Scenic view of Nashville during sunset

The Best Time to Visit Nashville (A Local’s Guide)

The most popular time to visit Nashville is during the summer from June until August when Nashville has all kinds of events happening. The middle of the summer can be hot, so the best time to visit Nashville for good weather is in the spring and fall.

There are a lot of factors that go into determining when the best time to visit Nashville for you is. It depends on the different activities that you want to do in Nashville, what kind of weather you prefer, and your tolerance for crowds. Start by thinking about the things you want to do in Nashville to help you figure out when to visit.

The best time to travel to Nashville isn’t the same for everyone. Let’s break down the factors to help you decide when to plan your trip to Music City.

Here’s what we’ll cover: 

I’ll talk about what to expect during each season. I’ll also go over what time is best for good weather, best for avoiding crowds, and best for families and kids.

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When is the Best Time to Visit Nashville

View of Cheekwood Botanical Garden during spring season
Cheekwood Gardens in the spring

The summer months are usually packed full of special events making this time the most popular season to visit Nashville. Nashville has relatively good weather from April to October, so visitors who want good weather but fewer crowds might enjoy the spring or fall months better.

Of course, Nashville has plenty of visitors year-round for different reasons. Picking the perfect time to visit Music City really depends on what you want from your visit. Since I get to see Nashville in every season, I can help you decide exactly when you want to spend time in Nashville.

Still looking for a place to stay during your trip to Nashville? Check out our guide to where to stay in Nashville.

When to Visit Nashville for Good Weather

View of Nashville during fall season
Nashville in the fall

Nashville weather can be unpredictable, but generally, the best weather is from April to October. If you aren’t used to heat, it can be unpleasantly hot during July and August. The average high temperature peaks in July at 90 degrees Fahrenheit. But, compared to other cities in the Southeast, Nashville’s heat and humidity is not terrible. 

The temperature is mildest from April to June and from September to October. There also tend to be fewer crowds during these months. Spring and fall have great weather with cool mornings that warm up pleasantly in the afternoon.

When to Visit Nashville to Avoid Crowds

View of a waterfall on the indoor garden in Opryland Resort
The indoor gardens at the Opryland Resort are the perfect place to visit during Nashville’s winter off-season

Nashville is a popular destination during the entire year, but the crowds slow down during January and February. You’ll typically experience fewer crowds after the holiday season is over. Even so, be sure to check what’s going on before planning a visit. Big events like New Year’s Eve and Titans games can bring an influx of visitors.

Although the weather is cold during this time of year, there are plenty of indoor activities that you can enjoy during your visit. You can always catch a show at the Grand Ole Opry or wander through the 9-acre atrium at the Opryland Resort.

When to Visit Nashville for Families and Kids

The summer months are the most fun for bringing kids to Nashville. There are all kinds of fun activities in Nashville for kids. Families can spend the afternoon playing in the splash pad at Cumberland Park. Another great option is a day at Nashville Shores, a water park.

With kids, try to time your visit for May or June over July or August. The weather can get hot in the late summer. Young kids risk getting overly cranky or tired walking around in the heat.

Plan indoor activities like going to the Adventure Science Museum during the middle of the day to avoid summer heat if you travel to Nashville during July or August.

👉 Pro Tip: Looking for more fun things to do with kids in Nashville? Check out our guide to the best things to do in Nashville.

Nashville Travel Seasons

Visiting Nashville in January and February

The Bridgestone Arena from the outside in Nashville
Catch a Predators Game at Bridgestone Arena (photo: Hendrickson Photography / Shutterstock)

The weather is usually the coldest and dreariest during these two months. You can generally expect freezing temperatures at night with highs in the 30s and 40s during the day. Of course, given Nashville’s unpredictable weather, sometimes it’s unexpectedly warmer.

Due to fewer visitors, some attractions and restaurants may have shorter opening hours. People are still visiting, but there are not as many events happening.

  • 🏒 Predators Game – Nashville’s hockey team plays during the entire NHL season from October to April. Going to a game at Bridgestone Arena in January or February is the perfect indoor activity when the weather outside is unpleasant.
  • 🏎️ Nashville Auto Fest – This annual classic car show is a treat for anyone interested in automobiles. Everything is indoors which makes it perfect for the unpredictable winter weather.
  • 🍲 East Nashville Restaurant Week – A select group of local restaurants in East Nashville offers weeklong specials. The restaurants and specials change each year, and it’s a great way to discover new favorites.

📚 Related Reading: Can’t make it to Nashville for restaurant week? Find out about the best restaurants in Nashville to try no matter when you visit.

