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10 Things to Do in Nashville in July

Nashville is the most representative city in Tennessee and in July you can enjoy the best festivals and Independence Day celebrations during the best weather time of the year in the city.

Matías Rodríguez

Matías Rodríguez

9 min read

10 Things to Do in Nashville in July

Nashville | ©Brandon Jean

Nashville has plenty to offer year-round, but it's during the summer that it's at its best, with street festivals, water celebrations in the Cumberland Park area and country and bluegrass music shows in various parts of the city.

Among the best things to see and do in Nashville in July you can also take part in Independence Day celebrations, the Franklin Farmers Tomato Festival, which is one of Nashville's most curious events, and artisan fairs.

1. Enjoy the Nashville Street Music Festival

Nashville's Broadway Street| ©Victor Hamberlin
Nashville's Broadway Street| ©Victor Hamberlin

Nashville is famous for its concerts and music shows, and in July you can attend the Street Music Festival, which is one of the premier live country and honky tonk music events. The festival takes place on stages that are set up on Broadway Street, which is one of the main thoroughfares of Tennessee's capital city.

This festival is also one of Nashville's most traditional celebrations, attracting visitors from all over the state and an opportunity to sample the city's craft beers and famous bars and restaurants that are often included in Nashville food tours.

During the festival, the Country Music Hall of Fame, one of Nashville's best museums and a tribute to some of the genre's historic artists, is also open.

Details of interest

  • Price... Admission to the festival is free.
  • When... During a weekend in July.
  • Where... In the bars, restaurants and stages of Broadway Street, Nashville.

Book tickets for the Country Hall of Fame

2. Attend the Cumberland Park Water Fest

Cumberland Park| ©Daniel Lobo
Cumberland Park| ©Daniel Lobo

The capital of Tennessee was built around the river and so there are many festivals designed to celebrate it. If you plan to visit Nashville in September you can participate in the Cumberland River Festival and if you travel in July you can attend the Cumberland Park Water Fest, a green lung located next to the John Seigenthaler Bridge.

The Cumberland Park Water Fest aims to promote water awareness and also explain to visitors the importance of the river through interactive activities with environmental slogans. This festival also includes live music performances, educational exhibits, water slides, children's activities and river tours.

During the festival you can also take river tours such as kayaking activities, dinner or lunch cruises and boat excursions.

Details of interest

  • Price... Admission to the festival is free.
  • When... During a weekend in July.
  • Where... Cumberland Park, Nashville.

Book a Cumberland River cruise excursion

3. Take a helicopter tour of Nashville in the best weather of the year

Helicopter View| ©Vanderbilt University
Helicopter View| ©Vanderbilt University

Taking a helicopter tour to discover the city from above is one of the best tours you can take in Nashville, as the capital of Tennessee has one of the most beautiful skylines in the state and also a wealth of attractions to see, such as the Ryman Auditorium, the Capitol and Nissan Stadium, which is one of the most modern in the United States.

These tours are available year-round but it is during the summer and especially in July when the weather is best for them, as there is no wind, the skyline is usually clear and the flights are more pleasant and safe.

In addition, this is when the city has the most visitors, so you can tour Music City from the heights and marvel at the number of visitors that Nashville attracts.

The routes of the helicopter trips depend on each service provider, but generally you can fly over Vanderbilt Stadium, Belmont University, Broadway Street and over the Southern Parthenon, to contemplate a wide panoramic view of one of the emblematic cities of the southern United States.

Details of Interest

  • Price... Helicopter flights have an initial cost of approximately 93 euros per person.
  • Duration... Helicopter tours last approximately 15-20 minutes.
  • When... July is one of the best months to fly over Nashville because winds are moderate and the skyline is usually clear.

Book a helicopter tour in Nashville

4. Experience the Summer Cocktail Crawl

Cheekwood Estate & Gardens, Nashville.| ©bior
Cheekwood Estate & Gardens, Nashville.| ©bior

If you plan to visit Nashville in July, you can attend the inaugural Summer Cocktail Crawl, an art and botanical garden event held each year at Cheekwood Estate & Gardens, a mansion that is open to the public just outside Nashville and also includes a cocktail bar.

