Take a drive through the Deep South and discover the inviting mix of Southern hospitality, fascinating history and culinary experiences that makes up this diverse region. Journey through Louisiana, Alabama, Kentucky, Tennessee and Mississippi on an 18 day adventure to satisfy the soul.
- Explore Antebellum Mansions
- Experience true Southern Hospitality
- Savour delicious local dishes
- Discover the diverse musical soundtrack of the South
Start your Journey
Begin your Deep South adventure with three nights in the vibrant heart of Louisiana, New Orleans. Take a walking tour of the iconic French Quarter and absorb the sights and sounds of this lively historic district as you stroll along the cobbled streets and discover the city's fascinating Creole history. Hop on a trolley to explore some of the city's other districts such as the jazz filled streets of Treme; or the beautiful Garden District. With such a diverse mix of cultures and cuisines you will find yourself spoilt for choice when it comes to dining out. Try local favourites such as a po'boy, crawfish, beignets, jambalaya and gumbo, or why not learn how to cook one of these local delicacies for yourself at the New Orleans School of Cooking.
Leave the 'Big Easy'; behind you today as you head out onto the I-65 and travel through Alabama to Montgomery. Make time on your journey today to stop off in Mobile. This beautiful Gulf Coast city was once the capital of the Louisiana Territory and the fantastic historic district in the heart of Downtown Mobile is brimming with locally owned art galleries, restaurants and shops. The perfect place to grab lunch before heading up the I-65 to Montgomery.
From the Civil war to the Civil Rights movement, Montgomery has been a pivotal site for some of the most important moments in American history and as such is home to a host of must see attractions. Stand on the steps of the historic State Capitol building where Martin Luther King Jr. delivered his moving speech after the march from Selma to Montgomery or visit Dexter Avenue Baptist church where he was once parson. Step back in time at Old Alabama Town and experience a little taste of life in 19th century Alabama. Head to the Alley Entertainment District for speciality boutiques, lively nightlife and fantastic dining from casual eateries to fine dining. Dreamland BBQ is not to be missed.
Head straight up the I-65 for the relatively short drive from Alabama's State Capital to the State's largest city, Birmingham. From the spectacular live music scene, fabulous shopping and world-class dinning it is no wonder Birmingham is considered the cultural and heritage hub of Alabama. Visit the Birmingham Civil Rights Institute and 16th Street Baptist Church to learn more about the Civil Rights movement and its impact. Take a stroll down 3rd Avenue North and pick up a souvenir from one of the quirky boutiques or head over to Mountain Brook where you will have three shopping villages to peruse. For some fantastic dining options head over to The Summit where you will find everything from sushi to BBQ.
Cross over into Kentucky today as you continue up the I-65 to Louisville. Break up your journey with a stop in Bowling Green and learn a bit more about the region with a visit to the Kentucky Museum. The Lost River Cave offers you Kentucky's only underground boat tour and if you fancy a little home cooking before heading back on the road Cambridge Market and Cafe; is a favourite with locals. Why not take a short diversion to visit Mammoth Cave National Park and explore the world's longest cave system before heading up to Louisville.
Home of the world famous Kentucky Derby, Louisville is a delightful mix or urban excitement and laid back southern charm. Visit the Muhammed Ali Centre and learn more one of Louisville's most legendary sons. Sports fans will have even more to explore from the Louisville Slugger Museum, considered one of the greatest sports museums in the world by Forbes magazine, to a day at horses at Churchill Down. Known as the culinary capital of Bourbon Country, foodies will be delighted to discover Louisville's boundary pushing twist on southern cuisine and the unique Urban Bourbon Experience features the only city-wide trail of award winning micro-distilleries and exhibits.
As you make your way back down through Kentucky why not stop off at some of the iconic distilleries which make up the famous Kentucky Bourbon trail such as Jim Beam in Clermont or Maker's Mark in Loretto as you head to the Country music capital of Nashville.
