Discover 10 Spots You'll Love in Downtown Franklin

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by Visit Franklin

Pilgrimage Music & Cultural Festival is known for it’s great taste in music, food, and culture and it wouldn’t be complete without it’s community! The two-day festival takes place in the heart of beautiful Franklin,Tennessee. This classic town is home to a Great American Main Street and leaves you feeling like you’ve stepped into a real-life Norman Rockwell painting!

If you’re a local looking to explore or just visiting for Pilgrimage, our friends at Visit Franklin are giving you the 10 must-visit spots in Downtown Franklin!


Every day should start off with a power breakfast, and by power breakfast, I mean a 100 layer donut! These marvels of the pastry world come in all forms from vegan and paleo, to Maple Glazed, Chocolate Sea Salt along with monthly specials the likes of Orange Dreamsicle, Campfire S’mores or Peaches & Cream. You have to get there early though, as you can imagine these sweet treats can go quickly.


This step back into pure Americana will be the highlight of your Instagram feed! Dating back to the 1930s, this crown jewel of Main Street is highlighted by a timeless neon sign out front that just screams “take my picture.” Once you go inside, it only gets better as the former movie house is now considered the best 300-seat music venue in the world.


When you see the Gray’s On Main sign from the street, you’ll think it’s the local pharmacy, but when you walk through the doors you’ll find one of the southeast’s top restaurants and bars. The food includes an upscale touch to the southern classics, while the cocktails, live music and upstairs bar are a show all on their own! Be sure to pay close attention to the walls as you dine; they tell the incredible history of the pharmacy that once occupied the space!


The newest shop to call Main Street home, Twine is a must visit for the new funky t-shirt design, art print or poster to commemorate your visit to Franklin.


Far more than your traditional visitor center where you find nothing but rows of brochures, the Visitor Center located just off Main Street can set the tone for your whole visit to Franklin. You can grab an instrument from the wall and strum out your favorite hits in the “pickin’ corner,” or peruse a large collection of products from local makers and artisans that you’ll find nowhere else!


A trip to Franklin isn’t complete without a visit to the historic site of where the Civil War’s Battle of Franklin was waged. Three homes that were in epicenter of the battle have been preserved to the way they were on that fateful evening in 1864, and a tour will show you exactly what the families living through the battle endured as well as what happened to the properties in the years following the war.


There is no better way to get an authentic feel for the local culture than popping in and out of shops owned by locals, showcasing the incredible local talent. Franklin’s iconic Main Street is lined with these welcoming shops, with a little something for everyone; from clothing, antiques, art, jewelry, rare books, and of course food and treats.


Sip on a craft brew at Franklin’s only brewery, Mantra Artisan Ales. Known for their creative creations, Mantra Artisan Ales has gained worldwide fame for their creativity and variety. Their Saffron IPA was even listed among Conde Nast Traveler’s “Eight Fall Beers to Try Around The World.”


For any coffee fan, a trip to Franklin isn’t complete with a stop at one of its most inviting local coffee shops. Frothy Monkey has the coffee creations to impress even to biggest coffee snob while blending it with an atmosphere that mixes back porch vibe and creativity into one cool space.


This classic, locally owned, bookstore is a story all in itself! It’s owners, who you are sure to meet if you stop in, have been the subjects of a New York Times bestseller The Bridge, and a movie by the same name! As they guide you to the perfect book to fit your taste, you’ll see exactly why an author was inspired to tell their love story!

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Photos via Visit Franklin