Nashville is the center of country music, but the center of the city is not the only spot to enjoy the music metropolis of Tennessee. Many of the most beautiful and well known attractions from Nashville are beyond the honky tonk and neon lights dotting the downtown streets.
Explore the highlights of Country Music and rich history, especially during the Civil War, of the outer sections of Nashville.
While the downtown area of Nashville is highly walkable, which are best visited by means other than foot. This is either due to their distance from downtown or the need to go around through areas of heavy street traffic. You can reach these attractions by public bus, car and some by bike share.
Things to do and see in Outer Nashville Map:
What to do and see in Outer Nashville:
Nashville was longtime home of President Andrew Jackson, as he spent is post-president years at the Hermitage plantation. Learn about the life and legacy of Jackson at the visitor center museum before heading off for a guided tour of his house. Make sure to take a stroll through the gardens on your way out.
Nashville Zoo at Grassmere
The Nashville Zoo at Grassmere is a medium sized zoo, perfect for an afternoon adventure around the world through wildlife. Our favorite exhibits are the meerkats, friendly kangaroos and of course the recent arrival, an Andean Bear. The zoo is open daily from 9AM to 6PM over the summer and until 4PM over the winter. Tickets are $17 during the weekday and $18 on the weekend.
Belle Meade Plantation
The Belle Meade Plantation now serves as a museum, event space and more. Take a tour of the historic mansion, enjoy the many conserved buildings on the grounds and even enjoy a wine tasting. Belle Meade is most well known for its thoroughbred horses, of which all Kentucky Derby horses since 2003 can trace its ancestry to this plantation. Tickets are $15 and up depending on the type of admissions and tours you desire.
Cheekwood Botanical Garden and Museum of Art
The 55 acres of the Cheekwood Estate & Gardens prominently feature a beautiful botanical garden, teaming with color throughout the warmer months. Make sure to take a walk along the Carell Woodland Sculpture Trail for an interesting intersect of art and nature. The Museum of Art is home to notable artists both local and world famous. Tickets are $20 and parking is an additional $5.
Lane Motor Museum
For those of you who are car lovers, look no further than the Lane Motor Museum. Here you will find a large collection of unique and rare European cars and motorcycles. The cars throughout the museum range from historical to propeller-driven vehicles to unfinished concept vehicles. The museum is open Thursday through Monday from 10AM to 5PM and tickets are $12 per adult.
The Belmont Mansion was built in 1853 and now sits in a busy corner of Belmont University. Take a guided tour through this prime example of antebellum history. Not only can you enjoy the beautifully restored rooms, but take a tour around the world with the many pieces of art picked up along Adelicia Acklen’s extensive travels.
Grand Ole Opry
No visit to Nashville is complete without a visit to the Grand Ole Opry, the stage for country music. It is from this stage that country music stars come together to play for a live audience and over the sound waves from WSM-AM. You can either catch a live concert or get a glimpse behind the scenes with a backstage tour.
At Marathon Village, you step into an old car factory with a fun mix of past and present. There are several boutique, arts and antique stores to browse through along with a delicious wine slushy from Grinder’s Switch Winery. In the hallways the walls are lined with old machine and car parts from its factory days.
Take a walk down Music Row, the heart of country music record labels and recording studios in Nashville. Almost every building for several blocks provides the breath and soul behind country music. Most notable is Historic RCA Studio B, where you can tour where many great artist including Dolly Parton and Elvis Presley had the chance to record.
Last but not least, time for a quick visit to Greece! Not actually Greece, but Nashville is a home to a full-scale replica of the Parthenon in Athens. Originally built to celebrate the city’s centennial, its popularity lead to a permanent construction of the building along with a full size replica of the 42 foot Athena Parthenos statue. Enjoy a photo at the Parthenon without having to travel the world!
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