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Welcome to Franklin, Tennessee, a charming city nestled in the heart of Williamson County. Known for its rich history, vibrant culture, and picturesque landscapes, Franklin offers visitors a unique blend of Southern hospitality and modern amenities. Whether you’re a history buff, a foodie, or an outdoor enthusiast, there’s something for everyone in this bustling town. In this guide, we’ll take you through the must-see attractions, the best times to visit, how to get here, and more.



Short History Overview of Franklin, TN

Founded in 1799, Franklin boasts a storied past that is deeply rooted in the history of the American South. Named after Benjamin Franklin, the city played a significant role in the Civil War, serving as a strategic location during the Battle of Franklin in 1864. Today, Franklin’s historic downtown district showcases beautifully preserved antebellum homes, Civil War sites, and a thriving arts scene that pays homage to its rich heritage.

Franklin was created in 1784 from part of the territory west of the Appalachian Mountains that had been offered by North Carolina as a cession to Congress to help pay off debts related to the American War for Independence. It was founded with the intent of becoming the 14th state of the new United States. Franklin’s first capital was Jonesborough.

franklin city neighborhood in the fall


Best Time to Visit Franklin, TN

The best time to visit Franklin is during the spring and fall months when the weather is mild, and the surrounding landscapes come alive with vibrant colors. Spring brings blooming flowers and pleasant temperatures ideal for exploring outdoor attractions, while fall offers crisp air and stunning foliage, perfect for scenic drives and leisurely strolls through downtown.


What to See in Franklin, TN

Franklin offers a plethora of attractions for visitors to explore. Don’t miss:

  • Historic Downtown Franklin: Take a stroll down Main Street and admire the beautifully preserved Victorian architecture, boutique shops, and art galleries.
  • Carnton Plantation: Step back in time at the historic Carnton plantation, which served as a field hospital during the Civil War. Explore the grounds and learn about the site’s poignant history.
  • Lotz House Museum: Discover the stories of the Lotz family and their experiences during the Battle of Franklin at this meticulously preserved Civil War-era home turned museum.
  • Franklin Theatre: Catch a show at the iconic Franklin Theatre, a beloved local landmark that hosts live performances, concerts, and film screenings year-round.

historic franklin cannon

What to Do in Franklin, TN

From outdoor adventures to culinary delights, Franklin offers a wide range of activities to suit every interest:

  • Explore the Natchez Trace Parkway: Embark on a scenic drive along the historic Natchez Trace Parkway, stopping at overlooks and hiking trails along the way.
  • Food and Wine Tasting: Indulge in the local culinary scene with a food and wine tasting tour, featuring farm-to-table fare and award-winning wines from nearby vineyards.
  • Outdoor Recreation: Enjoy outdoor activities such as hiking, biking, and kayaking at nearby parks and nature preserves, including Harpeth River State Park and Bowie Nature Park


How to Get to Franklin, TN from Nashville, TN

Franklin is conveniently located just 21 miles south of Nashville, making it easily accessible by car via Interstate 65. Additionally, several transportation companies offer shuttle services and guided tours from Nashville to Franklin for those without access to a vehicle. Here are some transportation options to consider when planning your trip from Nashville to Franklin:


The most convenient way to reach Franklin from Nashville is by car, typically via Interstate 65 South. The drive takes approximately 30-40 minutes, depending on traffic conditions. With plenty of parking options available in downtown Franklin, driving offers flexibility and convenience for exploring the area at your own pace.


Ride-Sharing Services (Uber/Lyft):

For travelers without access to a car or those looking to avoid the hassle of driving, ride-sharing services like Uber and Lyft are popular alternatives. Pros include convenience, door-to-door service, and the ability to split fares among friends or family traveling together. However, costs may vary depending on demand and time of day, and availability may be limited in less densely populated areas.


VIP and Private Transportation:

For a more personalized experience, consider VIP and private transportation services offered by companies like Mint Julep Experiences. With a fleet of SUVs and large passenger buses, these services provide comfortable and stylish transportation from Nashville to Franklin. Pros include professional drivers, spacious vehicles, and the flexibility to customize your itinerary. Whether you’re traveling solo, with a group, or for a special occasion, VIP transportation offers a hassle-free way to reach your destination in style. Learn more about transportation services in Nashville and to nearby towns like Franklin, Shelbyville, and Lynchburg.

Mint Julep Nashville Tours on Bus


Guided Tours:

For a comprehensive and immersive experience, guided tours from Nashville to Franklin are an excellent option. Companies like Mint Julep Experiences offer guided tours with transportation included in the itinerary and ticket price. Pros include knowledgeable guides who provide insights into the area’s history, culture, and attractions, as well as the convenience of having transportation arranged for you. Whether you’re interested in exploring Franklin’s historic sites, sampling local cuisine, or enjoying wine tastings at nearby vineyards, guided tours offer a curated experience tailored to your interests.

