Saturday, 9 August 2014

The Annual Chaplin Family Road Trip - Day 3 & 4

Day 3 - Nashville Tennessee - 14th July

As much as we were very tempted to stay and have a relaxing day at the hotel, Nashville beckoned, so after a swim in the outdoor pool we headed into Nashville in time for lunch at the famous Jack's BBQ which was fabulous, after lunch, and completely on the spur of the moment we popped inside a bar to see a country music band and have a quick beer. The band and music was great, near the end they took requests and rather humbly sang a Taylor Swift song for our girls.

After our little music adventure, Mr C wanted to visit the shop of the American Pickers, a TV show we enjoy here, only 8 blocks walk he said, in heat of 100f, 8 blocks soon turned into a few miles of walking in no shade, but we finally made it, in need of a drink.

The American Pickers shop was great, it was a wonderful collection of American history not all things were for sale but it was good to visit and was very interesting.

We certainly weren't going to walk back so we took a taxi back into Nashville to visit Hatch Show Print - a letterpress printing making company who started their business creating show posters in the late 1800's and they have been famous ever since.

Not only a retail shop, but you can see into the print side of the company and see them printing up posters, each one unique.

And afterwards we couldn't resist a quick visit to the Country Music Hall of Fame retail shop - where the girls tried out the (fake) guitars - I think Tilly may be born for stardom.

After a long but great afternoon in Nashville we headed back to the hotel for a lovely dinner at Cascades, a restaurant in the hotel.

We retreated back to our rooms for a night cap of Jim Beam Fire whilst watching the lovely water/light show from our balcony.

Day 4 - Nashville, TN to Gatlingburg TN - 15th July

After a quick breakfast and swim we hit the road as we had quite a drive to Gatlingburg, 215 miles, our next stop for our Smoky Mountains adventure.

Our journey to Gatlingburg was rather uninteresting, we stopped a Cracker Barrel for lunch, then I saw a big sign on the freeway for a Yarn shop and made Mr C drive off to it, it was a lovely yarn shop too and I purchased some wool for a project.

On our way into Gatlingburg we passed through Pigeon Forge, home of Dollywood, passing through Pigeon Forge was an eye opener, full of attractions, on both sides of the road, such as Ripley's Believe it or not, Hollywood Wax Museum, carnival rides, lots of car racing rides, the girls couldn't get enough.

Once through Pigeon Forge, it wasn't long before we hit Gatlingburg, the gateway into the Smoky Mountains. The Smoky Mountains are America's most popular and visited National Park, more so than Yellowstone Park and The Grand Canyon put together.

After a short but winding trip into the Mountains, we reached our destination for the next 3 nights, the elegant Buckberry Lodge.

After settling in, and checking out the views of the Smoky Mountains from our room, we headed back down the mountain, for dinner in Gatlingburg and a wander around the shops, stopping to see laffy taffy being made, and sampling Moonshine.

Our visit to Dollywood coming up next.

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