There’s nothing like traveling to another city to see your favorite musician live — not only do you get to see the concert, but there are also many ways you can enjoy the city itself. Arguably, there are many fantastic travel destinations for music lovers, whether you’re attending a concert at an iconic music venue or want to explore exhibits with pieces that belonged to famous musicians, each of these cities has something for music lovers. Here are the top 5 cities for vacation for music lovers.
1. Austin, TX
Known as the Live Music Capital of the World, Austin, Texas, has more live music venues per capita than anywhere else in the country. You’ll find music from nearly every genre performing somewhere in the city, including indie rock, folk, country, jazz, and more. In particular, there are a number of attractions for country music fans, such as the Willie Nelson statue, Allens Boots, and iHeart Country Fest.
In addition to music venues, Austin hosts some of the largest music events and festivals in the world, including South by Southwest (SXSW), Austin City Limits Music Festival (ACL), The Urban Music Festival, Fun Fun Fun Fest, the Pachanga Festival, and more.
If you’re wondering which Austin music venues you should visit, consider:
- ACL Live at the Moody Theater
- Skylark Lounge
- Elephant Room
2. Nashville, TN
Often called “Music City,” Nashville is known for being a destination for country music fans, but the city itself is incredibly diverse in attracting music lovers and musicians of many genres.
Depending on your interests, you can venture to Honky Tonk Highway, visit the Johnny Cash Museum, the GRAMMY Museum Gallery, the Musicians Hall of Fame and Museum, or attend a Nashville Symphony concert — the opportunities are endless!
As for music venues, there are countless places to go with two of the most famous being the Grand Ole Opry and the Ryman Auditorium, or if songwriters are more your taste, visit the Bluebird Café to hear writers perform.
3. Memphis, TN
“Put on my blue suede shoes/and I boarded the plane” … remember that tune? Just a few hours south of Nashville, Memphis is famed for Beale Street, the King of Rock and Roll, Elvis, the home of the blues, and the birthplace of rock and roll.
A few must-see attractions for music lovers include:
- Walk down Beale Street — From live music to shops to restaurants, visitors can find a lively piece of Memphis history in a just under 2-mile stretch.
- Visit Graceland (sign the wall!) — Graceland was home to Elvis Presley and now serves as the largest Elvis museum in the world.
- Tour Sun Studios — Artists such as Bob Dylan, Johnny Cash, and Jerry Lee Lewis all recorded here, and this is also where Elvis got his start.
- Visit the Memphis Rock n’ Soul Museum — Located on Beale Street, the museum tells the story of the birth of rock and soul music.
- Tour the Gibson Guitar Factory — Whether you’re a musician yourself or just an admirer, it might be worthwhile to take a tour of the factory to see the guitar-making process.
4. Seattle, WA
Home to many of the greats like Jimi Hendrix and Kurt Cobain, Seattle offers a multitude of opportunities for music lovers. You can visit the Jimi Hendrix statue or perhaps make a stop at Viretta Park, the unofficial Kurt Cobain Memorial. For official exhibits, visit the Museum of Pop Culture to see “Nirvana: Taking Punk to the Masses” or “Hendrix: Wild Blue Angel.”
You also won’t want to miss A Sound Garden, a large outdoor art installation made from steel pipe structures that create musical sounds when the wind passes through them.
For famous music venues, you can check out live music at either The Crocodile or Re-bar. And if you want to stay or visit a hotel once graced by the presence of legends such as The Beatles, Led Zeppelin, and The Rolling Stones, check out The Edgewater Hotel.
5. Los Angeles, CA
Finally, last but not least, the City of Angels offers a number of reasons for music lovers to book a vacation. Not only is the weather beautiful, but there are also a ton of iconic music venues and locations to visit that have hosted countless bands or musicians at one point in time. Here are just a few places to visit.
- Hollywood Bowl
- Walt Disney Concert Hall
- Amoeba Records
- The Grammy Museum
- Capitol Records Building
Book Your Trip to One of These Music-Lover Travel Destinations
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