Travel

By Maria Neuman

After 11 years of hosting the award-winning daytime medical show The Doctors, it's no surprise that Dr. Travis Stork is a pro at doling out trustworthy information. So who better to ask for vacation tips when it comes to Music City? "I first moved to Nashville back in 2003 to complete my residency at Vanderbilt University," says the recently married Stork, who does weekly commutes from Nashville to Los Angeles to tape The Doctors. "Nashville has a great balance in terms of lifestyle, and as a doctor I'm always preaching about balance in everything."

Dr. Travis Stork and his wife in front of a mural in Nashville.

Dr. Travis Stork and wife Parris in Nashville.

Photo Credit: Courtesy of Travis Stork.

And while this Tennessee capital is home to some of the most touristy hotspots in the country (think the Grand Ole Opry), Stork suggests going local for added flavor. "Don't forget to visit the neighborhoods that make Nashville so homey and to really get a sense of this city. If you haven't been here recently, it will blow your mind."

The Doctors is distributed through CBS Television and airs weekdays. Check local listings.

WAKE UP

Worth every calorie

Photo Credit: Courtesy of Barista Parlor.

I'm a coffee shop guy, and my neighborhood of Germantown has some great ones. My favorite spot is called Red Bicycle Coffee, and my drink of choice is the iced almond milk latte.

Another favorite is Barista Parlor, which has a few locations around Nashville; for visitors who want one of the best under-the-radar sandwiches, their morning biscuits are to die for. [My wife, Parris, and I] limit our intake of those, but I always say they're worth the calories.

GRAB A BIKE

Dr. Travis Stork with a bicycle.

Stork with his late dog, Nala, in Nashville.

Photo Credit: Courtesy of Travis Stork.

Rent bikes and go to Percy Warner Park, which is about 15 minutes out of the city. A few years ago, they built over eight miles of mountain biking trails for every skill level. I also like Edwin Warner Park, which is right next door. They have a large road that is blocked off to car traffic, so it's great for road riding.

I often take my road bike there and travel out into the countryside. There are also biking stations inside the city called B-cycle where you can rent some wheels and explore. The nashville.gov website has a map of all the paved biking trails, which are great to take advantage of because of the safety element.

TAKE A STREET-ART SELFIE

Nashville peace sign mural.

Mural mania

Photo Credit: Carole Julius.

There's a neighborhood called 12 South, which not only has a lot of shops and boutiques owned by local celebrities but there's also a mural that everyone goes to: It says "Nashville" with a peace sign, and you'll see people lined up down the street to take a picture there.

SIP A LOCAL BREW

Dark stout beer.

Super suds

Photo Credit: Anna Togyre/Bearded Iris Brewing.

If you like beer, check out Bearded Iris Brewing. I think they make the best IPAs out there—and I'm a Colorado kid! I usually send my guests home with a few cans.

ENJOY A ROOM WITH A VIEW

Charming bathroom in a boutique hotel.

Photo Credit: Courtesy Thompson Nashville.

Aside from Nashville's tons of Airbnbs, there are some good hotels like Thompson Nashville in an area called The Gulch, across the train tracks from Downtown. They have a rooftop bar called L.A. Jackson, which is a great spot to grab a drink and get a wonderful view of the city.

Hotel suite in a boutique hotel.

Bobby Hotel

Photo Credit: Lisa Diederich/Bobby Hotel.

Another cool place is Bobby Hotel; in Downtown Nashville, on Fourth Avenue. We had a drinks reception there during our wedding weekend. It's a boutique hotel, and the vibe feels authentic to Nashville.

ACT LIKE A TOURIST

Exterior of the Grand Ole Opry in Nashville.

Photo Credit: Courtesy of Grand Ole Opry.

If you're a history buff or a country music fan, pick one or two of the well-known sites to visit, whether it's the Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum, The Johnny Cash Museum, or the Grand Ole Opry. For a souvenir, go downtown and buy a pair of boots. From the traditional to the crazy, they have it all.

Turquoise blue cowboy boots.

Power boots

Photo Credit: Pidjoe/Getty Images.

TASTE SOME VINO

Wine glasses and a vineyard view.

Wine country

Photo Credit: Courtesy of Arrington Vineyards.

Head about 45 minutes out of the city to Arrington Vineyards. Not only will you be out in the beautiful Tennessee countryside thinking This is Nashville?, but you'll enjoy some pretty great wines, too.

INDULGE AT DINNER

Baby back pork ribs.

A local treat

Photo Credit: Courtesy of Butchertown Hall.

If you're in the mood for some traditional smoked meats, go to Butchertown Hall. It's a nice culinary blend of old and new Nashville, mixing in healthy options with more decadent fare. I eat meat about once a week and order the brisket; it's to die for, and so are the guacamole and margaritas.

LISTEN TO THE LOCALS

When people think of Nashville, they think of famous country music artists, not the hundreds of songwriters who actually wrote those songs. Check out The Listening Room Cafe, where you can watch the songwriters perform their greatest hits. It's such a cool thing to experience, and there's so much talent in this town.

Illustrated map of Nashville, Tennesse

Illustration by Sara Mulvanny.

Originally published in Watch Magazine, January-February 2020.

The Doctors is distributed through CBS Television and airs weekdays. Check local listings.

Chris O'Donnell brings a quiet intensity to his work on NCIS: Los Angeles, but when not playing "G" Callen on CBS' hit drama, the actor is all smiles and laughs on the Emerald Isle.

Watch photographed the beloved actor at the legendary Ashford Castle in County Mayo, Ireland for our March-April 2013 issue. Here's a look back at his lucky adventures.

Watch NCIS: Los Angeles on Sundays at 9/8c on CBS and CBS All Access.

