Road Trip Destinations to Cruise Through This Summer

Pensacola Neach

There’s nothing like a summer road trip. While there are plenty of places you can go this season, you might want to keep it short and sweet. If you only have enough time for a day or weekend-long trip, one of these close destinations might be the perfect quick vacation spot for you.

Bay St. Louis and Pass Christian, Mississippi

Bay St. Louis is a little over an hour’s drive from New Orleans and is the perfect beach getaway for a weekend. It’s located in Hancock County and lies along the Mississippi Sound (an embankment of the Gulf of Mexico) at the entrance to St. Louis Bay. The city is home to attractions such as the Alice Moseley Folk Art and Antique Museum, Trapani’s Eatery (a seafood favorite), and, of course, beautiful beaches.

When night comes, you can see a band at The Ugly Pirate Café and Bar or have a drink at BSL Lounge, a sports lounge with a modern vibe. Of course, you can always try your luck at a casino; Silver Slipper and Hollywood Casino are Gulf Coast favorites.

Pensacola, Florida 

If you’re up for a bit more of a drive, head over to Pensacola, Florida. Not only does this city boast beautiful beaches, but there are plenty of other things to keep you entertained. Pensacola’s biggest attraction is the National Naval Aviation Museum. The museum is a military and aerospace museum devoted to the history of naval aviation. 

When night comes, you can check out the city’s numerous bars and restaurants, such as O’Riley’s Irish Pub, Seville Quarter, Old Hickory Whiskey Bar, and Jackson’s Steakhouse.

Covington and Abita Springs, Louisiana

Just across the lake, Covington is the perfect spot for a weekend day drive, especially if you’re looking to get out of town but not necessarily spend the night somewhere. Covington is home to the Abita Brewery, where you can stop in and grab a beer and even go on a brewery tour! If biking is more your thing, be sure to check out the Tammany Trace Bike Trail. This thirty one-mile trail connects Covington, Abita Springs, Mandeville, Lacombe, and Slidell. Finally, if you’re looking for dinner, The Chimes Restaurant & Taproom is one of Covington’s hot spots.

Abita Springs is one of my favorite secret, not-so-secret road trip spots. Not only is the Abita Brew Pub a great place to get lunch, but you can’t visit Abita Springs without seeing the Abita Mystery House. This art attraction is a folk-art environment with thousands of found objects and homemade inventions.

Gulf Shores, Alabama

Gulf Shores is another drivable beach spot perfect for a weekend getaway or extended vacation. In addition to beach views, there are plenty of attractions in Gulf Shores. Jurassic Golf is a glow-in-the-dark mini golf course that features eighteen holes of prehistoric fun! GulfQuest-National Maritime Museum of the Gulf of Mexico has ninety interactive exhibits, simulators, theaters, and displays in a museum that helps visitors understand the importance of the Gulf of Mexico and the coastal region surrounding it. 

After a day of sightseeing, there is plenty to enjoy at night. Check out The Hangout, The Cove Bar and Grill, and The Flying Harpoon to get the party started (or keep the party going).

Lafayette, Louisiana

Lafayette is at the heart of Louisiana’s Cajun culture, and this city is brimming with delicious food, fun festivals, memorable activities, and friendly people. Here you can enjoy hiking, camping, fishing, and much more.

One thing Lafayette does right is festivals. The schedule is packed with fests such as the Acadiana Po-Boy and Plate Lunch Festival in September and the annual Boudin Cookoff and Festivals Acadiens et Créoles in October. If music is your thing, the city’s calendar is packed with events you won’t want to miss. 

As for food, Lafayette has some of the best in the state. After all, this is where Cajun food was born. Charley G’s, Olde Tyme Grocery, and Pop’s PoBoys are just a few places you should check out. Although, it’s hard to pick favorites with so many delicious spots in one city. 

If you’re feeling especially adventurous (and hungry), set out on the Cajun Boudin Trail. A selection of spots where you can sample this meaty Lafayette treat and choose your favorite.

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