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How to See the Best of Nashville in a Weekend

Travel Team | Feb 27, 2024

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Everyone is making their way to Nashville these days. Country music lovers, bachelorette partygoers, nightlife enthusiasts, and Southern-grub foodies can find something to love.

If you're thinking about where you might go on your next weekend trip, Nashville, Tennessee, is a great destination to choose. You might not be able to squeeze in everything on your wish list, so these tips for visiting Nashville should help you make the most of your short time.

Best Things to Do in Nashville

Ryman Auditorium

There’s a reason Nashville is known as the Music City, and if you love country music, you already know that there’s no better place to soak it all in.

Most will make their way to the Opry House, home of the Grand Ole Opry (founded in 1925 by the founder of an insurance company, by the way). But the original home of the Grand Ole Opry was actually the Ryman Auditorium.

Many acclaimed artists have had the chance to play on its stage. Elvis, Patsy Cline, Johnny Cash, and Hank Williams only scratch the surface of performers that filled the Ryman with music. The venue still hosts performances today, and visitors can tour during the day to learn about its history and the architecture that makes the acoustics so legendary.

RCA Studio B

After you’ve seen where some of the most popular artists performed, you’ll want to see where they recorded. Historic RCA Studio B is the place to visit where you can stand in the same spot Dolly Parton and Elvis recorded their hits.

If you book a tour of the studio, you’ll be filled in on secrets that other music lovers don’t know, like when Elvis accidentally hit his head on the microphone at the end of one of his ballads.

Bring your choir or musically inclined friends and even record something yourself. “My high school choir got the chance to record our own rendition of a Chicks song right there in the studio!” said Ashley Fritz, a Seven Corners blogger.

The Parthenon

If you’re on a budget, you don’t even need to spend any money to visit Nashville’s full-size replica of the original Parthenon in Athens, Greece. Located in Centennial Park, the Parthenon houses exhibits on the original Athens structure, art shows, and musical performances. It also hosts activities for kids, making this a great stop if you’re vacationing with the family.

You can also simply enjoy the architecture from the lawn outside of the building if you don’t want to purchase tickets to tour the inside or if you’re on a time crunch.

Nashville murals

One of the admired and recognizable features of the streets of Nashville are the murals you can find on many corners. There are plenty of places to search for the most Instagrammable spots to bring your friends.

This is another great way to experience the culture of Nashville without spending money or a huge chunk of time. Grab a morning coffee and a bagel, and walk around to find one of the many murals throughout the city. The Nashville murals website shows you where to find some of the best.

Bluebird Café

This one’s for anyone who loves nightlife, live music, and the best new country singles. Bluebird Café opened in 1982 and has since become a famous spot to listen to the hottest emerging artists. You can grab a drink and listen to live performances by whoever the artist on deck may happen to be that night. Taylor Swift, Garth Brooks, Dierks Bentley, and more have been known to play a song or two at the Café, even long after they became the big names that they are.

This is a staple of Nashville for anyone who wants to truly embrace the music of the city and the stars who got their start in Tennessee.

Country Music Hall of Fame

You simply can’t plan a trip to Nashville without stopping by the Country Music Hall of Fame. A walk through the museum will take you through the timeline of country music itself and the key contributors to its tradition.

The museum houses more than 2 million artifacts like iconic outfits, memorabilia, instruments, and original documents of music legends. If you visit, make sure to stop in the Hall of Fame Rotunda where Country Music Hall of Fame members’ plaques cover the walls.

Honky Tonk Highway

You’ll need your cowboy boots to visit one of the many country music bars that stretch along Broadway. Referred to as Honky Tonk Highway, the main drag is full of music, energy, and line dancing late into the night (or early morning).

Some of your favorite country artists even have their very own bars right on the strip, and you might be lucky enough to spot them checking in on things. There’s no cover to experience the bars on Honky Tonk Highway, setting the stage for the perfect boot scootin’ boogie kind of night.

Best Restaurants in Nashville

Pancake Pantry

You’re going to want to get up early for this breakfast joint. A line forms early at the Pancake Pantry, and you shouldn’t be surprised to see it wrap outside and around the building. The wait is worth it, though.

