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Old 07-25-2012, 02:22 PM
 
36 posts, read 191,303 times
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Me and a couple buddies are planning a road trip from tampa, florida to New Orleans. We only are able to take about a week off from work so it will be a decently quick trip. Is it feasible to try and do this in a week? Also what are some other interesting cities/routes along the way to and from tampa? Also how much cash should we bring, I've already calculated the cost roughly of gas/food etc. What about sleeping the car to save costs? We're all college kids so funds are low.
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Old 07-26-2012, 05:18 AM
 
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I'd not waste time on doing stuff between Tampa and New Orleans Not much to see between Tampa and N Orleans anyway ,a few beach towns but as you are from Tampa thats not going to be a major attraction for you.
Just go North on I-75 west on I-10, exit at downtown New Orleans.Budget 12 hours for the drive so if you leave Tampa early you should be there in time for a 6-8 o clock supper then party time for the best part of a week..

W Hillsborough Ave to N Broad St - Google Maps

If by sleeping in the car instead of motel on your arrival i'd not recommend it as the cops take a dim view of people sleeping in cars and may push the issue of Vagrancy also tourists with money sleeping in cars could attract a very unsavory element of New Orleans society..
No idea how much money you should bring as i have no idea how much you gonna drink or eat or what quality lodgings may be needed, i'd bring a few hundred each and fully functioning credit cards each, beware if you are the only one with credit card,i'd suggest every one has one or no one has one..

Last edited by jambo101; 07-26-2012 at 05:35 AM..
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Old 07-26-2012, 06:26 AM
 
Location: Texas
14,078 posts, read 17,652,720 times
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Jambo is right. There isn't much between Tampa and NO which might attract young college guys. Oh, there's the Battleship Alabama in Mobile and casinos in Biloxi and Gulfport, but that's about it. And, since you're coming from a beach town, somebody else's beach will still be just another beach.

Once you get to New Orleans, you'll find it can be a very expensive place to party. Hotels in the downtown, French Quarter, Garden and Warehouse Districts (which are within walking or trolly car distance from Bourbon St.) will run you from about $150 on up, plus parking in most cases. You can find cheaper places within those areas, but you probably won't like them. And, if you stay out in the 'burbs, you'll still have to get to where you're going and pay parking again. It runs from about $25-40 a day. Or, you can ride the bus, which will likely necessitate some transfers along the way. If you do take your car into town, watch out for the new electronic parking meters! They'll be positioned in the middle of the block and you've got to find it, pay the parking fee and put the receipt under the windshield wiper or you're subject to a pretty heft parking ticket. And, you'll have to keep going back and feeding it again and again because all day isn't an option.

Sleeping in your car? NO! In the first place, you won't find a safe place to do it and, in the second place, you'll likely end up dealing with the NOPD, one of the most corrupt police departments in the nation. You're as likely to be shaken down by them as you are to be robbed, which is a real possibility in any part of New Orleans or the surrounding parishes.

And, we haven't even touched on the subject of the cost of drinks, food and entertainment! In the tourist areas, it's steep. For instance, I bought a six pack of Abita Beer from a liquor store on Canal St. a few weeks ago and it was 9 bucks. That's about typical for that area. Bourbon St. would be higher. Also, if you're interested, don't think you can come back with any Saints T-shirts or other paraphernalia. It's not sold in most places. The Saints keep a tight rein on that. Food: A bowl of soup and a glass of tea at Archie Manning's place cost me $10. It'll be similar in the Quarter. Really, your best place to eat is at Harrah's Casino at the foot of Canal St. Looking for authentic Cajun food? Forgetaboutit! (No, Mulate's doesn't count). It just isn't there. Oh, you can get po'boy's and muffaletta at lots of places, but that's about it. If you like your morning sweets and hot coffee, try Cafe Dumont, a couple of blocks downstream from Jackson Square. It think it's Decatur St.

Overall, New Orleans is a great place to visit, but don't expect to do it on a shoe string.
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Old 07-26-2012, 07:45 AM
 
Location: The Triad (NC)
28,484 posts, read 62,084,629 times
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That stretch of I-10 is awful. Do all you can to get that 700 miles driving done and over asap.
If you start early you can be in 'narlins by dinnertime.

Find a place to rent in/near the garden district and you'll spend the week car-less.
Try to remember where the car was parked for the ride home... well, for those who will be going home.
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Old 07-26-2012, 11:08 AM
 
Location: Denver
600 posts, read 889,981 times
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I've driven between Tampa and NOLA many times. The other posters are right, there isn't much to see on the way. Especially on the stretch between Tallahassee and Pensacola.

And no, don't sleep in your car! There are a handful of hotels along St Charles where parking shouldn't be so much of an issue. Another alternative would be to stay in the Central Business District - you might find some cheaper hotels there. Park your car at the airport and get a cab into town. You won't need a car while you're here.

For French Quarter entertainment, yes, you have to experience Bourbon St once, but there are also plenty of other great places in the Quarter that aren't as expensive. And head to Frenchmen St for some local flavoured bars and nightlife.

And it's Cafe Du Monde, you'll easily spot its green and white striped awnings.
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Old 07-26-2012, 03:09 PM
 
36 posts, read 191,303 times
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wow I appreciate the tips. When we first planned it out we wanted to take 3 weeks and go out west possibly and see the Grand Canyon, Yellowstone, etc.(we plan on doing that next summer) But due to time constraints the New Orleans trip should suffice. I'm wondering though, we do party but we wanted this trip to be more so a site seeing and spontaneous kind of thing rather than just driving to New Orleans and back dreading the drive. Would there be another route that me be more catered to what we are looking for but still doable in a week or maybe a bit over a week?
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Old 07-26-2012, 04:31 PM
 
34,355 posts, read 41,427,648 times
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Instead of I-75 then I-10 take Hwy 19N then Rt98 west, less traffic, somewhat scenic as you near Panama City and points west,also more opportunity for Spontaneity .the Battleship Alabama was fun..
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Old 07-26-2012, 04:49 PM
 
Location: The Triad (NC)
28,484 posts, read 62,084,629 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by amc11890 View Post
Would there be another route that me be more catered to what we are looking for but still doable in a week or maybe a bit over a week?
Add Vicksburg and the Natchez Trace into the mix
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Old 07-27-2012, 01:20 PM
 
Location: Orlando
8,178 posts, read 16,542,413 times
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I had all kinds of quirky places to visit picked out but the realized that we're talking about college age guys, limited funds, limited time and the attaction of New Orleans.

I like Jambo's route except I'd get off of I-75 in Ocala take RT 27 over to 19 head north to pick up 98.
I'm a backroad lover tho.

Have fun!
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