This past Labor Day Weekend marked our 5 year wedding anniversary, and one of the few years that my husband has been home to celebrate. Unfortunately for most of the past five years, the Marine Corps had other ideas about how we should celebrate our wedding anniversary. Not only was this anniversary my husbands first as a civilian, but we knew we actually had a few free days, so we though we would get out of town for a little trip to celebrate.
As much as we are enjoying Kentucky so far, we thought that we would venture out and see what some of the surrounding states are like. Neither of us have ever really done much traveling in Tennessee other than driving through from one side of the country to another, so we thought it could be fun to visit Nashville and spend a few days exploring the city.
This trip also marked our entrance into the 21st century- this was the first time that we went with an airbnb over a hotel. I chose to go with airbnb since I found an amazing loft (the whole unit- I don’t think I could deal with being in a room in someone else’s place) right downtown in the heart of Nashville. The loft was perfectly sized and well appointed, and really worked perfectly for our trip. If you are interested in the 506 Lofts, their website can be found here, and their profile on airbnb here.
There were tons of aspects of Nashville that I loved, but I think my favorite neighborhood was 12 South. This neighborhood is a mix of residential and commercial, and having visited it both during the day for shopping, and again in the evening for dinner, I can say I really loved it. There is a good mix of shops, cafes, and restaurants. We had breakfast at Frothy Monkey, which was wonderful and obviously well loved by the local residents. For dinner, we went to Josephine, which was the best dinner we had while in Nashville, and I highly recommend.
After dragging my husband to Draper James (the appeal of a Reese Witherspoon owned boutique wasn’t the same for him as me…), and an obligatory stop by the I Believe in Nashville Mural, we headed to White’s Mercantile since that was more his taste.
Since my husband and I are both complete history nerds, we also made a few stops to see some of the local historical landmarks of the area. First we stopped at Cheekwood, which is an estate built by the Maxwell Coffee House Fortune, and is now a museum, botanical garden, and museum.
We also visited Belle Meade Plantation, which is a Greek Revival style plantation that was once the largest Thoroughbred farm in Tennessee (I guess we didn’t get enough Thoroughbred history in Kentucky…).
Since we were staying right downtown, it was rather difficult to avoid the chaos of Lower Broadway. Lower Broadway is packed full of bars and honkey tonks, and the area also contains the Bridgestone Arena, the Ryman Auditorium, The Nashville Convention Center, in addition to the Country Music Hall of Fame.
Overall, we really enjoyed our quick getaway to Nashville. It was great to get out and explore a new city, and to get out of our comfort zone and stay in the heart of it all.
Strangely, the main thing that stuck out to me about Nashville was the construction. I don’t think I have ever seen a city experiencing so much construction on such a massive and widespread scale. No matter the neighborhood, it seemed as though there were a crane and crew on at least one corner. Some figures have anywhere between 50 and 100 people moving to Nashville every day, and it shows in the apparent growing pains the city is facing.