Family Travel Forum's review of Southcoast USA
What do Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama and Florida have in common? Resorts areas along the Gulf of Mexico. Consider Louisiana’s popular family getaways in Lake Charles, Lafayette, Baton Rouge, Houma, New Orleans and on the Louisiana Northshore at St. Tammany Parish. Mississippi has tourist destinations along the West Coast and at Ocean Springs. Everyone’s heard of the Alabama beaches at Mobile, Gulf Shores and Orange Beach, which compete in summer with Florida’s Pensacola and the Beaches of South Walton region.
Fortunately for the family looking for a value beach vacation without worrying about what state they’re in, a joint marketing effort by these destinations makes it easy: SouthcoastUSA.
“Southcoast USA” offers a moderately-priced beach vacation laced with culture, great regional cuisine, eco-tours, sports facilities and historical sites. Of course, this 350-mile-stretch of sand along the Gulf of Mexico from the Florida Panhandle to the Louisiana Bayou is not unknown — in 2000, for example, more than 25 million visitors from around the world spent the night in its 92,000 hotels rooms (average rates $83/N.)
The marketing partnership is new: 11 C&VBs and Amtrak, whose Sunset Limited runs along the coast daily, make it ‘Big Easy’ to plan a journey.
Take it from SouthCoastUSA.com: The temperate climate enables families to enjoy the Florida beaches at South Walton and Pensacola; Alabama’s Gulf Shores, Eastern Shore and the city of Mobile; the Mississippi Gulf Coast with its riverboats and (for parents) casinos; and the highlights of Lafayette, Lake Charles and Northshore New Orleans, as well as New Orleans and Baton Rouge, year round.
Look online for top-value Amtrak vacations, and the scoop on Cajun and Creole restaurants, jazz and bluegrass clubs, bike paths to see alligators, Mardi Gras festivities, African- American historical sights, rolling golf courses and lifeguard posts.
This story was accurate when it was published. Please be sure to confirm all rates and details directly with the companies in question, and stay up to date with current events to ensure a safe and successful trip.