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Family Vacations In Nashville-Davidson: A Huffington Post Travel Guide

09/05/2011 01:50 pm ET | Updated Oct 31, 2011

Family vacations in Nashville-Davidson can be rewarding experiences or absolute disasters -- it all depends on pretrip homework. To make planning easier, we've done all the preparation. As part of a Huffington Post Travel series on traveling with children, here are recommended attractions for those planning Nashville-Davidson family vacations.

Nashville Shores Water Park


Nashville Shores Water Park has something for all ages, including "beaches," where families with younger kids can hang out and rest, and Jet Skis and kayaks, for older members of the family looking to get their heartbeats going. Admission to the water park is half-off after 3 p.m., and an RV resort with special parking packages is available.

Address: 4001 Bell Road, Hermitage, TN 37076
Phone: 615-889-7050
Hours: Open weekends only in late May, daily during the summer and weekends only from late August to mid-September. Open 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday through Saturday and 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. Sunday. Check the park's official website for more details.
Price: General admission for those 48 inches tall and taller, $29.99; juniors under 48 inches, seniors 62 and older and military (with valid ID), $24.99.

Adventure Science Center


A favorite feature of the Adventure Science Center is the highly interactive adventure tower, which has some of the best views in Nashville. Smaller children can take advantage of hands-on workshops and exhibits, while older children will love the flight simulator. Other features include a walk-on piano, a skin-climbing wall and a vertebrae ladder.

Address: 800 Fort Negley Blvd., Nashville, TN 37203
Phone: 615-862-5160
Hours: Open 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Saturday and 12:30 to 5:30 p.m. Sunday; closed Thanksgiving and Christmas.
Price: Under age 2, free; ages 2 to 12 years, $8; adults and teens, $10.

Frist Center for the Visual Arts


Offering free admission for children 18 and under, Frist Center for the Visual Arts provides families with guides to the galleries and a drop-in art center for kids. There are summer camps for kids if the visit is an extended stay, and the cafe features kid-friendly menu options, such as grilled cheese, corn dogs and chicken fingers.

Address: 919 Broadway, Nashville, TN 37203-3822
Phone: 866-244-3341
Hours: Open 10 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Monday through Wednesday, 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. Thursday and Friday, 10 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Saturday and 1 to 5:30 p.m. Sunday.
Price: Kids 18 and under, free; adults, $10.

The Grand Ole Opry


The Grand Ole Opry is the longest-running radio show in America and where many country music stars got their start. Kids will identify with stars such as Carrie Underwood and Kellie Pickler -- two of the many artists who perform live shows in the entertainment complex. Take a tour and see a live show to maximize your experience with the family.

Address: 2802 Opryland Drive, Nashville, TN 37214
Phone: 615-871-OPRY
Hours: The dates and hours are specific to show and tour times, so it's best to plan ahead and call for more information.
Price: Ticket prices depend on the event.

Willie Nelson and Friends Museum & General Store


The Willie Nelson and Friends Museum & General Store holds much of the country icon's personal memorabilia, as well as items that belonged to some of his celebrity friends -- Dolly Parton, Johnny Cash and Patsy Cline, to name a few. In the general store, patrons can purchase some of their favorite souvenirs to commemorate their trip.

Address: 2613 McGavock Pike, Nashville, TN 37214
Phone: 615-885-1515
Hours: Open 8:30 a.m. to 9 p.m. Monday through Saturday and 8:30 a.m. to 8 p.m. Sunday.
Price: Entrance to the museum is free.

Nashville Zoo at Grassmere


The Nashville Zoo at Grassmere has attractions for kids of all ages, including a petting zoo for preschoolers, a jungle gym and a 66,000-square-foot wooden playground and climbing adventure. The zoo prides itself on providing many opportunities for hands-on experiences with some of the animals. It also features a wild animal carousel and zoo train.

Address: 3777 Nolensville Pike, Nashville, TN 37211-3324
Phone: 615-833-1534
Hours: Open 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. mid-March through mid-October and 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. mid-October through mid-March. It's not open Thanksgiving, Christmas or New Year's Day.
Price: Under 2, free; children 2 to 12 years, $9; seniors, $12; adults and teens, $14.

The General Jackson Showboat


The General Jackson Showboat is a 300-foot ship with four decks that hosts numerous concerts and shows. There are multiple dining rooms on this ship, which has been designed to look like a 19th-century riverboat. This cruise is best for children age 5 and older, as all of the attractions may overwhelm babies and toddlers.

What's your favorite vacations spot in the Nashville-Davidson area?

Lead photo: Trevecca Student Government/ Flickr
Mid photo: Joe Shlabotnik/ Flickr

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