We can all agree that the worst part of every vacation is the time you spend in an airport. In the hopes of helping more people avoid airports at all costs, we’ve put together a list of drivable day trips from Nashville. By getting a few hours outside of the city, you can take a mini vacation without having to deal with security, boarding passes or crowded planes.
Gas up your tank, leave the luggage at home, and visit one of the day trip destinations below!
The heat can be a little unbearable at times in Nashville, so next time that happens, we recommend embarking on the hour-and-a-half drive to Cummins Falls. This 75-foot waterfall drops straight into a swimming hole that you can get to if you’re willing to hike for a bit. The falls feature three levels of cascades, and you can take some breathtaking pictures from the shores of the swimming hole while you’re there.
Scenic day trips near Nashville don’t get much more scenic than Lookout Mountain. Located about 2 hours southeast of Nashville, this mountaintop offers stunning views of Ruby Falls — the largest underground waterfall in America. You can see the top of the falls from the lookout point, or venture into the country’s deepest commercial cave to see the falls from below!
Lookout Mountain is also the site of the Incline Railway — America’s steepest railroad. Visitors can pay to ride the mile-long rail — just don’t look down!
The phrase, “one of a kind” is tossed around a lot, but the Unclaimed Baggage Center is truly the only place like it in the country. As the name suggests, this massive warehouse is filled with all the airline baggage that’s been lost and never claimed. It’s all available for purchase at thrift shop prices, and the store is constantly being stocked with new unclaimed items.
The Unclaimed Baggage Center is located about 2 hours from Nashville in Scottsboro, Alabama. The massive, 40,000 sq. ft. warehouse even has a cafe inside, so you won’t need to leave for a lunch break!
The next stop on our list of day trips from Nashville is a must-visit for anyone interested in Civil War history. Franklin, TN was the site of the Battle of Franklin — one of the bloodiest battles of the war and one in which over 10,000 soldiers lost their lives. While in Franklin, be sure to check out The Carter House, which is still riddled with centuries-old bullet holes.
Franklin is good for more than just history, as the downtown area is filled with boutique shops, restaurants and festivals happening all summer long. As you might expect from such a historic old town, there are also plenty of ghost tours you can take if you’re in the mood to be spooked!
Day trips are usually all about the final destination, but anyone driving to Leiper’s Fork gets to also experience the scenic Natchez Trace Parkway. Once you get to the actual community of Leiper’s Fork, you’ll be able to visit antique stores, grab snacks and drinks at old-timey markets, and even visit a distillery.
This community has been around since the 1700s, and it’s citizens have done a great job of preserving the history that makes Leiper’s Fork so charming. We recommend waking up early on a Saturday make the 40-minute trip so you can stop by the Leiper’s Fork Farmers Market — held every Saturday from 9am to 1pm.
That’s just a small sampling of the many easy day trips from Nashville you can take this summer! We hope you get the chance to explore these top-rated destinations, and we invite you to swing by Vertis Green Hills when you get back in town! You can schedule a tour online or stop by the leasing office to get an in-person look at our new community of luxury apartments.