Tennessee Country Christmas

November 30 –  December 6, 2023 • 7 Days • Estimated price – $2100-$2500

We invite you to join us and experience the holiday lights and sparkle of Nashville, the natural beauty of Kentucky’s subterranean wonderland at Mammoth Cave National Park, and Georgia’s marvelous Lookout Mountain attractions!

NOTE: Details presented below are from the most recent edition of this tour planned for 2021. Final details will be available soon, along with a priority invitation to register for those who JOIN THE LIST in advance. To get your name on the list to receive this advance invitation to register, click the blue JOIN THE LIST button to the right and enter your contact information and tour of choice.

Tour Type: Classic Curated

Enjoy walks and holiday fun throughout 3 states – Tennessee, Kentucky and Georgia!

Highlights:

  • Nashville, “Music City, USA,” showcasing the amazing  lights and Christmastime atmosphere of Opryland Hotel
  • Belle Meade Plantation and the Hermitage (home of President Andrew Jackson)
  • A Broadway Christmas Show at the Grand Ole Opry
  • An underground walk at the biggest cave in the world— Mammoth Cave National Park—featuring an unforgettable Christmas Cave Sing and subterranean stroll by candlelight
  • A stay at the old Chattanooga Choo Choo Railroad (now a hotel)
  • The amazing natural beauty of Ruby Falls, Rock City, and Lookout Mountain
  • Fascinating Civil War history along the Tennessee/Georgia Border in Chattanooga!

This is a draft itinerary. Revisions will be made, and an updated itinerary with finalized dates and pricing will be made available!

Including:

  • All land travel as outlined
  • Superior tourist-class hotel accommodations – 4 nights in the same hotel near Opryland in Nashville and 2 nights in Chattanooga
  • Hotel to airport transfer on last day
  • 7 Meals: All breakfasts and 1 dinner as listed in itinerary (BD)
  • 5 walks as listed (3 different states: Tennessee, Kentucky, and Georgia!)
  • Fees for those collecting AVA walking credit
  • All tipping for local guides, coach drivers, and group meals
  • WAI guide service throughout
  • Pricing is based on double occupancy. A limited number of single rooms are available for a supplement. We also provide a roommate matching service.

Activities/Entrance Fees:

  • Belle Meade Plantation
  • Christmas Broadway Show at Grand Ole Opry
  • The Hermitage (President Andrew Jackson’s home)
  • Opryland Hotel’s Christmas Displays (ICE, Hall of Trees, and Craft Show)
  • Delta Riverboat ride inside Opryland Hotel
  • Mammoth Cave National Park (including Christmas Cave Sing)
  • Rock City in Georgia
  • Chattanooga’s Incline Railway
  • Ruby Falls
  • More fun stops than we can list!

Optional Excursion:

  • Tennessee Aquarium – Chattanooga (Day 5)

Adventure Pace

Tour Pace: 1 2 3 4 5
Walk Challenge: 1 2 3 4 5

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Important Info

Group Size

Approximately 24-28 travelers

Hotels

Superior tourist-class hotel accommodations – 4 nights in the same hotel near Opryland in Nashville and 2 nights in Chattanooga

Meals

7 Meals: All breakfasts included with 1 Dinner as listed. Letters BD indicate which meals are included.

Airfare

Not included. We can connect you with a local travel agent that can help with airfare bookings! This tour starts and finishes in Nashville, TN.

Transportation

Included. We use motorcoaches with a seating capacity of 40+ seats.

Traveler Age

Our travelers usually range from 50–75 years of age. All ages welcome!

Your Guide

Scott IsomScott Isom has had a passion for the outdoors ever since his childhood days spent exploring the waterfalls and outstanding hiking trails of the Columbia River Gorge with his family. Scott has led tours on all 7 continents and is one of WAI’s busiest guides and on-site Adventure planners. Scott will be lead guide on our Tennessee Country Christmas tour.

