Embarking on a road trip from Oklahoma to Nashville? Congratulations! You’re in for an incredible adventure filled with stunning landscapes, memorable experiences, and the freedom of the open road. But even the most dedicated road trippers need a break now and then. That’s why it’s essential to plan for a good stopover along the way.
Choosing the right stopover destination can turn a long drive into an exciting and fulfilling part of your journey. Fortunately, there are several fantastic options between Oklahoma and Nashville that offer a blend of natural beauty, cultural attractions, and unique experiences. Whether you’re looking to explore a vibrant city, relax in a scenic location, or indulge in local cuisine, there’s something for everyone.
So, fasten your seat belts and get ready to explore some of the best stopover options between Oklahoma and Nashville. Each destination offers its own charm and attractions, ensuring that your road trip remains a memorable experience from start to finish.
Option 1: Memphis, Tennessee
Located on the banks of the Mississippi River, Memphis, Tennessee, is a vibrant and culturally rich city that serves as an ideal stopover between Oklahoma and Nashville. Known as the birthplace of the blues and the home of Elvis Presley, Memphis offers a unique blend of history, music, and mouthwatering cuisine.
No visit to Memphis is complete without a visit to Graceland, the iconic home of Elvis Presley. Take a tour of the mansion, explore the exhibits, and immerse yourself in the life and legacy of the King of Rock ‘n’ Roll.
For music enthusiasts, a trip to Beale Street is a must. This iconic street is lined with historic clubs and venues that have hosted legendary musicians such as B.B. King and Louis Armstrong. Immerse yourself in the soulful sounds of live music and enjoy the lively atmosphere of this famous street.
In addition to its musical heritage, Memphis is also known for its mouthwatering barbecue. Indulge in some finger-licking ribs, pulled pork, or smoked brisket at one of the city’s renowned barbecue joints. The flavors and aromas will leave you craving for more.
If you’re looking to explore the history and culture of Memphis, a visit to the National Civil Rights Museum is a must. Located at the site of the Lorraine Motel, where Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. was assassinated, this museum offers a powerful and educational experience, allowing visitors to gain a deeper understanding of the civil rights movement.
Wrap up your visit to Memphis by taking a scenic cruise along the Mississippi River. Hop on a riverboat and enjoy breathtaking views of the city skyline while learning about the history of this majestic river.
With its rich musical heritage, vibrant nightlife, delectable cuisine, and historical significance, Memphis offers a perfect stopover destination that will leave you with unforgettable memories.
Option 2: Little Rock, Arkansas
Situated along the banks of the Arkansas River, Little Rock, Arkansas, is a hidden gem that makes for an excellent stopover on your road trip from Oklahoma to Nashville. This charming city offers a delightful combination of natural beauty, fascinating history, and a vibrant art scene.
Start your visit to Little Rock by exploring the River Market District. This bustling neighborhood is home to a variety of shops, restaurants, and galleries, making it the perfect place to grab a bite to eat or pick up a unique souvenir.
No trip to Little Rock is complete without a visit to the William J. Clinton Presidential Library. Discover the fascinating exhibits that delve into the life and presidency of one of the nation’s most influential leaders. Take a stroll along the adjoining riverside park for stunning views of the Arkansas River.
Nature enthusiasts will enjoy a visit to Pinnacle Mountain State Park. Lace up your hiking boots and tackle the trails that wind through this beautiful park, offering breathtaking views from the top of Pinnacle Mountain. Alternatively, you can rent a kayak or canoe and explore the calm waters of Lake Maumelle.
For a taste of the local cuisine, head to the historic Hillcrest neighborhood, known for its eclectic mix of dining options. From farm-to-table eateries to delicious food trucks, you’ll find a culinary adventure waiting for you.
Art lovers will appreciate the Arkansas Arts Center, which boasts an impressive collection of American, European, and contemporary art. Explore the galleries and immerse yourself in the diverse world of artistic expression.
Before you hit the road again, make sure to explore the Big Dam Bridge, the longest pedestrian and bicycle bridge in North America. Take in panoramic views of the Arkansas River and enjoy a leisurely walk or bike ride across this architectural marvel.
With its mix of history, natural beauty, and artistic charm, Little Rock offers a delightful stopover that will leave you wanting to come back for more.
Option 3: Hot Springs, Arkansas
If you’re in need of relaxation and rejuvenation on your road trip from Oklahoma to Nashville, look no further than Hot Springs, Arkansas. This charming town is nestled in the Ouachita Mountains and is famous for its natural hot springs, beautiful landscapes, and rich history.