“A friend took me here on a spontaneous weekend trip. He’d lived in Nashville while going to school at Vanderbilt University, and the Pancake Pantry was the one place he insisted we eat,” says Seven Corners writer Becky Hart. “This is comfort food on a breakfast platter, full of pancakes, pancakes, and more pancakes. Even if you order an omelet, you’ll get a short stack on the side.”

For something a little different than what you’ll find at home, try the sweet potato pancakes or pork chops (brined in sweet tea; you’re in the South) served with eggs and, of course, more pancakes.

Loveless Café

“Ask my family where to eat in Nashville,” says Becky, “and the first words out of their mouth are ‘Loveless Café!’” Country ham, fried chicken, biscuits, and more Southern favorites are made from scratch at this Nashville staple, which has been in business for more than 70 years.

If you can’t get enough of the tasty treats, visit their shop where you can take home a pack of their biscuit mix, fruit jams (Becky loves the blackberry preserves), and more.

Hattie B’s

Nashville hot chicken has become trendy throughout the U.S., but if you want the original done right, you go where it all began. That means Nashville, and for the best in town, try Hattie B’s. It was founded by a multigenerational family of restaurant workers who, over the years, transformed their offerings from a cafeteria-style restaurant to a hot chicken legacy. Top off your meal with some Southern-style desserts like banana pudding or peach cobbler.

Today, there are multiple locations across several states. If you're going to give Hattie B’s a try, though, make a stop at the original in midtown Nashville.

Bringle's Smoking Oasis

In the South, one must eat BBQ at least once. Bringle’s Smoking Oasis was recommended to us by a Nashville local, and it has us drooling just thinking about it. The owner’s second restaurant —his first is Peg Leg Porker — puts a unique twist on BBQ with Southwestern flavors and his own take on ribs. If you’re looking for a specific dish, though, check the website before you go. Their menu rotates weekly, and you’ll want to be in the know when tasty items like beef ribs and smoked prime rib are available.

Cock of the Walk

Founded in Mississippi, Cock of the Walk (named for the best boatmen traveling along the Mississippi River) has established itself as a prime spot for catfish in Nashville. If catfish doesn’t sound good to you, get your fill of chicken, steak, shrimp, and all the sides like hushpuppies, skillet bread, and fried pickles instead.

Assembly Food Hall

If you and your friends can’t decide on a restaurant, head for Assembly Food Hall. It’s full of restaurants and bars featuring a range of different cuisines. In the mood for tacos? Assembly Food Hall has. Vietnamese food? They have that, too. Hot chicken, cotton candy, cocktails? Consider it done.

They also have live music occasionally, so check the calendar before you go. Nothing beats a casual dinner and a show.


One more local-recommended place is Lola, a relatively new Spanish restaurant in downtown Nashville. If you love tapas and a taste of the Mediterranean — even in the U.S. South — this is for you. Stop by on a Monday and you’ll be treated to paella and Spanish wine for two, the perfect date night when you’re out exploring a new town together.

Travel Insurance for U.S. Trips

If these Nashville highlights don’t encourage you to grab your friends for a weekend adventure, we’re not sure anything will. There is plenty more to see and do, so you may have to plan a couple of trips.

Protect your trip before you go with Seven Corners Trip Protection USA. This customizable plan not only provides coverage for your trip expenses if you have to cancel or interrupt your trip, but also allows you to add bundles of coverage for medical expenses and flights if you need that, too. Get a quick quote online or talk to a licensed agent to find the best coverage for your next getaway.


Insurance benefits are subject to limitations and exclusions, including an exclusion for pre-existing conditions. The insurance provided by the plans is in excess of all other valid and collectible insurance and indemnity.

Trip insurance within the plans is underwritten by United States Fire Insurance Company. Benefits listed can vary by state of residence. Travel assistance services in the plans are not insurance, and they are provided by Seven Corners Assist. Individuals looking to obtain additional information regarding the features and pricing of each travel plan component, please contact Seven Corners at 1-800-335-0611.

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