There are almost 100 people moving to Nashville every single day. In fact, Nashville is projected to grow by 1,000,000 more residents by 2035. From Millennials to retirees, there are many activities, events and attractions that make Music City such a desirable place to live. Here’s our comprehensive list of why we think a move to Nashville is a good idea:
List of 75 Things That Make Moving to Nashville A Great Idea
1. Free Music
They call it Music City for a reason and is one of the top reasons people are moving to Nashville. There is no shortage of good free music here. Many musicians move to Nashville to try and get noticed by a record label. The result is a steady supply of live music at many restaurants in the city and fun free events like Live on the Green.
2. Hot Chicken
One of Nashville’s favorite dishes, this culinary staple can be found on menus in just about every restaurant in the city. If you’re going to give it a try, a good place to start is at Prince’s Hot Chicken, which is considered by many to be the original. Hattie B’s, which is one of our favorites, is another solid option.
3. Great Investment
As mentioned earlier, people are moving to Nashville by the droves, which is creating a situation in our housing market where there is not enough properties for the amount of demand. In fact, Nashville has the 3rd hottest real estate market in the country. This is leading to increased home values year over year, which is expected to continue for quite some time.
4. We Go All Out On 4th of July
Nashville is known for having one of the best 4th of July fireworks displays in the entire nation. The drone video above gives you a unique perspective of this awesome yearly event.
Residents who relocating to Nashville are pleasantly surprised that the city offers more than 80 miles of greenway trails. This is perfect for anyone with an active lifestyle or just enjoying the outdoors with friends and family on the weekend.
Grimeys is more than a record store. It is a music lover’s dream come true. Located off of 8th ave, just south of downtown, this icon stays true to Nashville’s music roots by hosting intimate in-store performances from small local bands to the Black Keys. They also play host to widely popular “Record Store Day.”
7. Frist Center for Visual Arts
For those looking for a little culture, try heading to the Frist Center for Visual arts located in downtown Nashville, just off of Broadway. This art deco building was once Nashville’s main post office and now offers 24,000 square feet of gallery space. Frist Fridays are also a popular summer time event that you will want to check out.
8. Pinewood Social
Definitely one of the more unique venues in Nashville, Pinewood Social caters to many different people and activities. Here you will find a coffee shop, restaurant, bowling alley, bocce ball, swimming pool and private event space. It is the epitome of what a social gathering should be. It was also featured in Esquire’s “Best Bars in America“.
9. Cheekwood Botanical Garden
Cheekwood is a local favorite attraction and is home to 55 acres of meticulously crafted gardens. They also host many popular seasonal festivals including an impressive Christmas light display.
10. Buildings Named After Superheros
We have a building that everyone refers to as the “Batman Building” because of it’s unmistakable shape. If that’s not reason enough to consider moving to Nashville, then I don’t know what is.
11. Iroquois Steeplechase
More than just a horse race, this yearly event is a true southern tradition that brings thousands of socialites and sports fans together for one of Nashville’s biggest festivities. This create a fun, festive atmosphere where fashion and partying is almost as important as the race itself.
12. Arrington Vineyards
About 30 minutes south of Nashville is Arrington Vineyards, which was founded by country music’s Kix Brooks of Brooks and Dunn. The venue offers stunning countryside views, live music for the whole family and of course, excellent wine. One visit here and you’ll quickly realize why it’s a local hotspot.
13. Climb Nashville
Looking to relieve a little tension? Climb Nashville, which has locations in Sylvan Park and East Nashville, offers a fun and challenging workout. Speaking of workouts – they also offer fitness and yoga classes on site.
14. Hatch Show Print
Founded in 1879, Hatch Show Print has been producing unique playbills and concert posters for the likes of Johnny Cash, Elvis Presley, The Rolling Stones and even Joe Biden. Their shop is located next to the Country Music Hall of fame and allows the public to see how the printing process works as well as purchase one of these works of art.
15. St. Jude Country Music Marathon
What’s the best way to get know Nashville? Run around the city with thousands of other people for a good cause. The St. Jude Marathon has raised over $310 million for charities and runners have a great time while doing it. The race is lined with musical performers and participants are treated to a free concert afterwards at LP Field with some of the biggest names in music. Some of the past performers include Macklemore & Ryan Lewis, Pitbull, Goo Goo Dolls, All-American Rejects, Flo-Rida, Train and Lady Antebellum.
16. No State Income Tax
One of the reasons moving to Nashville is so appealing, is that there is no state income tax in Tennessee. While there is a sales tax, it still leaves more money in your pocket than states that levy both sales and income taxes.
