Travel / Travel Guides

The Ultimate Guide to Nashville, Tennessee

Looking for a weekend getaway? Look no further than Nashville, Tennessee. Only two and a half hours away from New York City by plane, it’s the perfect destination for the foodie and music lover to spend the weekend. I began planning it as a solo trip and then my favorite travel buddy Alexa heard I got tickets to see one of our favorite bands, The Spill Canvas, and we decided to make it an adventure for the two of us! We both had never been to Nashville before and always wanted to check it out, so away we went!

Whether this is your first time in Nashville or you’re looking to try something new this time around, check out my favorites in music city:

Where to Eat In Nashville

Adele’s  / 1210 McGavock St, Nashville, TN 37203
The food at Adele’s was INCREDIBLE. I secured a table for 2 on OpenTable knowing this is a popular dining spot, especially for brunch. The staff was accommodating of our dietary restrictions, and offered suggestions for both our meal and our trip.

Pictured below is their jw potatoes with rosemary and the gnocchi with turnip puree, squash, sorghum, and sage. Alexa is a vegetarian (I’m not) but we were both able to enjoy these dishes.

Hattie B’s  / 112 19th Ave S, Nashville, TN 37203 
You can’t go to Nashville without having Nashville hot chicken, or so I’ve heard. The line at multiple Hattie B’s locations throughout the city had a line wrapping around the building but READER, it was worth the wait (even in the hot Tennessee sun). With indoor seating and various levels of spice, you can enjoy your sandwich the way you like it.

Las Paletas / 2911 12th Ave S, Nashville, TN 37204
We were in Nashville in the thick of the summer, and yes, we were dripping. We’re from Jersey. This quaint little popsicle shop was conveniently at the end of our walk down the 12South strip of shops. It was a refreshing pit stop in the middle of shopping. I played it safe with my choice, but there are some great seasonal flavors available.

Liberty Common / 207 1st Ave S, Nashville, TN 37201
It’s like my two personalities had a baby. Liberty Common is a French-style restaurant in decor and ambiance, with country favorite fare like chicken and waffles. It was the perfect start to a day of exploring. Also isn’t my friend Alexa gorgeous?!

Woolworth on 5th / 221 5th Ave N, Nashville, TN 37219
We popped by for a light bite at Woolworth before hitting Broadway and it was close to our hotel. This restaurant has historical significance in the civil rights movement. The staff here was also really kind, something of a trend in this city. We had a *lot* of baked brie here and I loved the elevated diner-style ambiance.

Milk & Honey / 214 11th Ave S, Nashville, TN 37203
Since breakfast is my favorite meal, I had to spend my final one of the trip at Milk & Honey. It was busy and bustling, even on a Monday morning. I got chicken and waffles (yes, again!) and it did not disappoint. Because it was so busy, I snagged a counter seat overlooking the industrial Gulch neighborhood.

Frothy Monkey / 2509 12th Ave S, Nashville, TN 37204
In the midst of our mural photoshoots, we popped by Frothy Monkey for a relief from the sun and a sweet treat. I have a weakness for anything with coconut, so this coconut cake was everything I dreamed of. I coupled it with an iced chai. Frothy Monkey is the perfect spot for your afternoon caffeine fix.

Where to Shop in Nashville

Draper James / 2608 12th Ave S, Nashville, TN 37204
I’m a big fan of Reese Witherspoon. Though her clothing is not really my style, it was a delight to visit her flagship Draper James store in the 12South neighborhood nonetheless. We were greeted with complimentary sweet tea (adorable, but also refreshing).
I picked up this Strong Female Lead necklace – I lit up seeing it as a female in production – and decided to wear it for the rest of the trip (and the rest of the summer).

White’s Mercantile / 2908 12th Ave S, Nashville, TN 37204
You can pretty much find everything here – from Le Labo laundry detergent to clutches that say Honky Tonk Angel. Which I am. This boutique carries trendy souvenirs, cookbooks, and toys, as well as denim shorts. If you’re looking for a gift to take home, you can probably find it here.

Uncommon James / 601 9th Ave S, Nashville, TN 37203
I’m going to be honest – this store was meh. The jewelry was overpriced and the store was almost too bare in my opinion. It was, however, bustling with shoppers, due largely in part to its famous founder Kristin Cavallari and her E! show Very Cavallari. Neither of us purchased anything, but this mural was cute. I still suggest popping by if you’re a Laguna lover. The items weren’t my taste but I also don’t wear much jewelry on the day to day.

