Long Weekend Guide to Nashville
Our love for Nashville started over two years ago when our mom took us for our birthday. We fell in love with the city, the live music coming from every bar/restaurant/shop & the people (they're just SO nice). That's why it was our first choice when we were deciding where to take our mom for her 60th! We booked the tickets in August, told her to save the dates & waited until Christmas to surprise her with the location.
We flew out of LAX on a connecting flight so we could meet mom in Phoenix & fly to Nashville together. We knew it was going to be a great trip when despite being C4 and C5 on Southwest, we got the last 3 seats together. Our luggage made it to Nashville safely & we hopped in the Uber to our hotel.
We stayed at Thompson Nashville, which has the cutest décor – from the lobby to the coffee shop to the guest room & especially the bathroom. While we waited for our room to be ready, we went across the street to Burger Republic & devoured the beer cheese fondue with tater tots. The veggie burgers were homemade & red bean-based, but the tater tot appetizer was the highlight of the meal. Highly recommend!
We relaxed in the hotel room the rest of the night (it was raining) & planned our itinerary for the next day.
After sleeping in a bit, we headed downstairs to try out Killebrew coffee in our hotel & were so glad they had chocolate croissants. We tried the chai latte & loved it! We had been craving the beignets at the farmer's market for so long, so we decided it was the perfect snack before heading over to the collection of shops, restaurants, and bars by the Bicentennial Capitol Mall State Park. Unfortunately, when we got there we saw on the Delta 61 menu that they're only available Friday-Sunday...bummer!
Our next stop was the Country Music Hall of Fame! There were three levels of exhibits (both interactive & behind glass) & we saw a ton of memorabilia from all of our favorite country artists. There was also a "recording studio" which was super fun and embarrassing and an awesome rotunda where you can stand in the middle & hear your voice amplified. It's hard to explain, but it was one of the highlights!
We went back to one of our favorite spots from our last trip for a late lunch. We got the same booth as our last visit & were so happy! Bakersfield is a fun Mexican restaurant with fresh margaritas served in mason jars. When you go, definitely get the queso dip & add jalapeños – so good! After a big meal & knowing we'd need some form of dinner in just a few hours, we decided to walk back to our hotel to get some FitBit steps in.
Once we got back to our hotel, we got changed & ready for our night at The Ryman! We ended up going to the hotel rooftop bar for drinks & appetizers since we were still full from lunch. Although the fried artichokes & truffle fries were absolutely amazing, we realized we probably should've checked ourselves on ordering only fried foods. The Ryman show that night was Opry Country Classics (The Ryman was the original location) & it was a tribute to Johnny Cash & June Carter's 50th wedding anniversary. Our favorite performers were Mark Collie (aka Frankie Gray - Deacon's sponsor from Nashville) & Chris Jansen. Afterwards, we did the backstage tour (thanks mom!) & loved seeing the dressing rooms and being able to see the view of the audience from the stage.
On our last trip to Nashville a couple of years ago, we stuck around the downtown area (with one side trip to Fido in Hillsboro Village), so this trip, we were super excited to explore 12 South. First things first, we loved Fido so much last time that we decided to try their breakfast menu this time around. Honestly, we tried to go to Pancake Pantry first, but after seeing the line & feeling our stomachs rumble, we opted for good ol' Fido. We tried the village scramble & Pete's breakfast. We highly recommend both & if you're a vegetarian, you'll love their veggie sausage patty!
Since the sun was finally shining, we opted to walk the 30-minute trek to 12 South. We passed Belmont Mansion & Belmont University before ending up on 12 South Ave. The shops there were so cute & it was so fun to explore somewhere we hadn't been yet. We took goofy pictures at the Five Daughters Bakery donut shop & ogled at Bartaco from afar (we'd been dying to try it but we were too full!). We were greeted with sweet tea at Draper James & took photos in front of the wall murals around the corner.
We refreshed at the hotel & headed back downtown for our final night in the city. We had local beer, mac n' cheese & pizza at The Stillery – which was our favorite meal of the whole trip! They make their own cheese & dough. Pro tip: Even if there's a wait downstairs, upstairs is first come, first serve & the vibe is even better!
After filling our bellies, we decided to do something we regretted not doing on our last trip – learning to line dance at Wildhorse Saloon! There was a $6 cover, but we arrived just in time for a 30-minute line dancing lesson. It was so fun & great exercise! When we were leaving the gift shop, we were so excited to see a cardboard cutout of Deacon Claybourne from Nashville, we just had to take pictures! We walked up & down Broadway after that and popped into our favorite karaoke bar Wanna B's and corner bar (across from Tootsie's) called Rippy's. Shout out to The Northern Lights for playing such an awesome set!
We had originally wanted to go to Milk & Honey for our mom's birthday dinner, but we decided to try it out for brunch on our last day in Nashville. Unfortunately, there was a line to put your name in & once we got there we found out the wait was an hour long. Not wanting to wait (or miss our flight for food), we walked up the block to Fin & Pearl, which was not crowded at all & had a really cool nautical vibe. We shared a carafe of bottomless mimosas & loved the brunch items! We'd love to try Milk & Honey next time, but we highly recommend coming up to Fin & Pearl so you can enjoy being able to hear your friends speak vs. wait for an overcrowded restaurant. They had really cute touches, like giving the bill in an old book that acted like a guest book. It was so cute, we just had to sign!
After brunch, we stopped into Frye (shoutout to the awesome employee at our hotel who gave us all $50 gift cards!) & looked around. Then we sadly collected our luggage & headed to the airport.
It was such an amazing trip & we're so lucky to have been able to take the time to spend quality time with our mom for her birthday. The city has grown quite a bit since we were there last, but Nashville really does feel like our home away from home. We can't wait to visit again someday soon!