Nashville is such a great city but sometimes you just need to get out of town, right? I’m a firm believer that one doesn’t have to travel far to explore the world. Some of my favorite spots in the world, even after traveling quite a bit, are in my own backyard. There are so many driveable spots in and around Tennessee and here are ten weekend trips from Nashville to take.
Psst: Looking for more information on Nashville? Check out a few of our other posts!
I think I’ve waxed enough poetic about Asheville that you all know how much I love that city. If you’re looking for a mixture of small city meets mountains meets epic views then Asheville is the perfect spot for a weekend getaway from Nashville.
Asheville is a very inclusive city that makes it perfect for anyone no matter your reason for needing a weekend away. I love to visit for the amazing hiking, the mouthwatering vegan food, and overall aesthetic of the city.
- The Best 36 Hour Asheville Itinerary to Make the Most of Your Time
- 7 Breath-Taking Hikes You Must Do in Asheville, North Carolina
- Foraging for Food in Asheville, North Carolina
- Vegan Guide to Asheville, North Carolina
- Animal Haven of Asheville | Farm Sanctuary in Asheville, North Carolina
- Visiting a Micro Sanctuary in Asheville, North Carolina
I grew up going to a lot of Braves (baseball) games in Atlanta and with it only being 4 hours away, it’s the perfect weekend getaway from Nashville. You should definitely head here if you’re looking for a bigger city vibe, are a sports fanatic, or looking for a good food scene.
I haven’t been back since going vegan (which really needs to change soon) but the vegan scene is supposed to be incredible as well. Searching for street art and visiting Oakland Cemetery are two of my favorite things to do while in Atlanta.
Nestled between Nashville and Atlanta is Chattanooga. This is a super easy day trip from Nashville too with it being under two hours away. Chattanooga still has a small town feel so it’s great if bigger cities aren’t your thing. Make sure to check out Ruby Falls, Lookout Mountain, or hike the Fiery Grizzard trail.
I visited Indianapolis for the first time in 2017 and surprised me in a lot of ways! There are so many outdoor activities within downtown, lots of green spaces, a perfectly walkable city, tons of vegan food options and very family friendly as well.
- A Vegan Guide to Indianapolis, Indiana
- The Indianapolis City Market is a Vegan Paradise
- Nine Lives Cat Cafe in Indianapolis, Indiana
- Vegan-Friendly, Sustainable and a Strong Mission // Public Greens in Indianapolis
The Smoky Mountains are one of my favorite places in the entire world and Gatlinburg is settled right on the outskirts of the National Park. While I’d much rather be in the actual park exploring the forests and trails, Gatlinburg is a nice little town getaway as well.
I much prefer Gatlinburg over Pigeon Forge but I’d definitely head over to Pigeon Forge to visit Dollywood for the day. Whatever you do, do not miss getting into the actual park though. It’s the most visited national park in the country and it’s free!
- Everything You Need to Know About Seeing the Synchronous Fireflies in the Smoky Mountains
- Things to do While Staying at Elkmont for the Synchronous Fireflies
- Finding the Abandoned Wonderland in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park
- 8 Reasons to Visit Dollywood
- Road Trip from the Smoky Mountains up the Blue Ridge Parkway | Part One
- The Ultimate Guide to Visiting Dollywood
Huntsville is located less than two hours south of Nashville and it’s a shame that I don’t get down there more often. There are some great things to do here including hiking, a great art scene, space camp (!), speakeasies, and more.
Knoxville sits less than three hours east of Nashville and is where I went to college so it will always hold a special place in my heart. Knoxville isn’t a huge city. Downtown is still small and quaint – definitely visit Market Square. If you’re looking for somewhere to eat, do not miss Vegan Sanctuary Cafe.
Louisville is known for probably one main thing – the Kentucky Derby. Check out this post on why I strongly urge you not to support this cruel tradition. There is definitely zero shortage of bourbon in Louisville so if that’s your thing, definitely consider checking off some of your Bourbon trail while here. There are also some great green spaces, Cave Hill Cemetery, street art, and delicious vegan food.
Memphis has changed and is still changing regularly. Come for the music and history as always but there’s a lot more to do now too including many green spaces including two state parks nearby, biking paths, many sustainability initiatives, and more.
My brother was in grad school for three years in St Louis so I was able to visit many times and realized how underrated of a city it is. In fact, the whole Midwest is fairly underrated and it’s a shame. It’s such a great place to explore and St Louis is fantastic. It’s got a little bit of everything for everyone. Lots of museums (almost all are free) making it perfect for families. Lots of green spaces (a park larger than Central Park). A fantastic vegan food scene.
- Vegan Guide for St Louis, Missouri
- Cat Cafe St Louis // Mauhaus Cat Cafe
- Animal Sanctuary Missouri // The Gentle Barn in St Louis
- The Best Four Day St Louis Itinerary
- Why Visiting the Endangered Wolf Center Should Be on Your St Louis Itinerary
- Five Unique and Free Things to Do in St. Louis
- St. Louis for Outdoor Lovers
- 72 hours in St. Louis
As you can see there are plenty of weekend trips from Nashville that you can take and this only scratches the surface. One of the things I love about my city is how centrally located it is – you can reach the coast, the midwest, Florida and more within a few hours. If you have any questions about any of the places above, let me know!
Have you ever been to any of these spots? Tell me about it in the comments below ↓↓↓
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