A few weekends ago, I joined my friend from high school for her bachelorette party in Nashville, Tennessee. Having never been to the Music City (or a bachelorette party for that matter), I was not sure what to expect. But after a long, exciting weekend in the Country Music Capital of the World, I figured I would share what I learned.
Where to Stay in Nashville
We opted to stay in an Airbnb rather than a hotel. With a hotel we would have either had to spend a fortune on a giant suite or deal with separate rooms that could be on different
floors entirely. An Airbnb allowed us to comfortably pregame and get ready together. Our house was kick-ass and leaned into the Nashville theme with its decor. It was a couple of minutes from the main road in the cute neighborhood of 12 South. (I highly recommend walking this area if you have time. Read on for more information.)
The downfall to Airbnb is that they are usually a little farther from downtown. We had to take turns ordering a Lyft or Uber to go anywhere. The prices were anywhere from $10-$25 to get downtown for an XL, but be mindful of the surcharge times. (**Note- We consistently found Lyft to be slightly cheaper than Uber. )
If your check in is too late or your check out is too early, there is an alternative to lugging around all of your heavy bags. Try the Stow Station.
What to do for a Nashville Bachelorette Party
Going Out in Nashville
What is a bachelorette party without a few drinks and possibly some questionable decisions? Luckily Nashville has no shortage of places for a night out on the town with your girlfriends.
Broadway is the main going out area in the Music City. It is a big tourist spot lined with many bars and restaurants owned by country music stars. Because there are no cover charges, you and your girlfriends can create your own bar crawl. While it should come as no surprise that country music fills the street, many of the bars have multiple levels with different genres of music. We seemed to find that the higher up we went in the building, the farther the music strayed from the country hits. If you are wanting to party on the rooftop, you are in luck. It seemed that every bar on Broadway had one.
Crazy Town– Crazy Town was probably our favorite bar on Broadway. The top floor featured both a covered and open area. We went out early one night and caught the tail end of some live music on the stage, but as its gets later this floor is opened up for your dancing pleasure to the top hits. The great part about this bar is that is so big. Even as the crowds roll in, there is still a lot of breathing room.
Tootsie’s Orchid Lounge– We ventured to the second floor for some live music and found the place packed to capacity. Because of the tight space, there was no room to dance. We simply chatted for a bit as we finished our one drink and moved on. There was a photo booth that we took full advantage of.
The Valentine– The Valentine is a four-story bar right next to Crazy Town. The bottom floor is a big dance area with a DJ. We grabbed a table on the second floor to give our aching feet a break from our heels. This level has lots of seating, and you can look down at the people dancing on the floor below. After a short rest, we headed to the rooftop bar for some more dancing. While a fun atmosphere and good dance music (not a lot of country music at this bar), this area is small. When it starts getting into the wee hours of the morning, the roof is packed and you can feel the floor shaking below you.
Honky Tonk Central– It seemed only right that while in Nashville, we visit Honky Tonk Central. Country music is the main draw at this bar. We chose to go earlier in the night before the big crowds came. The bar often has live music and is more of a relaxed atmosphere. We grabbed a drink and chatted before going elsewhere to dance.
Drinking Off Broadway
As the hours roll by, Broadway becomes packed with people including brides and their entourages walking up and down the street and pouring in and out of the bars. If you don’t like dancing on top of people at some of the smaller bars, you may want to consider straying outside of the main street.
Wild Beaver Saloon– In our attempts to escape some of the crowds, we stumbled upon this side street bar in Nashville. It quickly became our favorite, and we came back the next night. Rather than the dancing atmosphere of most of the Broadway bars, the Wild Beaver Saloon has other draws. Here you will find karaoke, a photo booth, pool, arcade games, and a mechanical bull. We grabbed a table and thoroughly enjoyed the entertainment of bad singing and bull riding fails (including two epic rides from the bride). This bar is a great place to relax your feet after too much dancing.
FGL House– The Florida Georgia Line House is just off of Broadway and seemed like a Nashville must. There was a huge dance floor upstairs. The top floor also features an outdoor area to get out of the path of the booming speakers. It was crowded even early and had lots of brides and their friends dancing the night away. If you like country music, then the FGL House is a solid choice for you.
Live on the Green– During some Thursday nights in the summer, the Music City features live performances at the Nashville Pubic Square Park. The festival is free and within walking distance of Broadway. You can check the website to view the upcoming lineups.
Day Drinking in Nashville
Luckily for all of the thirsty bachelorette parties, Nashville features a plethora of day drinking options. Bachelor and bachelorette parties can be seen at all hours being hauled around downtown in a party bus-like vehicle of some sort. There are many variations of the same concept, but basically you and your group get to drink, blast music, and see Nashville in some type of kooky transportation option. You can choose from a tractor, bus, wagon, pedal pub, and more. We went for the nautical theme with the Party Barge.
You can also visit Broadway during the day. We wandered from rooftop bar to rooftop bar to sip cocktails and listen to live music. A few of our stops included George Jones and Jason Aldean, but you could stumble into pretty much anywhere. Our favorite rooftop bar for day drinking was Acme Feed and Seed. While the boozy slushies and great view draw you to the roof, this building also features various food options. They have everything from Nashville favorites to delicious sushi rolls.
Of course if you are feeling a little hungover and need a break from drinking, Broadway and the surrounding area is also good for more than just drinking. You can use the daylight to go souvenir shopping or find a pair of authentic cowboy boots. There are also the typical sightseeing spots like the Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum, the Grand Old Opry, Music Row, and the Parthenon.
Exploring the Neighborhoods
12 South is a cute neighborhood in Nashville. Walking the main street, we stumbled upon a few murals and the Instagram-worthy Ameila’s Flower Truck. There are also a lot of colorful shops, cute cafes, and trendy bars. We grabbed lunch at the Frothy Monkey and did some browsing at the shops along the street. Our last stop at 12 South was Las Paletas. Las Paletas is a Mexican homemade popsicle shop featuring flavors like mint chocolate chip, cucumber with chilis, and Mexican caramel.
The Gulch is a popular area of Nashville that we only scratched the surface of. It is home to the iconic wings mural that you have probably seen featured repeatedly on social media. We ventured to the top of the Thompson Nashville hotel to their rooftop bar, L.A. Jackson, for pre-dinner drinks. For dinner we simply walked a few minutes to City Fire American Oven & Bar. There was nothing spectacular about this place.
What to Eat
The Stillery– The Stillery was a tasty lunch spot. They are best known for their hot chicken and pizza pies. Warning- their hot chicken has quite a kick to it. If you are into spice, try their hot chicken mac & cheese. You won’t regret it.
Chuahan Ale & Masala House– This is a nice restaurant with traditional Indian favorites. Along with good food, the restaurant has some neat decor including videos projected on the wall.
Peg Leg Porker– When in Nashville, barbecue is a must. We asked around and the consensus from the locals was that this is the best place in town. I don’t like barbecue food, so I stuck to just mac and cheese, but everyone else seemed to enjoy it. Traditionally Nashville has a dry rub on their ribs. While delicious, they may be different than you are used to.
Cabana– Cabana describes itself as dishing up casual Southern comfort cuisine. We ordered a bunch of delicious appetizers that we happily passed around. Fair warning, Cabana is bachelorette party central. Every private cabana was filled with a bride in white and their girls in black (including ours).
Milk & Honey– Unfortunately we never made it here for brunch but heard lots of good reviews. With a big group like ours, we were told the wait time for brunch would be substantial.