Arrive in New Orleans
Arrive in New Orleans and either pick up your hire car and drive to your hotel for a two night stay, or transfer independently.
Two nights: Holiday Inn New Orleans-Downtown Superdome or upgrade to Hotel Monteleone (or similar)
Enjoy a full day to explore New Orleans – famous for riverboats, jazz and Creole cuisine. Stroll through the French Quarter with its wonderful old buildings and beautiful courtyards, visit Jackson Square, Royal Street and Bourbon Street. Enjoy live music at every turn and delicious food in the myriad restaurants and cafes.
New Orleans – Biloxi – Mobile – Montgomery (309 miles)
This morning, experience the laid-back, sandy side of Mississippi as you make your way through its Coastal region. In Biloxi, you could join a shrimping trip. Continue to the grand dame of Alabama's Gulf Coast, Mobile. Founded in 1702 as the original capital of the Louisiana Territory and nestled along the beautiful Gulf of Mexico, Mobile continues to impress with its sheer beauty, modern architecture, amazing museums and famous seafood. From here, it's on to Montgomery. No city has played a greater role in the history of Alabama than Montgomery. From Civil War to civil rights, Montgomery is steeped in history.
Overnight: Wingate by Wyndham Montgomery (or similar)
Montgomery – Birmingham – Nashville (280 miles)
Head north through the fertile highlands of Alabama to Birmingham. A must-see in Birmingham is the Vulcan. Standing 56 feet tall from toe to spear point, the Vulcan is the world's largest cast iron statue and considered one of the most memorable works of civic art in the United States. Cast from local iron in 1904, the Vulcan has overlooked the urban landscape of Alabama's largest city since the 1930s. Continue north to Nashville for a two night stay - a city that sizzles with American music, Southern hospitality, unbelievable cuisine and a boundless spectrum of nightlife.
Two nights: Ramada by Wyndham Nashville/Music Valley or upgrade to The Inn at Opryland, A Gaylord Hotel (or similar)
Enjoy a full day in Nashville, capital of country music and we certainly recommend a visit to the Country Music Hall of Fame. You may want to drive out to the Grand Old Opry for a tour. Or simply enjoy bar hopping along Broadway to enjoy the fabulous live music.
Nashville – Memphis (212 miles)
Drive west to Memphis, home of the Blues. Memphis combines the charm of the Old South with the exciting pace of a modern metropolis. You may wish to tour downtown Memphis with its famous Beale Street, followed by a visit to Elvis Presley's Graceland – a fascinating insight into the great man.
Overnight: Comfort Inn Downtown or upgrade to Holiday Inn Memphis – Downtown Beale Street (or similar)
Memphis – Vicksburg (246 miles)
Today visit Vicksburg National Military Park which commemorates the campaign, siege, and defence of Vicksburg in 1863. There's over 1,300 monuments, markers and plaques, a 16-mile tour road and a national cemetery, the nation's largest burial site of Civil War Union soldiers and sailors with graves totalling over 17,000.
Overnight: Quality Inn (or similar)
Vicksburg – Natchez (72 miles)
Today, drive south on the Natchez Trace Parkway which evolved from an Indian trail into a post road and pioneer highway, and on to Natchez, the oldest settlement in Mississippi. You may want to visit a plantation in Natchez - Burn, Dunleith, Melrose, Monmouth or Longwood are our suggestions. Overnight in Natchez and enjoy an evening in this laid-back historic town on the banks of the Mississippi.
Overnight: Hotel Vue (or similar)
Natchez – Lafayette (134 miles)
Today, travel south back into Louisiana through Alexandria, Ville Platte and Opelousas to Lafayette, the heart of Cajun Country where the Acadians, or Cajuns, started arriving in 1765. Today these French-American's are famous for their joie de vivre which is reflected in their lively dancing, music and spicy food. Upon arrival, you may want to enjoy a walking tour of downtown to discover landmark buildings, or take a short drive to Acadian Village overlooking the bayou and filled with authentically restored Cajun homes and churches.
Overnight: DoubleTree by Hilton Lafayette Hotel (or similar)
Lafayette – Cajun Country – New Orleans (135 miles)
A short drive from Lafayette takes you to New Iberia and Avery Island, the birthplace of Tabasco sauce. Other attractions include Jungle Garden, lush with tropical plants, and Bird City, a sanctuary filled with flurries of snow-white egrets. Continue to Morgan City, the "Shrimp Capital of the World," and Houma, where you may want to take some time for an optional boat tour into the deep swamp and bayou to see alligators and other wildlife. Following the scenic route, and perhaps stopping at Terre Bonne or Southdown Plantation, you will arrive in New Orleans for your final night.
Overnight: Holiday Inn New Orleans-Downtown Superdome or upgrade to Hotel Monteleone (or similar)
Fly home from New Orleans