Any advice on New Orleans to LA
I have a trip booked for my 50th. birthday, we fly to Chicago on 8th Jan and leave LA on 28th Jan. Originally we were going to travel route 66, but have decided to postpone that due to likely bad weather, so now might fly to New Orleans for a few days, then drive to LA via Houston(space centre), then San Antonio, onward to San Diego, then LA. We still want to visit the Grand Canyon and maybe travel a bit of 66 back to LA (we thought of going to San Fransisco from LA, then to the Grand Canyon and Vegas) My husband does love driving, but is this a bit ambitious in the time scale?
We'd love to do it in a convertible, but am a bit worried about weather conditions.
A cross country road trip is a great way to celebrate attaining the ripe old age of 50! I am a little confused -- is the Chicago leg still in the trip? Or will the road trip start in New Orleans?
New Orleans is a great place to be in January -- really nice walking-around weather.
When you are headed west from Texas to California is the time I would suggest stopping at the Grand Canyon -- it is not that large a detour and far easier than on the other leg. Plus you can easily reach Las Vegas and maybe Death Valley on your way to LA
A convertible in January is going to be chilly! Snow is certainly likely just about anyplace in Texas, New Mexico and Arizona. It can be fun -- but I would recommend a hard-top in January.
I am still not sure about the time frame...
Thanks Mark, Regarding the time frame, our flights to Chicago are booked, and two nights in a hotel so we would be leaving there on 10th Jan. I'm just looking at booking flights to New Orleans, thinking of three or four nights there. The route we have in mind now is old US 80, I think, trying to avoid the snow! If we followed your suggestion would we not miss San Diego?
First of all : happy 50th birthday:o)!!
New Orleans is a very fun city, so take your time and enjoy the ambiance while you're there, because I think there is no such place like that around the area.
I don't know what's the temperature like in southern Texas during the winter, but if it is hot enough, you could head to South Padre Island for a few days. The beaches are often almost deserted, so no freezbees flying above your head, no baby crying, no radio, it's pretty quiet and nice
for a young couple:-)
I also suggest you spend a few days in San Antonio, it's the nicest town in Texas to my opinion. With its spanish architecture, its huge parks and its history, San Antonio is definitly a must see. I'm sure you could spend weeks in San Antonio and still have a lot of places to visit. But of course, as an old "spanish" city, the street plan is a little twisty, you can get lost easily if you drive through the city. Go take a look at Brackenridge Park and its japanese garden, it is not easy to find but it's really worth the tour, there are a lot of nice parks in San An with nice flower arrangements, fountains, falls, plants and trees, just ask around. There is also a must see theater downtown, I believe its name is Majestic theater, go take a peak inside, the stage is kind of the reincarnation of a Vaudeville, very impressing. Of course, San Antonio is also the hometown of the famous Ft Alamo!
You could also follow the Old Spanish Mission Trail in the El Paso area. Personally, I thought the ambiance in El Paso was very particular, maybe because of the proximity of the Mexican border, it was one of my favourite town, despite my very poor spanish skills.:-)
Through New Mexico, I enjoyed the stretch of road between Soccorro (NM) and Globe, Arizona (SR 60). There are a lot of ghost towns on this stretch of road, lots of desert, Native land, mountains, (no traffic!!!) and you can visit the Very Large Array (VLA).
For the rest, I think I'll let our specialist, uncle Bob, give you some tips on Arizona and other places!!:-)
Have a nice trip!
OK -- Following the old route of US-80 is going to require a lot of work. About 50% of the original route is still intact, but much of it is not posted with identification signs. I-8 and I-10 and other roads have glommed onto much of the route.
I hate to tell you, but the odds are that you will hit snow and/or ice storms along that route in Texas, Arizona and New Mexico -- in fact the odds are better that you will hit ice on the southern routes because you are that much closer to the gulf (the source of most of the winter storm's moisture). It is just as likely that you will have great weather -- but snow flurries and ice are known weather conditions every winter in those areas.
"My route" (above) could easily include a visit to San Diego by simply continuing south on I-15 from Las Vegas to San Diego.