Known as Music City since the 1800s Nashville connection with music is a strong as ever. You will find live music performances here every day of the week and from the lively Honky-Tonks which line Broadway in Downtown Memphis and 2nd Avenue where you can enjoy a mix of genres from blues to rock n roll to the songwriters; nights across the city where you can hear artists try out new material. Nashville is also home to an impressive supply of music themed attractions, take a tour of the Ryman Auditorium, the original home to the Grand Ole Opry, discover the interactive exhibits at the Country Music Hall of Fame, enjoy a dinner cruise aboard the General Jackson Showboat, visit Historic RCA Studio B for a close look at the studio where artists such as Elvis Presley and Dolly Parton made recording history. And of course we can't forget the iconic Grand Ole Opry, enjoy a backstage tour and see the show for yourself at its new home at Grand Ole Opry House.
Head west today as you move from one music filled city to another. Jackson, Tennessee makes a perfect pit stop as you make your way along the I-40 to Memphis. Visit historic Casey Jones Village for a taste of Tennessee in the early 1900s, why not stop for lunch Brooks Shaw's Old Country Store or visit the Historic Casey Jones Home and Railroad museum before continuing on to Memphis.
Known as the 'Home of the Blues' and the 'Birthplace of Rock n Roll' this dynamic city is brimming with music history. Stop by Sun Studio to see where Sam Philips helped turn nervous teenage Elvis Presley into a legend and artist such as Johnny Cash and Jerry Lee Lewis recorded, take the free shuttle over to the Stax Museum of American Soul Music and the Memphis Rock 'n' Soul Museum and discover the unique sound which emerged from Soulsville. The shuttle will also take you on to perhaps Memphis's most famous attraction Elvis' former home Graceland.
Journey South through Mississippi today as you make your way to Natchez. Elvis fans should definitely take the detour to Tupelo, visit Elvis Presley's birthplace and enjoy a little taste from the past at Aunt B's Soul Food before heading along the beautiful Natchez Trace Parkway on your way to Natchez. Another great place to take a break is historic Vicksburg. Discover the charming historic downtown area or head over to the Vicksburg National Military Park.
Overlooking the highest bluff on the Mississippi, Natchez enjoys some truly spectacular views. Take a stroll along the Natchez Trails and discover more about the history of the oldest settlement on the Mississippi River from the interpretive panels dotted throughout the trails. Natchez is home to some of the most well preserved antebellum mansions in the Deep South, take a horse drawn carriage ride past these beautiful homes or why not get a closer look on a mansion tour. Be sure to stop by Mammy's Cupboard for a bite to eat. This unique restaurant part roadside attraction, part foodie's haven is shaped like an archetype Mammy and offers a range of home cooking specials.
Follow the US-61 as you cross back over into Louisiana and head down to Baton Rouge.
The capital of Louisiana, Baton Rouge is a rich mixture of beautiful historic buildings, energetic nightlife and fantastic outdoor spaces. Whether you decide to take a tour through Plantation Country to visit some of the impressive antebellum mansions, choose to get back to nature at the Atchafalaya National Wildlife Refuge or simply relax with a cocktail and enjoy delicious Cajun and Creole cuisine in the city voted "Best Foodie City" for two year in a row Baton Rouge will be sure to pleasantly surprise.
Take the I-10 back to New Orleans, why not stop off at The Outlet Collection at Riverwalk for a last minute bargain before heading to Louis Armstrong International Airport for your flight home.
You might also like these
Take a look at these other inspiring itineraries. Our Destination Specialists would love to create something perfect for you.
Atlanta To Chattanooga Road Trip
There’s no question too small. Start planning your dream trip by talking to our Destination Specialists.
Sign up to our newsletter
Receive the latest travel inspiration and destination news.
How we tailor make your holiday
The Hayes & Jarvis Way
We've been tailor making holidays for 65 years. With over 60 destinations to choose from, talk to us and we'll listen to your travel ideas to create unforgettable holiday experiences.