All commercial flights to Nashville come into the Nashville International Airport on the southeast side of the city. Nashville flights come in on one of four runways. Many people who want to experience life or business in Nashville travel by airplane, with more than 10 million passengers coming through the airport annually. The facility is served by more than a dozen major airlines that sometimes offer cheap flights to Nashville. The airport is large with many amenities including lounges, bars, restaurants and stores. Wi-fi is also available so travelers can check email or watch a video during a layover.
After arriving in Nashville, it is important to find transportation since the city is spread over 526 square miles. Private companies offer car rentals, limousines, taxi and shuttle services from Nashville International Airport. The city's government operates a public transit system of buses. Many hotels offer shuttle services to the airport and major sites around Nashville. Several major interstates crisscross the city, but weekday rush hours from 7 to 9 a.m. and from 4 to 6 p.m. can sometimes slow traffic on all major roads. Avoid these times when driving to avoid getting stuck in a traffic jam.
Several major sites, some of which are historical, make Nashville travel exciting. The Ryman Auditorium is one of the most famous concert halls in the history of country music. Both the Ryman and the Grand Old Opry host a variety of live shows every night. The Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum also makes its home in downtown Nashville. A full-size replica of the Greek Parthenon with an art museum inside can be found in the city as well. The Nashville Zoo is a rapidly expanding park with 300 animals on exhibit. The city has two major professional sports teams, the National Hockey League's Nashville Predators and the National Football League's Tennessee Titans.
After saving money on airfare to Nashville, it is natural to want to splurge for a night on the town. There are plenty of shopping and dining options in the city. The heart of Nashville is the downtown entertainment area called The District, which includes Broadway, Second Avenue/Riverfront and Printers Alley. Full of restaurants, piano bars and night clubs, there is no shortage of good, live music. Many famous country and southern rock musicians got their start in The District. The mecca of shopping is Opry Mills, a large mall with hundreds of stores and dozens of restaurants. Nashville is known for its Southern cuisine and many restaurants serve fried meats, barbecue chicken and pork, fresh garden vegetables and sweet desserts like banana pudding.