Explore the Land of Music and Adventure: Ten Free Things to Do in Nashville

free things to do in nashville
image credit: Travel lemming

Explore the Land of Music and Adventure: Ten Free Things to Do in Nashville

Welcome to Nashville – the birthplace of country music and an inspirational melting pot of diverse cultures. Nashville offers many exciting activities with no admission fee. From art galleries and museums to outdoor events and live music, there is something for everyone in this vibrant city.

Plenty keeps you entertained whether you’re looking for free fun or want to explore! With low-cost eateries and bars, it’s easy to find affordable dining options – from deep-dish pizza to classic southern barbeque. Best of all, most attractions are open seven days a week and offer a variety of programs for people of all ages. Discover more about what makes Nashville unique and experience its vibrant culture firsthand – without spending a penny! Here, we will discuss free things to do in Nashville:

1. Explore Nashville’s parks

Families in Nashville can enjoy a multitude of free outdoor activities together. Exploring one of its many parks is a great way to enjoy the city’s natural splendor. Metro Parks Nashville even has an interactive Park Finder tool that allows visitors to search for parks by activity, location or name. Popular destinations include Bicentennial Capitol Mall State Park, Shelby Bottoms Greenway and Radnor Lake State Park; each offering various activities like hiking, fishing, picnicking or wildlife viewing opportunities.

free things to do in nashville
image credit: Old Town Trolley Tours

2. Visit Cooter’s Place Museum

Cooter’s Place Museum in Nashville is a must-visit for fans of the Dukes of Hazzard television series. Here you’ll find an expansive collection of memorabilia from the hit ’80s show, such as General Lee car costumes worn by cast members and props used in production. Admission to Cooter’s Place Museum is free, but donations are appreciated; additionally, there’s a store where fans can purchase merchandise like T-shirts, hats, and DVDs. Whether you’re a diehard fan or just curious about the show itself, Cooter’s Place Museum offers visitors an engaging and unique attraction unlike anything else they’ll find around Nashville!

3. Attend Bluebird Cafe songwriter’s nights

The Bluebird Cafe in Nashville is one of the premier live music venues, and attending a songwriter’s night there is a must-do for any music fan. The venue showcases emerging and established songwriters in an intimate setting where songs take center stage. Reservations are recommended for both shows, which run twice nightly, seven days a week. 

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On Monday nights, however, seats are first-come-first-served at 6 pm open mic and 9:30 pm show with an additional $4 reservation fee. Tuesday and Thursday performances at The Bluebird Cafe require tickets to be purchased one week in advance at 8 am CST, with a limit of six seats per reservation. As the birthplace of several hit songs and launch pad for many chart-topping artists, any music enthusiast visiting Nashville should not miss this iconic venue.

blue bird cafe - things to do
Image credit: The Tennessean

4. Check out Honky Tonk Highway

Honky Tonk Highway is a stretch of Broadway in downtown Nashville that’s known for its vibrant music scene, featuring honky-tonk bars and live music venues. Visitors are welcome to explore and stroll around this area at no cost, while enjoying live entertainment provided by various bars and venues. 

On the Honky Tonk Highway, some popular bars include Tootsie’s Orchid Lounge, Legends Corner and Robert’s Western World. With locals and tourists alike in tow, it creates a buzzing atmosphere that’s uniquely Nashville. Additionally, Nashville offers several free activities such as visiting the Tennessee State Museum, admiring the scenic hiking trails along Radnor Lake, and touring Cooter’s Place Museum – home to memorabilia from “The Dukes of Hazzard.”

5. Tour the Tennessee State Capitol Building

This is one of the free things to do in Nashville. The Tennessee State Capitol Building at 600 Dr. M.L.K Jr Blvd in Nashville is a majestic reminder of Tennessee’s people. 

Guided tours are available Monday through Friday at 9 a.m., 10 a.m., 11 a.m., 1 p.m., 2 p.m. and 3 p.m. for visitors to explore this historic building which remains much as it did when it first opened its doors back in 1859; each tour lasts around 45 minutes and provides insight into both its fascinating history as well as its importance today to Tennessee itself.

6. Visit the Tennessee State Museum

Admission to the Tennessee State Museum, located at 1000 Rosa L Parks Blvd in Nashville, is always free. Open Tuesday through Saturday from 10 am to 5 pm and on Sunday from 1 pm to 5 pm, visitors get a fascinating glimpse into Tennessee’s diverse culture from prehistoric times up until today. Exhibits cover topics such as Civil War battles, music history in Tennessee, and political history of Tennessee – not forgetting natural resources and diverse geography! Additionally, guided tours through its exhibits are free of charge.

7. Walk across John Seigenthaler Pedestrian Bridge

This is also one of the free things to do in Nashville. This historic bridge, which spans the Cumberland River, offers picturesque views of the city skyline. It’s also a great spot for taking pictures while exercising while exploring the city; pedestrians can stop and relax at one of four overlooks along its length. Parking is available near the stadium and admission is always free.

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8. Explore Centennial Park and the Parthenon

Another free activity to do in Nashville is visiting Centennial Park and the Parthenon. Covering 132 acres, this park boasts several attractions like a one-mile walking trail, band shell, and sunken garden – but its star attraction is undoubtedly the Parthenon: an exact replica of an ancient Greek temple with an art museum featuring American paintings from 19th and 20th centuries. Admission to both sites is free; open daily dawn until 11 pm for picnics or leisurely strolls alike – making it perfect for art lovers as well as history buffs alike to explore.

centennial park
Image credit: 10Best

9. Experience Nashville’s booming art scene

For visitors under 18, the Frist Art Museum offers free admission on Thursdays and Fridays between 5:00 pm to 9:00 pm for college students with valid IDs. This gallery showcases rotating exhibitions as well as a permanent collection of art from around the world. In addition, Vanderbilt Fine Arts Gallery also provides free art exhibits spanning ancient times to contemporary works from various cultures.

The Nashville Walls Project offers free tours of murals and street art throughout the city, featuring works by both local and international artists. Visitors can also explore free galleries, exhibits, and art studios at Wedgewood-Houston’s First Saturday Art Crawl each month. Lastly, Ryman Auditorium provides access to its art collection including Hatch Show Print posters commemorating Nashville’s music scene history.

10. Enjoy recreational activities at Percy Priest Lake.

These are the free things to do in Nashville. Percy Priest Lake, situated just outside Nashville, offers numerous free recreational activities. Visitors can enjoy swimming and picnicking at its various parks and recreation areas like Cook Recreation Area, Anderson Road Recreation Area and Long Hunter State Park. Furthermore, fishing on Percy Priest Lake is popular; anglers can catch species such as bass, catfish and crappie here for free.

The Percy Priest Dam, operated by the US Army Corps of Engineers, offers breathtaking views of Lake Michigan and hiking and biking trails, picnic areas, and wildlife viewing areas. Visitors to this scenic lake can also take advantage of free boat launches at several locations around it like Anderson Road Recreation Area or Elm Hill Recreation Area. For campers in need, Long Hunter State Park and Poole Knobs Recreation Area offer several free primitive campsites.

Final Words

Visitors can experience the best of both worlds in Nashville, a place of music and adventure. Visitors to Music City can find something fun to do regardless of their interests. The city offers a multitude of free activities, from exploring its vibrant music scene to visiting its historical sites. Head to Nashville. Plus, completely absorb yourself in the culture and fashion, and form an unforgettable moment that will never be forgotten.

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