The moment we met our ground transportation at the airport, we knew Nashville was going to be amazing. Nashville International Airport is maybe one of our favourite airports (trust me, we have seen many). It was almost as if they crossed an airport with a museum. There were glass boxes showcasing music memorabilia, making it very clear that Nashville is, in fact, the capital of country music.
When our driver greeted us, and mum was instantly in love with his cowboy boots. However, what we thought was going to be a fantastic experience, didn't quite start off as we expected. Mum had thought she had booked the Sheraton Hotel in Downtown Nashville, but she actually booked the Sheraton Hotel by the airport. Luckily, the Sheraton offers a shuttle bus to their downtown hotel for a small fee.
Once arriving in Downtown, we walked towards Broadway, where we found a strip of bars with live music, which you can hear and immerse yourself in as you walk past. The liveliness of Broadway was captivating, so we spent a good part of the morning soaking up the atmosphere. We were in and out of shops which sold cowboy boots, belts and hats deciding which ones would look best on us.
After convincing mum that she didn't need the pretty boots with the rhinestones (at a thousand dollars a pair), we headed to a bar for some food and experienced the live music scene. It was such a charming experience hearing music while eating and reminded me of the music scene back in my university town, Brighton.
Visiting the Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum
After eating, we took a short walk over to the Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum but unfortunately got caught in a short rainy-spell and had to hide in Starbucks for 15 minutes. Once the rain stopped, we continued heading towards the museum. On our way, we passed the Music City Walk of Fame Park but found that we couldn't walk around because they were setting up for 4th July.
Entrance to the museum costs $25.95 (or for an extra $5, you can get the audio tour as well) and takes a few hours of your day. As I am not a lover of country music, spending a few hours here was a bit much for me. My mum, however, loved it. She's a relatively big fan of country music, so she wanted to see Jerry Lee Lewis' blue suede shoes. There were some fascinating parts to the museum, including several interactive elements and a pre-recorded Elvis Concert playing.
I was most interested in the Taylor Swift Education Center because, besides Elvis and Dolly Parton, she was the only other name I knew in the museum. Also, the girl has an education centre! It included outfits that she had worn on stage, a tour bus with her picture on it, and her silver rhinestone guitar.
Once we had finished at the museum, I bought my Nashville shot glass (it has cowboy boots on it!!). As we left, we found that the weather was still sunny, so we wanted to head down to the waterfront for a stroll.
Finding the Bluebird Café
As mum used to be a big fan of the ABC drama, Nashville, she was determined that in our short time here, we had to visit the Bluebird Café. This is a small, inconspicuous venue found on Hillsboro Pike, that has both known, and up-and-coming, stars perform their music to a crowd. We recommend that if you want to see a performance, book tickets in advance as it is a tiny venue.
When we peered in during a performance, we found it too claustrophobic to stay without seats. After taking some photos and listening to the performers finish their song we headed off.