Big Time Boots / 410 Broadway, Nashville, TN 37203
WHEN IN ROME. Okay, so I didn’t see *that* many people wearing boots in Nashville but I’ve always wanted a pair. If anywhere, this is the city to get them. I found these babies for $60 with the original price close to $500. What started as a gag really warmed up on me and I literally wore these boots everywhere (ask Alexa). Big Time Boots on Broadway is certain to have a pair of your liking.

Blush Boutique / 144 5th Ave N #2316, Nashville, TN 37219
You can easily miss this store if you’re not looking out for it. We decided to pop in and the shop’s assortment was filled with accessories and wine-themed t-shirts with funny sayings. While that wasn’t something I’d wear, I did spot a leopard print hair scrunchie with a scarf at the end (read: New Jersey). I almost left the store without buying it. Two minutes after I left, I went back in and succumbed to the Jersey inside. I’m glad I did, too – I wore that scrunchie all summer.

Where to Photograph in Nashville

Nashville has murals painted on walls throughout the city. Here are a few that Alexa and I visited:

I Believe in Nashville / 2700 12th Avenue South, Nashville, TN 37204

Draper James and the Blue Striped Wall / 2608 12th Ave S, Nashville, TN 37204

Nashville Looks Good On You / 2509 12th Avenue South, Nashville, TN 37204

Amelia’s Flower Truck / 2908 12th Ave S, Nashville, TN 37204
Not a mural, but a photogenic flower truck.

Looking Pretty, Music City / 2709 12th Avenue South, Nashville, TN 37204
No, Alexa and I didn’t plan on matching!

Flowers Mural / 2900 12th Avenue South, Nashville, TN 37204
If you look closely, I’m wearing the necklace I bought from Draper James! And of course, the boots.

Where to Stay in Nashville

Noelle Nashville / 200 4th Ave N, Nashville, TN 37219
Alexa and I are both Marriott Bonvoy members and selected to stay at this hotel. For a Marriott-run operation, it masquerades as an indie boutique hotel (with decor reminding me a lot of the Sentinel). I loved my room – I got a suite and the marble bathroom was massive. It also had a dedicated seating area and blackout curtains operated with a light switch beside my bed. This proved to be very useful after a night on Broadway.

What to Do in Nashville

Broadway / 400 Broadway, Nashville, TN 37203
Live music and bachelorettes everywhere. Akin to the Times Square of Nashville, it’s packed with tourists. It’s a fun spot to checkout, even for a few minutes. I reccommend visiting at night because during the day it was a bit odd with day drinkers and old men playing classic rock making us say the pledge of allegiance (it can get weird).

City Winery / 609 Lafayette St, Nashville, TN 37203
I love, love, love live music. I saw one of my favorite bands at City Winery in Nashville. If you’ve ever listened to the Spill Canvas, imagine them with a violin accompaniment over dinner. It was magical.

Grand Ole Opry / 2804 Opryland Dr, Nashville, TN 37214
We got seats in the NOSEBLEEDS, yes, but I just wanted to check this out and not splurge too much on it. The tickets for this Saturday show can run quite expensive. The venue was packed with music fans and we were excited to see a performance from Cassadee Pope, formerly of the band Hey Monday and now a country singer. We were almost dizzyingly high up, but we enjoyed it.

Old Town Trolley Tours  / 201 Broadway, Nashville, TN 37201
We found a great deal on trolley tours using PlumBenefits (a resource we have with work), and while it was open air ride (aka no air conditioning in the summer heat), it was a great experience. If you’re interested in music history, you’ll learn a bit and get the opportunity to check out record labels throughout the city.

Walk the John Seigenthaler Pedestrian Bridge 
After our trolley ride, we trekked up to the pedestrian bridge to take in the Nashville views. We went during the day, but if you have the chance to visit at night when the city is lit up, I definitely recommend that!

Country Music Hall of Fame / 222 5th Ave S, Nashville, TN 37203
I snuck this in an hour or two before catching my flight and I’m so glad I did. Even if you’re not a country music fan, it’s educational and interesting. I especially loved seeing the music video exhibit featuring Shania, and the first drafts of popular songs from songwriters like Taylor Swift. In fact, if you’re a Swiftie, you’re in luck. There’s a whole wing dedicated to her.

Overall, our trip to Nashville was so fun and the perfect way to spend a hot, summer weekend. With live music, great food, and friendly folks, I would happily book another flight one day.

Are you down to visit Nashville? Is there a really great spot I should check out? Let me know in the comments!

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I plotted all these spots on a Google Map to make planning a breeze.

Also, I made this Spotify playlsit for Alexa and I to remember our trip but might be nice for yours too!

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