Nashville Attractions: Discover the Eclectic and Electric Charm of Music City
Article by Kelley Falgout
Nashville attractions are boundless and offer up a buffet of excitement and intrigue coupled with rich history and a tune to go with everyone’s beat. Nashville is known as “Music City”, but in recent years its reputation has grown to encompass a broad scope of entertainment. It is also the home of sporting events from football, hockey and baseball games, as well as and performances from the symphony, ballet, opera and theater.
Nashville is the capitol of Tennessee and is surrounded by lush, rolling hills and sparkling lakes, which translates into a lot of outdoor fun for visitors. With great Nashville theme parks like Wave Country and Nashville Shores, as well as hiking trails, campsites, boat and Jet Ski rentals, visitors can have a lot of fun while discovering the natural beauty of the area. The outdoor activities alone could take up several days of one’s vacation.
Due to its strong cultural and traditional background and over 20 colleges and universities, Nashville has also evolved to become a popular metropolitan area that it is often referred to as the “Athens of the South”.It is fitting that the ‘Athens of the South’ is home to the world’s only full-size replica of the ancient Parthenon.
Originally built in 1897, the Parthenon stands proudly as the centerpiece of Centennial Park, Nashville’s premier urban park. The 42-foot statue Athena is the focus of the Parthenon and is the tallest indoor sculpture in the Western world. The basement galleries also serve as an art museum with permanent and revolving collections.
Despite its modern, urban feel, many people still visit Nashville just to come face-to-face with their favorite country music stars and tour the city’s famous publishing companies, record labels and Music Row recording studios. The 1950s-style RCA Studio B is said to have launched more hit records than any other recording studio in the country. If you catch a glimpse of someone on Music Row who looks an awful lot like Alan Jackson or another artist, it probably is. Many country stars have homes in Franklin and nearby Leiper’s Fork.
Visitors can also take bus tours of famous stars’ homes, catch a show at the Grand Ole Opry, and visit the beautiful Opryland Hotel. This great Nashville attraction boasts nine acres of lush indoor gardens and winding rivers where guests can take a tour on a Delta flatboat or enjoy a million twinkling lights during their Christmas Spectacular.
Located across from the Opryland Hotel is the loading platform for visitors to board and enjoy a cruise on the General Jackson Showboat. Live shows are performed during dinner in the beautiful two-story Victorian Theater located in the center of the boat. With four massive decks to take in the views, the 300- foot paddleboat takes guests down the Cumberland River to historic downtown Nashville.
The downtown area also features other Nashville attractions where visitors can enjoy the simple twang and narrative lyrics of country music. The popular Wildhorse Saloon sits on 2nd Avenue, and lying between 3rd and 4th streets lays Printer’s Alley, one of the top places to go for Nashville nightlife where visitors can walk through the alley and revel in the deep history it holds.
Another downtown Nashville attraction steeped in history is the world-famous Ryman Auditorium. During the daytime, visitors can tour the “Mother Church of Country Music” and stand on the stage to hear stories of when Hank Williams, Patsy Cline, and other country legends performed there early in their careers. Memorabilia like stage outfits and guitars also are on display.
The Country Music Hall of Fame is nearby and features numerous exhibits on the history and impact of country music. The museum is the largest popular music museum in the world and features entertaining films, interactive displays, and an incredible array of costumes and instruments. From the early pioneers to the modern chart-toppers, you’ll find every era of country music well represented throughout.
During a trip downtown, visitors can buff up on history of a different sort and visit a replica of the original Fort Nashborough, which stands at the foot of Broadway. Fort Nashborough was the first permanent European settlement in the area and was built on the banks of the Cumberland River in 1779.
A list of Nashville attractions wouldn’t be complete without mentioning some of the great museums that are available. The Frist Center for the Visual Arts features some of the nation’s most cutting-edge masterpieces. Located downtown on Broadway, a visit to The Frist is a convenient and cultural experience where visitors also have the chance to express their creative side and create their own masterpiece in the Martin Artquest Gallery.
The Cheekwood Botanical Garden and Museum of Art also features American and contemporary art while the Adventure Science Center can be an entertaining way to introduce children to science. Kids of all ages can learn about technology, the environment, physics, and health as they roam the museum pushing buttons and turning knobs in the interactive exhibits. The Nashville Zoo at Grassmere is a zoo and historic plantation that is also a great place to spend the afternoon and learn a little something.
Sports fans can also get their fill during a Nashville vacation with Nashville Sounds baseball, Nashville Predators hockey and Tennessee Titans football. For those looking for some fast-paced fun, the Nashville Superspeedway is located just outside of town in Lebanon. If shopping is your sport of choice, the Opry Mills Mall is filled with dozens of brand name stores, like Saks Fifth Avenue, Old Navy and Bass Pro Shop. You can also take in a meal at The Aquarium Restaurant and watch dozens of sea creatures swim by in the huge 150, 000 gallon aquarium.
As you can see, Music City has a lot to offer its visitors no matter what they’re into. With more than 40 centralized attractions in the Nashville area, the city offers excitement and fun for every member of the family. Whether you’d like to sample music, sports, outdoors or history, there’s a Nashville attraction that is sure to entertain you on your next Tennessee vacation.
About the Author
Kelley Falgout is the publisher of http://www.FamilyThemeParkVacations.com, a continuously growing database of all theme parks, amusement parks and water parks located across the United States. Visit now to find out more about Nashville theme parks.