The Gulf Coast Drive
Total miles for the trip: 380
Take Highway 90 east out of New Orleans to Bay St. Louis (50 miles). Turn right at Main Street, and follow it to the beach. Alice Moseley's house is three blocks south of Main on Bookter Street. Back on Highway 90, go six miles to Pass Christian. Turn left onto Scenic Drive for its antebellum mansions. In Long Beach (seven miles down Highway 90), take a left at the sign for the University of Southern Mississippi. As you enter the campus you'll see the Friendship Oak. Fifteen miles along Highway 90, you'll hit Biloxi. Past the lighthouse, on your left, is a sign for Beauvoir. After another mile, park at Mary Mahoney's restaurant and walk up Rue Magnolia to the Mardi Gras Museum. Two more minutes down 90 there's a small sign for the Green Oaks Bed & Breakfast.
In Ocean Springs, take a right off Highway 90 at Washington Street toward the Walter Anderson Museum of Art. On Washington, follow signs to Shearwater Pottery. Back on 90, turn right on Hanley Road to Gulf Islands National Seashore. It's about 50 miles to Mobile on 90. The National African-American Archives Museum is on Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Avenue.
Cross Mobile Bay and take Highway 98 south to Scenic 98; follow it into Fairhope (40 miles). Continue on Scenic 98 five miles to Ye Olde Post Office Antiques & Militaria. Stay with Scenic 98, turn right on Route 59 to Gulf Shores (20 miles). Turn right onto Route 180, drive 21 miles to Fort Morgan and the car ferry for Dauphin Island. Take Bienville Boulevard to the Dauphin Island Bridge, cross over, and follow Cedar Point Road 10 miles to Route 188, which takes you to I-10 west, back to New Orleans.
Green Oaks Bed & Breakfast 580 Beach Blvd., Biloxi, Miss.; 888/436-6257; doubles $90-$150 with full breakfast.
Malaga Inn 359 Church St., Mobile, Ala.; 800/235-1586; doubles $79.
Trapani's Eatery 116 N. Beach Blvd., Bay St. Louis, Miss.; 228/467-8570; lunch for two $20.
Bayview Gourmet 1210 Government St., Ocean Springs, Miss.; 228/875-4252; lunch for two $15.
Justine's Courtyard & Carriageway 80 Saint Michael St., Mobile, Ala.; 334/438-4535;
dinner for two $65.
Port City Brewery 225 Dauphin St., Mobile, Ala.; 334/438-2739; dinner for two $20.
Old Bay Steamer 312 Fairhope Ave., Fairhope, Ala.; 334/928-5714; lunch for two $15.
Prices do not include drinks, tax, or tip.