15 Best Things to Do in East Nashville, TN

East Nashville, TN
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You may already know Nashville, but have you heard of East Nashville?

The Music City’s artsy section with a laidback atmosphere is a historic neighborhood that serves excellent dining, local music, arts, and craft beer.

Many musicians and artists have willfully embraced the area's welcoming atmosphere.

Exploring this place treats you to beautiful historic homes and lets you experience the unique vibe of a culturally diverse neighborhood.

Back then, East Nashville helped put Nashville on the map thanks to restaurants like Marche Artisan Food and the Margot Cafe & Bar.

The last decade has seen the extreme revitalization of East Nashville, which has attracted quite a following, especially among young adults and families.

Stay on this side of the river and prepare for an experience like no other.

Here are the best things to do in East Nashville, TN:

Visit Greece in Nashville at the Parthenon

Exterior of the Parthenon replica
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You need not go to Greece to see one of its most famous landmarks, the Parthenon.

Instead, go to the Centennial Park in East Nashville to find the full-scale replica of this wonder of the ancient world.

It comes with the Athena structure, standing at 42 feet, a full-size replica.

Statue of athena in the Parthenon
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The replica of the Parthenon in Greece doubles as the Nashville museum.

It has a permanent collection that includes 63 paintings from 19th and 20th-century American artists.

Plus, there are also additional spaces for temporary exhibits and shows.

Details of the Parthenon structure
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Check Out East Park

East Park is where you can find locals enjoying themselves.

This community center offers residents and visitors a modern place to recreate, exercise, and gather with friends.

The park's programs and activities are open to everyone of all ages and skill levels.

You might need to sign up for a paid membership in the park's fitness programs and classes.

You can check out the dance/aerobics studio, full-service fitness center, water exercise, yoga, indoor swimming pool, and an indoor walking/running track.

Commune with Nature at the Shelby Bottoms Greenway and Natural Area

Wooden footbridge at Shelby Bottoms Greenway and Natural Area
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Spanning 960 acres, the Shelby Bottoms Greenway is one of the best nature spots to visit in East Nashville.

Behold wetlands, open fields, bottomland hardwood forests, and streams where deer, amphibians, and more wildlife thrive.

Engage in family-friendly activities like walking, running, and biking.

Curved pathway at Shelby Bottoms Greenway and Natural Area
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If you’re more adventurous, you can go skating with your older kids or observe the wildlife with the younger ones.

However, don't touch any of the fungi, plants, and wildlife if you don't have a permit.

You can also bring your dog, as long as they are on a 6-foot leash.

A stream at Shelby Bottoms Greenway and Natural Area
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Have Fun at the Tomato Art Fest

In 2004, the owners of the former Art and Invention Gallery hosted an art show featuring tomatoes, among other vegetables and fruits.

This event signaled the beginning of the Tomato Art Fest.

In 2017, hundreds of tomato lovers gathered to break the world record for the number of people dressed in vegetable costumes.

Various magazines like Travel and Leisure and Southern Living have named this tomato fest the "Best Festival" for 13 years.

Paintings, food, people, costumes, performers, music, fun, and party—all in the name of the tomato!

Bring Your Dog to the Bark Park

It’s not always that you will find a park dedicated to your dog.

Bark Park does double duty as a dog and human park, where they can play and enjoy their time together.

Let your dog roll, run, and fetch on a square block of landscaped green space with dozens of comfy spots.

The humans can enjoy the park’s free wifi, comfy seats under the shade, and restrooms.

Learn about American Vernacular Music at the Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum

Exterior of Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum
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Visit one of the world’s largest research centers and museums, the Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum.

It contains one of the most extensive musical collections across the globe.

You’ll see archival materials and collections that document country music from its beginnings up to today.

Guitars displayed in Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum
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The museum stores some artifacts inside a 46,000-square-foot climate-controlled collections room on the third floor.

Otherwise, you can check out 500,000 digital images, transparencies, negatives, and photographic prints.

You can also find 900 musical instruments.

Record awards wall in Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum
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Try East Nashville Beer at the East Nashville Beer Works

With the motto ‘Beer is Community,’ East Nashville Beer Works opened in 2015 with the idea of creating something different.

They came up with a brewery that brewed only fantastic beer, with a taproom that welcomes everyone.

The brewery also provides food that complements its beer, such as pizza.

You can also enjoy tons of good vibes.

The shop offers four year-round beers, including East Bank, Cumberland Punch, Miro Miel, and Tennessee Sipper.

