Nashville

Nashville Skyline by CC user 89241789@N00 on Flickr

Introduction

Being home to where country music’s name was made, Nashville is a must-visit locale for those that consider music to be their greatest passion. As this genre of the performing arts began to rise in popularity in the mid parts of the twentieth century, Nashville became a base for record labels specializing in this sort of music, thus laying the foundation for its status as not only a center for country, but many other types of music in the present day as well.

In addition to this, Nashville has enjoyed a great deal of prosperity in the post Civil War era, a fact which has granted it many attractive buildings in its downtown core, and its location during America’s most tragic war put it right at the center of some of the conflict’s most pivotal battles.

All these factors combine to make Nashville a solid choice for any tour of the South you may be considering in the near future, as these attractions will make your visit here full of highlights from arrival to departure.

Grand Ole Opry Dancers by CC user laurenprofeta on Flickr

Cultural Experiences

Start by honoring the greats of country music’s past by touring the Country Music Hall of Fame. This expansive museum is a gold mine of information for those seeking to explore the roots from this genre sprung up, from the days of honky-tonk to the pop and rock influenced sounds of today’s hot country stars.

Films, audio samples, and exhibits will keep country fans busy all day long, and provide valuable insight to those who know little about this well-loved style of music.

While walking around in a museum will fill you in on country music’s past, attending a live performance of this musical art form is the only way to gain a true appreciation for the emotional power of country music.

The Grand Ole Opry is the best place to go for this, as stage shows are hosted by this venue on a nearly nightly basis, with some of the biggest names in country sitting in at certain times throughout the year.

If you have been traveling through the South, but have yet to visit a plantation house, be sure not to miss The Hermitage while in the Nashville area. This estate was owned by Andrew Jackson, the 7th president of the United States, and it served as his home during his post-presidential days.

Those that visit will enjoy strolling through the former’s president’s mansion and gardens, where his final resting place can be found. An uncomfortable legacy of this place is that President Jackson also owned slaves, as was common practice in the pre-Civil War days, providing an uncomfortable asterisk to this former American leader’s past.

Parthenon by CC user 28992197@N00 on Flickr

Other Attractions

When you have tired of exploring museums in the Nashville area, relax for awhile in Centennial Park, one of the cities’ biggest and best loved recreation grounds, and home to one of its most peculiar structures.

At the center of this green oasis lies an exact replica of the Parthenon, a famous Greek ruin was built in 1897 for the Tennessee Central Exposition. This seemingly out of place structure is used by the local creative community today as an art museum, of which one of the highlights is a spectacular statue of Athena Parthenos.

Situated in the more southerly portions of the United States compared to the chillier north, the climate in and about the Nashville area have allowed a wide array of beautiful flora to grow and survive here year round.

The Cheekwood Botanical Garden and Museum of Art is the best place to bear witness to this, as its location at the mansion of a former wealthy magnate has given this place a wealth of well-sculpted gardens outside, and a well-provisioned art collection inside.

While there might be an abundant cast of past and present music stars to be admired and enjoyed during your time in Nashville, be sure to sample some of the live music and nightlife as well, as countless up and coming artists have moved here over the years in a bid to get noticed by talent scouts.

Attend the Whiskey Jam at Winner’s Bar and Grill, or drink some PBR’s at the Douglas Corner Cafe as the best in indie, rock and country do their level best to build a following and to raise the eyebrows of major league talent scouts.

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