Looking to take a road trip down south? Check out this list of southern road trip destinations for all the sweet tea and biscuits you can handle, y’all!
Road trips are one of the most underrated kinds of vacations out there. They’re way more fun than flying to one place and give you a lot more freedom than a cruise itinerary.
Not to mention, there’s something special to appreciate about being on the open road and stumbling across unique stopping points as you go from place to place. The hardest part of road tripping, though, is deciding where to go!
There are all kinds of amazing destinations in the United States that are worth visiting by car. Unless you’re moving cross-country, it’s best to take on one region of the U.S. at a time.
As far as a southern road trip goes, here are seven of the must-see stops you need to put on your list of southern road trip destinations.
1. Charleston, South Carolina
Charleston is one of the most eclectic Southern destinations a person can visit. Its uniqueness is right up there with New Orleans, and it has a history as rich as anywhere in the US.
You can find a little bit of anything here. There’s all the classic Southern food your heart can desire, lots of local art to enjoy, and plenty of natural beauty to discover around every corner.
The ocean is nearby too if you’re interested in taking a long stop on your road trip and spending a few nights by the sea.
2. Savannah, Georgia
Not too far from Charleston is a city called Savannah, Georgia that you’ve probably heard of.
Savannah is a gem of a city. It has a buzzing yet laidback nightlife, history to learn about, and beautiful parks all over town.
You can spend an entire day exploring downtown or getting to know the small towns that border Savannah. Make sure you stop at the old-style candy shop by the river and go to a speakeasy bar. The riverboat cruises are worth taking and the unique shops are sure to have the perfect road trip souvenir to bring home with you!
3. Montgomery, Alabama
Up next on the list is Montgomery, Alabama. This is a non-negotiable stop on a southern road trip if you want to learn about the history of the deep south.
Montgomery has a handful of museums on the Civil Rights movement and it recently opened a memorial to recognize the victims of lynching – the National Memorial to Peace and Justice.
Any exhibit or monument you go to is sure to move you. It’s worth learning about these points in our nation’s history to understand how far we’ve come and to open our eyes to the work that we still have ahead.
4. Nashville, Tennessee
If you’re looking for a destination that’s a little more lighthearted, head to Nashville, Tennessee. This is the Hollywood of country music; it’s a city where you won’t have to go far to find live music, and where you may even stumble upon the next big country artist.
But, Nashville has much more to offer than good music, great food, and fun bars. There’s a charm to this city that’s unlike anywhere else in the world. It has a welcoming atmosphere and a small town feel to it, despite it being Tennessee’s state capital.
While you’re headed into the city, try to stop in the Smokey Mountains for a night or two. You won’t regret this detour when you wake up to see fog over the trees or watch a sunset sink over the horizon.
Pigeon Forge, Tennessee isn’t too far, either. This city is home to Dollywood, the Hollywood Wax Museum, and a few other unique road trip attractions that this website can tell you about.
5. Jackson, Mississippi
Another southern capital city you should plan to visit is Jackson, Mississippi.
Jackson is well known for lots of live music, good food, and an all-around fun time. But, there are plenty of attractions worth visiting during the day if you have the chance. Jackson is home to many Civil War battle sites and museums.
As far as nighttime entertainment goes, try to do something a little different while you’re here and go to a blues bar. Blues is to Jackson what country music is to Nashville; it’s a part of the city and it’s hard to go wrong with one of the acts who perform it.
6. New Orleans, Louisiana
It wouldn’t be a complete southern road trip without visiting New Orleans!
This is the Las Vegas of the south, but better. In New Orleans, the good times keep on rollin’.
Make sure you stop at Cafe Du Monde for their world-famous beignets and bite into some crawfish, too. Take a walk through the city’s parks and check out the history this town has to offer in addition to all the art and entertainment.
7. Houston, Texas
Last but not least, Houston, Texas.
Plan to spend a few days here so you can enjoy the aquarium, the zoo, space center, and catch a baseball game. Take a drive through downtown to see what you find and take a moment to check out the outskirts of Houston as well. You’ll have fun wherever you go.
How to Make Your Southern Road Trip the Best Vacation Ever!
It’s one thing to know which southern road trip destinations you need to visit and another to know how to get from place to place the right way. After all, half the fun of a road trip is actually having fun on the road!
You need to make sure you’re comfortable while in the car and that you have all your accommodations figured out before you reach your next destination. This will have a significant impact on how much you actually enjoy all the stops the road takes you to.
Click here for packing and planning tips to make your trip a total breeze.