They also sell seasonal beers like Grip and Rip, Cosmic Sipper, Retrograde Espresso Cream Ale, and the Schwarz Army Romance.

Grab a Meal at Cafe Roze

East Nashville helped put Nashville on the map because of its restaurants.

One of the neighborhood’s can’t-miss restaurants is Cafe Roze, whose name means "pink" in Croatian.

The owner, Juliet, has Croatian roots; her place features beautiful colors splashed throughout its interiors.

Bring your friends and family here for a hearty meal.

Try their waffles, burgers, smoothies, and egg bowls.

Enjoy Country Music at the Grand Ole Opry

Exterior of the Grand Ole Opry
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For 95 years, the Grand Ole Opry has seen the past, present, and future of American country music.

Live performances and radio and TV broadcasts feature rising stars and country legends every week.

You can join tours, where you can walk with the stars for a backstage tour and learn about the stage, celebrities, and country music.

Country music concert in Grand Ole Opry
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Check Out the Historic Roxy Theatre

In 1938, the Roxy Theatre opened in East Nashville, with a seating capacity of 500.

In July 1960, it closed as a theatre.

Ten years later, it reopened as a laundromat.

Then, in1980, it reopened as the renovated Roxy Production Center, with a 24-seat theatre and a recording studio.

Numerous Nashville-based stars frequented it until it closed again in the early 1990s.

Today, the locals have many efforts to revive and save the Roxy Theatre.

Do your part in preserving a key piece of Nashville history and stop by the Roxy.

Dine and Drink at the Peninsula

Bring your date to the Peninsula in East Nashville.

Enjoy superb Iberian dishes, including Spanish and Portuguese, accented with French techniques.

Start off with a cocktail at the bar before enjoying a meal in the dining room.

With dim lighting and a specially-designed menu, you will feel like you’re in a high-end restaurant.

Whatever else you’re having, try their broth served in a teacup for the complete experience.

Meet the Animals at the Nashville Zoo

Kakak tua bird on a tree at Nashville Zoo
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Located six miles south of downtown Nashville, you can find the Nashville Zoo, a dynamic zoological park.

It encompasses 188 acres, though only 90 acres are developed.

Still, this place is the 9th largest zoo by landmass in all of America.

Tall giraffes at Nashville Zoo
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The Tennessean named it the Best Day Trip and the Best Regional Attraction, thanks to the number of tourists it draws.

The zoo houses almost 3,000 animals from all over the world, representing over 350 different species.

Find amphibians, reptiles, and birds to fish, mammals, and arthropods.

A siberian tiger at Nashville Zoo
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Devour Delicious Pizza at Folk

You can find pizza everywhere—it’s practically in every city or town you visit.

Stop by Folk in East Nashville to get more pizza.

This pizzeria serves wood-fired pizza, which you can pair with excellent organic wines.

Arriving here means seeing exposed lanterns and brickwork that contribute to the overall ambiance of the place.

The pizza is made only with the freshest ingredients, with the flour sourced from only the best mills.

Besides the pizza, you will also love their bar snacks and dishes since they change menus regularly to keep you on your toes.

Try the Izakaya Experience at Two Ten Jack

Two Ten Jack is a Japanese-inspired neighborhood pub known as izakaya.

You’ll fall for their Japanese dishes like the yakitori, kodawari ramen, and more Japanese-inspired pub comfort food.

For the drinks, you’ll never go wrong with their sake and shochu, handcrafted cocktails, wines, and craft beers.

Many locals stop by Two Ten Jack after work to grab dinner and drinks while basking in the ambiance.

Grab American Favorites at Dino’s Bar & Grill

Head out to Gallatin Avenue and devour American favorites, the classic burger and fries, at Dino's Bar & Grill.

Established in the 1970s, it’s the oldest dive bar in East Nashville, a watering hole for residents and visitors alike.

The late Anthony Bourdain once ate here for his show, ‘Parts Unknown,' in 2016.

‘Dino’s Cheeseburger’ is also known across the country.

Bon Appetit Magazine voted this burger as one of the Top 3 Burgers in the Country.

Dino’s is where good food and ice-cold beer come together.

Final Thoughts

Choose East Nashville for your next family vacation.

Its combination of music, arts, history, food, and nature lets everyone in the family have their slice of heaven.

Food is a priority of the neighborhood.

Pack your bags and head to East Nashville today!