What to Do in Nashville

Thank you to Visit Music City for hosting me at various locations throughout the city. All opinions expressed here are my own. Wings in Nashville

Are you planning a trip to Tennessee and are wondering what to do in Nashville? This post has all the great things to do in Nashville, plus where to eat, Nashville attractions, free things to do in Nashville, family friendly places in Nashville, and more.

Nashville Attractions:

Country Music Hall of Fame SignCountry Music Hall of Fame:

The Country Music Hall of Fame is in the heart of downtown Nashville. It is a really fun place to visit, even if you aren’t the biggest country fan. They cover all the decades of country music with fun costumes, memorabilia, and even cars. It will take you about half a day to cover the museum if you take your time. Wynonna Display at Country Music Hall of Fame

Ryman Auditorium:

Take a fun tour of the iconic Ryman Auditorium. The Ryman is located downtown Nashville and is walking distance to the Country Music Half of Fame. I recommend booking your tour ahead of time because they do sell out popular time slots.

Grand Ole Opry:

The Grand Ole Opry is located about 10-15 minutes outside of downtown Nashville. Get tickets to a show or book yourself a backstage tour, but plan ahead because they also sell out popular times as well.

Johnny Cash Museum:

This is a great place to visit for everyone from Johnny Cash’s biggest fan all the way to someone who just mildly enjoys the music. It is a great trip through history and was one of my favorite things to do in Nashville. Picture with Johnny Cash at Johnny Cash Museum

Free Things To Do In Nashville:

Two Old Hippies Sign in Nashville The Gulch:

The Gulch is a small trendy neighborhood in Nashville. In the Gulch is where you will find the Kelsey Montague Wings, which is a popular destination for a great photo. You can find some fun shopping including the FRYE shoe store and Two Old Hippies, which is a great place to pick up a gift for you or someone you love. This is also where the Thompson Hotel and Biscuit Love is located.


This is a replica of the original Parthenon in Athens and it is inside a big park called Centennial Park. There is a playground near by and lots of open space to run around or picnic. Being at the park and walking around the outside of the Parthenon is free, but FYI, Nashville’s Art Museum is inside of the Parthenon and that is NOT free to go in. Nashville Parthenon

Where to Eat in Nashville

Loveless Cafe:

Loveless Cafe is about 20 minutes from downtown Nashville, but is worth the drive for the homemade biscuits and and preserves. Go early to avoid a long wait. They also have a gift shop where they sell their biscuit mix and preserves, plus other fun items. Loveless Cafe Biscuits

Martin’s BBQ Joint:

Martin’s BBQ is a quick walk from Country Music Hall of Fame. Enjoy some delicious Tennessee BBQ and yummy side dishes. They can often have a line, but it moves really fast and they have plenty of seating including an upstairs area and bar. Martin’s is my favorite BBQ in Nashville. I got to take a tour of their pit room where they roast a whole hog for their pulled pork. Martin's BBQ Joint Nashville Sign

The Southern:

This restaurant is located downtown. The Southern is a nice restaurant for both lunch and dinner. At lunch time it is popular with corporate business from the neighboring buildings for a quick power lunch and cocktail. I enjoyed the atmosphere plus everything I ate was delicious.

Family Fun in Nashville Collage of fun family actives in Nashville

The Goo Goo Shop:

Located right across the street from the Johnny Cash Museum, the Goo Goo store is a destination for the whole family. Goo Goo Clusters are a delicious candy and you can get all the varieties, plus so much more at the store. They even offer chocolate making classes! Want to have some hands-on fun with chocolate? Offered to the public on most Thursdays at 2 p.m., Fridays at 2 p.m., and Saturdays at 11 a.m. and 2 p.m. You or your group can also reserve a private class any day of the week.  Click here for the current open class schedule. Goo Goo Shop Sign in Nashville

Adventure Science Center

Just about a 5 minute drive from downtown Nashville is a really fun place for kids called the Adventure Science Center. My daughter loved all the exhibits. It isn’t just fun, but also educational. We have actually gone twice. Some exhibits change and some are more permanent, so even if you have been before it might be worth another visit.Science Center Nashville

Gaylord Opryland Resort:

There are 4 acres worth of indoor atriums to explore at this resort, complete with indoor boat ride, shopping, indoor waterpark, and indoor ice extravaganza during the holidays. This is a great place to walk around and spend sometime, especially if the weather is bad. You can check out my compete post about Gaylord Opryland here. Gaylord Opryland SoundWaves Water Attraction

Nashville Zoo at Grassmere:

Nashville Zoo Sign When my family visited the Nashville Zoo we had a fantastic time. It is quite large with lots of walking, tons of animals, and even some fun play structures and rides. You can even pet a kangaroo!Petting at Kangaroo at Nashville Zoo

Nashville Hot Spots

LA Jackson:

My favorite place for a drink is this rooftop bar at the Thompson Hotel. It has a great atmosphere, great drinks, and a great view. 

Pinewood Social Bowling in Nashville Pinewood Social:

Small retro bowling alley meets trendy food and craft cocktails at Pinewood Social. They also offer brunch on the weekends.

Best of Nashville According to the Internet (a.k.a. be prepared for a line)

Biscuit Love:

Biscuit love is good, but not an hour long wait good in my opinion. If you get there early and there is no line it is definitely worth it, but I wouldn’t wait if the line is wrapped around the block.

Hattie B’s Fried Chicken:

Nashville hot chicken is super popular these days and Hattie B’s is one of the originals. There is often a line. It usually moves fast, but the chicken is good. You can order it to varying degrees of hotness. Hattie B's Hote Chicken Basket

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What to do in Nashville