Being the capital city and the most populous city of Tennessee, Nashville caters thousands of people, both locals and tourists on a daily and weekly basis. If this is your first time in the city, the very first thing you’ll look forward to is the best attractions for tourists found in Nashville and nearby areas. In this article, we’ll check out the best attractions in Nashville for first-timers and frequent visitors in the city. Continue reading below to learn more.
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Bryan Dearsley wrote an article in Planet Ware the most top-rated tourist attractions in Nashville. Check out the list below and see for yourself these top-rated tourist destinations in Nashville.
17 Top-Rated Tourist Attractions in Nashville
Nashville, capital of Tennessee, lies almost in the center of the state on the Cumberland River. Thanks to its importance as a place of learning – the city boasts many universities and colleges – along with its superb reproduction of the Parthenon, it’s often called the “Athens of the South” and is a delight to explore on foot. Founded in 1779, Nashville is perhaps best known as the capital of country music, as evidenced by such attractions as the Country Music Hall of Fame and the city’s famous Music Row district. The city also serves as an excellent jumping-off point to explore the rest of Tennessee, and Nashville’s surroundings offer many historical and recreational tourist attractions, including old plantations and Civil War sites.
If walking is your thing, be sure to take the historic John Seigenthaler Pedestrian Bridge for its great views over the Cumberland River. Another popular thing to do is walking to (and around) the trendy Germantown area, known for its boutique shops and superb restaurants. There are also plenty of great music-themed walks to enjoy.
1. Music Row: The Heart of Nashville
The area surrounding famous Music Square in downtown Nashville, Music Row is the heart and soul of the nation’s music industry. In addition to numerous souvenir and memorabilia shops and museums devoted to music and musicians, there are many memorials and plaques dedicated to some of the sites associated with music. For country fans, it’s all about places like the Country Music Hall of Fame, which commemorates the greats with its displays of artifacts and instruments.
2. The Nashville Parthenon
In Centennial Park, just a short walk west of the city center, is the famous reproduction of Athens’ Parthenon. Originally built of wood in 1897 to commemorate the state’s centenary and later rebuilt in cement on the same site, it’s an impressively accurate full-scale replica of the original Greek temple. Inside is a permanent art collection of 63 works by 19th- and 20th-century American painters, along with a 42-foot-high replica of the statue of the goddess Athena Parthenos covered with gold leaf. Also worth seeing are the replicas of the famed 5th century BC Parthenon Marbles.
Address: 2500 West End Ave, Nashville
3. The Hermitage
The former home of America’s seventh President, Andrew Jackson, is undoubtedly one of the most picturesque spots in Nashville. Located just a few minutes’ drive east of the city center, The Hermitage was originally constructed in 1819 and fully rebuilt 25 years later after a devastating fire. Now fully-renovated to look just as it would have during Jackson’s time – he lived here from 1837 to 1845 – this splendid old mansion now houses a fascinating museum with numerous exhibits and displays focusing on both his private and public lives. See full post here…
As you have noticed, the very first on the list is an entertainment center, which is also a famous music square in downtown Nashville. Dubbed as the heart and soul of the nation’s music industry, so your visit to Nashville will not be complete without visiting this iconic place for entertainment. Lots of awesome landmarks are also included in his list.
The Crazy Tourist also wrote their own version of the best things to do while in Nashville. Their article is made especially for new tourists in the city. Check out their list below.
25 Best Things to Do in Nashville (TN)
Nashville is the capital of the state of Tennessee and it sits along the banks of the Cumberland River. Nashville picked up the nickname ‘Music City’ due to its long and exciting musical history, as you go around the city you will notice the great music venues that are situated here.
The city was founded in 1779 and named after an American Revolutionary War hero called Francis Nash. The summers here are hot and humid and the winters are moderately cold with normally only a light snowfall. The downtown part of the city is an exciting place to hang out so let’s take a look at the best things to do in Nashville.
