If you’re a Nashville native, you’ve probably experienced the magical wonderland of Opryland hotel during Christmastime. What many don’t realize, however, is that Opryland isn’t just a fun place to visit during the holidays. In fact, after our recent visit, we’ll be making Opryland’s SummerFest an annual summer tradition!
This year’s SummerFest theme is Lewis Carroll’s, Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland and it will be at the Gaylord Opryland until Sept. 10, 2017. First and foremost – find out whether or not your children are familiar with Alice in Wonderland before visiting SummerFest. Maybe this was a personal mom fail, but my younger children weren’t familiar with this classic tale when I told them where we were going. If your children give you the same blank stare that mine gave me, maybe watch the movie as a family before going. You’ll save yourself a lot of question answering during your visit!
White Rabbit Scavenger Hunt
The first thing my kids wanted to do was the White Rabbit Scavenger Hunt. Make your way to the Cascades Concierge Desk and pick up your scavenger hunt booklet. We had so much fun solving the riddles as we made our way through the hotel, finding themed clues along the way.
The scavenger hunt was simple enough for my 5 year old to participate, yet still interesting enough to entertain my 12 & 15 year old. At the end of the hunt, we found our way to the Delta Boat Dock where we were rewarded with a neat souvenir. Keep in mind that there is one prize for each scavenger hunt booklet purchased. If you have kids that are close in age this might lead to some major meltdowns. Cost for this self paced activity is $12.00 per booklet and takes place daily from 10 am – 8 pm.
Mad Hatter’s Floating Tea Party
Our feet were ready for a rest after all that walking for the scavenger hunt. Luckily, we were already at the boat dock. We couldn’t pass up the Mad Hatter’s Floating Tea Party! We got a chuckle out of the tea party with a southern twist, complete with a bottle of cold, sweet iced tea upon departure. There was a wonderful guide that told a fascinating story about the Wonderland characters we saw along the way, as well as info about the hotel, itself.
The cost for the cruise is $14.00 for adults & children 12+, $12.00 for children ages 4-11 and FREE with a paid adult for ages 3 and under. Cruises depart regularly throughout the day from 3 pm – 9 pm.
Before we left, we made a stop at the Learning Log. This larger than life hollow log is an educational exhibit where guests young and old can learn about the life cycle of butterflies. Little ones will love crawling through the log and looking at the displays within. There is no cost for this activity.
Honestly, we could’ve spent 2 days doing all of the activities available. Next year we may just have to do a little staycation to experience all of the fun that SummerFest has to offer! Check out the complete list below to plan your family’s day of fun at Opryland hotel!
Learn about the resort’s history and indoor gardens during a 45 minute guided tour.
Location: Magnolia Lobby
Times: Daily, 4pm, 5pm & 6pm
Cost: $5.00/person, 3 and under FREE with paid adult
Queen of Arts Tour
Journey through the nine acres of lush indoor gardens while enjoying Alice-themed works from local artists.
Location: Delta Atrium
Times: At your leisure
Aspiring young chefs (ages 8-16) learn from Opryland’s award-winning chefs. Participants receive lunch, a chef hat and apron to keep. Parents are encouraged to stay and observe their children create.
Location: Water’s Edge
Times: Sundays, noon-2pm
Cost: $34.99 per Junior Chef, $11.99 for each additional lunch guest.
Delta Fountain Show
Like Alice, let your curiosity guide you into Wonderland. Marvel at the mesmerizing nightly water shows with stunning choreographed water, music & lights.
Location: Delta Fountain
Times: “Sounds of Summer” 6pm & 8pm, “Aqua” 7pm & 9pm
Junior golfers ages 15 and under can play one free round for each full-paying adult accompanying them.
Location: Gaylord Springs Golf Links
Times: Daily after 1pm
Summerfest at Gaylord Opryland Hotel
Where: Gaylord Opryland Hotel, 2800 Opryland Dr, Nashville, TN 37214 (Map)
When: Activities are available daily through Sept. 10, 2017
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Crystal was born and raised, and now raising a family of her own in Middle Tennessee. She currently lives in Murfreesboro with her husband Glenn, and their three children; Hunter, Grayson, and Hailey. They are an unschooling family, meaning they spend lots and lots of time out and about exploring all that this area has to offer!