Nashville

Music CIty is famous for its whisky, honky tonk, live music, southern cooking and hipsters. It’s also a college town, with Vanderbilt and Belmont just a few of the universities that have campuses in the city. Be sure to pack your cowboy boots, or at least your dancing shoes!


EAT

Cabana Upscale dining with big, dreamy windows and a lovely patio near Belmont University.

Hattie B’s Hot Chicken You’ve not had fried chicken until you’ve had Hattie B’s.

The Southern Steak & Oyster Southern food in the SoBro district. Excellent for brunch.


DRINK

Bluebird Cafe Famous for turning out talent, many Nashville stars got there start here. Recommended by friends.

Honky Tonk Central Fun, three-story bar on Broadway Street with pub grub and live music.

Printer’s Alley A cute alley off of Broadway Street with karaoke bars and pubs.

Tootsies Orchid Lounge A Nashville institution. Turn up for honky tonk!


PLAY

Broadway Street The lower end of this street, close to the river, is referred to as Nashville’s Honky Tonk Highway.

Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum

Grand Ole Opry The most famous country music hall in the world.

Riverfront Park Nice spot for a walk along the Cumberland River.


STAY

If you are in town purely to enjoy the music scene and nightlife, stay downtown. Consider the Courtyard by Marriott Nashville Downtown, it’s affordable and just two blocks from Honky Tonk Highway.

 

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Asheville

Ashvillle is a bohemian town in the Blue Ridge Mountains of North Carolina. Known for its artist enclaves, live music venues, craft beer breweries and delicious food, Asheville is just sparkling with southern charm!

Asheville’s airport is small and flights in and out can be pricey. Another option is to fly to Charlotte and drive two hours through the mountains.

Given the loveliness of the surrounding area, we recommend renting a car. If you’d rather not drive, Uber is available and an easy option for getting from the downtown area to the River Arts District, Biltmore Estate, and Biltmore Village.

EAT

Green Sage Cafe Healthy, organic cafe in downtown.

Tupelo Honey Perhaps Asheville’s most famous restaurant, serving up Southern food from scratch. Try the South Asheville location, likely to be less crowded.

Twisted Laurel Mediterranean food in an industrial-style setting.

Well-Bred Bakery & Cafe Tasty bakery in Biltmore Village with outdoor seating.

DRINK

Wicked Weed Brewing Pub Friendly brewery in downtown Asheville with outdoor seating.

New Belgium Brewing Company Industrial brewery and taproom near the River Arts District. Grab a seat on the deck for lovely views of the French Broad River.

Village Wayside Bar & Grille Local dive open late night in Biltmore Village.

PLAY

Biltmore Estate A historic, Chateau-style home built by George Vanderbilt with gardens and sprawling grounds at the seat of the Blue Mountains.

Blue Ridge Parkway A 496 mile drive through North Carolina and Virginia offering stunning vistas of the Appalachians. There are lots of hiking trails near the Parkway.

North Lexington Avenue A street in downtown with antique and eclectic shopping.

River Arts District Just west of downtown, this industrial area along the river is home to artist studios and galleries.


STAY

For a weekend stay, base yourself within walking distance of the downtown area.

If you have a car and intend to hike or visit surrounding areas, parking could be tricky downtown. We stayed in the very affordable Hampton Inn & Suites Asheville, just south of and within walking distance of Biltmore Village.

The Biltmore Estate offers luxury accommodation, a lovely option for a romantic weekend.

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Vienna

Vienna has repeatedly captured the hearts of travelers with its rich history, food scene and amazing architecture (bonus points for also being an über clean city). 

Vienna is charming any time of year and always a good stop when in central Europe.  

Vienna’s Christmas markets are some of the most intriguing in Europe, and open from mid-November through Christmas. The local vendors and winter scene at the Rathaus is one of best markets in Europe and should be a top attraction on your list if visiting during the holidays.

The City Airport Train (CAT) connects the airport to Wien Mitte Station near the city center in 15 minutes. Alternatively, taxis are available and the trip to city center is 18 kilometers.

EAT

Cafe Sacher Wien While touristy, this cafe offers the classic Austrian experience with fine coffee and the local sacher-torte. We recommend going for the Apfel-Strudel instead! 

Eis Greisler Cute spot for ice cream.

Erich Awesome brunch menu. If nothing else, go for the terrace and enjoy a drink.

Neni Middle Eastern restaurant located inside Naschmarkt. Great lunch spot.

Skopik & Lohn Upscale Schnitzel restaurant.

Steirereck Reservations recommended.

Ulrich Great patio and brunch menu.

DRINK

Das Loft Skybar at the Sofitel hotel. Go for a sun-downer and enjoy the amazing views!

Naschmarkt Wide variety of food and drink vendors and the perfect spot to grab a quick bite and afternoon spritz when the sun is out. Closed on Sundays.

O`Boufes This is a bistro but go for a wine tasting. They specailize in natural, locally grown organic wines. Different tastes but we loved trying something new.

PLAY

Belvedere Museum beautiful gardens surround the Palace which is now home to an art museum that showcases Austrian artworks and various exhibitions in the Lower Belvedere.

Innere Stadt (First District) Wander through Vienna’s charming Old Town in the evening or, to beat the crowds, on Sunday morning.

Hofburg Palace Former imperial palace of the Habsburg dynasty and today the official residence of the President of Austria. Be sure to check out the Spanish Riding School, dating back to 1562.

Leopoldstadt Rent bikes to cruise around this area, and making a stop at Prater, Vienna’s playground and one of the world’s oldest amusement parks.

Museumsquartier This area is touristy, but it is a must to check out the Kunsthistorisches and Naturhistorisches Musuem, and take stroll through the nearby Volksgarten. This area is home to a variety of art musuems and the cultural centersansplatz. After taking in the sites, get lost in the small side streets.

Schloss Schoenbrunn Buy tickets in advance to avoid the queues, and don’t forget to check out the beautiful surrounding gardens. Combine this stop with the Naschmarkt for lunch.

Staatsoper (Vienna State Opera House) Go for a tour or purchase tickets for an evening show. Note that the main, classic Opera performances are traditionally closed in July and August

STAY

Choose a hotel or AirBnb in the Innere Stadt city center. We recommend the Sofitel Vienna Stephansdom.

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