Summer sometimes seems insanely busy between camps, end of the year festivities, and life. It’s really hard to slow down and make summer memories. So here are day trip locations that are within three hours of New Orleans for you to visit. Most of them are in Louisiana, but some are in Mississippi, Alabama, and Florida. Get the kids, pack the car, and make some memories because before you know it, summer will be over and school will be starting again.
So technically this is in Jefferson Parish, but it’s so far removed from the main part of the parish, it’s a destination for most of us! Grand Isle has beaches, a butterfly dome, Elmer’s Island and whole lot more.
Located in Mandeville, Fontainebleau has beaches, hiking trails and a splash pad. The entrance fee into the park is only $2 per person.
Take a tour through the Honey Island Swamp, one of the least-altered river swamps in the country.
Also in Mandeville, the Northlake Nature Center has hiking trails and a variety of children’s activities.
Take a safari wagon tour and feed giraffes and other animals that are roaming free.
Tickfaw is one our favorite state parks. Spend some time in the nature center learning about local animals and wildlife, take a hike on one of the trails, and then play in the splash pad to cool off before heading home.
This beautiful island in South Louisiana is home to the Tabasco manufacturing plant. Cost to get on the island is $1 and tours of the plant and gardens are an additional fee.
Take a drive to Baton Rouge and visit the Louisiana Science and Art Museum. The museum has hands on galleries and exhibits that are perfect for little ones to explore.
Located on the Mississippi River in Baton Rouge, the USS Kidd is a Fletcher-class destroyer. Walk through the ship and see why she was called “Pirate of the Pacific”.
Take a trip back and time and see what life was like in 18th and 19th century Louisiana.
Another great trip idea for your little history buff. Visit some of the plantations alone River Road such as Destrehan, San Francisco and many others to see what life was like living on a Louisiana Plantation.
Take a trip to Lafayette and visit the Children’s Museum of Acadiana , the museum has lots of hands on learning for children of all ages.
While you’re in Lafayette stop by the science museum for interactive science fun.
Take a drive over to Gulfport for this fun rope and zip-lining course through the trees!
This is a favorite for my kids. They, yes even the 14 yr old, asks to go every time we visit Gulfport. And since it’s just blocks from the beach, you can go play in the sand after your visit before heading home.
Do your kids love dolphins and other marine animals? Then this is a MUST visit. Kids get to see dolphins interacting with their trainers, birds, touch marine life, and learn about conservation efforts.
To Infinity and beyond…. Explore and learn all about space, NASA and our space program at the Infinity Science Center. Included in your visit is a tour of Stennis Space Center!
The USS Alabama is a WWII Battleship that is in Mobile, Alabama. Visit the memorial park, to tour the battleship.
While you’re in Mobile, visit this science center full of 150 interactive exhibits!
This one may be slightly outside the 3 hour window but it’s worth the drive. We visited it a few years ago during spring break and there was so much to do, we couldn’t see it all. On select days you can even watch the Blue Angels practice, all for FREE!
What’s your favorite summer road trip destination?
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