Visiting Nashville in March and April

View of the cherry blossoms in Nashville
Nashville’s cherry blossoms (photo: Scott Heaney / Shutterstock)

The beginning of spring is my favorite time in Nashville. The weather warms up. During spring average temperatures include lows that are usually above freezing and highs in the 60s. Spring is sometimes rainy, so come prepared for a little precipitation.

More events begin to take place. There are more visitors, but Nashville doesn’t have huge crowds yet.

  • 🍺 East Nashville Beer Festival – Each spring, East Nashville celebrates local, regional, and international craft breweries. There’s live music and food trucks to enjoy all day long. Also, the event helps raise money for charity, so it’s a win for everyone.
  • 🎶 Tin Pan South – Music City hosts Tin Pan South, the world’s largest songwriter festival each year. The festival includes panels for songwriters and networking opportunities. There’s also time for fans to see their favorite songwriters and artists. Live music venues throughout Nashville host different events.
  • 👗 Nashville Fashion Week – This is a 5-day event that brings together a wide variety of people in the fashion industry. Nashville Fashion Week aims to support Nashville’s next generation of fashion professionals. 
  • 🌸 Cherry Blossom Festival – This festival kicks off with a walk through Nashville’s cherry blossoms and celebrates Japanese culture. The event is free to attend. It’s perfect for families as well.
  • 🎼 Rites of Spring – Rites of Spring is an annual music festival at Vanderbilt University. Artists from all genres perform at the festival. The event is organized by and put on for college students, but the Alumni Lawn is open for the students and public alike.

Visiting Nashville in May through August

A hand holding an ice cream with sprinkle on top and the Retro Sno Food Truck on the background
Retro Sno is my favorite food truck to find during summer events.

Summer is by far the most popular time to visit Nashville, and the city is prepared for an influx of visitors. The weather is hot during the summer, but May and June tend to be milder than July and August.

  • 🎵 CMA Music Festival – Country music fans fill Downtown Nashville during this festival presented by the Country Music Association. Country music stars as well as up-and-coming artists perform at multiple venues throughout the city. This is one of the biggest country music events in the US. 
  • 🖼️ Bonnaroo Music and Arts Festival – Bonnaroo takes place just a short drive from Nashville in Manchester, TN. This festival is a treat for music lovers. Over 150 artists and groups perform during the 4-day festival. Genres range from country music to rap to pop and basically any other type of music you can imagine. It’s a great event to plan a Nashville trip around.
  • 🎸 Musician’s Corner – The free concert series in Centennial Park showcases some of Nashville’s talented musicians. Shows occur in May and June and then resume in September.
  • 🌕 Full Moon Pickin Parties – Head to Percy Warner Park for a summer event that could only happen in Music City. Every full moon from May to September, local musicians gather to play bluegrass. While listening, the audience indulges in picnic food and food truck fare.
  • 🍗 Hot Chicken Festival – On the 4th of July, Nashville locals and visitors head to East Park to celebrate Nashville hot chicken. The day includes live music and a hot chicken amateur cooking competition.
  • Tennessee State Fair – It wouldn’t be summer without a state fair. The Tennessee State Fair traditionally took place in Nashville.  In recent years, it’s been moved to Wilson County. The location is only a 45-minute drive from Nashville, so consider renting a car  to attend the fair.
  • 🐘 Red, White, and Zoo – The Nashville Zoo becomes adults-only for a few hours during its annual wine festival. Guests enjoy sampling wines from around the world while listening to live music. Local food trucks are on site. Craft beer and spirits are also available during the event.

🛎️ Need a Hotel? Summer is the busiest time in Nashville. Browse Booking Hotels in Nashville. You’ll get the best deals by planning ahead before the rest of the summer crowd.

Visiting Nashville in September and October

The Natchez Trace Parkway sign on the entrance
(photo: karenfoleyphotography / Shutterstock)

The beginning of fall is a perfect time to visit Nashville. The fall weather is a great mix of cooler mornings with warm afternoons. This is one of the drier periods of the year, so you don’t have to worry about dodging rainstorms. Once the leaves start changing, driving along the Natchez Trace Parkway is a beautiful way to spend a morning.

The summer crowds usually begin to thin out, but there’s still plenty going on in Music City.

  • 🎤 Musician’s Corner – After a hiatus in July and August, Musician’s Corner resumes in Centennial Park. The free live music is just as great as in the early summer.
  • 🎬 Nashville Film Festival – The Nashville Film Festival is one of the oldest film festivals in the US. The event showcases the work of filmmakers from Tennessee and around the world.
  • 📖 Southern Festival of Books – This annual event typically features over 100 authors. Fans can listen to their favorite writers speak on panels or during other special events.
  • 🎁 Opry Birthday Bash – Each year, the Grand Ole Opry holds a celebration to commemorate the founding. It’s a fun, free event that features live music, food trucks, and other entertainment.

