Mention Leiper’s Fork to a Tennessee native, and they’ll likely tell you to “Hush!” We like to think of this quaint little unspoiled village as our own special secret — but today, I’m spilling the tea and sharing what makes Leiper’s Fork one of Franklin’s top attractions.
Just don’t tell anyone else about it, okay?
Located just a few miles from the historic Natchez Trace Parkway, Leiper’s Fork was settled in the early 1800s and quickly became a popular rest stop for travelers. Clearly, some of those travelers liked what they saw there, because by the early 1900s, Leiper’s Fork had its own railroad stop, as well as several shops and lumber mills, a blacksmith, a college, a handful of churches, and a bank.
In 1995, a group formed with the intention of preserving Leiper’s Fork’s historic structures — Thanks to their efforts, the town today is a perfectly charming, nostalgia-filled spot for an afternoon of shopping, a fun night out, or a quiet retreat with friends and family.
In fact, I’d go so far as to say the shops you’ll find in Leiper’s Fork are among the best in the state. My friends and I make time to browse here several times a year because it’s never crowded and every store contains a treasure trove of carefully-curated finds that truly suit every age, temperament, and budget.
You could head to Leiper’s Fork for the day, but if you’re looking for a restful or romantic weekend getaway in picturesque surroundings, the village has some fantastic lodging options. For larger families or small groups, Lyric in Leiper’s Fork is a vacation and retreat destination that includes 2,700 square feet of living space with three bedrooms, two large common areas, and scenic views of the surrounding countryside. Smack dab in the center of the village, you’ll find Sweeney Cottage, a historic home decorated by singer-songwriter Holly Williams. It can sleep up to six people and dogs are allowed!
Fox & Locke
Fox & Locke (formerly Puckett’s of Leiper’s Fork) has been a legendary local gathering spot with several changes in ownership and various iterations as a grocery store, restaurant, and music venue over a span of nearly 70 years. In 2022, Fox & Locke returned to its namesake roots, and folks from near and far continue to gather here for live music, cold beer, and classic Southern food.
Works of Art
At The Copper Fox Gallery and artist David Arms’ gallery inside a renovated barn next door, you’ll find an exquisite selection of local art and crafts, jewelry, books, and antiques. Just down the road, Leiper’s Creek Gallery features upscale and eclectic art from nationally and internationally known artists, ranging from representational painting to abstract expressionism and sculpture.
Creekside Trading Company is chock full of local arts and crafts, home decor, gifts, jewelry, and clothing. Props Antiques is the place to go if you’re traveling with kids — In addition to some wonderful Americana-style antiques, Props has retro-inspired toys, games, and candy. New to Leiper’s Fork is Patina, a charming home and garden store with farm to table provisions, local flowers, botanical skincare, and herbal remedies. Moo Country can only be described as ‘if Stevie Nicks were a cowgirl.’ And The Pick-It Fence is filled with gift options, furniture, jewelry, and more.
The Spa at Leiper’s Fork
What better way to relax in Middle Tennessee’s most peaceful small town than with luxurious treatments at The Spa at Leiper’s Fork in the heart of the village? Here, you can book appointments for a facial, massage, body treatment, waxing or nail care. Their staff gives each guest a customized experience, with treatments tailored to their specific needs. Don’t forget to pick up some of the spa’s own bath and skincare products on your way out!
Leiper’s Fork Distillery
Leiper’s Fork Distillery is working to bring the history and heritage of small-batch whiskey production to Williamson County. The distillery uses mainly local ingredients as well as limestone-filtered water to craft its premium spirits. Here, whiskey tours and tastings are offered, and if you like what you’ve tried, you can buy a bottle or two in the gift shop. Leiper’s Fork Distillery also offers live music all weekend long on its courtyard stage when the weather is nice; check the website’s events page for a full schedule.