Last month I spent a few days exploring Music City, aka "The Songwriting Capital of the World" and currently home to more musicians than any other city in the world. It was SO much fun and I hope you enjoy this little guide. I didn't get to see every neighborhood but I feel like the parts that I explored were full of things to do and see! I definitely need to go back some time.
Sorry this guide is coming out so late! Things got pretty exciting and crazy the end of last month but I'm still excited to share a little write-up of my trip...so here goes.
Stay: Urban Cowboy BNB
I came across Urban Cowboy BNB while looking for a place to stay in Nashville and was immediately drawn to it! Urban Cowboy has 8 of the neatest, most uniquely designed suites you may have ever seen, inside of a historic victorian mansion located in East Nashville. You have to check out each of the suites on their website - you'll be blown away!
Behind the B&B you'll find their Public House Bar & Kitchen with craft cocktails, wood-fired seasonal bites and a really eclectic back yard hangout space! I ended up grabbing a bite here my last night after a show at The Bluebird and found this space to be really popular with the younger crowd in Nashville! Their menu changes daily.
Check in to Urban Cowboy BNB, Eat lunch at Edley's BBQ, Shop along 12 South, Grab a donut at Five Daughter's Bakery, Make a pit stop at the grocery store for bubble bath, wine and snacks & ENJOY your room at Urban Cowboy the first evening because it's incredible.
I took a morning flight into Nashville and was able to check-in to Urban Cowboy early, but if you're not able to check in early you can usually drop your bags wherever you're staying before going off to explore!
My first stop was lunch at Edley's BBQ, an authentic Nashville dining spot. Ironically I ordered a Hot Chicken sandwich instead of BBQ but it just looked and sounded SO good...and it was!!
After lunch I did some window shopping along 12 South: "One of Nashville’s hottest neighborhoods, 12South has emerged as the perfect one-stop destination to eat, drink, play, and socialize. Stylish shops, beautifully-restored homes, charming coffee shops, and a wide array of dining options are all within walking distance. You are likely to find a vintage guitar, local craft beer, gourmet popsicle, hand-stitched pair of jeans, and a fabulous meal all in one visit." (VisitNashville).
I HAD to stop by Reese Witherspoon's store Draper James - it was so cute! I didn't end up buying anything but had fun window shopping. I almost bought some gold shoes from another boutique down the road but my Instagram story viewers swayed my opinion with the poll I put out! Thanks for saving me money guys! 😉
I did however stop to buy a donut from Five Daughter's Bakery and it was DELICIOUS. One of the best donuts I've ever had. I think I got the white chocolate raspberry. TRY IT.
Before heading back to my room I took a Lyft to the store to buy some bubble bath, wine and snacks and then went back to my Watchtower room, ran a bubble bath in the claw foot tub and enjoyed the evening.
Breakfast at Urban Cowboy BNB, Walk Broadway, Visit Johnny Cash Museum, Tour Ryman Auditorium, See the Nashville Parthenon, Eat lunch at Hattie B's, Go Nashville whiskey tasting at Corsair Distillery, See music at The Bluebird Cafe, grab dinner at Urban Cowboy's Public House
A stay at Urban Cowboy actually includes breakfast every morning from a local bakery which is nice because you don't have to go out and their breakfast is really good! They have coffee, granola, fruit and different pastries starting at 8:30am - so sleep in!!
After breakfast I decided to go sightseeing! I caught an uber to Broadway and walked over to The Johnny Cash museum to learn a little more about The Man in Black. At the museum you'll look at a timeline of his life, listen to his music and even watch some clips of movies that he was in.
Then I walked over to The Ryman (Grand Ole Opry) and went through a tour. I wish I could have seen a show! But the movie that they play for the tour is actually really good at sharing the history! Really entertaining too.
"When you walk through the doors of the historic Ryman Auditorium, one thing becomes clear right away: this isn’t just another nightly music venue, and it’s so much more than a daytime tourist stop. This place is hallowed ground. This is the exact spot where bluegrass was born, where Johnny Cash met June Carter, where souls were saved and a slice of history was nearly lost. It was right here that country music found an audience beyond its own back porch, and countless careers took off as deals were signed on napkins and paper scraps backstage. This is a building where anything is possible: a soul can find redemption, a crumbling building can find salvation, and an unknown kid with a guitar can find their name in lights" (ryman.com).
After The Ryman I caught a Lyft over to the Nashville Parthenon, the only full-scale replica of the famous Greek temple in the world. The Nashville Parthenon is over in Centennial Park and holds an art exhibit inside as well as the largest indoor statue in the western world inside of it.
While I was visiting it was a drizzly and grey day, however Centennial Park would be a great spot for a picnic on a pretty day!
For lunch I took a Lyft over to Hattie B's for some of Nashville's famous hot chicken! The line was literally out the door around noon, but the wait was worth it because the food was GOOD.
Two of my Lyft drivers let me know that Prince's Hot Chicken was the original Hot Chicken place in Nashville, but Hattie B's was closer and has also earned a local reputation for great hot chicken!
It was time for a quick nap after a few tastes of Whiskey, so I headed back to my room at Urban Cowboy to rest a bit before going to The Bluebird Cafe, an iconic listening room, to hear an "in the rounds". If you have a big party, you'll want to make a reservation for a show at The Bluebird because it's a popular spot and show book up!
Because I was traveling solo I thought I would take a chance and go stand in line. They have a certain amount of seats reserved for first come first serve, but the night I went I ended up getting in on a table overlooking the circle for the rounds and the music was incredible! I didn't know any of the people playing beforehand but they were all so good that I definitely left a fan.
After the show I grabbed a quick bit at the Urban Cowboy Public House before heading up to my room to bed!
Breakfast at Urban Cowboy BNB, Pack up and leave bags at BNB, Get coffee at Bongo East, Walk to The Fatherland District and shop, Grab lunch at Local Taco, grab your bags and head to the airport!
The Shoppes at Fatherland weren't quite open yet so I killed some time at the local coffee shop Bongo first, but the Fatherland District had some great shops! Among my favorites were The Shine Project that employs inner city youth and helps them get to college! They had some really great insirational tee's. And then Abode Mercantile - They just had really cute stuff and the owner was so nice!! I could've bought the whole store.
When I'd finally worked up enough of an appetite I stopped into Local Taco. Loved the prices, the vibes and the tacos! Had to get a hot chicken taco...of course. Hot chicken was the food theme of the trip.
Until next time Nashville....