When Irish eyes are smiling

Chris O'Donnell tries falconry while visiting Ireland.

Chris O'Donnell hangs with a hawk during his unforgettable shoot.

Photography by Cliff Lipson.

Irish wonder

Chris O'Donnell sitting on stone wall with Ashford Castle behind him.

This breathtaking countryside retreat certainly promises the royal treatment.

Photography by Cliff Lipson.

Lucky charming

Chris O'Donnell on the grounds of a medieval castle.

The prince of NCISLA looks like something out of a fairytale.

Photography by Cliff Lipson.

Irish blessings

Chris O'Donnell is lovely Ireland.

We thank our lucky stars for this stunning snap shot.

Photography by Cliff Lipson.

Erin go Bragh!

Chris O'Donnell in front of a famous castle

Chris O'Donnell in castle country.

Photography by Cliff Lipson.

Pot o' gold

Chris O'Donnell in a blue suede jacket and blue jeans.

Who wouldn't want to find this dashing lad at the end of a rainbow?

Photography by Cliff Lipson.

Sláinte!

Chris O'Donnell at traditional Irish pub in the village of Cong.

Chris O'Donnell in Pat Cohan's pub in the village of Cong, the site of 1952's The Quiet Man, starring John Wayne.

Photography by Cliff Lipson.

If you’re lucky enough to be Irish

Chris O'Donnell in the sitting room of a castle-hotel lobby.

Crackling fire? Check. Cozy castle? Check. Chris O'Donnell is right at home.

Photography by Cliff Lipson.

Suited to perfection

Chris O'Donnell wearing  suit.

Lucky for us, "G" Callen is good at fighting crime.

Photography by Cliff Lipson.

SEE MORE: Our Favorite Photos Of The NCIS: Los Angeles Cast

Watch NCIS: Los Angeles on Sundays at 9/8c on CBS and CBS All Access.

GIF image of Chris O'Donnell in row boat in a lake surrounding a medieval castle.

Photography by Cliff Lipson.

Reporting by Mona Buehler

Favorite Place To Go

One of my favorite places in the world is the Amalfi Coast. We went there on our pre-honeymoon, and we were supposed to go there for four days, and then to Rome for four days. We ended up staying on the Amalfi Coast for seven days and spent just 13 hours in Rome because it was so stunning.


The Shoreline of the Amalfir Coast in Italy and Eric Christian Olsen and his wife Sarah Wright Olsen.\u200b

Italy's Amalfi Coast, known for its striking scenery and architecture. NCIS: Los Angeles star Eric Christian Olsen and his wife, actress, and entrepreneur Sarah Wright Olsen.

Photo Credit: Buena Vista Images/Getty Images (Italy); Courtesy Eric Christian Olsen (Couple)

Amazing Hotel

Hotel Santa Caterina, Amalfi. Breathtaking hotel. Every morning I would get up, have a nice orange juice on the terrace, walk down, and go swimming in the Mediterranean. Then I would go back up and have breakfast, read the paper, and then go swimming [again].

A view of the ocean from poolside at the Hotel Santa Caterina.

Hotel Santa Caterina is run by the same family that opened it in 1880.

Photo Credit: Hotel Santa Caterina/The Leading Hotels of the World

Cool Amenity

I'm a big fan of showers and tubs. I need a great tub because we usually spend about 12 hours on our feet. Then I go home, grab that paper, crack open a nice bottle of wine, and sit in the tub and talk about what we saw that day.

An exotic bathtub with a view of verdant hills For an extra sumptuous soak, try a bathtub with a view.

Photo Credit: Vostok/Getty Images

Travel Must-Haves

I'm obsessed with travel because I think it's one of the most compelling ways to get perspective on life. I used to travel only with a

Lonely Planet guide. That's just how I traveled because I thought it was the best way to see the country. Instead of staying in really nice hotels, you just kind of find these nooks and crannies. My iPhone has made travel much easier.

A travel guide and an iPhone.

Ready for a trip? Take a cue from Eric Christian Olsen and read up on your destination.

Photo Credit: Lonely Planet


Watch all-new episodes of NCIS: Los Angeles on CBS and CBS All Access.







Reporting by Marc Berman

Favorite Place To Go

Hawaii is the most incredible place I've been too so far. My brother and I went on vacation there, and we had the time of our lives. Not only is the place beautiful, but the people are as well.

Coastline of Oahu, Hawaii.

Photo Credit: Art Wager/Getty Images (Oahu).

Favorite Way To Discover A Destination

On accident! Stumbling upon a new place by getting lost. I also love when work takes me to a new place.

Cool Amenity

The pool! I could spend all day in the pool on a hot day.

Infiniti pool of a luxury hotel.

Photo Credit: imaginima/Getty Images.

Travel Must-Haves

I can't travel without my headphones, my wallet, and my favorite ripped black jeans.

Pink headphones and chain wallet.

Photo Credit: boonchai wedmakawand/Getty Images (Headphones); badmanproduction/Getty Images (Wallet).

Amazing Hotel

The Grand Iberostar in Jamaica. I take a charity trip there every year; the all-inclusive resort is just incredible.

Freshly cooked red lobster.

Photo Credit: AlexRaths/Getty Images (Lobster).

Most Memorable Meal

Probably the day I was celebrating booking my first movie. I was about six years old and I got to pick out the biggest lobster in the restaurant. It was about eight pounds!

Next On Travel Bucket List

I am going on a secret excursion soon for a bachelorette party. It will be my first and I am really excited!

Originally posted on Jul 30, 2019 | 05:00am

Watch all-new episodes of MacGyver on Fridays at 8/7c on CBS and CBS All Access.

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