Are you ready to light a candle and write down your autumn bucket list? For some reason, I've been thinking of fall nonstop this year. Last year, I was in full wedding planning mode and now I am here and totally ready for the season change. In March, we moved to the Nashville area, so I am soooo excited to give you guys a fall guide of things to do in Tennessee!
1. take a hike in old stone fort and cuddle up for a waterfront picnic
Two months ago my sister-in-law and I took a hike in Old Stone Fort State Archaeological Park. It was so beautiful and would be the perfect spot for a fall picnic! Right now, the weather in Tennessee is around 50-80 degrees, so you could actually swim here too if it's warm enough that day. Another perk is that this park is free! You can find Old Stone Fort in Manchester, TN.
When we went, we did the Enclosure Trail and ended up at Big Falls. That hike was around 1.4 miles, but there is a much shorter way to get there! As you start at the park office/visitor center, you will want to veer right instead of left. I'd say it's about a half mile hike to Big Falls! Here's a link to the map if you'd like to see it >>
2. spend a rainy morning at mimi's cafe with stuffed french toast and a white peach mimosa pitcher
This morning we were headed to the pumpkin patch, but the rain made it close down for the day. Instead we headed to Mimi's Cafe for breakfast! My mother-in-law found this place on one of their visits and I'm so stoked to go back :) Mimi's is a bistro cafe and is covered in New Orleans styled decor.
I ordered the pain perdu with mixed berries, which is french toast filled with orange marmalade and cream cheese. It was so yummy, I still can't believe I ate most of it. You know when pancakes or french toast can end up too sweet? This is not that. There was a perfect balance of tang and sweet! So delicious.
My meal also came with a meat and two eggs! It was a $13.99 meal, so the place is a little pricier, but the atmosphere and service really match the price of their items. If you wanted, you could have something at home and then just stop in for a mimosa pitcher and a muffin ($3) or ham and cheese croissant ($12).
Their mimosas were amazing and the pitcher only cost $26. This is such a good deal because this gave us about 7 mimosas, making it out to be $3.70 per mimosa! If there's only two of you, they do $5 mimosas on Saturday and Sunday until 2pm as well. We ordered the white peach kind and it was amazing!
3. boo at the zoo in nashville
For Trax's second birthday, we headed to the Nashville Zoo for the first time! We went around 4pm on a Thursday and expected it to be a little busy because the weather was so nice! Surprisingly, we didn't see many people at all and this zoo was so much cooler than I anticipated! Being from Nebraska, the Henry Doorly Zoo in Omaha is ranked the third in the country, so I wasn't trying to get my hopes up.
However, this zoo is super charming. They put a lot of thought into their open concept exhibits and the structures matched the home country of each animal well. I mentioned Boo at the Zoo because this event starts October 15th for three weeks in a row! I cannot imagine how cute and cozy this place will look around sunset. Boo at the Zoo will be held Tuesday thru Thursday for $18 each (everyone older than two will pay this). On Friday thru Sunday the price will go up $2. This event runs from 5:00pm to 9:00pm!
You can buy tickets in advance too, if you'd like to save your spot. A few things you will see here are pumpkin patches, nightly animal shows, Scary-Go-Round carousel, and trick-or-treat stations for candy. I feel like this is great alternative if you've been going to pumpkin patches every year and want to mix it up!
4. throw on your softest sweater and enjoy a breezy evening at george jones' rooftop bar
A few weekends ago, Trey and I had our first downtown Nashville night out. Yay for babysitters!! Anyway most places were crazy crowded on Broadway, so we walked a block or two away and found the George Jones rooftop bar. After four flights of stairs, you are greeted with a low key atmosphere and live music. There were plenty of tables open on a Saturday night around 8:30 :)
This place was perfect. They have an insane view of the river and it was so spacious compared to many other rooftop bars. It was such a great evening because there was a little breeze too. It definitely felt like fall! Don't worry, they also serve food here, so you don't have to hop from place to place all night. You can find things like nachos, sliders, and wings! Lately, I've just been ordering white claws or Malibu and coke, if they have it. Here, I just had white claws! This bar is open most days except Tuesday and Wednesday.
TIP: On Saturday and Sunday, between 10am and 3pm, they have brunch drink specials :)
5. stop at simply pure sweets for a coffee and to write out your fall bucket list
This is one of my favorite coffee shops. It's quiet and they open early at 6:30am :) I really enjoy their bacon and pepperjack biscuits. They also have a good vanilla latte! I sit in here for hours to work and the bakery smells make it so much better.
I'd love to take a little time while I'm here soon to write out my fall bucket list. This shop is located downtown, which is very cute if you've seen it before. I feel very safe going alone too- you can park right in front of the bakery :) I'd love to try some of their lunch items sometime because they look so good as well!
6. get your pumpkin on at lucky ladd farms
Guys, this place is magical. Lucky Ladd Farms is a family fun park and in the fall, it is a pumpkin lovin' mecca. They have hay rides, countless animals, a giant barn slide, corn maze, and a free tractor train for little ones.
We went two weekends ago and it was such a cute afternoon. There's something to do in every direction you look. Our son Trax, who just turned two, loved the barn slide and the tractor train. (I also loved the train because it was free! Often I feel like those extra activities are like $10, haha)
As I look at the farm map now, I see a sunflower field that I missed! That could have been sweet to see. Tickets are $17.99 on the weekends and $15.99 on Thursdays! If you want to take home a pumpkin- you can upgrade to a pumpkin pass. However, I wouldn't really suggest this. There wasn't a huge selection of pumpkins this pass applied for. You're much better off checking a pumpkin farm or grocery store for a good deal :)
7. take a slow x romantic river cruise through the opryland hotel
In April when my parents were in town, we decided to explore the Opryland Hotel. I wanted to add this boat ride to my list because this would be a great fall activity if it was cold outside, but you still wanted to do something cute! This place is a good option because it is all indoors and there's plenty to do for a full evening.
The resort is situated on nine acres and full of waterfalls, plant life, x dazzling chandeliers. On our river cruise, I noticed 1,000 other beautiful details I hadn't noticed from the walkway. To book a fall river cruise, you can click here. Tickets are $15 per person and the ride lasts 12-15 minutes. Until October 30th, they are open everyday 10am to 5pm.
In addition to that, it looks like they've got a theme night going on daily from 6pm to 9:30pm called 'Ghouls Night Out River Boat Ride.' These tickets are $20 each but it looks like there is a candy corn challenge involved and spots around the river will look similar to a haunted house.
TIP: You do not have to be staying there to visit! Parking is around $32 for this place, but if you're willing to walk a bit I've read online you can park at the Opry Mills mall or the Grand Ole Opry for free.
Don't worry y'all, I will be adding to this as I continue to visit places this fall! I hope this post inspires you to find a fall activity you actually like doing because let's be honest, I ain't doing a 30 item fall bucket list, lol. I might write down three this year. Do things you love! I am so curious what things you guys actually love doing every fall? Tell me below!
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Want to see what fall activities I'm doing this month? You can follow along via my Instagram here! I'd love to have you :)
This blog post is sponsored by Smile Brilliant. However, I never promote things I don't love. All opinions are my own.
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Sometimes after I run around a city taking photos, I wish I would've whitened recently or sat out in the sun longer. This way, I don't have to carve out time to do those things, I just brush like normal. The cariPRO is the best electric toothbrush I've used and I am stoked to see how it changes the color of my teeth long term. Don't worry, I'll keep y'all updated :)
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