This road trip from San Antonio to New Orleans incorporates both urban and natural stops that capture the history and culture of the Texas Hill Country and Southern Louisiana regions. Though a little on the long side, this route maximizes both fun and education. On the road to New Orleans, you may find yourself exploring cities, lounging in some of the most luxurious natural settings in the country, and marveling at the variety of vistas along the way.
Hot Springs National Park
Blending nature, history, and luxury, Hot Springs National Park in Arkansas features thermal bathhouses and an on-site spa. When you’re not busy relaxing, learn about the gangs that frequented the surrounding city during the Roaring '20s. Glimpse the nearby mountains and explore the flora and fauna of the area by hiking the trails. This national park is a little out of the way, but it’s well worth the detour.
San Antonio Missions National Historical Park
Before leaving San Antonio, check out the San Antonio Missions National Historical Park. Spanish colonizers founded missions to "civilize" the Native Americans of Texas. Though complicated and sometimes painful, the history these buildings represent is an important part of the American story. The missions are beautiful in their own right, but the history they contain is the real draw to the historical park.
Lyndon B. Johnson National Historical Park
Learn about the life and times of Lyndon B. Johnson, America’s 36th president. The national historical park covers everything about his life from birth to death. Located at a retired hospital that he founded, Lyndon B. Johnson’s historical park in Stonewall also features exhibits about his wife, Lady Bird Johnson, and her contributions to conservation efforts around the country.
Cane River Creole National Historical Park
The Cane River Creole National Historical Park preserves the Magnolia and Oakland cotton plantations in Natchitoches Parish in Louisiana. These plantations housed people belonging to the French Creole culture for over 200 years. The history of slavery mars the beauty of these plantations, however. The descendants of African American slaves continued to work and live on the land surrounding these plantations throughout the 20th century. This national historical park seeks to preserve the unique Creole culture created and makes for a wonderful addition to any San Antonio to New Orleans RV road trip.
Jean Lafitte National Historical Park
Named after a French pirate, the six sites of Jean Lafitte National Historical Park seek to preserve the unique cultural and natural resources of the region. The sites range from a nature preserve on the bayou to tours of the historic New Orleans French Quarter. Visit all six sites for a complete picture of the cultures and landscapes of the Louisiana Mississippi River Delta region.
Pedernales Falls State Park
Located on the beautiful Pedernales River, Pedernales Falls State Park in Johnson City, Texas, is a perfect camping spot if you like to swim, fish, or tube in the river. If water activities aren’t your thing, hike the trails or enjoy a scenic picnic. The park was once a ranch, but the elegant limestone landscape now serves as a fun getaway for Texans and tourists alike and makes a nice stop on your San Antonio to New Orleans road trip.
Dinosaur Valley State Park
Dinosaur Valley State Park near Glen Rose, Texas, is proof that dinosaurs once roamed the land! The extinct and enchanting beasts left their footprints here in the park, and you can see them for yourself. The kids will love the Junior Ranger Explorer Kits that really bring the park alive. After you see the ancient footprints, stick around and hike, mountain bike, swim, or fish in the Paluxy River. The park features over 100 acres of land to explore on horseback, so bring your trusty steed.
Chicot State Park
Located on the Mississippi River Delta, Chicot State Park showcases the unique flora and fauna of Louisiana. Backpack or hike the 22-mile trail that surrounds the lake and take in the views. Spanish moss drapes over the branches of many of the trees, lending the park an enchanted feel. Chicot State Park is also home to a variety of fish.
Fontainebleau State Park
The land that Fontainebleau State Park occupies was once a 2,800-acre sugar plantation established a mere hour outside the city of New Orleans. Visitors can wade in Lake Pontchartrain, hike on the trail, and explore the surrounding wetlands. The park is home to a variety of plants and wildlife that will fascinate nature lovers.
San Antonio River Walk
Before heading to New Orleans, check out the famous San Antonio River Walk. The River Walk is below street level and is home to a variety of shops and restaurants. For the best experience, visit in the evening, eat by the water, and then take a boat tour on the river. The experienced river guides will provide you with the best views of the River Walk and share the unique history of the area.
Texas’ history is full of legends, but no legend looms larger than the Battle of the Alamo. The battle was a devastating loss for the Texas army, and “Remember the Alamo” became a rallying cry for Texas troops during the U.S.-Mexico War. The historic site has come to symbolize Texas’ unwillingness to give up in harrowing times.
The city of Waco is the final resting place for 24 Columbian mammoths. It is believed these creatures died in a flash flood, and archaeologists discovered their fossilized remains in 1978. Visitors to the park can view these significant fossils and learn about the ancient Columbian mammoth species.
Waco is home to HGTV celebrities Chip and Joanna Gaines. Fans of their show "Fixer Upper" flock to Waco from all over the country to shop at their Magnolia Market and eat at their restaurant, Magnolia Table. If you plan to eat at the restaurant, be prepared for long lines. Guests sometimes wait for hours before being seated, but many of them swear the food is worth it.
This historic party street is a must-see for anyone visiting New Orleans. The iconic street is vibrant and full of music and fun. At night, it fills up with party people enjoying the many bars and restaurants. Good times flow freely on Bourbon Street, especially during Mardi Gras.
Ritzy and elegant, Dallas stands out among Texas cities. Visit the massive indoor zoo or peruse the city’s many bars and live music scene. If you prefer cowboy vibes, check out the nearby Fort Worth Stockyards. The carnival environment is fun for city dwellers and rodeo lovers alike. There are several RV parks in Dallas, but Treetops RV Resort stands out with its excellent amenities and fun activities that the whole family can enjoy. If you’re not planning to camp, the KOA dump station is a good option since it is open 24 hours a day and provides water.
The third most populous city in Louisiana, Shreveport acts as a crossroads for Texas, Arkansas, and Louisiana cultures. While you’re there, visit the famous Orlandeaux's Café and the Shreveport Aquarium. For camping, check out Pavilion RV Park, which offers full hookups, spa amenities, and even fishing on a nearby pond. If you’re looking for a dump station, we recommend the Shreveport/Bossier City KOA.
Louisiana’s capital city, Baton Rouge is located directly on the Mississippi River. While you’re there, visit the state capitol building, explore one of the old plantations in the area, or check out one of the many history museums in the city. There are many RV campgrounds near Baton Rouge, but we recommend Baton Rouge KOA Holiday for the best RV camping. The site is right on the Mississippi River, so it's perfect for fishing. If you’re looking for a dump station, we recommend Farr Park Equestrian Center & RV Campground.
It doesn’t matter if you like to travel rugged or stick to luxury; this road trip itinerary from San Antonio to New Orleans has something for everyone. Traveling in an RV allows you to make this road trip your own without worrying too much about lodging. If you don’t have an RV, consider renting one from RVshare. We can help you plan a road trip that your family will never forget.