Our favorite way to explore a new city is on foot. You can experience so much more just by wandering around at a slower pace, talking with locals, people watching, and even getting lost. Walking around Nashville was the best way for us to get to know its vibe and love it.
Walking is a great way to get a real feel for the atmosphere and pulse of a city, so we always encourage everyone to walk around as much as you can.
It’s a great way to stay in shape on your travels too, and of course, walking is FREE!
You can walk across bridges, through neighborhoods, along rivers, and around the city center chatting with the locals and taking lots of photos.
It’s amazing what you can learn by chatting with the locals. We love to eat where the locals eat and who better to ask than the folks that live there!
And with that being said, we love walkable cities such as Nashville. Our recent trip to music city proved to be awesome on so many levels; the music, the museums, the food, the people, and the fact that it’s so walkable.
Even if you don’t stay in downtown Nashville like us, we stayed in an Airbnb in east Nashville, getting to and then around the city center by foot is easy.
Here’s a tip.
Parking in the city center can be challenging and expensive, but thanks to a local in the know, we discovered you can park for free across the river on Titans Way in front of the Titans Football Stadium, then simply walk across the pedestrian bridge into the city.
Each day we walked across the John Seigenthaler Pedestrian Bridge which spans 960 m and is one of the longest pedestrian bridges in the world. It offers a great view of the river and city skyline.
Once in the city, you’re amongst the best of Nashville.
We started off by wandering along Broadway and 2nd Ave, it’s here you’ll find all the Honky Tonk Bars and it instantly hits you that you’re in music city!
You’ll also come across several stores selling boots, and we just happened to be in Nashville on Mother’s Day so what’s a girl to do? Mummy got herself some cool new boots.
Nashville has some awesome rooftop restaurants and bars with views over the river and city and our fave for lunch was the ACME Feed & Seed on the corner of Broadway and 1st Ave.
It’s a multi-story venue; first floor is an updated honky tonk bar with casual food and live music, second floor a lounge bar, third floor a music venue, and then the rooftop bar with sweeping views of downtown, the Cumberland River, and Titans Stadium.
We also had lunch at nearby Rock Bottom Brewery. The view isn’t as spectacular as ACME, but it was mother’s day which called for a cheeky sangria.
If you fancy some ribs, take the short walk a few blocks from Broadway to Martin’s BBQ Joint. Our local friend Kristin took us there for lunch and we had the biggest rack of ribs we’ve ever eaten – cool venue too!
We spent a good few hours walking the hallways of the Hall of Fame Museum, and even if you didn’t grow up with country music like me, you’re in Nashville and this place will have you a fan soon enough!
As for the Ryman, well, it’s hallowed ground and all the greats have played here, it’s where Johnny Cash met June Carter and it’s said to be one of the best live music venues in the world for its outstanding acoustics and we thoroughly enjoyed our behind the scenes tour.
Speaking of Johnny Cash, his museum is just off Broadway too and it’s home to the largest collection of Johnny Cash items in the world – check it out, what a legend!
The Gulch District is a neighborhood on the southwest fringe of downtown. It has an industrial history but is now a hotspot with ample restaurants, cafes, and shopping – the Two Old Hippies store featured on our fave TV show, Nashville!
It’s a hip spot to walk around.
The Gulch is where old warehouses have been renovated into residential, and it’s also where you’ll find cool street art including the famous What Lifts You angel wings mural and the large-scale, colorful murals on 11th Avenue South.
Apparently, Burger Republic has the best burgers in Nashville. And the line up for Biscuit Love is always out the door (that’s how popular this joint is), and if you’re looking for an organic grocery store with healthy smoothies, we loved the Turnip Truck.
Walking in comfort
Exploring Nashville gave us our first opportunity to wear our new and much-needed travel clothes from prAna who are all about making sustainable clothing.
I love my new Furrow shorts, made of a sustainable blend of soft hemp and recycled materials they are honestly the most comfortable and lightest pair of shorts I have owned. And my crew t-shirt.
Caz has been living in her Mika Strappy Top , Lizbeth Skirt (also made from hemp) and Barton Dress.
After a day of walking around Nashville, the evening stroll back across the bridge is a picturesque way to end the day!
Plan Your Trip to Nashville, TN
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What is your fave city to walk around?