries. And the Nashville Ballet has been a forerunner in the industry for collaborations with known artists that live in Nashville.
For history buffs, there is plenty to explore. Walk through Fort Nashborough, a replica fort one-fourth the size of the original, and see where the pioneers settled upon the banks of the Cumberland River. Tour the city's oldest home, Travellers Rest, and hear how a friendship begun by chance developed into a partnership managing a presidential campaign. Marvel at the Tennessee State Capitol building, one of the oldest operational capitols in the nation. And discover the Parthenon, the world's only full-scale replica of the ancient Greek temple. Host an off-site event inside the temple at the feet of the 42-foot-tall gilded Athena.
There is plenty more to see and do in Nashville during your visit. Explore the following resources to help plan your stay:
Nashville Downtown Attractions
170 1st Avenue
Tennessee State Capitol
Charlotte Avenue (between Sixth and Seventh Avenues)
116 Fifth Avenue North
Tennessee Art League and Galleries
Tennessee Sports Hall of Fame and Museum
Country Music Hall of Fame
222 5th Avenue South
2600 West End Avenue
Tennessee State Museum
Fifth Avenue (between Union and Deadrick Streets)
1200 Forrest Park Drive
Frist Center for the Visual Arts
Miss Marple’s Dinner Theatre
135 Second Avenue North
One Symphony Place
Tennessee Performing Arts Center
505 Deaderick St
This is the place to be for Nashville tourists and locals alike. With specialty boutiques and vintage stores by the handful and cute cafes for snacks, it's a great way to spend your afternoon in Nashville. You'll feel right at home with the eclectic mix of folks in this area, which spans only a couple of streets (mainly Hillsboro Road). Be sure to check out Pangaea, Posh, and Vintage for your clothing needs. Try dining at the french cafe, Provence, for lunch, Bosco's for an upbeat dinner and a beer, Fido for coffee, Baskin-Robbins for ice cream, The Sushi Place for sushi, and Jackson's for other food and wine and fun.
The Mall at Green Hills
2126 Abbott Martin Road
Immerse yourself in the exceptional by shopping Tiffany & Company, Louis Vuitton, Cole Haan, BCBG Max Azria, Sephora, Anne Klein NY, Marmi Shoes, The Cheesecake Facotory, Kiehl’s, Coach, bebe, Restoration Hardware, Banana Republic, Z Gallerie, Apple Store, Ann Taylor, J. Crew, Macy’s, Dillard’s, and a 100 other fine shops and eateries.
Opry Mills Mall
433 Opry Mills Drive
Opry Mills features the best names in manufacturer and retail outlets including Nike, OFF 5th Saks Fifth Avenue, Gap Outlet and Old Navy, as well as high-quality entertainment venues and themed restaurants including Regal Cinemas, Dave & Buster's, and The Aquarium.
Nightlife and Entertainment
B.B. King’s Blues Club
152 Second Avenue North
The Bluebird Café
4104 Hillsboro Road
Douglas Corner Café
2106 A Eighth Avenue South
Graham Central Station
128 Second Avenue North
Grand Ole Opry
2802 Opryland Drive
Layla’s Bluegrass Inn
The Sportsgrille at the Hilton Nashville Downtown
121 Fourth Avenue South
The Stage on Broadway
The Station Inn
402 12th Avenue South
120 Second Avenue North
Historic Home Tours
Belle Meade Plantation
A renowned thoroughbred horse farm, the bloodlines of some of today’s most famous horses trace their lineage back to Belle Meade.
November 12-December 31 Victorian Holiday Tours
5025 Harding Rd, 615.356.0501
Ornate home to the always intriguing Adelicia Acklen who has long been rumored to be one of the real-life inspirations for Scarlett O’Hara.
1900 Belmont Boulevard
Home of President Andrew Jackson, the extensive grounds include the seventh president’s own home plus Tulip Grove, lavish gardens, family grave site, slave quarters and outbuildings, church, and education center and museum.
4580 Rachel’s Lane
Historic Carnton Plantation
This elegant home was turned into a field hospital during the Battle of Franklin. 1345 Carnton Lane
Historic Mansker’s Station
The Mansker’s Fort and Bowen Plantation represent the transition settlers made from fort living to estate life.
705 Caldwell Drive
Tours and Transportation
All in One Destinations
Authentic Tours Historic Black Nashville and Middle Tennessee
Blueshoe Nashville Travel
General Ole Opry Backstage Tours
Gray Line Tours
Johnny Walker Tours
The Key Event and Helen Moskovitz Group
Nashville Black Heritage Tours
Nashville Express Tours
Nashville Trolley Tour
USA Travel DVD