Visiting Nashville in November and December

View of colorful fireworks on New Year's Eve in Nashville
Nashville’s New Year’s Eve party in Downtown

As the holiday season begins, Nashville weather continues to be unpredictable. November and December might be mild and warm, or there might be snow and ice. 

Early November tends to have fewer crowds, but the numbers pick back up as the holidays approach. Nashville is particularly popular during the Christmas season and right before New Year’s Eve.

  • 💡 Cheekwood Holiday Lights – The Cheekwood Estate and Gardens is wonderful to visit year-round. It’s a special treat to see the grounds lit up during the holidays. Get tickets online in advance because they sell out.
  • 🏟️ Music City Bowl – Football fans get the chance to watch an SEC team and a Big Ten Conference team play in a post-season game. The game takes place in Nissan Stadium. If your team is playing in the Music City Bowl, it’s a perfect excuse to plan a trip to Nashville.
  • 🎆 New Year’s Eve – Gather in Downtown Nashville to listen to live music, watch fireworks, and see the Music Note drop to ring in a new year.
  • 🛍️ Porter Flea Holiday Market – During the holiday market, hundreds of local and regional makers set up booths. Shoppers are able to find unique handmade items that are perfect for holiday gifts.

Nashville Weather and Climate

A person holding an umbrella outside Draper James
Outside Draper James on a rainy day

Nashville has a temperate climate with four distinct seasons. Winter tends to be cold with lows frequently dipping below freezing. Summers are hot and humid with the average high temperature reaching around 90 degrees Fahrenheit. 

Nashville receives around 120 days of precipitation a year. Sometimes these are just short afternoon showers, but other times it rains all day. Spring is usually rainier than the fall, but you should be prepared to see rain in any season. Severe thunderstorms and tornadoes are possible. Severe weather is not too frequent. Keep informed just in case.

The weather can be somewhat unpredictable. Nashville weather sometimes fluctuates wildly during the same week. Check the forecast before your visit and pack clothes with layers that you can adjust as needed.

Tips for Visiting Nashville

View of parked bicycle in Nashville during winter season
(photo: Restricted Flowers / Shutterstock)

Check the forecast before packing for your trip.

Even though you can look at average temperatures during a particular month, that doesn’t mean the weather will be consistent when you visit. There are a few warm days during the winter months. Occasionally, it snows in March and then warms up the next day.

🍽️ Read Next: Best Day Trips from Nashville

Bring layers that you can adjust.

There’s usually a 20 to 30 degree difference in temperature from the mornings to the afternoon and from the afternoon to the evening. Even in June, you might be chilly some nights if you don’t have a light sweater to throw on.

Be aware of severe weather during your visit.

Severe weather like thunderstorms and tornadoes can occur during different seasons. If watches or warnings for severe weather are released, take those warnings seriously. Follow the suggested guidelines for safety in Nashville.

Severe weather events don’t happen often, but you don’t want to ruin your trip by getting caught in dangerous conditions.

📚 Related Reading: For more tips on visiting Nashville, read our ultimate guide to Nashville

FAQs About When to Visit Nashville

View of the Grand Ole Opry large guitar on the entrance
(photo : Hendrickson Photography / Shutterstock)

What is the best month to visit Nashville?

May is a great month to visit Nashville because the weather is nice and the summer crowds are just beginning to arrive. Most visitors come to Nashville from April to October. Choosing the best month to visit is influenced by what you plan to do in Nashville.

How many days do you need in Nashville?

Most visitors plan to spend 2 to 3 days in Nashville. This is enough time to get a sense of the city. Depending on what you want to do in Nashville, you might consider spending 4 or 5 days.

What should I avoid in Nashville?

Nashville is generally safe, but like any city, you’ll want to pay attention to your surroundings. Be alert to what is happening around you, and avoid walking alone in deserted areas at night

What is the hottest month in Nashville?

Typically, July is the hottest month in Nashville. The average high temperature for July is 89 degrees Fahrenheit with an average low of 71 degrees Fahrenheit.

🥾 Read Next: Best Hiking Trails Near Nashville

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Hopefully, my guide helped you to pick out the best time for you to visit Nashville. The perfect time is different for everyone, but no matter when you visit Nashville, you’ll have a great time.

To continue planning your perfect trip, check out our guide to the best things to do in Nashville

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