The Perfect Itinerary for 2 days in Nashville

September 13, 2021

Travel, Travel Guides

Nashville is a very popular place for weekend getaways and bachelorette trips. And why not! It’s full of incredible food and fun things to do that everyone can enjoy!

And while you may want to stay forever (or even just a week), maybe you have to squeeze everything you want to do into just a couple of days. Here’s my perfect itinerary for 2 days in Nashville!

Day 1: East Nashville and Downtown

Downtown Nashville has a nice, clean atmosphere, great shopping, and plenty of good places to eat!

One of my favorite things about the downtown area is the murals painted on the walls of many of the buildings.

Nashville Tennessee street art you don't want to miss - What Lifts You Mural

Downtown Nashville is famous for its Instagram-worthy murals, so you definitely want to check out this cool street art!

There are tons of different murals spread throughout the downtown area and all over Nashville, so check out my post about 20 of the Best Nashville Murals and Where to Find Them.

Nashville Tennessee street art you don't want to miss - Off the Wall Charlotte Avenue It's gonna be OK mural

Opry Mills Mall

After shopping around and posing for your Instagram, head to the Opry Mills Mall. This is an outlet mall right next to the Opryland Hotel. I found SO MANY great deals here.

Almost every time I visit I end up buying a new purse at the Fossil outlet store for super cheap! We spent several hours just shopping in several stores finding awesome deals on big-name brands!

Besides just shopping, the Opry Mills mall also has plenty of other fun activities. The IMAX theater was definitely cool!

Perfect Itinerary for 2 Days in Nashville - Imax Theater in Opry Mills Mall

This was my brother’s choice of activity since he wanted to see an Avengers movie on the big screen.

The mall has plenty of great food choices. During our different trips to Nashville, we’ve eaten at Macaroni Grill, Rainforest Cafe, and Dave and Buster’s all inside the mall. They also have an aquarium restaurant that has good food. It’s a little pricey but you are mostly paying to watch the fish swim in a big aquarium while you eat!

Perfect Itinerary for 2 Days in Nashville - Inside the Aquarium Restaurant in Nashville, TN

If you’re looking for more unique, local restaurants, Nashville has no shortage of great places to eat! Check out my favorite local restaurants in Nashville!

You could easily spend a whole day just shopping in the downtown area and malls around Nashville. There are so many fun things to do and see!

Gaylord Opryland Resort

Right next to the Opry Mills Mall is the Gaylord Opryland Resort. This hotel is full of gorgeous scenery in its greenhouses that are right outside the doors of your hotel room. We did not stay at this resort, but it is free to go inside and walk around.

Inside Gaylord Opryland Resort greenhouse in Nashville, Tennessee

This is a lovely place to have a photoshoot in front of the greenery and waterfalls. There is also a boat ride you can pay for on the small indoor river and several restaurants to choose from.

Day 2: South and West Nashville

Nashville Zoo

The second day of our Nashville itinerary starts with a trip to the Nashville Zoo! We arrived a few minutes before the gates opened, which I would highly recommend. The zoo got a lot more crowded as the day went on, but since we beat the crowds we got to see a lot of the animals just coming out into their habitats.

Perfect Itinerary for 2 Days in Nashville - Nashville Zoo Giraffe Habitat

Perfect Itinerary for 2 Days in Nashville - Giraffe sticking his tongue out at the zoo

I thought the coolest parts of the zoo were the habitats you could actually go inside. Since we got there early, we got to go into the aviary without anyone else, which was a really cool experience! The birds are used to people so they may even sit on your shoulder like they did to my sister, Molly!

Perfect Itinerary for 2 Days in Nashville - girl with bird on her shoulder at Nashville zoo

You can also walk into the habitats with the tortoises and kangaroos (and feed them for an extra cost). The Nashville Zoo is a little smaller than some of the zoos I’ve been to, but it is very authentic. As in there’s not a lot of chain link fences and bars. Everything looks pretty natural. Definitely a fun place to visit!

Cheekwood Estate & Gardens

If zoos aren’t your thing but you still want to see some beautiful outdoor landscapes, plan a visit to the Cheekwood Estate & Gardens.

2 day itinerary Nashville, TN - Things to do - Cheekwood Estate and Gardens house

This gorgeous estate was built in 1929, but now it has been converted into an art museum and botanical garden.

2 day itinerary Nashville, TN - Things to do - Cheekwood Estate and Gardens

2 day itinerary Nashville, TN - Things to do - Cheekwood Estate and Gardens

As you can see in the above photo, the gardens were already being prepared for fall festivities (notice the white pumpkins on the arbor!). Although I visited in September, I’m sure Cheekwood Estate is beautiful during any time of the year!

