Those in search of a vacation that will take them through some of the South’s loveliest and most historical spots will likely be interested in an Austin to Atlanta road trip. This route takes you through nearly a thousand miles of Texas, Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama, and Georgia. On the way, you’ll be able to learn more about the various cultures and movements that helped shape the South and even the entire U.S. You’ll also go through two great college towns that are home to historical buildings and programs with rich football traditions. Whenever you’re ready to hit the road with your camper, this route through the Deep South will be ready to show you its treasures.
On your trip from Austin to Atlanta, you should check out the beautiful views of some well-known national parks. Check out the RVshare national park guide.
Cane River Creole National Historical Park
Cane River Creole National Historical Park is located southwest of Shreveport not far past Natchitoches. As its name implies, it’s located along the Cane River; Red River isn’t far away, either. This national historical park is home to Oakland Plantation and Magnolia Plantation. Visitors can tour these plantations and their grounds and learn more about the lives of the Creoles who lived and worked here for centuries. If you want to learn more about King Cotton and its role in early Southern life, then you’ll want to check out Cane River Creole National Historical Park.
Hot Springs National Park
Hot Springs National Park is close to three hours off of your route to the north. It’s located in Hot Springs, Arkansas, which is, of course, home to the hot springs that give the park and its surrounding town its name. This national park is in a more urban setting than most, so there are plenty of nearby amenities and attractions to enjoy after you’re done soaking in the springs. Most of the park’s trails are short, but a couple of them are several miles long and wend their way through hardwood and pine forest areas.
Natchez National Historical Park
Natchez National Historical Park is located near the town of Natchez, MS, which is close to the Mississippi River. The park is comprised of several historical homes and settings in the area. Visitors can tour Melrose Estate, the William Johnson House, and Fort Rosalie. The town itself is home to multiple places on the National Register of Historic Places and over a dozen national historic landmarks. You can learn about everything from the early founding of Natchez to its fate during the Civil War and beyond at Natchez National Historical Park.
Martin Luther King, Jr. National Historical Park
Just because you’ve reached Atlanta doesn’t mean that your road trip from Austin to Atlanta is truly over. If you want to learn about the history of this immensely important civil rights figure, then you won’t find a better place to do so than Martin Luther King, Jr. National Historic Park. Located in the heart of Atlanta, this national park takes visitors on a journey through locations like King’s birth home, King’s church, and the King Center. Whether you’re deeply interested in the details of the Civil Rights Movement or you simply want to learn a bit more about this important part of American history, you can do so at Martin Luther King, Jr. National Historical Park.
Great Smoky Mountains National Park
Great Smoky Mountains National Park may be a couple of hours away from Atlanta, but the extra driving is a small price to pay for admission to America’s most popular national park. This sprawling national park contains 500,000 acres of beautiful mountain environments in the Great Smoky Mountains. Whether you want to take a strenuous hike on the Appalachian Trail or a leisurely drive throughout the park itself, you can do that and more at Great Smoky Mountains National Park.
Huntsville State Park
Huntsville State Park is about an hour and a half south of your route near Huntsville, TX. Visitors to this park enjoy fishing on lovely Lake Raven, which is full of largemouth bass, crappie, and the occasional alligator. Whether you want to explore some of the 21 miles of trails in this park or enjoy paddling, canoeing, or kayaking on the lake, you’ll have plenty of opportunities for fun at Huntsville State Park.
Lake Livingston State Park
Lake Livingston State Park is a bit to the east of Huntsville State Park. It’s aptly named since it’s located on Lake Livingston. Visitors keep returning to this park in order to experience its calm waters and lengthy shoreline. As is usually the case with such parks, fishing, swimming, and boating are the most popular activities here. Guests can also go mountain biking, birdwatching, or geocaching.
Roosevelt State Park
Roosevelt State Park is located between Jackson and Meridian close to the edges of the Bienville National Forest. All of the typical state park activities like boating, swimming, and fishing are available here. If you’re into disc golf, you’ll enjoy playing the Moccasin Bend Disc Golf Course, which is 18 holes of fun surrounded by wooded areas and open terrain.
Oak Mountain State Park
Oak Mountain State Park is Alabama’s largest state park and is conveniently located about 20 miles south of Birmingham. A wildlife center, a BMX track, and an interpretive center all call this park home. Fishing, boating, swimming, and hiking are all popular here. If you want to play some golf or practice your archery, you can do that here as well.
Cheaha State Park
The last state park on your road trip itinerary from Austin to Atlanta is Cheaha State Park. It’s nearly 2,800 acres large and includes Cheaha Mountain, which is the highest part of Alabama. The park is also right next to Talladega National Forest and isn’t too far from Talladega Superspeedway.
Texas A&M University
College Station, TX, is home to Texas A&M University. As the university was founded in 1876, there are numerous historical buildings and locations on campus. Some important buildings on campus are Kyle Field, Harrington Hall, Sterling C. Evans Library, and Rudder Tower.
Shreveport Aquarium is in the Downtown Riverfront part of Shreveport close to the Red River. Visitors can feed stingrays, touch jellies, and experience various types of marine life in an interactive pool. Also popular are the demonstrations of shark and alligator feedings.
Mississippi Civil Rights Museum
Jackson, MS, is home to multiple museums, so it’s a great place to explore on your Austin to Atlanta RV road trip if you love history. One of the most popular museums here is the Mississippi Civil Rights Museum, which is part of a complex that also features the Museum of Mississippi History.
The University of Alabama
The University of Alabama was founded a hundred years ago, so there are some lovely buildings and museums on campus. The Alabama Museum of Natural History is worth visiting as is Foster Auditorium and the Paul W. Bryant Museum.
Barber Vintage Motorsports Museum
Barber Vintage Motorsports Museum is on the eastern side of Birmingham right along your route. While there are some classic cars in this collection, the vast majority of the vehicles on display are motorcycles. Whether classic motorcycles are your passion or you simply want to learn more about them, you’ll enjoy your tour of this museum.
College Station, TX
The bulk of College Station centers around Texas A&M and off-campus living. Whether you’re coming to town to cheer on the Aggies or to explore the history of the area, you’ll be able to park your camper at some great local campgrounds.
Shreveport is located in northern Louisiana on the Red River and is close to Cross Lake. The Riverfront area as well as part of nearby Bossier City features some resort casinos that are popular. If you want to spend some time in Shreveport, you’ll be able to avail yourself of multiple dump stations and campgrounds.
Jackson is the capital of Mississippi in the heart of Mississippi. In addition to some excellent museums, it’s also home to the Jackson Zoological Park, LeFleur’s Bluff State Park, and Jackson State University. Several dump stations and campgrounds are available.
Most of Tuscaloosa is built around the University of Alabama. If you want to experience the passion and energy of an SEC college football game, then you should stop by Tuscaloosa on a game day. If you do so, you’ll probably want to take advantage of the local campgrounds.