When traveling to a city for the first time, it can be easy to fall into the touristy-hot-spots trap – and with good reason. Those spots are the easiest to locate and get the most attention. While a typical Belmont student will tell you to avoid tourist traps, we say go ahead … visit just a few. These few to be exact.
The Parthenon and Centennial Park
A full-size replica of the original Parthenon in Greece serves as the centerpiece of this tourist spot. Though a school-field-trip destination, with bus-loads of children regularly visiting, its annual events make it a must-see. Every year the park plays host to the Nashville Shakespeare Festival’s Shakespeare in the Park, Big Band Concert Series and Musicians Corner. Apart from these annual events, visitors can find scheduled group yoga times, sand volleyball tournaments and even international food festivals.
RCA Studio B
Billed as one of the world’s most important and successful recording studios, RCA Studio B has seen and produced songs for artists like Elvis Presley, Dolly Parton, Carrie Underwood, Martina McBride and The Everly Brothers. Tour tickets are available only through the Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum’s box office and must be purchased in conjunction with museum tickets. Whether you’re a musician, songwriter or just have a healthy appreciation for music history, a tour through the heart of Music Row is bound to hit the right note.
In what started as Nashville’s publishing business capital and later developed into a thriving hub for nightlife in the 40s, Printer’s Alley is a colorful section of downtown Nashville, running from in-between Third and Fourth avenues down to Union and Church streets. Visitors are now treated to a “flair of Bourbon Street” when they visit the alley’s many and varied nightlife establishments.
Known as a songwriters haven in Green Hills, the Bluebird Cafe has gained worldwide recognition for revealing the “heroes behind the hits.” Viewers of the TV show “Nashville” will recognize the venue and listening room from the series. Famous artists like Keith Urban, Taylor Swift and Kenny Chesney all got their start here – after either passing an audition to play at this legendary cafe, or by being picked up by a label based on their Bluebird performance. Even on normal show days, guests line up outside to secure a spot inside, but the wait is even longer for the vastly popular Sunday evening shows. In order to bypass the wait, the listening room’s site recommends making reservations but warns that there are limited reservation spots available.