Itinerary

NOTE: Information below comes from the last edition of this tour and will be updated closer to the time of registration.

Click on each day to reveal more details. BD refers to meals included, Breakfast and Dinner.

DAY 1: Arrive in Nashville, TN

Travelers arrive from across the country today into Nashville, Tennessee, affectionately known as “Music City, USA”. We rendezvous at our hotel near Opryland, where we begin a 7-day and 6-night Country Christmas celebration spanning 3 states. Following a get-acquainted orientation this evening, feel free to explore the dazzling Christmas sights and sounds of Opryland Hotel.

DAY 2: Activities in Nashville (B)

Nashville Scholars Walk – 11 km, rated 2A

We start our morning with a walk in Nashville featuring the campuses of Vanderbilt and Belmont Universities, and a stroll down Nashville’s famous Music Row to view a full scale replica of the Parthenon. Our coach then takes us down the road for a Christmas Tour at historic Belle Meade Plantation, one of America’s premier thoroughbred horse farms. A wonderful Christmas Broadway Show caps off our day at the Grand Ole Opry.

DAY 3: Activities from Nashville (B)

Nashville Capitol Walk – 12 km, rated 3A

Our second morning in Nashville begins with a walk focusing on the Tennessee state capitol, Bicentennial Mall, and historic Ryman Auditorium. After a lunch stop, we look forward to presidential treatment during a Holiday Tour at the Hermitage, home of our seventh commander-in-chief, Andrew Jackson. Enjoy dinner on your own this evening at one of the area’s numerous restaurants. Also consider imbibing the marvelous Christmas ambiance of Opryland Hotel, using your included tickets to ride the indoor Delta Riverboats or explore a magical world of ice sculptures.

DAY 4: Activities in Mammoth Cave National Park, KY (B)

Mammoth Cave Walk – 10 km, rated 2B

A short drive into Kentucky this morning connects us with the largest subterranean wonderland on the planet, Mammoth Cave National Park. Prepare for spectacular natural sights as we embark on an underground/above ground walk. Witness the famous “Frozen Niagara” cave formation as well as numerous sinkholes, disappearing streams, and springs common among Kentucky’s karst landscape. Be filled with yuletide cheer as we participate in the annual Cave Sing and Storytelling event, a unique and memorable Christmas tradition dating back to 1883 that takes place only one day each year in the decorated and candlelit chambers of Mammoth Cave. After our time in the Bluegrass State, we return to Nashville for a little down time, or more Opryland exploration.

DAY 5: Nashville – Chattanooga (B)

Chattanooga Downtown River Walk – 10 km, rated 2A

Today we shuffle down the tracks a couple of hours to charming Chattanooga, enjoying a downtown walk that features the Chattanooga Choo Choo and Walnut Street Bridge, the country’s longest pedestrian bridge. During your free time this afternoon, you may want to dive in to the fascinating environment of the world-class Tennessee Aquarium (optional), or consider exploring the sprawling grounds of our hotel, built on the 24-acre site of the Chattanooga Choo Choo Terminal Station. This evening, we receive a little geological inspiration in our third state, Georgia, as we explore Rock City, a marvel of nature featuring massive ancient rock formations, gardens, and a wonderful display of Christmas lights.

DAY 6: Activities in Chattanooga (BD)

Lookout Mountain/Ruby Falls Walk – 10 km, rated 2C

After a brief drive back into the Peach State, we navigate the scenic and historic footpaths of Lookout Mountain during a combination Georgia/ Tennessee walk. Along the way, we discover the Civil War history of “The Battle Above the Clouds” and experience “America’s Most Amazing Mile” as we descend down the 72.7% grade of Chattanooga’s Incline Railway. We then soak up more Christmas ambiance at impressive, 145 foot tall Ruby Falls, one of the largest underground waterfalls open to the public. A fitting finish to our day comes at a Choo-Choo themed Farewell Dinner at our Chattanooga hotel.

