If you want to drive from one history-rich coastal town to another, then a New Orleans to Rockport road trip may be in your future. On your journey from the Gulf Coast to the Atlantic Coast, you’ll be able to explore numerous national and state parks. You’ll also travel through some fascinating cities that are full of interesting tourist destinations. Whether you want to spend time out in the great outdoors or in some of America’s greatest urban environments, you’ll have no problem rounding out your road trip itinerary from New Orleans to Rockport with top-notch locations.
Great Smoky Mountains National Park
Why not make the first national park you visit on your road trip from New Orleans to Rockport America’s most popular one? Great Smoky Mountains National Park is only 45 minutes from Knoxville, Tennessee, so you should definitely stop by and experience the many reasons that millions of people flock here each year. There are over 800 miles of trails in the park, meaning you won’t have to work hard to find a gorgeous trail that will suit your skill level. You can even take an auto tour if you want to explore the park from the comfort of your vehicle.
Mammoth Cave National Park
If you’re willing to drive three extra hours northwest of Lenoir City, Tennessee, you’ll be able to tour the wonders of Mammoth Cave National Park. At this interesting national park, you’ll be able to explore part of the world's longest-known cave system. Multiple cave tours of varying levels of difficulty will take you to awesome areas like Frozen Niagara, the Rotunda, and Gothic Avenue. On the surface, some lovely trails take you through some of Kentucky’s rolling hills. There are also various rivers available for fishing and boating.
New River Gorge National Park
You’ll find the entrance to New River Gorge National Park roughly an hour and 20 minutes north of Wytheville, Virginia. Boaters and rafters have been coming here for many years to enjoy the wonders of the New River and the gorge it’s carved out over time. Hikers enjoy walking along the ridges of the canyon or even trekking down into the gorge itself. You’ll also get to behold a man-made wonder here; the New River Gorge Bridge is an iconic single-span steel arch bridge that’s been enchanting visitors since its construction in 1977.
Shenandoah National Park
You can easily reach the entrance to Shenandoah National Park by traveling a mere 25 minutes east of Harrisonburg, Virginia, so it’s a logical place to visit on your New Orleans to Rockport RV road trip. This gorgeous portion of the Blue Ridge Mountains is full of mountains, forests, waterfalls, and abundant plant and animal life. A hundred miles of Skyline Drive and 100 miles of the Appalachian Trail both run through the park, so you can explore this park via car or trail. Many other trails abound through the park for horseback riders, hikers, and bikers.
Acadia National Park
If you reach the end of your road trip from New Orleans to Rockport and are still hearing the call of the open road, then you may want to consider driving up the rest of the Eastern Seaboard to stunning Acadia National Park. Depending on how much you want to hug the coast, you can make the trip from Rockport to Acadia’s entrance in four and a half to five hours. Several million people visit this gorgeous stretch of Maine’s coast each year, so you’ll hardly be alone as you explore the shoreline, forests, lakes, peaks, and more. Between the hiking trails and carriage roads in the park, you’ll have over 200 miles of pathways to explore.
Oak Mountain State Park
Oak Mountain State Park is only half an hour south of Birmingham, so you should put it on your road trip itinerary from New Orleans to Rockport. Three separate lakes provide excellent places to fish, boat, and swim. You’ll be able to hike on 25 miles of trails ranging in difficulty from easy to hard. The park has an archery park, an 18-hole championship-grade golf course, and even a BMX track.
Desoto State Park
Roughly a dozen minutes east of Fort Payne, Alabama, is Desoto State Park. This park is home to Alabama’s largest waterfall, Desoto Falls. There are multiple smaller waterfalls throughout the park, as well as some rivers and forests. More than 30 miles of trails take you through the mountainous terrain here and give you the means to explore on foot or by bike. Little River is a great place to kayak, and the Olympic-sized pool is perfect for cooling off. If you’re feeling adventurous, you can try some of the park’s zip lines and sky bridges.
Claytor Lake State Park
You only have to travel two minutes from your route as it passes through Ingles, Virginia, to reach Claytor Lake State Park. The park gives you access to Claytor Lake, which is a great place to go boating and swimming. Hiking, picnicking, sunbathing, and touring the historic Haven B. Howe House are other favorite activities here.
Allaire State Park
You’ll find Allaire State Park 25 minutes east of Robbinsville, New Jersey. One of the park’s biggest draws is Historic Allaire Village, which is comprised of the remnants of a bustling industrial community built around an ironworks. The Manasquan River is a great place to go fishing. Multiple marked and unmarked trails are available for hikers, bikers, and horseback riders.
Harriman State Park
Before you cross the Hudson to take a bite of the Big Apple, you should consider heading 40 minutes northwest of Teaneck, New Jersey, to Harriman State Park. This park is home to more than 30 bodies of water, so there’s no shortage of places to fish, swim, boat, and more. Over 200 miles of trails are open to hikers, bikers, and dog walkers.
Rock City is technically in Lookout Mountain, Georgia, but the easiest way to get there from your route is to head a dozen minutes south from Chattanooga, Tennessee. From this lovely spot on Lookout Mountain, you can see ancient rock formations up close while getting a panoramic view of seven states. You’ll be able to walk along the Enchanted Trail, explore Mother Goose Village and Fairyland Caverns, and have a meal at the Big Rock Grill.
Great Falls Park
Before you cross the Potomac, you should head 10 minutes west of McClain, Virginia, and visit lovely Great Falls Park. One popular activity here is viewing Great Falls itself and the Potomac River. Adventurers enjoy shooting the rapids that flow through the park while fishers enjoy casting their lines in the more tranquil areas. Multiple multi-use trails throughout the park provide paths for hikers, bikers, and riders.
Babe Ruth Birthplace and Museum
The Babe Ruth Birthplace and Museum is only three minutes from Interstate 95 as it travels through Baltimore, Maryland. If you want to learn more about one of the greatest baseball players of all time on your road trip from New Orleans to Rockport, then this is the right place for you. Exhibits like The Ruthian Record, Playing the Babe, and The 500 Home Run Club await.
The Empire State Building
Right after you cross the Hudson on Interstate 95, you can head south for about 25 minutes to one of most iconic buildings in New York City known as the Empire State Building. Tourists flock to this attraction for the stellar views of Manhattan and its surrounding areas, but there are plenty of other sights to see here as well. Multiple floors are home to exhibits like Modern Marvel, Otis Elevators, and Urban Campus.
The Salem Witch Museum
After you leave Interstate 95 for the Yankee Division Highway on the final part of your New Orleans to Rockport road trip, you should definitely travel 15 minutes from Danvers, Massachusetts, to visit the Salem Witch Museum. Salem is, of course, famous for the Salem Witch Trials, and the Salem Witch Museum is an excellent place to learn more about that point of American history. Exhibits about these particular witch hunts and the perception of witches in general are part of this fascinating museum.
New York City, New York
Whether you want to take in a show on Broadway, stroll through Central Park, or pay your respects at the National 9/11 Memorial Museum, you’ll find much to do in the Big Apple. There are many dump stations and campgrounds in this popular tourist area.
When you follow this road trip itinerary from New Orleans to Rockport, you will enjoy historic locations and beautiful scenery along the way. If you want to travel in comfort and style, consider an RV rental from RVshare. From large motorhomes to compact campervans, there is a rig that will meet your travel and budget needs. Once you hit the road, you are protected by our renter guarantee and 24/7 roadside assistance. Find the perfect vehicle for your travel needs in New Orleans or Rockport.