Admission to this event includes a walking tour of the gardens and a tasting of the most representative cocktails and local food along the way, making it an excellent experience for you to relax during your visit to Nashville. During the July opening, in addition, there are usually discounts on other activities at the mansion.

Cheekwood Estate & Gardens can be reached by public transportation on Line 3 buses and the Nashville Sightseeing Bus, which includes a stop in the area near Warner Park.

Details of Interest

  • Price... Admission to the event has an initial cost of approximately 15 euros per person.
  • When... The inaugural event is during the first week of June.
  • Where... Cheekwood Estate & Gardens, Nashville.

Book the Nashville Tour Bus

5. Join in the 4th of July celebrations

Nashville Marathon| ©Stephen Yeargin
Nashville Marathon| ©Stephen Yeargin

If you plan to visit the United States in July you can experience Independence Day celebrations and Nashville is no exception, as every 4th of July the city hosts the Let Freedom Sing event, which combines music performances with a fireworks show.

This free event is held every year in East Park and also includes arts and crafts vendors, street food booths and children's activities, making it a good alternative if you plan to visit Nashville with children

On July 4th, Nashville also organizes a marathon through downtown, which starts in the morning and has different categories divided by age and physical condition.

6. Join the Bluegrass Along the Harpeth Festival

Bluegrass Along the Harpeth Festival| ©Katelyn Reimers
Bluegrass Along the Harpeth Festival| ©Katelyn Reimers

Bluegrass is one of the traditional American musical genres and its main festival is held every year during the fourth week of July in Franklin, a county located just outside Nashville that is characterized by its gastronomy and art exhibits found in different parts of the city.

The Bluegrass Along the Harpeth Festival is one of the most attended events in Tennessee and is a celebration that in addition to music performances includes dancing, food booths, art exhibits, talks by local artists and musical performance contests, making it an ideal activity to visit with the family.

In addition, proceeds from the event go to charity and the promotion of bluegrass music in the United States.

Details of interest

  • Price... The entrance to the festival has an approximate initial cost of 15 euros.
  • When... During a weekend in July.
  • Where... Franklin, Tennessee.

7. Attend the Full Moon Pick-Up Party.

Warner Park, Nashville.| ©idintify media
Warner Park, Nashville.| ©idintify media

The Full Moon Pickin' Party is a bluegrass festival held each year in July in Warner Park that includes a series of activities around the park, in addition to the music performances that take place on the three stages set up along the main trails.

This bluegrass event is the largest of its kind in the city and brings together the most renowned local artists, making it one of Nashville's top attractions. In addition, admission to the event includes an open bar and an evening tour of the park.

Warner Park can be reached by public transportation on Line 3 buses or the Nashville Sightseeing Bus.

Details of interest

  • Price... Admission to the event has an initial cost of approximately 25 euros per person for adults and 20 euros for children between the ages of 7 and 18.
  • When... Held during a full moon night in July.
  • Where... Warner Park, Nashville.

8. Participate in Franklin Farmers Tomato Festival

Tomato Art Festival| ©Stephen Yeargin
Tomato Art Festival| ©Stephen Yeargin

The Franklin Farmers Tomato Festival is not only one of Nashville's most eclectic events, but also one of the most traditional and a special activity to do during the summer in the city's ideal weather. Tomatoes are one of the most important local products and this festival, held every year in July, includes tastings and activities for the whole family.

This festival includes local food booths, lectures to promote farm products, music concerts and children's activities, making it an ideal activity to do if you plan to visit Nashville with children.

In addition, the Franklin Farmers Tomato Festival lasts approximately one day, so if you are planning to visit the city in July you can do so even if you are planning a short stay in the city. If that is your case, here is a list of activities you can do to discover Nashville in 3 days.

Interesting details

  • Price... The entrance to the festival has an approximate cost of 18 euros per person.
  • When... It is celebrated during one day in July.
  • Where... Franklin Farmers, Franklin, Nashville.