Start your visit to Hot Springs by exploring Bathhouse Row, a collection of historic bathhouses that line Central Avenue. Take a soak in the thermal waters at one of the bathhouses and indulge in a luxurious spa treatment. The healing properties of these natural springs have attracted visitors for centuries.
For a dose of history, visit the Hot Springs National Park Visitor Center. Learn about the town’s rich history, geology, and the importance of preserving this unique natural resource. Take a stroll along the Grand Promenade, a scenic pathway that offers panoramic views of the surrounding mountains and the historic bathhouses.
Outdoor enthusiasts will find plenty to do in Hot Springs. Take a hike in Hot Springs National Park and explore the network of trails that wind their way through the forested mountains. If you’re up for an adventure, try your luck fishing on Lake Hamilton or Lake Ouachita, known for their abundance of bass and crappie.
For a unique experience, visit the Mid-America Science Museum. This interactive museum offers hands-on exhibits and engaging displays that cater to visitors of all ages. Discover the wonders of science, technology, and nature in a fun and educational environment.
No visit to Hot Springs is complete without sampling the local cuisine. Indulge in some mouthwatering Southern comfort food, from traditional barbecue to delicious fried catfish. The town is also home to a thriving craft beer scene, so be sure to visit one of the local breweries and savor a pint of their finest brew.
Before you hit the road again, don’t forget to take a scenic drive along the Hot Springs Mountain Tower. This 216-foot observation tower offers stunning 360-degree views of the surrounding area, allowing you to truly appreciate the natural beauty of Hot Springs.
With its relaxing hot springs, outdoor activities, rich history, and delicious cuisine, Hot Springs provides the perfect stopover destination for those seeking a rejuvenating break.
Option 4: Branson, Missouri
If you’re looking for a destination that offers entertainment and family-friendly fun, Branson, Missouri, is the perfect stopover on your road trip from Oklahoma to Nashville. Nestled in the Ozark Mountains, Branson is known as the “Live Entertainment Capital of the World” and offers a wide range of attractions and shows for visitors of all ages.
Start your visit to Branson by exploring the famous Branson Strip, also known as Highway 76. This vibrant stretch is lined with theaters, restaurants, and attractions, offering an abundance of entertainment options. Catch one of the many live shows, ranging from music performances to comedy acts and magic shows.
If you’re a fan of country music, be sure to visit the Grand Country Music Hall, where you can enjoy live performances from talented musicians and singers. Dance along to country classics and embrace the lively atmosphere of this music-centric city.
For a fun-filled family adventure, visit Silver Dollar City, a theme park that combines thrilling rides, live shows, and unique crafts and demonstrations. From roller coasters to water rides, there’s something for everyone in the family to enjoy.
Take a break from the excitement and explore the natural beauty of the Ozark Mountains. Table Rock Lake offers ample opportunities for boating, fishing, and swimming. Rent a pontoon boat and spend the day cruising the clear waters or relax on the lakeshore and soak in the serene surroundings.
Branson is not just about entertainment; it also offers a variety of shopping opportunities. Visit the Branson Landing, a waterfront shopping and dining district, where you can browse through a range of boutiques, shops, and specialty stores. Enjoy a leisurely stroll along the waterfront and take in the scenic views.
Before you leave Branson, be sure to catch a ride on the Branson Scenic Railway. This vintage train takes you on a picturesque journey through the Ozark Mountains, offering breathtaking views and a glimpse into the area’s history.
With its lively entertainment scene, outdoor adventures, and shopping experiences, Branson is a stopover destination that offers something for everyone in the family to enjoy.
Option 5: Springfield, Missouri
Located in the heart of the Ozarks, Springfield, Missouri, is a vibrant city that offers a delightful stopover on your road trip from Oklahoma to Nashville. With its diverse attractions, rich history, and natural beauty, Springfield provides a perfect blend of urban excitement and outdoor adventures.
Begin your visit to Springfield by exploring the world-renowned Fantastic Caverns. Take a guided tour through this extensive cave system and marvel at the stunning rock formations and underground wonders. Learn about the fascinating history and geological significance of the caverns as you journey deep into the earth.
For a dose of history, visit the Wilson’s Creek National Battlefield, which preserves the site of the first major battle of the Civil War fought west of the Mississippi River. Take a self-guided tour of the battlefield and learn about the events that unfolded during this crucial moment in American history.
