You know that scene in the Disney cartoon “Hercules” when Herc walks into the temple to talk to Zeus? That kind of how going inside Nashville’s Parthenon feels, except it’s a giant statue of Athena and not Zeus. While it’s gorgeous and ornate, it’s also kind of empty beyond the statue, because it’s one of those weird things that was built specifically as a tourist attraction. It’s kitschy, yet epic, and that makes it well worth visiting.
“A full-scale replica of the Athenian original”
This is the world's only full-size replica of the ancient Greek temple. It houses the tallest indoor sculpture in the western world, a statue of Athena, ancient goddess of wisdom and learning, the deity for whom the original Parthenon was erected. Originally built for the Tennessee Centennial Exposition in 1897, the building became unsafe and was rebuilt in 1929. It is an exact replica of the Greek temple, its architecture including not a single straight line; no two columns are the same size, nor are they placed the same distance apart. No two steps are the same size and the floor is not square or level. A proud symbol of Tennessee’s Capitol city, the “Athens of the South,” the Parthenon houses the city’s permanent art collection, plaster casts of the Elgin Marbles, a gift shop, and visitors center.
As others have said this place is way more impressive than you'd imagine. Perfect place to visit on a nice sunny day. Close to music row and several other tourist spots in Nashville. This should be on your Nashville bucket list.
Kind of unbelievable and not entirely sure why it's there. Admission inside was $8, which we didn't think was worth it since we felt that the most impressive photos were from the outside.
Absolutely HUGE! Super impressive exterior & worth the drive to see it. I would love to come on a warm, sunny day & have a picnic on the vast grounds. I showed up on an extremely cold Monday though - so it was closed & we didn't want to stay out too long. I hear the Athena statue inside is amazing too.
Definitely worth the stop! you will be awestruck by this monumental monument lol. Super easy to find and park as well. There's many more sculptures and monuments as well right outside it. The whole thing is gorgeous!
This was a fun stop on our way through Nashville. The grounds were very nice and well kept. We enjoyed a picnic lunch outside after.
This was impressive and met our expectations. It is part of a larger park, with great trails. They were restoring an old train engine at the park while we were there. If you are just driving through and needing a break, give yourself an hour, if not 90 minutes. You can spend half a day here easy.
My son and I loved it. The giant Athena statue inside is CRAZY cool. It doesn't make sense that this place is in Tennessee, but then, that's what makes it so crazy cool. Wonderful path around the lake outside, and just an all-round nifty place to visit.
It was a fun stop for the family.
When we visited the Parthenon, it wasn't open yet, which was disappointing. None the less, we walked the dog up the stairs and took pictures. The plaque with the hours and tour information did say no dogs allowed, so I'm assuming it's underneath where the tours start, or something. Who knows.
As a history nut, I could not pass this up and it is truly impressive. I thought the admission cost was worth it, the collection of paintings inside is wonderful and the statue of Athena is astounding!
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- Tue - Sat: 9:00 am - 4:30 pm
- Sun: 12:30 pm - 4:30 pm
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Good for cultural-travelers.
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