How To Do Nashville Like A True Tourist

How To Do Nashville Like A True Tourist

Possibly this post should be titled, “How to spend $150.00 on a few jars of legal moonshine”, more on that later.

Spring break is one of the times that Chateau’ Relaxo raises the drawbridge and heads out of town.. this year the destination was Nashville, TN. I’ve been to Nashville several times over the years, but only for business. Which translates to meetings and dinner plans, little else. This trip was going to be different! Basecamp was the Hilton Garden Inn Nashville Downtown/Convention CenterClose to everything, which meant no need for a rental car…. more on that later. 

The nice thing about the Nashville airport is they have a designated ride-share area for Uber and Lyft, $15.00 to the hotel.

When exploring a new city one of our standards is using the Old Town Trolley. Their Nashville tour didn’t disappoint and using them we got discounted admission into the Country Music Hall of Fame.

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The Old Town Trolley tour offers 15 stops, with driver commentary/stories along the way. $35.00 and the tour will take most of the day if you get off at each stop.

Here are some of the highlights. 

Stop #1 – George Jones Museum – $17.00 with the centerpiece being George’s Jonn Deere tractor that earned him a DUI after his wife hid his car keys.

True Tourist Stop #8 – Marathon Motor Works – The Marathon Motor Works building was converted into a village housing an American Pickers backed store as well as Nelson’s Green Brier Distillery.

Stop #13 – Bobby’s Idle Hour – This stop focuses on Music Row and Bobby’s is the only bar on the block. If you happen to stop by on a Wednesday afternoon you’re in for a treat, Sam’s Jams. It’s nothing but songwriters singing original songs.

Stop #14 – The Gulch – Great shops, eats and photo opportunities.

Next up, the “Nashville Trilogy

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Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum – $26.00, but you can save a few dollars by purchasing a package from Old Town Trolley. Plan on spending two or three hours. The facade looks like a piano keyboard, thumbs up for design. The museum will make an impact, even if you’re not a Country Music fan.

The current exhibits are:

  • Loretta Lynn: Blue Kentucky Girl
  • Tim McGraw & Faith Hill: Mississippi Woman, Louisiana Man
  • Shania Twain
  • Lynn Anderson: Keep Me In Mind


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There are plenty of locally inspired contributions, in addition to two floors of blinged out cars, boots and actual Grammy awards.


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The Ryman Auditorium – $22.00 and the self-guided tour will take less than two hours. The Ryman story is more interesting than I ever imagined and the structure is an architectural masterpiece, including its restoration. They are still holding shows, during our visit Tony Bennet and Trace Atkins held concerts.

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The Grand Ole Opry – $45.00 – $99.00 and the performance is under three hours. If you’re buying tickets in advance you’ll be purchasing without knowing the performers, they post that seven days before the show. We saw John Conlee, Carley Pearce, Del McCoury Band, Lorrie Morgan, Chris Janson, Jamey Johnson and Charlie Daniels was scheduled to perform but canceled due to illness. On the night we were there Chris Janson was inducted into the Grand Ole Opry family by Garth Brooks.

After those stops, there’s plenty more to see.

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Tootsies – Located behind the Ryman Auditorium. Tootsie’s has three stages that host live local talent each night; covering modern day country music artists. The building is a vibrant pink and they claim the color comes from a paint mixture that was supposed to save money. True Tourist

The Wildhorse Salon  – A great place for live music, and the food is fresh and the “LOCAL” beer is cold. If you’re looking to learn how to line dance they offer free lessons….Don’t Walk The Line ~ Dance It!


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Hatch Show Print – If you’ve ever visited a county fair or rodeo more than likely you’ve seen a hatch show print style poster. Part of my career focuses on putting ink on paper, so this place hit home.

The Hatch Show Print designer-printers create 500-600 different posters each year for venues, entertainers, businesses, and organizations. Blending twenty-first century design sensibilities with nineteenth century technology, Hatch Show Print creates original, eye-catching work. While a handful of the shop’s clients continue to use the posters for advertising, most of the posters commemorate events in Nashville and around the world.

Their history is riveting, and what they can do with letterpress is simply amazing.

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Gaylord Opryland Resort & Convention Center – Ever wanted to live inside a terrarium?  I did a four-day event here, and never went outside, yet the architecture led you to believe you did. The gardens are nothing short of amazing, and entry is free. Worth a visit!

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If you’ve made it this far, here’s the part about “more on that later“. The initial plan was to facilitate this trip using Uber & Lyft…. no rental car. That was until we came across the Smith Creek Distillery.  At Chateau’ Relaxo we’re rubes for anything labeled “local” and Smith Creek Distillery filled the bill. We grabbed a bottle or two or three for the trip home. At the time we were holding tickets for the evenings Grand Ole Opry performance and after a quick phone call we found out that bottles weren’t permitted inside. Since Uber & Lyft won’t allow you to store gear the fall back was a rental. The rental depot at Gaylord Opryland Resort & Convention Center didn’t accept Hertz points so this became a cash transaction, to the tune of $150.00.

Nashville is a great destination and offered three days worth of adventure.

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