Probably my favorite place in the gardens was this gazebo-like structure in the Children’s Garden.

2 day itinerary Nashville, TN - Things to do - Cheekwood Estate and Gardens

2 day itinerary Nashville, TN - Things to do - Cheekwood Estate and Gardens

On one of my Nashville trips, we arrived at Cheekwood at opening time. Not because we were worried about crowds, but just to get that great morning light for photos and escape the midday heat of the Nashville summer.

If you enjoy looking at flowers and being out in nature, Cheekwood Estate is something you don’t want to miss!

12 South

If you’ve ever been to Nashville or even done any research for a trip, you’ve probably heard of 12 South. This street is full of shops, restaurants, and of course, more murals!

Nashville Tennessee street art you don't want to miss - Nashville Looks Good on You Mural

Again, there are lots of murals in this area, so make sure you don’t miss any of the best ones and check out this list.

Centennial Park

In West Nashville, you can visit Centennial Park which has a life-size replica of the Parthenon! This replica was built in 1897, but the original in Greece dates back to the 5th century B.C. Inside this massive replica is an art museum housing 63 paintings.

I didn’t get to visit the Parthenon because it was under construction. Check and make sure it will be open before you go, or you’ll just have to be happy with seeing it from the street like I did.

L & L Market Place

Perfect Itinerary for 2 Days in Nashville - L & L Market Place

This old factory building turned luxury mall has so much character. Stop in for a bite to eat or shop at one of the beautiful stores inside such as Amelia’s Flowers or Living with Landyn.

McKay’s Book Store

The final stop on our itinerary is McKay’s Book Store. I had heard good things about this used book store, so we decided to check it out. I’m so glad we did! This is probably the best book store I’ve ever been in. Why? Because it’s not just books, but also movies, board games, video games, music, and tons of other stuff. It’s all used, but all of it is in good or even new condition, and it’s very reasonably priced!

Perfect Itinerary for 2 Days in Nashville Tennessee - Weekend in Nashville Life Full of Light - McKay's Book store

The books are the main attraction, and this enormous store is full of pretty much any book you can think of, old or new! Book lovers and people searching for any other kind of media will definitely want to check this place out for some awesome deals!

So there you have it! Your itinerary for a perfect weekend in Nashville is filled with shopping and sightseeing, and this doesn’t even include places to eat! Nashville has so many delicious choices that I made a completely separate post just about my favorite restaurants! Take a look here to see some of the amazing food choices you’ll want to mix into your Nashville trip!

The Perfect Itinerary for 2 Days in Nashville - Life Full of Light - Wondering how to spend a weekend in Nashville, Tennessee? This itinerary from Life Full of Light is perfect for 2 days in Nashville and includes all the best things to do and sights to see! Check it out for a perfectly planned weekend for your vacation or bachelorette party. #nashville #visittennessee #nashvilleitinerary #thingstodoinNashville #girlsweekend #nashvillephotoshoot


What to Do on a Day Trip to Franklin, TN

Local Restaurants in Nashville You Have to Try

20 Nashville Murals You Don’t Want to Miss

Tips for Packing a Carry-On Like a Pro

  1. […] Nashville, Tennessee is an art lover’s paradise. From music halls to art galleries, Nashville has no shortage of talent. Most people think of Nashville as Music City, but if country music isn’t your thing, Nashville has amazing shopping, food, and of course murals! The incredible street art all over the city makes amazing backdrops for your Instagram feed! Many of them even have hashtags so that you can tag the mural or the artist on Instagram when you strike a pose in front of their work. My favorite mural in Nashville is the What Lifts You Mural by Kelsey Montague. […]

  2. […] The Perfect Itinerary for 2 Days in Nashville […]

  3. […] The Perfect Itinerary for 2 Days in Nashville […]

  4. […] bag from Fossil. I bought this purse in the Espresso color from the Fossil outlet store in Nashville, and I really love the style. Since I’ve had it for a few years, it’s a bit hard to […]

  5. […] love to use this lens to capture distant objects like wildlife or the moon. I used it at the Nashville and Memphis Zoos and when I rode Kilimanjaro Safari at Disney World. Even though it’s a kit lens, […]

  6. […] The Perfect Itinerary for 2 Days in Nashville […]

  7. Sarah says:

    I’ve got an upcoming trip and this helps a lot!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *