Welcome to Nashville, Tennessee, the second home of country music. Overflowing with history, Nashville is a great place to take your family to learn about music from the bluegrass and country genre. With iconic men and women such as Loretta Lynn, Dolly Parton, and Willie Nelson having roots dug deep into Nashville, the stories come to life.
From Ryman Auditorium where the benches are original, to the new Grand Ole Opry and Country Music Hall of Fame, music is just the tip of the iceberg in this old new city. Find a good place to park and plan on walking a few blocks to see everything in one area before moving on to the next as parking can be a bit pricy.
Ryman Auditorium is a great place to learn the history of Music City’s roots. Starting as a place for preaching against the evils of this world, it became a hub for country music, a place where budding singers dreamed of singing. Little wonder. It was the pinnacle of success to sing in Ryman Auditorium, and the acoustics are amazing.
I recommend taking time to watch the short video of the history before touring the outer edge with displays of different eras of country music – with clothing, tickets, and blurbs of information, there is something to learn for everyone. My 11 year old spent the most time reading the different displays. Also take time to read the timeline of history where you will see iconic names such as Mae West and Elvis. If you love singing and are halfway good, make sure you schedule an opportunity to record a song while you are here.
The Country Music Hall of Fame is just a few blocks away and is huge. I recommend getting the ticket with the tour of RCA studios. Prepare to spend quite a few hours here. We didn’t have time to visit everything we wanted to so this one is on the list for a future visit.
After visiting these two sights, I recommend driving up to the Grand Ole Opry. Make sure you take time to learn the history of the Grand Ole Opry and why it’s considered the “new” Grand Ole Opry. This is a good time to weave in some Nashville history.
Parking at the Grand Ole Opry is free and is located behind the gorgeous Opryland Mall, where you will find plenty of shopping and food. Take a break from your music and history and stroll through the Gaylord Opryland Hotel, which has botanic gardens in the center of it. You can explore several different areas, walking through botanic gardens or above them. Look above to live orchids growing off the side of a waterfall, or check out the large fish swimming lazily in the pools of water.
Plan to spend several days in Nashville to fully appreciate all it has to offer.
Nashville Study Initiatives
Music and Theatre – Bluegrass, Country Music, Rock’n Roll, Film
Science – Plants
History – Music, Nashville, Fashion, Film
Where to Eat
Make sure you stop to enjoy some of the local food. We recommend Gigi’s Cupcakes, Jeni’s Ice Cream, and Caney Fork River Valley Grille. Make sure you try the fried green tomatoes.
Where to Stay
See why we recommend staying at Residence Inn by Marriott, Nashville.
As an aside, I got to meet Hannah Conway, published author and now, friend. Check out her book, The Wounded Warrior’s Wife. It’s so very good.
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