9. Enjoy the Gatlinburg Artisan Fair

Gatlinburg Convention Center| ©skooksie
Gatlinburg Convention Center| ©skooksie

One of the most popular summer events in Tennessee is the Gatlinburg Artisan Fair, held each July at the Gatlinburg Convention Center, a quaint town just outside of Nashville that's worth visiting for its multicultural and artistic residents.

At the Gatlinburg Artisan Fair you can enjoy live music shows, browse the booths selling handmade items and also participate in workshops and demonstrations provided by the artisans who are part of the fair.

You can also visit this fair in December if you plan to visit Nashville during Christmas, although in that case the Gatlinburg Convention Center becomes a Christmas market.

Details of interest

  • Price... Admission to the fairgrounds costs approximately €7 per person for adults. Children under 12 are free.
  • When... Held every year in June for one week.
  • Where... Gatlinburg Convention Center, Tennessee.

10. Enjoy street performances on Honky Tonk Highway.

Honky Tonk Highway| ©Wampa-One
Honky Tonk Highway| ©Wampa-One

Nashville is a permanent breeding ground for artists, and most of them thrive on its streets, in street shows and in bars featuring country, bluegrass and other Southern genres. During July in Tennessee's state capital, there is a popular tradition in which artists perform shows on Honky Tonk Highway, the city's famous street where music producers stroll during their vacations.

The tradition is aimed at being discovered by these producers so that the artists can build a professional career, but it is also a gathering place for musicians from all over the state at these honky tonks, which are typical southern bars that serve drinks and feature local music shows.

Whether you travel to Nashville in January, September or any time of year, you'll find street music shows, but in July you'll have a chance to experience this tradition where performers mingle with music producers amid the neon lights of Honky Tonk Highway while you get the feeling you're listening live to the next Johnny Cash.

Details of interest

  • Price... Admission to the street shows is free and most artists only ask for a collaboration.
  • When... July is when there are the most performers at Honky Tonk Highway.
  • Where... Honky Tonk Highway, Tennessee.

Nashville temperatures in July

Streets of Nashville| ©Chris Connelly
Streets of Nashville| ©Chris Connelly

July is the peak of summer and the hottest month of the year in Nashville, with temperatures that can reach highs of 35° and lows of 23° and average temperatures of 28°, which will ensure you good weather all month long and also clear skies, ideal for outdoor activities.

You should keep in mind that even in summer Nashville is a city prone to rain and wet weather, so I advise you to always carry light rain gear to avoid showers ruining your excursions.

In Nashville in August the rains become more sporadic and the weather drier.

Tourist flow in Nashville in July

Nashville afternoon| ©Lynn Josse
Nashville afternoon| ©Lynn Josse

Nashville's peak season starts in May and ends in September, so in July you'll be visiting the city during one of its busiest months, especially since the city offers many summer activities and the weather is ideal for enjoying tours along the Cumberland River.

If you are one of those who prefer to visit cities with fewer visitors, you should visit Nashville in October, once autumn begins, or during the winter months, although then temperatures can be very low.

Prices in Nashville in July

Money in Euros| ©Ibrahim Boran
Money in Euros| ©Ibrahim Boran

July in Nashville is summer and it is also part of the high season in the city so prices are not cheap, especially in accommodation and outdoor excursions or those that include activities along the Cumberland River, although if you want to save money you can book in advance online to access some discounts.

If you want to save money you should avoid the city in summer and the best alternative to visit the capital of Tennessee at affordable prices is to visit it during the winter.

What to pack for a visit to Nashville in July

Luggage| ©JamesDeMeyer
Luggage| ©JamesDeMeyer

Nashville's summer is hot and humid and rains are frequent, so I recommend that you include the following in your suitcase:

  • Sunglasses
  • Sunscreen
  • Comfortable shoes
  • Sun hat
  • Lightweight t-shirt
  • Lightweight coat
  • Lightweight pants
  • Rain jacket
  • Waterproof footwear
  • Umbrella