Group on Bus Tour on Kentucky Bourbon Trail

Sample Tour Itinerary: Nashville to Franklin, TN with Mint Julep Experiences:

With a carefully curated itinerary that showcases the best of the region’s distilleries, culinary delights, and historic landmarks, you’ll gain a deeper appreciation for this charming Southern destination. So sit back, relax, and let Mint Julep Experiences guide you on an unforgettable journey through Franklin’s rich heritage and vibrant culture.


Duration: 5 hours


  • Tour & Tasting at Local Craft Distillery: Begin your journey with a visit to a local Franklin distillery, where you’ll learn about the art of distillation and sample a variety of handcrafted spirits, from whiskey to gin. Discover the rich heritage of Tennessee whiskey-making and enjoy tastings of small-batch creations.
  • Tasting at Local Craft Distillery & Coffee House: Next, stop by a local craft distillery and coffee house. Indulge in a tasting of their specialty spirits, paired with artisanal coffee blends for a truly unique sensory experience.
  • Lunch in Franklin: After your tastings, enjoy time for lunch at your leisure. Our guides will have a few recommendations for you to choose from— one of our favorites is a historic industrial complex turned cultural hub. Explore a variety of dining options, from Southern comfort food to international cuisine, and savor the flavors of Franklin at your leisure.
  • Shopping in the Franklin Square: Take advantage of your time in downtown Franklin to explore the charming shops and boutiques that line Main Street. From antiques and artisan crafts to clothing and home goods, there’s something for everyone to discover in Franklin’s vibrant retail scene.

Additional Add-Ons (Optional):

  • Tour Historic Civil War Battle Site: Extend your tour with a visit to a historic Civil War battle site, such as Carnton or the Lotz House Museum. Learn about the pivotal role Franklin played in the Civil War and gain insight into the lives of soldiers and civilians during this tumultuous period in American history.
  • Additional Time for Shopping: If you’re a dedicated shopper, consider adding extra time for exploring downtown Franklin’s shops and galleries. From unique souvenirs to locally made goods, there’s no shortage of treasures to uncover in this charming town.
  • Third Distillery for Tasting: For those with a keen interest in spirits, consider adding a visit to a third distillery for an additional tasting experience. Discover even more flavors and techniques as you sample a wider range of handcrafted beverages crafted with care by local artisans.


Travel with Mint Julep Experiences to Franklin, TN

  • Tailored Itinerary
  • VIP Transportation
  • Reservation Coordination
  • Admissions & Entries
  • Speciality Experiences


Things to Know When Visiting Franklin, TN

Before you visit Franklin, here are a few tips to keep in mind:


  • Parking: Downtown Franklin offers ample parking options, including street parking and public lots.
  • Weather: Be prepared for hot and humid summers and cool winters with occasional snowfall.
  • Hospitality: Embrace the Southern hospitality and friendliness of the locals, who are always eager to welcome visitors with a warm smile and a friendly hello.


Annual Events in Franklin, TN

Throughout the year, Franklin hosts a variety of festivals and events that showcase the city’s culture and community spirit. Some annual highlights include the Main Street Festival, Pumpkinfest, and Dickens of a Christmas, a festive holiday celebration held in downtown Franklin.


A Day in Franklin, TN

Start your day with a leisurely breakfast at one of Franklin’s charming cafes before embarking on a historic walking tour of downtown. Explore local shops and galleries, then enjoy a delicious lunch at a farm-to-table restaurant. In the afternoon, visit Carnton or the Lotz House Museum to delve into the city’s Civil War history. Finish your day with dinner and live music at a downtown restaurant, soaking in the vibrant atmosphere of this dynamic city.

Whether you’re drawn to its rich history, lively culture, or scenic beauty, Franklin, Tennessee, offers a memorable experience for travelers of all ages. Plan your visit today and discover why Franklin is a destination unlike any other in the South!


Frequently Asked Questions about Franklin, TN

Is Franklin safe to visit?

Yes, Franklin is generally considered a safe and welcoming destination for visitors.

Are there guided tours available?

Yes, several companies offer guided walking tours, ghost tours, and historical tours of Franklin. Mint Julep Experiences can help coordinate specific tours and experiences when you book a custom tour and transportation from Nashville to Franklin.

What are some family-friendly activities in Franklin?
Families can enjoy exploring local parks, visiting the Adventure Science Center, and attending family-friendly events such as Movies in the Park.