A First Timer’s Guide to Nashville

If you’re a fan of country music, chances are you’ve thought about visiting Nashville (and if you haven’t, well you should!). Heck, even if you aren’t into country music I can almost guarantee you will still find something to love about Nashville when you go. It’s one of my favorite cities, not only because of the amazing music there, but also for the food, shopping, bars and of course the people!

Where to stay:

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Opryland hotel

Perfect if you have small kids, or if you’re just wanting to enjoy the hotel amenities. Even if you don’t stay the night, visiting during Christmas time is a fun activity as they have pretty lights decorating the entire hotel, and the Gaylord ice show going on. If you plan on spending most your time on broadway and downtown I don’t recommend staying here because it’s about 30 minutes away.

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On Broadway Courtyard Marriott

This is where my friends and I have stayed twice now. It’s a great location within walking distance of broadway, and the rooms are very nice. If you don’t want to be right in the middle of all the chaos of broadway but still close by this is perfect

$ Air b&b

If you don’t want to spend a ton of money, air b&b is the way to go, or finding something just a short Uber away from broadway. Pretty much every weekend Nashville has bachelor and bachelorette parties happening, so rooms are going to be pricier, but it looks like air b&b has a lot better deals than hotels if you want to budget.

Areas to visit:

Broadway

This is the busiest street in Nashville, and where you’ll find all the tourists. Being a tourist myself, I still have a blast going to the bars on broadway. There’s always good music, almost every bar has bbq food and a restaurant section that’s not so loud as the bar, and the ambiance is always fun. Only downside is drinks are going to be on the pricier side here as opposed to the less touristy spots.

 

The Gulch

This is a cute up and coming area about a 5 minute drive from Broadway filled with breweries, shops, street art and cute apartments and houses. 12 south is the street you want to be on, which is where most the shopping is, along with some famous murals (see Instagram worthy spots below)

Frothy Monkey for an amazing cup of coffee!

 

Where to eat:

Hattie B’s

Best Nashville hot chicken I’ve ever had. I got boneless and it was perfect! Side of fries and mac n’ cheese (super healthy, as always haha). I have yet to try Prince’s but have heard amazing things about that place too!

Biscuit Love

A carb lovers dream. I ordered the breakfast platter that came with eggs, bacon, grits, potatoes and a biscuit. It’s one of those order at the counter then take a number and sit place (actually most the places near broadway seem to be like this). So the service was fast and the food was amazing! We did go on a weekday so it wasn’t as crowded but I hear it gets busy so go early!

 

Five Daughters

The famous bakery known for its hundred layer donuts. I’m happy to report they did not disappoint. I got a cranberry pistachio donut and it sounds odd but it was delicious.

 

Peg leg porker

One of my favorite bbq spots! It’s not on broadway, or in the gulch it’s actually kind of on a random back street. But the food is to die for! Get the brisket and Mac n cheese!

Pinewood Social

The perfect brunch spot! This is the cute restaurant in Nashville you always see with the bowling alley inside. The food is amazing and the ambiance is perfect for anyone!

 

Urban Grub

This place is seriously so cute! They’re able to accommodate large groups, have indoor and outdoor seating and have the best appetizers! Think oysters, charcuterie boards, etc. Everything here is so tasty and it’s always a fun environment!

 

Sight seeing:

Pedestrian bridge

A great spot to take some group photos, and get a good view of the skyline. Rent a bird scooter and scoot your way across the whole bridge or take a nice long walk.

 

Grand ole opry

A country music fans dream. If you don’t know, the Grand Ole Opry is a weekly country music stage concert in Nashville, Tennessee founded on November 28, 1925, by George D. Hay as a one-hour radio “barn dance” on WSM. Currently owned and operated by Opry Entertainment, it is the longest running radio broadcast in US history. Tourists are able to get tours of the studio, and also buy tickets to see a live show! Sometimes they have surprise guests who are pretty big. Every night they have a few artists from the past, a few up and coming, and a few current popular artists. It’s a huge honor to play live at the Opry, and even more so to be inducted into the family as a member. I highly highly recommend going to see a show and getting the tour! You never know who you might see.

 

Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum

A great thing to do on a rainy day is visit one of the several museums in Nashville. One of my personal favorites is the Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum which has plenty of country music artifacts new and old, featuring both temporary and permanent exhibits.

 

Where to drink:

⁃ Whiskey row

⁃ Jason Aldean

⁃ Acme

⁃ George Jones

⁃ Honky Tonk

⁃ Florida Georgia

⁃ Frothy monkey

⁃ Jackalope

My favorite spots for the music and a fun crowd are Whiskey row, Jason Aldean and Honky Tonk. If you’re there with. Big group the dueling piano bar on broadway is a blast too (especially if it’s a bachelorette party or something like that). Acme has amazing food and George Jones rooftop bar has a great view across the river plus a more chill vibe with great live music. If you’re looking for some good coffee, frothy monkey is always a favorite and if you’re looking for some good breweries check out the gulch area. Jackalope is my favorite!

Pedal Tavern

One of my favorite parts of my friend’s bachelorette party in Nashville was the pedal tavern we all rented! If you don’t know what it is, look it up. They’re popping up all over the place, but have been in Nashville for a while. Basically if you have a big group this is a perfect way to bar hop and see the city. A pedal tavern  basically a trolley that you all pedal to keep moving, and you’re going to have a “driver” with you as well. Basically they’re going to be your tour guide, bartender, DJ, and steer for you while everyone else onboard keeps the thing moving. I think it was around $60 a person when we did it, and you do have to bring your own booze, but you also get really good drink specials at all the bars you stop at. Not to mention IT’S SO FUN! Highly recommend doing this regardless, but if you have a bachelor or bachelorette group its a must!

 

Instagrammable spots:

⁃ I believe in Nashville mural

⁃ What Lifts You Wings

⁃ Biscuit love Nashville sign

⁃ Pedestrian bridge city skyline

⁃ Acme or George Jones rooftop

⁃ Honky Tonk balcony (2nd or 3rd floor)

 

One last thing before you go! 

If you’re on the market for some new cowboy boots this is the place to buy them! They have so many deals and sales constantly, and you can find anything from a $20 pair to $500+ really nice ones! It’s fun to just look around the shops on broadway and around Nashville regardless, so go check it out!

 

I hope this gave you some ideas on what to see in Nashville next time you visit! Or if it’s your first time a little guide of what to expect!

 

 

 

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