“Down on Music Row, if you want to be a star that’s where you’ve got to go,” country music’s legendary superstar Dolly Parton bursts out in one of many songs written about the Tinseltown of the deep American South, Nashville, Tennessee.
With nicknames such as Nashvegas, Cashville, the Buckle of the Bible Belt, Hollywood of the South, and many others, this music-wealthy city is also home of the Tennessee Titans NFL team Nashville Predators hockey team and both Vanderbilt and Tennessee State University.
Pack your heart separately because you may lose it in this city of hopes and dreams. Known as a land of possibilities where aspiring artists flock and celebrities reside, this star-studded city will leave you with a sparkle in your eye and a dream in your heart.
With a regal water show and botanical garden tours, you’ll want to book your stay at Gaylord Opryland Resort. Blissful pampering awaits at its 27,000-square-foot European-inspired spa which features an indoor/outdoor pool, 12 private treatment rooms and a state-of-the-art fitness center. Numerous shops are available on-site, from bath products to gifts, music and candies, entertainment for a lazy afternoon is in arms reach. Gaylord Springs Golf Links has stay-and-play packages at the Gaylord Opryland Resort, only five minutes to Gaylord Springs and 10 minutes from Nashville International Airport.
The Cumberland River gave birth to the Scottish links-style Gaylord Springs Golf Links, a par-72 golf course that provides 18 testing holes that border limestone bluffs and wetlands protected by the feds. The golf course, designed by the former U.S. Open and PGA Champion Larry Nelson, has collected several distinctions over its days.
The big draw on the Gaylord Springs Golf Links is the signature fourth hole, home to the hundred-plus-year-old springhouse that gives the golf course its name.
After a round on the Gaylord Springs Golf Links, head back to the 43,000-square-foot antebellum-style clubhouse to shop, dine, and take in the views of the golf course.
Feel the rumble of live music beneath your feet at Nashville’s premier country music stage, world-renowned Grand Ole Opry. Legends, superstars and new talent can be seen all in one evening. Unlike any other concert venue, the Grand Ole Opry presents multiple artists at each show, giving the audience a variety of styles to listen to in one night. Backstage tours of the music hall where many musicians launched their careers are guided for a close-up and personal experience. You can walk on the same stage that Carrie Underwood has performed and hear stories about what happens behind the curtain at the Grand Ole Opry while sneaking a peak in the artist’s dressing rooms.
The General Jackson Showboat is the one to catch in Nashville. Hop aboard for a phenomenal lunch or dinner cruise on the Cumberland River. A three-course, pure Southern meal is prepared and served while cruising the city’s skyline from an authentic paddle-wheel showboat.
Taste local Nashville fare and Southern favorites on a guided walking tour. As you explore the city, learn the history behind famous sites like Broadway, the Country Music Hall of Fame, the Ryman Auditorium, and Printers Alley. Try Nashville hot chicken, BBQ, beer, and more at local restaurants while you hear stories about Music City. If you’re a foodie or a first-timer, this tour is for you.
“Roll into town step off the bus,
Shake off the where you came from dust,
Grab you guitar walk down the street,
Sign says Nashville Tennessee,”-Jason Aldean
If you’ve ever been interested in celebrity homes, this city offers the perfect tour. A 3.5-hour sightseeing bus tour in a comfortable, air-conditioned motor coach drives through some of Nashville’s best scenic, upscale and secluded areas and neighborhoods to see celebrity homes. Superstar’s such as Dolly Parton, Garth Brooks, Kid Rock, Dierks Bently, Reese Witherspoon, Martina McBride, Trisha Yearwood and Taylor swift are on the list. A hotel pick-up and drop-off are included in the tour.
From interactive exhibits to only-in-Nashville events, there’s plenty to see and do at the Country Music Hall of Fame® and Museum. Elvis’ gold Cadillac and piano can be found here. The museum’s major exhibition, however, Outlaws & Armadillos: Country’s Roaring ’70s, celebrates this era of cultural and artistic exchange between Nashville, Tennessee, and Austin, Texas, revealing untold stories and never-seen artifacts. The exhibition, which remains for a nearly three-year run, explores the complicated, surprising relationship between the two cities.
Sing Me Back Home, the museum’s core permanent exhibit tells the story of country music from its pre-commercial roots in the nineteenth century through its vibrant life today. A multi-layered experience, it includes artifacts, photographs, original recordings, archival video, newly produced films, touchscreen interactive media, and beautifully rendered text panels. You’ll become immersed in the history and sounds of country music, its meanings, and the lives and voices of its honored personalities at this exhibit.
Don’t miss a chance to tour the historic RCA Studio B. The cities most important recording studio and the creative epicenter for Elvis Presley, Dolly Parton, The Everly Brothers and many others, this iconic tour is worth the time spent.
At the Museum General Admission, stories of the music’s roots through artists of today unfold before your eyes through displays, interactive photo archives, engaging films, listening stations — and, of course, the inspiring Rotunda, where the plaques of all Country Music Hall of Fame members reside. Located inside the Museum, the state-of-the-art CMA Theater hosts a variety of musical performances throughout the year, from country, bluegrass, and folk artists to the latest Americana acts.
An authentic Nashville original, Hatch Show Print opened in 1879, and has been creating show posters for more than 140 years. Get a behind-the-scenes look at this process and print your own poster at this location. Famed WSM radio personality, Bill Cody carries you through Museum & Audio Guide offering fun details, behind-the-scenes stories, and other insider tips to help the exhibits come alive.
We’ve barely covered the surface of attractions and the scene “behind the scenes” in this fun city. If you’re in pursuit of a fun music-filled stay, start planning your own getaway. Sources say NFL quarterback Tom Brady may land with the Tennessee Titans if the Patriots don’t lock him down for a 21st season in New England.
“I woke up in Nashville, but it still felt like a dream. Like the one I’ve been chasing since the day I first played my Dad’s six string”–Seth Ennis.
By Michelle Keller