Art enthusiasts will appreciate a visit to the Springfield Art Museum, which houses a diverse collection of artwork from various periods and styles. From contemporary pieces to classic masterpieces, the museum offers a captivating journey through the world of art.
If you’re a fan of the outdoors, don’t miss the opportunity to visit Nathanael Greene/Close Memorial Park. This expansive park features beautiful walking trails, picnic areas, and a botanical center. Take a peaceful stroll amongst the lush greenery and admire the vibrant blooms.
For a taste of local flavor, head to C-Street Historic District. This charming neighborhood is filled with unique boutiques, art galleries, and delicious eateries. Explore the shops, sample local cuisine, and soak in the vibrant atmosphere of this thriving district.
Sports enthusiasts will be pleased to know that Springfield is home to professional baseball with the Springfield Cardinals. Catch a game at Hammons Field and cheer on the team as they play America’s favorite pastime.
End your visit to Springfield by treating your taste buds to some tasty barbecue. From mouthwatering ribs to savory pulled pork sandwiches, the city has several renowned barbecue joints that will satisfy your cravings.
With its combination of history, art, outdoor beauty, and culinary delights, Springfield offers a diverse range of attractions that will make your stopover a memorable one.
Option 6: St. Louis, Missouri
If you’re looking for a stopover destination that combines rich history, iconic landmarks, and cultural attractions, St. Louis, Missouri, is the perfect choice. Situated along the banks of the Mississippi River, this vibrant city offers a diverse range of experiences for travelers.
Start your visit to St. Louis by exploring the iconic Gateway Arch. Symbolizing the westward expansion of the United States, this architectural marvel is a must-see attraction. Ride to the top of the arch for stunning views of the city and the Mississippi River.
For history enthusiasts, a visit to the Missouri History Museum is a must. Dive into the rich history of St. Louis and learn about the city’s role in shaping the nation. Explore interactive exhibits, artifacts, and engaging displays that showcase the city’s past.
No trip to St. Louis is complete without a visit to the famous St. Louis Zoo. This world-class zoo is home to thousands of animals from around the world, providing an immersive and educational experience for visitors of all ages. From lions and tigers to penguins and elephants, there’s a vast array of wildlife to discover.
Another iconic attraction in St. Louis is the City Museum. This unique museum is known for its interactive exhibits, architectural wonders, and artistic displays. Climb through a massive jungle gym, explore hidden tunnels, and marvel at the intricate sculptures made from recycled materials.
If you’re a fan of baseball, catch a game at Busch Stadium and cheer on the St. Louis Cardinals. Immerse yourself in the electrifying atmosphere of a live game and experience the passion that St. Louis has for their beloved team.
For a taste of local cuisine, head to the historic Soulard neighborhood. This vibrant district is known for its lively atmosphere and delicious food. Visit one of the many BBQ joints, sample some soul food, or enjoy a cold beer at a local brewery.
End your visit to St. Louis with a leisurely stroll through Forest Park. This expansive park offers beautiful walking paths, tranquil lakes, and lush green spaces. Visit the Saint Louis Art Museum or the Missouri Botanical Garden, both located within the park, and soak in the natural beauty.
With its iconic landmarks, vibrant cultural scene, and rich history, St. Louis offers a stopover experience that will leave you with lasting memories.
As you travel from Oklahoma to Nashville, a well-chosen stopover can make your road trip even more unforgettable. The options presented here — Memphis, Little Rock, Hot Springs, Branson, Springfield, and St. Louis — each offer their own unique experiences and attractions. From vibrant music scenes to natural wonders, historical landmarks, and culinary delights, these destinations are sure to add an extra layer of excitement to your journey.
Whether you’re seeking the soulful sounds of blues and rock ‘n’ roll in Memphis, the historical significance of Little Rock, the rejuvenation of natural hot springs in Hot Springs, the entertainment and family-friendly fun in Branson, the art and outdoor adventures in Springfield, or the iconic landmarks and cultural attractions in St. Louis, you’ll find something to suit your preferences and create lasting memories.
Remember to plan your stopover strategically, considering factors such as the driving distance, your interests, and the time you have available. Take the opportunity to explore the local attractions, indulge in regional cuisine, and discover the hidden gems along the way.
So, make the most of your road trip and turn your journey from Oklahoma to Nashville into an incredible adventure by adding a memorable stopover. Embrace the freedom of the open road and the excitement of exploration as you take in the sights, sounds, and flavors of these fantastic destinations.