A Local’s Guide to Nashville

A header image for a blog about places to visit in Nashville, TN
A header image for a blog about places to visit in Nashville, TN

Are you planning a trip to Nashville, Tennessee, but feeling overwhelmed with all the choices on what to do and where to go? We’ve got you covered. Introducing our Local’s Guide to Nashville, where we ask real Nashvillians about the best bars, restaurants, and date night spots in Music City. Our guide gives you an insider’s look at how visitors should spend their time, including the most romantic places to go around town. Say goodbye to tourist traps and hello to an authentic Nashville experience!

What Do Locals Do in Nashville, TN?

A graphic showing insights from a survey of Nashville residents about what they like to do

To answer that question, we went straight to the source and asked Nashville locals ourselves. We got insights into the best date night spots, bars, music venues, and romantic destinations for a visit to Music City.

The Best Date Night Spots

After you touch down in Nashville, you’ll probably want to find a spot to sit down, unwind, and enjoy a nice dinner. If you’re seeking a refined and romantic ambiance for a date night, Nashville locals say you can’t go wrong with Fleming’s Prime Steakhouse & Wine Bar. Fleming’s offers a sleek and stylish interior, exceptional customer service, and an extensive menu of mouthwatering steaks and other entrées, making it an ideal choice for impressing your special someone.

  • 18% of respondents said Fleming’s is their go-to date night spot.

The Best Live Music Locations

When it comes to concerts in Music City, there is no shortage of fantastic venues to visit. Locals agree that the best place to catch a live show in the city is the Nashville Palace. Located just outside downtown, the Nashville Palace has a long history of hosting some of the biggest names in country music and is revered by locals for its authentic honky-tonk vibe. With a spacious dance floor and live music every night, it’s no surprise locals love it.

  • 23% of respondents voted the Nashville Palace as the best place for live music in the city.

The Best Nashville, TN Watering Holes

Fans of a cold brew are in luck, as Nashville has a lot to offer in the way of craft beer and local breweries. Residents agree that Nashville Underground takes the top spot for best brewery in Music City. This multi-level bar is a popular hangout spot with a rooftop patio that provides excellent city views. 

M.L. Rose Craft Beer & Burgers comes in at a close second, offering a rotating selection of local and national craft beers and a menu of delicious handhelds. M.L. Rose is the perfect spot for a low-key date night.

  • 14% of respondents voted Nashville Underground as the best bar, while 13% opted for M.L. Rose.

Broadway’s Best

Surprisingly, almost half of the Nashville residents who responded to our survey (49%) believe Broadway is overrated. While Broadway is a popular destination for visitors and is known for its many bars, restaurants, and live music venues, many locals are over the noise, congestion, and lack of parking in Nashville’s main drag.

If you decide to take the bait and fall into the tourist trap, try checking out Honky Tonk Central and Dierks Bentley’s Whiskey Row on Broadway. According to residents, these two bars stand out as the best places to experience the classic Nashville honky-tonk vibe. 

Honky Tonk Central, located in the heart of downtown, boasts three floors of live music and a rooftop bar with sweeping city views, while Dierks Bentley’s Whiskey Row offers a slightly more upscale atmosphere with a menu of Southern-inspired cuisine and an extensive selection of whiskey.

  • A combined 23% of respondents voted for either Honky Tonk Central (12%) or Dierks Bentley’s Whiskey Row (11%) as the best bar on Broadway.

The Most Romantic Places in Nashville, TN

If romance is your sole goal on your next trip to Nashville, there are a few places you should check out. According to residents, the most romantic locations in Music City are the Grand Ole Opry, the Opryland Hotel, and Lover’s Lane.

What Does a Night Out in Nashville Cost?

Nashville is an exciting city with a little something for everyone; however, a night on the town can add up quickly. According to locals, the average night out will cost you $318.33. This price tag includes dinner at a nice restaurant, drinks at a popular bar, and tickets to a concert or event. Whether you’re celebrating a special occasion or enjoying a night out, be sure to budget accordingly.

Closing Thoughts

We hope our Local’s Guide to Nashville has helped provide you with an inside look into how to spend your time in the famous Music City. With recommendations straight from Nashvillians themselves, you can trust you’ll be experiencing the best breweries, concert halls, and date night spots in town. Forget the tourist traps and experience the heart and soul of the real Nashville!
As you plan your trip to Nashville, don’t forget to add some sparkle to your itinerary with a visit to Shane Co. With a vast selection of stunning engagement rings and fine jewelry, you’re sure to find the perfect ring for your special someone to make your stay in Music City unforgettable. Our expert staff can help you find the best piece to fit your style and budget, ensuring that your proposal is as unique as your love story. So, explore our online selection or visit our Nashville location and start planning your perfect proposal today. Nashville has so much to offer, and with a Shane Co. engagement ring, your memories will last a lifetime.


To develop a local’s guide to Nashville, we went straight to the source. We surveyed over 150 Nashville, Tennessee, locals in January 2023 and asked them questions about their favorite date night spots, bars, outdoor activities, and more to get the inside scoop on the best ways to spend some time in Music City. The questions were all multiple choice, with the possible answers coming from Visit Music City’s lists.

We also picked their brains to find out how much you can expect to spend on a night out and if Broadway is really all it’s cracked up to be.

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