17. Local Coffee Shops
If you’re in need of a caffeine fix, there’s no short supply of excellent locally owned coffee shops all over Nashville. Some of our favorites include, 8th & Roast, Frothy Monkey, Fido, Bongo Java, Barista Parlor and The Well.
A fun way to sightsee around Nashville is to rent a bicycle at one of the 31 B-cycle locations around the city. Just return it when you’re done to any of the stations. You can also take a nice ride through some of the parks and greenways in town with a similar program called GreenBikes.
19. Nashville Farmers’ Market
The Nashville Farmers Market offers a wide variety of fresh, locally grown produce. A staple of the city since the 1800’s, the farmers market has expanded to offer 16 restaurants where you can sample different ethnic dishes from around the world. One of the biggest draws here is Volksfest which is held in September and showcases German beer, food and entertainment.
Although Nashville has a small town feel, it offers big time sporting events. The city is home to the professional teams of the Tennessee Titans and Nashville Predators as well as minor league basesball’s Nashville Sounds. College sports include Belmont and Vanderbilt University, which just recently won the College World Series.
As they say, laughter is oftentimes the best medicine. If you’re in need of a good laugh, then you need to head over to Zanies comedy club. Located off 8th Ave, this club features shows with some of the biggest names in the industry. For the big headliners, you’ll want to purchase tickets on their website ahead of time as they tend to sell out quickly.
22. Meat & Threes
After moving to Nashville, you will no doubt hear the term “meat and three’s” quite often around lunch time. This is a traditional southern cuisine, where restaurants typically offer a couple different choices of daily meat specials and three sides of your choosing. Probably the most popular meat and three restaurant in Nashville is Arnold’s, which is located just south of Broadway on 8th Avenue.
23. Ryman Auditorium
Known as the “Mother Church of Country Music,” the Ryman Auditorium is where the Grand Ole Opry was born, but this historic icon is much more than just country music. This venue offers an intimate concert experience from big names in other genres like Mumford & Sons and Taylor Swift. If a musician gets the chance to play here at the Ryman, they know they have finally made it.
24. Radnor Lake
Need a little peace and quiet? Head over to Radnor Lake, which is just minutes from downtown Nashville and offers stunning views and plenty of wildlife sightings. Five miles of trails wind through the woods and alongside the lake as you tour this peaceful state park.
25. The Parthenon
The Parthenon in Nashville is an exact replica of the real one built in ancient Greece. In fact, the inside is home to a 42 foot tall statue of Athena just like in the original. The structure was built in 1897 as part of a world expo because Nashville is often referred to as the “Athens of the South.”
26. Pedal Taverns
Where else can you go sightseeing, get some good cardio and catch a buzz all at the same time? Once you move to Nashville, you will see these pedal taverns all around Broadway and they’re usually having a pretty darn good time.
27. The Bluebird Cafe
In a city that’s known for music, it’s hard to stand out, but The Bluebird Cafe is a small unassuming venue that offers some of the best live music in the city. Known for it’s intimate shows, this has been the stage for some of the biggest songwriters in the country. As with all the popular venues in town, shows here sell out very quickly, so plan ahead and get your tickets online.
28. Dyer Observatory
Perched on one of the highest peaks in Nashville is Dyer Observatory, which is run by the Vanderbilt University. The observatory offers open houses where you can get a first look at our solar system. They also host a popular concert series called Bluebird on the Mountain featuring local artists.
29. Catbird Seat
photo credit: findeatdrink.com
The Catbird Seat is a restaurant that many serious foodies have on their bucket list. This is a true 12 course culinary dining experience where the food is prepared in front of you and a small handful of other lucky patrons. While it doesn’t come with a cheap price tag, most food connoisseurs will tell you that it was money well spent after their savory and interactive meal.
30. Nashville Zoo
Always a family favorite, the Nashville Zoo has excellent wildlife exhibits that let you get up close and personal to all the animals. They also have fun yearly events like Boo At The Zoo as well as other seasonal activities with live music and entertainment.
31. Warner Parks
Percy Warner & Edwin Warner Parks are together referred to as Warner Parks. They are managed by the Metro Board of Parks & Recreation in Nashville and are considered to be the second largest municipal park in Tennessee. Just south of Belle Meade, these two parks make up over 2,600 acres and are also home to the Iroquois Steeplechase. Activities here include running, hiking, biking, horseback riding and golf.
32. Schermerhorn Symphony
For those of you moving to Nashville that prefer a little more elegance, the Schermerhorn Symphony may be right up your alley. From Mozart to movies, this venue offers something from all genres and for all ages. With excellent restaurant options nearby, this always makes for a memorable date night.
33. Top 5 City for Millennials
A recent report was released showing Nashville as the #4 city for millennials in the country. The vibrant lifestyle combined with a large supply of tech jobs makes Nashville a very attractive place to live for the younger generation. It’s also considered a “sticky city” because Nashville has quite a few universities and colleges in the immediate area and a large percentage of their students take up residency here after completing their degree.
34. Tennessee Whiskey
If you’re a fan of whiskey, then you will be happy to know that the most popular spirit in the world, Jack Daniels, is made about an hour and half outside of Nashville in Lynchburg, TN. The public is allowed to tour the distillery which provides a first-hand perspective into the whiskey making process as well as it’s checkered past. While you’re out there, take a trip over to the George Dickel distillery, which is only about 30 minutes away.
35. RCA Studio B
RCA Studio B is a historic site where legends like Elvis Presley, Dolly Parton Waylon Jennings and Roy Orbison recorded their hit albums. Owned and operated by the Country Music Hall of Fame, this guided tour located on Music Row is a must for all music and history buffs.
36. Harvard of the South
Do you like really really smart people? Then you’re in luck if you are moving to Nashville. Vanderbilt University, which is located in the heart of the city, is commonly referred to as the Harvard of the South because of it’s excellent academic reputation. What makes it better than Harvard? It’s also a member of the SEC, which produces some of the best sports teams in the country.
Take a journey to the Prohibition era and visit Nashville’s Patterson House. This speakeasy has all the decor and drinks to make you feel like you stepped back into the 1920’s. The bartenders here take their craft very seriously, which makes the experience all the more authentic. So if you’ve got a hankering for a bacon-infused old fashioned, then this is your place.
38. Belcourt Theatre
Located in the popular Hillsboro Village neighborhood, the Belcourt Theatre is a small boutique theatre that has a great selection of independent films as well as some mainstream movies. With local breweries on tap and wine available, this hidden gem is a perfect spot for date nights. The theatre is also scheduled to receive a much anticipated major renovation.
39. Great Weather
This probably isn’t the most exciting item on this list, but you can’t complain about the weather in Nashville. We enjoy a true four seasons with typically mild winters and summers. In fact the average temperature for the year is usually around a comfortable 70 degrees.
40. CMA Music Festival
This four day festival brings in over 200,000 attendees every year . This is your chance to see and hear some of the biggest names in country music. With stages set up on Broadway, the street turns into one big concert surrounded by honkey tonks. LP Field, just across the river, also plays host to the festivities.
41. Pancake Pantry
One of the longstanding breakfast hot spots in Nashville, the Pancake Pantry has been serving flapjacks since 1961. Here you will find 23 different varieties of pancakes as well as just about any other breakfast plate you can think of. You’ll know you’re at the right place when you see the line wrapping around the building.
If you’re thinking about moving to Nashville and you’re an avid golfer, then you’ll be pleased to know that there are plenty of options to choose from in the metro area. The mountains and valleys throughout the area make for incredible views on just about any course in the city. Hermitage and Gaylord Springs are probably two of the best public courses in the area, but there are also quite a few private courses to choose from if you prefer to join a country club.
43. Luau Island
Moving to Nashville doesn’t mean you still can’t have a little slice of paradise. Head over to Percy Priest Lake with a kayak or canoe and paddle over to Luau Island for some relaxation on your own little beach. During peak times, it can get a little crowded so shoot for a weekday for a more private experience.
44. Belle Meade Plantation
Belle Meade Plantation is situated just 10 minutes south of downtown Nashville in the affluent city of Belle Meade. Once the premier breeding farm in the South for racehorses, the plantation has hosted 5 presidents throughout its history. Take a guided tour through history or visit their winery which carries on their tradition of homemade wines.
45. Beer Festivals
There is a beer festival taking place what seems like every month in Nashville. These events offer live music, food and a great selection of local brews as well as national brands. Some of our favorites are the Nashville Beer Festival, East Nashville Beer Festival and the Winter Warmer in 12 South.
Looking for something different to do on your date night? The Tennessee Performing Arts Center located in downtown Nashville, showcases broadway musicals, ballet, comedy shows, plays and concerts.
47. Gourmet Popsicles
What’s the number one reason for moving to Nashville? Gourmet popsicles. Ok, this may not top the list for reasons to relocate you and your entire family, but Las Paletas, which is located in 12 South offers some of the craziest flavor combinations you will ever find in a popsicle. Grab one of these icy treats and head across the street to unwind in Sevier Park.
48. Printer’s Alley
Once the home of large printing companies in Nashville (hence the name), Printer’s Alley has a Bourbon Street type feel to it. Hidden from the more touristy parts of town, this little district has plenty of bars and saloons to choose from and is just a short walk to Broadway.
49. Bicentennial Capitol Mall Park
This is an urban park at the center of downtown Nashville next to the state capitol building. The park is loaded with historic information about the city as well as the state of Tennessee and offers excellent photo ops with its impressive stone architecture.
50. Franklin Town Square
If you are moving to Nashville, you may want to visit the city of Franklin, TN, which was just recently named as America’s best small town. About 35 minutes from downtown, the Franklin Square has outstanding shops, restaurants and a beautiful historic movie theatre. The family friendly atmosphere makes Franklin a local favorite.
51. Love Circle
If you’re looking for one of the best places to catch a glimpse of the Nashville skyline, then head over to Love Circle, which is located in the Hillsboro West End neighborhood. As the name implies, this is where you can find many couples smooching over a picnic and dramatic views. If you would prefer a less crowded experience, try showing up at sunrise which provides for some stunning scenery.
If you’re a music junkie, then living in Nashville definitely has its perks. One of those would be the yearly music festival Bonnaroo, which is located in Manchester, TN. 80,000 people from all over the world travel to here to see the biggest bands at this four day event, but Nashville residents only have about an hour and half drive.
53. The Pharmacy
The Pharmacy is located in popular East Nashville and is a great spot to go hang out at when the weather is great. They have an awesome beer garden that is perfect for enjoying a beautiful Nashville day along with a solid selection of craft beers. Oh yeah, they have also been voted to have the best burgers in the city two years in a row.
54. The Hermitage
Home to our 7th President, Andrew Jackson, The Hermitage is an impressive historic plantation that provides a detailed look into the life of Jackson and his family. Just 25 minutes from Nashville, it is considered to be one of the most accurately preserved historical sites in the country, and boasts over 250,000 visitors a year.
55. Country Music Hall of Fame
Whether you’re a fan of classic or modern-day country, you will fascinated by the amount of exhibits on display here. There are also a lot of kid friendly exhibits to keep the little ones occupied. Random attraction alert: the car from Smokey and the Bandit is also on display here.
56. Most Friendly City
If you’re moving to Nashville, then it’s nice to know that Travel & Leisure just recently ranked Nashville as the #1 friendly city in the country. You can actually get fined for acting like a jerk in public. Ok, that’s not true, but the city is definitely full of plenty of friendly people who embrace southern charm…..unless you’re trying to find a parking spot at the Mall at Green Hills, then all that friendliness goes out the window.
While we thought about just listing honky tonks on here, we had to single out Tootsies because it’s pretty much the standard for all other honky tonks. Located in the center of Broadway, Tootsies is three stories of some of the best live music you will find on the strip. It’s not uncommon for big-time artists to come here and play unannounced, like when Keith Urban and Steven Tyler showed up and hit the stage together.
58. Natchez Trace Parkway
The Natchez Trace Parkway is 444 miles of beautiful scenery that includes Alabama, Mississippi and Tennessee. This route, which picks up in Leipers Fork, was used by Native Americans and later as a trade route by early European and American explorers. Now it has become a National Parkway that is perfect for enjoying a lazy day and nature. If you’re planning on driving the entire parkway, just remember the speed limit is 40 mph. That could make for a long trip.
59. Loveless Cafe
If one of the reasons that you are moving to Nashville is to get your hands on some good southern food, then one of the first stops you need to make is the Loveless Cafe. The cafe, which has been featured in national publications like USA Today and Peoples magazine, is known for their homemade biscuits and jams. It’s a very popular place, so there’s bound to be long wait, but you’ll be glad you did.
With over 143,000 attendees last year, Nashville’s Oktoberfest in historic Germantown is one of the largest Oktoberfest Festivals in the entire country. The three day affair ensures that you will get your fair share of brats, beer and live entertainment. So put on your big boy lederhosen and get ready to have a good time.
61. Gaylord Opryland Resort
The Opryland Resort is a massive upscale hotel that offers many different activities for the whole family. You could almost spend an entire day in the atrium, where there are plenty of shopping and restaurant options as well as a riverboat tour that winds throughout the complex. Once you’ve moved to Nashville, it’s well worth a visit during the holidays, as the entire resort becomes a winter wonderland with hundreds of thousands of lights.
