Two of the coolest cities in the United States are Austin and Nashville. Each one is an artistic hub with delicious food and impressive talent. But when it comes to deciding which city to visit, Nashville definitely takes the cake. Here are 12 reasons the Tennessee town tops Texas’s capital.
Austin might be the live music capital of the world, but the music doesn’t get cranking until after the musicians roll out of bed in the afternoon. In Nashville, you can head downtown in the morning and find singer/songwriters playing inside bars and restaurants. And after everyone has gone to bed in the evening, musicians stay up and entertain night-owl patrons well past last call. You’ll also find street performers – both children and adults – trying to impress passersby with their acoustic performances. No matter what day of the week it is, what time of day (or night) it is or what part of town you’re in, there’s live music to be heard in Nashville.
Not only does Nashville have an incredibly diverse food scene, there are also several restaurants owned by celebrities worth checking out. These spots offer a fun, unique dining experience and act as “pseduo museums” dedicated to the owners. Many times, the celebrities will even pop in for a visit and mingle with the guests. The menus feature tasty Southern-inspired cuisine, live music fills the different levels inside and the rooftops provide remarkable views of the city.
Rolling green hills, colorful sunsets and glistening lakes make Nashville’s natural landscape so beautiful. Drives down back roads are made more enjoyable by the stunning views, and you can’t deny that the scenery is comparable to that of a fictional town from a fairy tale. Everything might be bigger in Texas, but in Nashville, it’s more majestic.
While there are more liberal folks in Nashville, most people lean conservative. This means that family plays a huge role in people’s lives and many families settle here because there’s so much to do and see. But even those who are young, single, childless and career-driven are considered family, too. That’s what makes Nashville so great – it doesn’t matter where you come from or what you do, you’ll find a great support system in Nashville. Everyone is friendly and welcoming, so you’ll feel right at home.
In a place as artistic as Nashville, it should come as no surprise that there is street art throughout the city. Tributes to musical legends and personal creations by local artists fill the walls of buildings. Public art, much of which is music-themed, can be found on sidewalks and other public places. These masterpieces are a true testament to the talent that exists in Nashville, and visitors will enjoy snapping selfies in front of each one.
Nashville is a place where health and wellness are important. Being outdoors is something that many enjoy. That’s why it’s wonderful that Nashville has so many parks and green spaces. There are plenty of choices for places to go hiking, cycyling, jogging, walking the dog or enjoying a picnic on the grass. Breathe in the fresh outdoor air and squeeze in a mini workout at Centennial Park, Radnor Lake, Warner Parks or Harpeth River State Park.
Both Austin and Nashville have great places to hear live music. But Nashville’s selection of historic venues outweighs Austin’s. For a once-in-a-lifetime experience, Nashville has the Ryman Auditorium and the Grand Ole Opry, which both host veteran and contemporary country musicians nightly. And these are just two of the venues around town. The iconic Bluebird Cafe is a quaint spot to hear local singer/songwriters and many downtown music venues feature local and national talent from all genres of music.
There’s nothing like exploring the world from your car. And in Nashville, you can hit the road and easily be in other states within a few hours. Austin, on the other hand, will get you to other Texas locations, but it will take you much longer to get out of the state and venture into other territories. From Nashville, you can take a weekend trip to Georgia, Kentucky or Alabama if you want to make the most of your time down south.
Since Nashville is a city that values privacy, many of the celebrities who live here have no problem being out and about. They are treated like anyone else and aren’t hounded by photographers when they leave the house. Since many own homes and businesses in Nashville, there’s a good chance you’ll have a celebrity encounter while you’re here. Don’t worry if you become starstruck. Most of the celebrities are very nice and more than happy to take a picture with or offer a hug to fans.
The weather forecast for Austin is usually just “hot.” But in Nashville, there are four seasons, so visitors can come during the time of year that offers the weather they most prefer. If you want to visit Nashville when it’s cool, come in the spring or fall. Love the heat? Head there for summer vacation. And of course, if you happen to like the cold, you might get lucky in the winter and have the chance to build a snowman. While the weather can fluctuate each season, there are definitely four of them to choose from.
Most Southern cities have nice, welcoming residents. But with Austin having a more metropolitan feel and a younger overall demographic, it’s more likely you’ll come across people who are not as friendly. In Nashville, you won’t meet a stranger. Everyone smiles at one another, asks how they’re doing and offers help to those who need it. If you’re thirsty, you’ll be offered a drink. If you’re lost, someone will give you directions. When it rains, you’ll find someone who will cover you with their umbrella. The people in Nashville are considerate and kind, and you’ll notice that as soon as you step foot there.
Most of the people who live in Nashville are not from Nashville. People from all walks of life move here for work, to be closer to family or to pursue a music career. You’ll meet people who are Christian, non-religious, black, white, conservative, liberal, young, old and everything in between. There is even a part of town called Little Kurdistan, where much of the Nashville Kurdish population (the largest in the country) lives and works. If you want to meet people from different cultures and backgrounds, come to Nashville.
One of the largest job sectors in Nashville is the healthcare industry. There are more than 400 healthcare companies located in Nashville and 16 publicly traded healthcare companies have their headquarters here. What this means for visitors is that if you’re injured or become ill while you’re in town, you don’t need to worry about being taken care of. With Vanderbilt University Medical Center, Saint Thomas Hospital and several TriStar locations, you’ll be nursed back to health in time to finish exploring this wonderful city.