1. Witness A Star Performance At The Ryman Auditorium
In the 1880’s local businessman Thomas G. Ryman became a converted Christian after listening to the words of the evangelist Reverend Sam Jones. At that moment he decided that he would build a tabernacle that would allow everyone to hear the great man speak. The tabernacle was completed in 1892 and was the largest structure in the area. Over time the place was used for political rallies, local events and entertainment productions. Over the years many legends of the entertainment business have taken to the stage, including the likes of Charlie Chaplin and Aretha Franklin. Many awards decorate this fantastic venue and a trip whilst in this city is highly recommended.
2. Pretend You Are In Ancient Greece
The Parthenon is a full scale replica of the original Athenian building and statue found in Greece. It feature a 42 foot high statue of Athena and is the main focus of this incredible sight. The Parthenon was built in 1897 as part of Tennessee’s 1897 Centennial Exposition. The idea behind the structure was that it would be a replica to a monument that was considered the pinnacle of classical architecture. Today the Parthenon is used by the city of Nashville as an art museum, 63 paintings from 19th and 20th century American artists adorn the walls for all to see.
3. Tour The Belle Meade Plantation
The Belle Plantation is steeped in history and a tour when in Nashville is both enjoyable and educational. You will start by taking a tour around the Greek-Revival mansion where you will learn about the history of the mansion and the surrounding area. Once you have finished this you will be able to view other buildings such as the dairy, carriage house, dairy and gardens. When the site seeing is finished you can take a trip to the winery for some free wine tasting. If you are hungry there is an onsite restaurant in Harding House where you can stop for lunch or dinner.
Music and entertainment are what Nashville is known for, thus it is also called the Music City. While there, it is also a good idea to know its long and exciting musical history of the city. You should not get shocked if you see great music venues within the city. Other notable attractions include the Parthenon replica of the original Athenian building in Greece, the Belle Plantation, among others.
Nashville Guru also wanted to help tourists find the best attractions in the city. Check out their recommendations below.
The 20 Best Attractions and Sights in Nashville
Whether you’ve lived here for years, just moved to town, or are visiting for the weekend, there’s no excuse for being bored in Music City. From must-see museums to iconic music venues, consider this your Nashville bucket list.
Country Music Hall of Fame & Museum
It’s known as “the Smithsonian of country music” for good reason: The Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum spans 350,000 square feet of prime downtown real estate, which it packs with thousands of artifacts, two performance theaters, and countless rotating special exhibitions. The museum’s permanent installation, Sing Me Back Home, takes visitors through the evolution of country music from its roots in the nineteenth century to today’s biggest hitmakers.
The home of Andrew Jackson, located on the outskirts of town, is one of the most popular attractions in the state. Open as a museum since 1889, the Hermitage sits on more than 1,000 acres and comprises the seventh U.S. president’s stately mansion, its surrounding gardens and grounds, and the Jackson family tomb. A new million-dollar exhibit, Andrew Jackson: Born for a Storm, features interactive displays and a deep dive into his multifaceted life.
The world-famous and incredibly intimate Bluebird Cafe is where you go to hear your favorite songs—and their backstories—straight from the people who wrote them. (Yes, just like on TV.) Nearly every night, this tiny club hosts a group of songwriters who play and banter their way through acoustic rounds, captivating those who got in line early enough to score a seat.
Grand Ole Opry
Another essential Nashville music experience is a trip to the historic Grand Ole Opry—it’s the only place where country music stars of past, present, and future share the same stage. Spring for the backstage tour, where you can see the Opry’s 18 themed dressing rooms, learn behind-the-scenes secrets, and, if you’re lucky, step foot in “The Circle” yourself.
As mentioned several times in this article, Nashville is a city known for its quality entertainment and for its love for music. This is also the primary reason why it is dubbed as the Music City. If entertainment and music is your cup of tea, then come and visit Nashville. There’s a lot of things to do here.
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