62. Centennial Park
Centennial Park is located right of West End Avenue and is home to many free concert events including the popular Musician’s Corner as well as the Parthenon exhibit we mentioned earlier. There are running and bike trails throughout the park as well as an excellent dog park to take your pup. The perfect location and excellent amenities make this park a favorite spot among residents.
63. Local Breweries
Nashville is home to some excellent local breweries. In fact, just behind The Gulch, there are four breweries within walking distance. These include Jackalope, Czann, Tennessee Brew Works and the ever popular Yazoo. Stop in one of these breweries to learn about how the brewing process works and get your hands on a tasty adult beverage.
64. Best Bathroom in the Country
photo credit: fulloctanegarage.com
Yes, you read that right. The men’s bathroom at the upscale Hermitage Hotel in downtown Nashville has previously received this distinguished award. It’s good to be #1 when you go #2.
65. Adventure Science Center
Looking for a way to entertain your children and teach them at the same time? The Adventure Science Center is a very interactive venue where kids can get a fun and hands-on experience of science where they learn how things work as well as explore the universe with their impressive planetarium.
66. Google Fiber
Nashville is one of 9 cities in the entire United States that is slated to receive Google Fiber. This means that we will have the fastest internet in the world, better HDTV and become more attractive for large corporations and tech startups.
67. Ranked #3 Best City for Families
Parenting.com ranked Nashville as the 3rd best city to raise a family. They based their selections off of U.S. Census data, FBI crime statistics, reports from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, and ratings from GreatSchools.org. If you have a family, this should make relocating to Nashville an easy choice for you.
68. Fox’s Donut Den
Donuts are little gifts from heaven and we just happen to have one of the best donut shops in America according to a recent article by Thrillist. Located off of busy Hillsboro Road in Green Hills, Fox’s Donut Den stays packed with loyal customers. True story: I once drove past the gym, completely skipping my workout and stopped here for two delectable donuts instead. Worth it.
69. Ascend Amphitheater
photo credit: ascendamphitheater.com
One of the latest additions to Nashville is the the Ascend Amphitheater, which is situated on the bank of the Cumberland River in Downtown Nashville. This is a state of the art venue that offers stunning views of the Nashville skyline and it is already being recognized as one of the best and unique outdoor venues in the country.
70. Food & Wine Festival
The Music City Food & Wine Festival takes place at different historic locations throughout the downtown area and was co-founded by Nashville residents, Kings of Leon. As you sample the different food and wine offerings, you’ll get to meet and interact with chefs from all over Nashville. When the sun goes down, the party gets started as Harvest Night kicks off with live music and of course more food and drinks.
71. Riverfront Park
Parts of the new Riverfront Park are open to the public, but once fully completed it will offer a world class waterfront experience for Nashville. The final project will be ten times the size of the existing Riverfront Park. Amenities planned are fountains, spraygrounds, boardwalks, overlooks, piers, performance spaces, wetlands, plazas, new docking facilities, increased bikeways, and open play space. Situated between Broadway and Nissan Stadium, this park figures to be a favorite with locals and tourists alike.
72. Ridiculously Good Looking People
If you have been putting off moving to Nashville, then maybe you should keep this in mind: Nashville was just recently ranked as the 7th most attractive city in the U.S. I’m not sure how they got their findings, but it’s numbers and we all know they don’t lie.
73. Acme Feed & Seed
The name Acme Feed & Seed might be a little misleading at first, but this former feed store is one of the coolest places in Nashville to grab a drink and listen to live music. Encompassing 4 stories and 22,000 square feet, Acme embodies the true Nashville atmosphere and has probably one of the best views in the city on their rooftop deck.
74. Top 7 Cities for Rental Investments
If you’re looking at different investment opportunities, then you may want to take a look at rental properties in Nashville. National Real Estate Investor has Nashville as their 7th best city for multifamily investment properties. Because the city is attracting so many more people, the rental rates have skyrocketed, making it an attractive option for investors.
75. Music Row
To round out our list we have Music Row, which really is the true heart and soul of Nashville as well as the epicenter for country music and other genres. You’ll find the biggest record labels here like Sony, ASCAP, Warner Music, BMI, Big Machine Label and RCA Records. It’s neat to drive down Music Row and see where record labels have put up banners congratulating their artists for topping the charts. This is where it all starts and why so many people in the music industry are moving to Nashville to get noticed, which gives the city a charm like no other.
What did we miss?
While we tried to include some of the most uniquely Nashville places and events, I’m sure we missed a few. Feel free to share your favorite spots or things to do in Nashville that you think we left out.