Image via Trover.com by Jim Nix
Nashville is not your typical Southern town. Located in the heart of Tennessee, this vibrant city became the subject of a major network television show. Full of beautiful settings and interesting characters, Nashville is more than what you see on the show. It’s full of historical and cultural significance that date back to the original settlements of America. Whether you stay downtown or in Bellevue or Old Hickory, you’re sure to find a convenient and relaxing family-friendly IHG hotel close to the many historic sites of Nashville.
Who knew you could find a bit of ancient Greece in Tennessee? One of the most popular historic sites in Nashville is The Parthenon, which attests to the city’s nickname, the “Athens of the South.” Located west of the downtown area in Centennial Park, the life-size replica of the ancient Greek structure is a fitting tribute to the town’s moniker. Celebrating ancient Greek architecture, the site includes a 42-foot statue of the Greek goddess Athena and houses a permanent art collection.
The Grand Ole Opry
In 1925, The Grand Ole Opry broadcast its first show, “The WSB Barn Dance.” Ninety years later, the weekly show continues to air from the most sought after venue in country music. Over the years, country music’s newest and notorious, from Patsy Cline to Carrie Underwood, have performed on the famed stage.
Located on the banks of the Cumberland River, the history of country music is woven into the fabric of The Grand Ole Opry. Take a tour of the famous building during the day and come back at night and catch a show. You never know who will show up on the Opry stage.
Jack Daniel’s Distillery
Image via Trover.com by Ronald Mason
Tennessee isn’t only a music mecca; it’s the whiskey capital of the world, too. No distillery is more famous than the Jack Daniel’s Distillery. Created in 1865, the history of the birth of this American staple is both fascinating and tragic.
Located 90 minutes from Nashville in Lynchburg, Tennessee, the site is worth the day trip. Book a guided tour and partake in a tasting. You can absorb the history of alcohol in America while listening to the tale of how Jack Daniel and eight other master distillers created the whiskey so many enjoy today.
Belle Meade Plantation
Built in 1820, the Belle Meade Plantation is a historic walk through the human condition. A short drive east of downtown Nashville, the former Indian hunting ground became the model for plantation life in the South. Even in the 1890s, tourist and dignitaries alike paid a visit to Belle Meade to see how a proper plantation should be run. With its immaculate grounds and perfectly restored buildings, you get an idea of life in the Old South. The Belle Meade is available for weddings and other events. During the summer, the plantation offers educational summer camps for kids.
Nashville has a rich and complex history — one you must see. Book a few nights at one of the city’s fabulous hotels and spend a few days visiting these historic sites that shaped our country’s history.