Goodlettsville, Tennessee

Make the Great Escape to Goodlettsville, Tennessee

Often called “Nashville’s neighbor,” Goodlettsville is a charming city with plenty of things to do from shopping to eating and more.

Just 12 miles north of downtown Music City, Goodlettsville is often called “Nashville’s neighbor.” But this charming Southern city is neighborly in more than just its geographic location: It’s also full of friendly faces, welcoming events and home-cooked meals. Enjoy the best of both worlds by retreating to the tranquility of Goodlettsville after a busy day of sightseeing.

Small-Town Flavors in Goodlettsville

Goodlettsville may be this city’s formal name, but Good(eats)ville would suit it just the same. From Southern delicacies to surprisingly sophisticated plates, there’s something for every palette here. 

When it comes to homemade dishes, it doesn’t get much better than a scratch-made pasta. Owned by Andrea and Annabella Galifi, (the former raised in Rome, Italy) Pasta Galifi specializes in authentic Italian cuisine. Guests can choose from over 20 types of specialty pasta, all made with fresh, quality ingredients. Whether you’re enjoying spaghetti, linguine or a cannoli for dessert, there’s no doubt you'll be saying, “buon appetito!”

Speaking of fresh flavors, you’d be hard pressed to find fresher cuts of fish than those at Japan House. Known as Japanese “fast food,” they offer a variety of traditional Japanese dishes that are all MSG free – including vegetable tempura, teriyaki chicken and steak, and a variety of sushi rolls and cuts.

Though the diverse options are abundant here, it just wouldn’t be a trip to the South without a little Southern comfort food. Mama’s Kitchen is just that – taking on a persona that any Southern Mama would be proud of. This local-favorite buffet serves up everything from deviled eggs and chicken and dumplings to pies and cobblers galore. Likewise, Ruby’s Kitchen will have you feeling right at home with a cozy atmosphere and food to match. Their weekly specials include hushpuppies, roast beef, chicken casserole, baked apples and pinto beans. 

And if you need a pick-me-up after all that fine dining, Goodlettsville has that, too. Lasater’s Coffee & Tea, Cars Café Coffee and Authentic Coffee Company are all unique (and entertaining) places to get your fix.

Natural Wonders in Goodlettsville

Whether you’re looking for an afternoon activity or a sunset stroll, Goodlettsville provides plenty of places to take in the beauty of Mother Nature. The Grand Ole RV Resort and Market offers 130 full hookup sites plus amenities like laundry for family-friendly camping year round. Prefer more traditional accommodations? Take your pick from more than 1,500 affordable hotel rooms around the city.

Five of Goodlettsville’s six parks include playgrounds – and the 147-acre Moss-Wright Park also has ballfields, a paved walking trail, a dog park and a Level II–certified arboretum comprising 64 trees. Peay Park boasts tennis and pickleball courts as well as a can’t-miss summer destination for kids: the free Splash Pad at Peay Park, a series of exhilarating water cannons, fountains and tunnels. Don’t worry, there’s a protected seating area for family members who want to stay dry.

Speaking of activities with a view, the 18-hole course at Twelve Stones Golf Club is centered around the meandering Manning Creek. After your round, grab a drink or sit down for a meal at Sand Trap at 12 Stones


Top Shops in Goodlettsville

There’s nothing like the thrill of scoring a unique find, and the odds are in your favor in Goodlettsville. Just a couple miles from RiverGate Mall, the city’s antiques district encompasses Rare Bird Antique Mall, the Goodlettsville Antique Mall and Cast & Found Vintiques, each overflowing with treasures from the past. Must-visit apparel shops include Cottonwood Boutique and Rust & Ruffles, while those with an eye for home accessories can explore Chic Artique for decor and a dedicated architectural salvage section. On the hunt for a small gift or trinket to take home? Drop by the Goodlettsville Visitor’s Center Gift Shop for souvenirs, “GOOD”-emblazoned apparel and locally made treats like Willa’s Mercantile gourmet shortbread and Brittle Brothers’ homemade brittle – with flavors ranging from peanut to bacon. 

Hands-On History Attractions in Goodlettsville

A tour of Historic Mansker’s Station invites you to walk through the doors of two notable structures: an authentic reproduction of a 1779 frontier fort and the oldest brick home in Middle Tennessee. Mansker’s Fort – which commemorates the original built by Kasper Mansker, a settler who helped establish the Cumberland region’s local government – affords visitors a glimpse into frontier life through period-dressed interpreters and demonstrations. The two-story Bowen House, built in 1787 by Captain William Bowen, was restored in the 1970s and today retains about 70% of its original woodwork.

Enjoy Seasonal Events in Goodlettsville

Goodlettsville hosts many free events throughout the year (and some with a nominal fee), meaning you can experience something special every season. In April, Heritage Day delights crowds with interactive historical demonstrations of blacksmithing, leatherworking, woodworking and other trade skills from the frontier era. At the Goodlettsville Farmer’s Market, which runs from May to October, you’ll find vendors offering baked goods, produce, barbecue, shaved ice, candles, soaps, and much more. The annual Independence Day Celebration honors July 4th with music, food vendors, a Kids Zone, and a fireworks finale. 

October brings a major holiday event: GOODFest & Fall Market, with over 100 vendor booths, artisans, kids’ activities and an array of food.

Yulefest, a decades-old Goodlettsville tradition, kicks off the winter holiday season 18th-century style with carriage rides, a handbell choir, and period costumes. And throughout December, the Candy Cane Village takes over the grounds of City Hall with tiny houses that have been decked out by local sponsors – photo ops are encouraged!

So, gas up the car and head to Goodlettsville to experience some Southern charm!

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