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  • Writer's pictureAmy Leggett

Where to Stay in Nashville...Downtown or The Gulch? That is the Question!

Where should you make your home base when you visit Nashville? This is the first but most important question you must answer when planning your trip. Ask yourself what you plan to spend most of your time doing and then pick a location closest to most of the sights you want to see.

Downtown: Usually the main focus of a visit to Nashville is bar crawling the honky tonks on Broadway. If this is your plan, or if you are attending a concert or sporting event at Bridgestone Arena or Nissan Stadium, you will want to stay in the central downtown area. There are many hotel choices downtown, but the prices tend to be a bit higher due to the prime location. The trade off is being able to walk a block or two to many of Nashville's attractions. This convenience will come in handy after a full day of sightseeing or bar hopping to listen to all the great music. I highly recommend the Drury Plaza Hotel Nashville Downtown. The location is fantastic and an added bonus is the incredible free hot breakfast as well as the free snacks and drinks at the 5:30 Kickback every day. The breakfast is more substantial than the usual free breakfast offered in hotels. They provide fresh scrambled eggs, sausage, biscuits and gravy, oatmeal, a waffle station and a cook making pancakes in adorable Music City shapes! The afternoon "snacks" include a full on dinner buffet with alfredo pasta, grilled chicken, garden salad and soup. You also get a punch card for three free drinks every day during your stay (cocktails, wine or beer!). Unfortunately we were usually out and about around 5:30 every day so only took advantage of the Kickback on the first day, but it was there if we wanted it. It can be a good way to keep your spending down as you can potentially cover two meals and drinks everyday!

The Gulch: The first time I visited Nashville I stayed in an Airbnb in The Gulch. The Gulch is a newer upscale area with chic boutiques and trend-setting restaurants. It is a great place to stay, especially if you don't plan to spend a majority of your time on Broadway. Broadway is only a quick 15 minute walk away, but The Gulch is definitely removed from the craziness of the main downtown area if you prefer a more low key vibe. The Gulch is where the famous "What Lifts You Up" Wings mural is located for that perfect Nashville Insta moment. There are only a few hotels in this area, so you will most likely be staying in an Airbnb if you want to stay in The Gulch. The Airbnb I stayed in was spacious and had a well-equipped kitchen where I made breakfast and could keep leftovers to eat the next day. It was a comfortable space to decompress after days jam packed with sightseeing and bar hopping.

Either location is a great place to stay. You will be able to easily get back and forth between each area, so you really can't go wrong. Basically, if you would prefer a hotel Downtown has more options. If you like spreading out in a more homey space with a kitchen, an Airbnb in The Gulch will be perfect for you! No matter what, I guarantee you will have an amazing time in Nashville!

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