The 5 Best Road Trips to Take From New Orleans

With Labor Day coming up next weekend, all us Babes have one thing on our mind … vacation!! And even if you’ve procrastinated booking a flight, we’ve been brainstorming the best places within driving distance from NOLA to spend your long weekend. So pack your cooler, your coozies, and of course some road trip snacks, and get ready to hit the road!

road trips new orleans

Bay St. Louis, Mississippi

The first destination on our list is also the closest. Less than an hour out of town, Bay St. Louis offers up one of the easiest beaches outside of NOLA to drive to. And with sparsely populated beaches, beach bars, and perfect views, it’s a great last minute option for a weekend getaway. And most importantly, if you are looking for some delicious cocktails (did someone say Buschwackers?) make sure to check out the best bar and restaurant in Bay St. Louis, The Blind Tiger, which is located only feet from the beach.

mississippi road trips

Blue Ridge Mountains, Georgia

While a little farther than some of the other destinations on this list (about 7.5 hours away), the Blue Ridge Mountains are one of the most beautiful, relaxing, and all-around best places to visit within driving distance from NOLA. The Blue Ridge Mountains have it all, from a ridiculous number of hiking trails, to a beautiful lake perfect for kayaking and sunbathing, to luxury cabins, which are cheap and perfect for a friend getaway.

blue ridge mountains

Orange Beach, Alabama

One word: Florabama. Okay, two words: Florabama and Bushwackers. A mere three hours outside of the city, Orange Beach is the perfect destination for a weekend in paradise, if your idea of paradise includes country music, fried pickles, and (tons of) dancing. With a number of condos within walking distance of Florabama, most of which come with their own pools to drink and relax by, there’s really no better getaway for a girl’s weekend!

Austin to New Orleans

Austin, Texas

If you want to spend the weekend somewhere that is (almost) just as weird and fun as NOLA, Austin is your best bet. With some of the best live music in the South (outside of the Big Easy of course), and tacos to die for, Austin is an unbeatable road trip destination. Only about a seven hour drive outside of town or a quick, direct flight (thanks Southwest), Austin is just as accessible as it is fun. With tons of boutique hotels under $100 per night, and some of the quirkiest AirBnbs you can find, there are tons of options for where to post up for your long party weekend.

orage beach road trip

Pensacola, Florida

The third beach to grace this list is none other than Pensacola. Arguably one of the most beautiful beach destinations within driving distance (less than three hours away!), and filled with fun and tropical-themed beach bars, Pensacola is an amazing option if you’re looking to lay back, catch some sun, and spend your days sipping on some tropical drinks!


Sara, Contributor

While originally from upstate New York, Sara came to NOLA for law school and got sucked in by this crazy city. Five years later she’s an official adopted New Orleanian. She’s an avid traveler, runner, and beignet lover (of course!) You can follow along with all of her travels and misadventures here.

  1. Great choices but I’d suggest two more: St. Francisville is lovely, and such a change of pace from New Orleans. There are some excellent B&Bs there. My favorites are Ann Butler’s fabulously unique cottages, and The Myrtles, the most haunted house in America ( don’t even try booking less than a year away from Halloween! Teeta Moss is a fabulous hostess with the best stories ever! There are some excellent shops and restaurants and, unlike NOLA it’s hilly and green. Very English country style.
    The other is Lafayette. Again they have excellent B&B s and restaurants to die for. Get up early to drive to Eunice where the party starts at 8AM ( make sure you have a designated driver) and it’s legendary party time. Downtown Lafayette has some really good nightlife spots for dancing. Sunday drive to Magee’s Landing for an unparalleled swamp tour. It’s the real deal run by the Allemond family for generations. Either one is a two hour drive and may as well be on another planet. Both life experiences you’ll never forget. And I’ve traveled everywhere but those two places I’ve been too many times to count.

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