I don’t know about you, but I find myself daydreaming about going on vacation even more than usual during the wintertime. The desire to escape is heightened by the freezing cold temperatures, piles of snow and cloudy skyline.
If you’re lucky enough to secure some time off, that’s when the hard part comes in – choosing a destination. We’ve rounded up a list of 5 of the best getaways for country music lovers and this is what we came up with.
1. Country Music Hall of Fame – Nashville, Tennessee
The Country Music Hall of Fame features permanent and temporary exhibitions, an extensive country music history and, of course, live concerts. The museum recently released its 2018 exhibit schedule and will feature Little Big Town, Ralph Stanley, The Judds and Emmylou Harris. It will kick off the 2018 year with American Currents: The Music of 2017, which will provide a behind-the-scenes look at major country music events that occurred throughout 2017.
2. Graceland – Memphis, Tennessee
Graceland, otherwise known as the home of Elvis Presley, the king of rock n’ roll and country music, is the second most visited house in America. Visitor’s can explore Elvis Presley’s Graceland mansion, walk through various museums dedicated to the king himself and check out his automobiles and airplanes.
3. Dollywood – Pigeon Forge, Tennessee
Graceland isn’t the only place dedicated to a country legend. Living superstar Dolly Parton opened Dollywood, a theme park, in 1986. Dollywood features amusement park rides, as well as concerts and music events, some of which even feature Parton and her family. Dollywood is adjacent to Dollywood’s Splash Country, a thrilling waterpark and Dollywood’s DreamMore Resort and Spa, which is surrounded by the Great Smoky Mountains. It’s also the site of the Southern Gospel Museum and Hall of Fame.
4. Ryman Auditorium – Nashville, Tennessee
Ryman Auditorium is one of the original locations of the Grand Ole Opry. The Grand Ole Opry is a weekly country music stage concert that began in 1925 as a one-hour radio barn dance. Also known as “The Show that Made Country Music Famous”, it is the longest running radio broadcast in U.S. history and has featured famous musicians across a variety of genres including country, bluegrass, Americana, folk and gospel. The Grand Ole Opry remained at the Ryman Auditorium until 1974, after which it moved to the Grand Ole Opry House. Since 1999, the Grand Ole Opry returns each year to the Ryman Auditorium for three months in the winter.
5. Canadian Country Music Awards – Hamilton, Ontario
This year Country Music Week will be held in Hamilton, Ontario from September 6-9, 2018. Part music festival and part industry conference, the event will end off with the Canadian Country Music Awards.
Bonus: Route 66
Can’t decide which attraction to see or where to go? Why not take a road trip on one of the most famous highways of all time and hit up a bunch of country music destinations on the way. Not only is Route 66 iconic, but it will weave you through Illinois, Missouri, Kansas, Oklahoma, Texas, New Mexico, Arizona and California, covering a total of 2,448 miles. Prepare your best country music playlist and get ready to hit the open road.