The oldest print shop in America opened in 1879. For decades, Hatch Show Print was the leading poster printer for circuses, vaudeville shows and sporting events. Today, it is located in the Country Music Hall of Fame and is best known for creating images of Grand Ole Opry stars, thousands of which line the shop's walls. Modern-day artists employ the same techniques that have been used since the 15th century, including printing works on site.
It is fitting that the "Athens of the South" is home to the world's only full-size replica of the ancient Parthenon. Forty-six Doric columns encircle the building. The largest bronze doors in the world, weighing 7.5 tons each, stand at the East and West entrances. Featured is Athena Parthenos, the tallest indoor sculpture in the Western world. Sculptures and friezes are modeled from Elgin Marbles at the British Museum in London. There are also four art galleries. While the prices are reasonable, you can avail discounts for groups of ten or more with a reservation.
A striking glimpse into America's antebellum eon, the Hermitage tells tales of the life of the country's seventh president, Andrew Jackson. Built in 1835, this historic edifice is a confluence of culture and long-standing history. While living at the Hermitage, Jackson ran a general store, tavern and thoroughbred horse racing tracks nearby, which eventually inspired him to cease his work on the Supreme Court and focus on the Hermitage and its nearby enterprises. This classic Greek Revival mansion retains Jackson's original architecture and furnishings. Permeated with the sounds of a biographical film and museum exhibits, the site of the mansion preserves the original 1804 slave cabins, Jackson's tomb, Tulip Grove Mansion, Old Hermitage Church, and Tennessee Confederate Soldier Cemetery. The estate grounds also shelter a delightful plantation. An integral chapter in the course of American history, the Hermitage greatly immortalizes the 'People's President'.
This 200-acre walk-through zoological park is home to the rare and beautiful. You'll encounter cougars, black bears, Bengal tigers, zebras, cheetahs and playful river otters. Kids can even go a bit wild on the Jungle Gym playground. The Croft Center, named for the sisters who left the estate to Grassmere, houses the Unseen New World exhibit and a variety of reptiles. There is also a working farm exhibit and a petting zoo.
The thrill of scientific discovery awaits you! Come explore over 150 interactive exhibits and programs for children and adults. View the heavens from the 40-foot Sudekum Planetarium. Climb seven interactive levels to the top of the Adventure Tower, and experience BodyQuest, an exciting tour through the human body. Special programs are offered for high school students on weekend nights.
Perched atop a prominent hill, this magnificent whitewashed building presides over downtown Nashville's skyline with indubitable grace and finesse. Constructed between 1845 to 1859 by well-renowned architect William Strickland, the structure's design is a stunning specimen of exquisite Greek-Revival architecture. What makes the building really unique is the fact that it is one of only ten capitol buildings to not feature a dome. The building's neoclassical facade is perhaps one of its most salient features that effortlessly captivates onlookers with its assemblage of elegant Corinthian stanchions and pronounced neoclassical rooftop. The facade's beauty is enhanced quite drastically at night when its sharp edges are highlighted by a series of ambient lights. Its interiors are equally as impressive, with the governor's house chamber being the building's centerpiece.
Centrally located, the Nashville Public Library offers the residents of the city a treasure trove of books that span genres and ages. The building of the library itself is a symbol of architectural marvel. Designed by Robert A.M. Stern Architects, this building has won a national design competition, and it gracefully blends functionality with beauty. As the main location of the network of public libraries in the city, this branch is appointed with several facilities, including an art gallery, meeting rooms, study rooms, a computer classroom, and has Wireless Internet. Besides the massive collection of books, the library also plays host to a range of cultural events, like concerts, exhibitions and much more. For more information, do see the website.
Known as one of the top studios in Nashville, the Historic RCA Studio B is where some of the music industries greatest hits were recored. With over 35,000 songs recorded here, not to mention over 1,000 of those being top American hits, this Music Row attraction is a bonafide Nashville landmark. Daily tours allow guests to get a firsthand look where the music, stories and the magic were made. Close your eyes and you can almost hear Elvis with his Southern accent or Dolly Parton belting out Jolene.
When you are looking for a little more than your average tour of the Music City, climb aboard the funniest bus in town. The Jugg Sisters are your hostesses and they will have you laughing and singing all afternoon. As you visit all the major attractions in the city, you will hear the satirical and very risqué commentary of the sisters while riding in comfort on their tacky pink bus. NashTrash Tours is not a very sophisticated ride, as alcohol is allowed to be consumed on the bus, so you might be best to leave the kids at home. If you don't mind the overall "hillbilly" theme, you're sure to have a grand time.