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Mississippi: Linger on the shores of the Magnolia State

The Magnolia State has many claims to fame—a superb waterfront, unforgettable cooking and warm Southern hospitality. This route along the scenic Highway 90 will treat you to all those qualities and more as you explore the laid-back communities that define Southern living.

Drive 54 miles, 1 hour, 7 minutes

Getty Images/iStockphoto

Getty Images/iStockphoto

1. Bay St. Louis

Starting Point

Having a main drag called Beach Boulevard should say it all. If you have any trouble finding a stretch of sand and warm water in this bayside hamlet, you’re doing something wrong. A walking tour of the Creole cottages and 19th-century homes that make up the historic Old Town is a great introduction to the town’s laid-back Southern lifestyle. Stop at the hip Blind Tiger restaurant for shrimp and cocktails, or relax in the welcoming “living room-like” atmosphere of the Mockingbird Café.

2. Gulfport

17.8 miles, 24 minutes

Let the good times roll right on the beach at the famed Island View Casino, where slots, poker and craps await gamers. Check the casino calendar ahead of time, as top musical performers regularly take the stage of the View Showroom. You can easily wander back and forth between the near 7 miles of white sand beaches and the gaming room floor, so don’t hesitate to take a break from the tables and enjoy dinner and a sunset out by the dunes. For adrenaline junkies, check out the Smokin’ the Sound speed boat races, which roar into town every spring.

Getty Images/iStockphoto

Getty Images/iStockphoto

3. Biloxi

20 miles, 20 minutes

Sport fishermen flock to Biloxi year-round for a chance to reel in the big one, and one of the many charter boats that leave the marina will help you hook a sea trout, mackerel or even a shark. After a morning on the water, try your luck at the Beau Rivage Resort and Casino, a well-known landmark and the tallest building in Mississippi. Between hot hands, check out the singular Ohr-O’Keefe Museum of Art, which was designed by famed architect Frank Gehry. The collection includes abstract impressionist pottery from George E. Ohr, known locally as “the Mad Potter of Biloxi.”


Cajun RV Park
Biloxi, MS
(877) 225-8699

4. Gautier

16.2 miles, 23 minutes

Home to the wetlands and bayous of the Pascagoula River, Gautier has something for everyone. From birding among the endangered seabirds at the Sandhill Crane National Wildlife Refuge to enjoying an afternoon guided kayaking tour of the bayous with Eco-Tours of South Mississippi, the outdoorsman in you will be busy. Next, challenge yourself to some championship golf at the Hickory Hill Country Club, a course designed to highlight the natural beauty of the area. The Mississippi National Golf Club challenges golfers as it winds through the area’s lush surroundings.