Nashville has been one of my favorite cities since my first visit there when I was in law school. But I honestly hadn’t been since having kids. I guess the Nashville I thought I loved, the one that involved staying at bars until 2 am, didn’t seem like a great place to take my kiddos. When I was invited to the Nashville Blogger Summit that took place a few weeks ago I had to stop and think about it a while. They only invited one blogger from each area of the Southeast so on one hand I felt honored and wanted to go and see Nashville again and connect with other mom bloggers, but on the other hand the thought of spending a weekend in Nashville with my kids was terrifying. After doing a little research we decided to go for it, and I’m so glad we did. There are a plethora of family friendly things to do in Nashville and we never once felt out of place toting our two little ones around. Here are our top picks for surviving a trip to Nashville with kids.
Where to Stay
Most of the hotels in the downtown area are geared towards drinkers, and business people, to be honest. If you want to really stay at an awesome environment for kids you need to go Gaylord Opryland Resort – just a little outside of the downtown area, in the Music Valley neighborhood. This is one of the most incredible resorts I’ve ever been to and our kids were fascinated by the whole place. Gaylord Opryland boasts 20 restaurants and bars, over 9 acres of indoor gardens and waterfalls, a fountain show, a river with boat rides, indoor and outdoor swimming pools, a spa, golf course, and so much more. While we were there they had an awesome Alice in Wonderland plant display throughout the resort and kids could actually go on a boat ride with Alice herself. There was a scavenger hunt that Maddie Grace thought was so fun, and for the holiday season they even have things like snow tubing and ice skating. It’s located conveniently across the road from Opry Mill Mall and next door to the Grand Ole Opry which is a must do if you can get a night without the kids.
What to Do
Country Music Hall of Fame – This was actually my kids favorite activity of the trip but I didn’t get to join as I was doing blogger summit activities! My kids thought this place was amazing though and it really was geared for little ones with different craft and art projects throughout the venue. My husband said he also found all the country music information very interesting, and our son was obsessed with the old cars they had.
Madame Tussauds Nashville – Located inside Opry Mills mall this showcases wax figures of country music icons of present and past. I was amazed by how life like these looked and thought it was really cool how they were set up in rooms to look like locations they may actually have been. Such a fun half day activity and the only place you can snap some selfies with both Elvis Presley and Taylor Swift!
Opry Mills Mall – Because what trip doesn’t involve shopping. This mall is amazing and such a fun place to hit up – you can do a moonshine tasting, take the kids on the carousal, and then shop at your favorite stores like H&M and Francescas, your kids favorites like Build-A-Bear and the Disney Store (outlet!), as save big at other outlets like a Janie and Jack outlet, Abercrombie & Fitch Outlet, LOFT Outlet, OFF Fifth, and soooo much more.
Adventure Science Center – This attraction is first up on our list of places to visit the next time we go to Nashville. It’s a hands-on interactive science center including a planetarium that is supposed to be awesome.
Walking around Downtown – This is a must do during the day. So many pretty and historical buildings you can stop and admire, and honkey tonks (aka the bars where country musicians play) allow kids in until around 6:00 pm!
Where to Eat
Aquarium – This place is so cool and the kids were amazed! Hence the name this restaurant is like eating inside an aquarium! It’s well removed from the busy bar scene in Nashville and has absolutely delicious food.
Rainforest Cafe – We can never go somewhere that has a Rainforest Cafe and not eat there. Amazing food, and the kids are obsessed with the swinging monkeys. It’s a must do.
Puckett’s – The downtown restaurants will accommodate kids but aren’t as kid friendly. However if you’re walking around and want to grab food I definitely recommend Puckett’s! The food is delicious and they are more than willing to accommodate little ones (although you’ll probably have to leave the stroller by the door).
Have you been to Nashville? I’d love to hear more about your favorite spots to hit up when you make the trip below!