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TAP’s holiday destinations

Courtesy Nashville CVB

Nashville, Tennessee
During the holidays, Nashville’s big-city sophistication intermingles with down-home Southern hospitality. The city’s musical heart beats for the holidays: The Schermerhorn Symphony Center annually hosts the Grammy Award-winning Nashville Symphony’s rendition of Handel’s “Messiah.” Around the corner, country croons at the Grand Ole Opry at the historic Ryman Auditorium.

Tennessee’s Antebellum Trail mansions reflect the simplicity of a mid-1800s Christmas with fresh garlands, wreaths and fruit. Belmont Mansion, an 1853 Italian-style villa, boasts opulent Christmas decor. In contrast, Nashville’s oldest historic home, Travellers Rest Plantation, showcases handcrafted furnishings and modest trimmings.

Cheekwood Botanical Garden and Museum of Art’s Holiday at Cheekwood displays themed trees throughout this early-1900s mansion turned museum. Events include a concert series, a garden railroad exhibit and adult gingerbread workshops. The Frist Center for the Visual Arts juxtaposes art with architecture, and its gift shop offers notable holiday shopping.

Gaylord Opryland Resort’s Country Christmas welcomes groups with a towering poinsettia Christmas tree. Nine acres of indoor gardens contain masses of crimson azaleas and more than 4,000 poinsettias. Nearly 2 million twinkling lights illuminate restaurants, fountains and a winding waterway tucked along lush paths.

Spectacular Ice!, a not-to-be-missed wonderland, amazes all who wander through frosty tunnels and ogle at nine-foot-high frozen candy canes. Next door, “Radio City’s Christmas Spectacular” stars the precision-perfect Rockettes. Carriage rides, an outdoor Nativity display and concert series round out Opryland’s extravaganza.

“Groups will be delighted with Nashville’s abundance of great music, historic attractions and many family-friendly events during the holidays,” said Jenny Steuber, director of public relations for the Nashville Convention and Visitors Bureau.


Elizabeth Hey

Elizabeth Hey is a member of Midwest Travel Journalists Association and has received numerous awards for her writing and photography. Follow her on Instagram and Facebook @travelbyfork.