DAY 7: Depart from Nashville (B)

Following breakfast at our hotel, we reminisce together on our coach ride back to the Nashville airport for flights homeward. Full of Christmas cheer and warm memories of our 3-state holiday extravaganza, we hope ‘Yule’ be back to join us for a future Adventure real soon!

More Details

NOTE: Information below comes from the last edition of this tour and will be updated closer to the time of registration.

Click on each heading for more details.

How do I lock in my place on this Adventure?

To register, a non-refundable $300 deposit is required to hold your spot. A final payment is due 90 days before departure and is non-refundable after the due date. You will receive a prompt email from us a week or two in advance.

Soon after registration, an “Adventure Advice” email will be sent with critical information on flight arrangements as well as important steps to take in the months before your trip. Please do not buy your airline tickets until you review this Adventure Advice email.

Follow this link to read our full General Tour Conditions.

How is airfare arranged?

Our official start and finish point is Nashville, TN. More details about flight arrangements and travel agent contact information will be available after this tour has been finalized.

What about the walks?

We generally walk at a pace of 2 to 3 miles per hour. In most cases, we are not “strolling.” We are walking at a relaxed but steady pace. Your experience will be significantly affected by your level of physical fitness. If not walking regularly at home, we strongly recommend that you make a priority of “training” beforehand in order to both enjoy the trip and avoid medical issues due to over-exertion. If you have questions about your ability to participate, please contact our office at 1-800-779-0353.

We have adopted a walk difficulty rating system which contains a numeric indicator for trail incline and an alpha indicator for trail terrain. The explanation for this system is presented below:

INCLINE

1. Very small hills or very little stair climbing. Cumulative elevation gain from Starting Point: up to 200 feet.
2. Some moderate hills and stair climbing. Cumulative elevation gain from Starting Point: 200-1000 feet.
3. Some significant hill or stair climbing. Cumulative elevation gain from Starting Point: 1000-2000 feet.
4. Lots of significant hills or stair climbing. Cumulative elevation gain from Starting Point: 2000-3500 feet.
5. Many steep hills. Cumulative elevation gain from Starting Point: more than 3500 feet.

TERRAIN

A. Almost entirely on pavement.
B. A significant part of the route is on well-groomed trails with very few obstacles.
C. A significant part of the route is on somewhat difficult terrain (rocky / rooted paths or soft sand).
D. A significant part of the route is on very difficult terrain.
E. The majority of the route is on very difficult terrain.

Tour Cancellations

Walking Adventures International reserves the right to cancel any tour departure with fewer than 15 participants, in which case registered participants will receive a 100% refund of payments received. This refund policy contains one exclusion related to the COVID-19 outbreak. Many suppliers require non-refundable deposits as a condition of booking services. Unforeseen circumstances linked to the virus can force us to cancel a tour. Due to these supplier’s non-refundable policies, WAI intends to retrieve as much of these deposits as possible, but cannot guarantee a 100% refund. In cases where full refunds cannot be obtained for a cancelled tour, we will do our best to transfer unrefunded money as traveler credits to be applied to a future tour to that destination.

View our full Coronavirus FAQ for more details. 

What happens next?

Upon registering for this Adventure, you will receive a welcome email and initial invoice notifying you of your tour balance and due date. All payments for the tour or optional services/excursions can now be made online.

Soon after registration, an “Adventure Advice” email will be sent with critical information on flight arrangements as well as important steps to take in the months before your trip. Please do not buy your airline tickets until you review this Adventure Advice email.

A final payment is due 90 days before departure and is non-refundable after the due date. You will receive a prompt email from us a week or two in advance. Please see our General Tour Conditions for the full terms and conditions for participation in this Adventure.

Around 2-3 weeks before departure, you will receive a final email packet with details of the program, including hotel names and contact information, a list of fellow travelers, and a more detailed daily schedule.

Take a few minutes to peruse the Tennessee Country Christmas itinerary. We are eager to share the natural and cultural wonders of this fun Yuletide Adventure in Tennessee!