Summer is here, and everyone’s ready to hit the road for a little time away from home. Take advantage of every weekend this summer with trips to nearby towns and parishes as well as jaunts across the city to your favorite destinations for dining and entertainment. There’s plenty of fun within driving distance of New Orleans, from the exciting, friendly festivals of Cajun country to the beaches of Florida and the relaxing sunsets and sensations of Mississippi. Rivers, lakes, bayous and oceans provide plenty of scenic water-based fun, while quaint towns deliver exceptional Southern hospitality with home-cooked meals, arts and crafts. Meanwhile, New Orleans delivers with its own weekend excitement, with Sunday brunch tables topped with mimosas and courtyards full of diners relaxing at the end of the workweek.  Let the good times roll with exciting weekend adventures all summer long.

Weekend Destinations

Premier Island Management Group

This summer, upgrade your remote working and learning environment with a getaway to Pensacola Beach, Florida, and the properties of Premier Island Management Group. Situated just a few hours outside of New Orleans along the Gulf of Mexico and the Gulf Island National Seashore, this collection of vacation rentals includes beach homes, condos, and the acclaimed skyhomes of the Portofino Island Resort.

Northwest Florida’s premier beach vacation experience, Portofino Island offers families the perfect location to work, learn and play. Step away from your laptop and enjoy a kayak or paddleboard adventure in the sound. At recess surf the emerald green waters, or take a parasail ride. Whether you chose to leave your work behind or bring it with you, there’s a Premier Island property that will be the perfect home away from home for you and your family.

More than just another getaway, this will be the one your family remembers for a lifetime. Discover yours at or call 866-935-7741.

Vermilion Parish

A warm welcome and affordable family fun awaits you in Louisiana’s Vermilion Parish. Here, you’ll feast on seafood straight from the Gulf waters or on Cajun favorites made just like grandma prepared. From over-stuffed poboys and raw oysters to fresh boiled seafood, there’s always a plate waiting for you.

Vermilion Parish is looking forward to the return of its major festivals this year and will host the Daylily Festival on June 5, followed by the Erath 4th of July Celebration, and the Delcambre Shrimp Festival and Gueydan Duck Festival both in August. The LA Cattle Festival will bring fun to fall in October, and Abbeville’s Giant Omelette Celebration will wrap up the year November 6-7. Whether it’s flowers, shrimp, ducks, cattle, or eggs—just a few of Vermilion Parish’s festival focuses—these communities celebrate with great music, flavorful food, and plenty of dancing. Vermilion Parish is located just two hours from New Orleans, so take the easy jaunt and join the fun.

Call 337-898-6600 or visit to discover more ways to experience “The Most Cajun Place on Earth!”

Visit Vicksburg

In Vicksburg, Mississippi, you’ll find Southern hospitality in its most authentic form. A city that harbors U.S. history at some of its most poignant turns, Vicksburg features art at its most creative angles, food at its finest flavors, and outdoor adventure at its most thrilling turns. Vicksburg is a place bursting at the seams with local culture, character, art, entertainment, and outdoor adventure.

With sweeping views of the Mississippi River, Vicksburg perfectly blends Southern culture and heritage with exciting modern-day attractions. From four world-class casinos and upscale shopping, dining, and spas to some of the most fascinating historic sites, architecture, and homes in the nation, Vicksburg offers an authentic Southern experience you don’t want to miss.

Just relax—it all runs on river time in Vicksburg. From restaurants and shops to historical sites and museums, you’ll find destinations, events, and lodging for your next adventure at

Big Bay Lake 

Big Bay Lake is a one-of-a-kind planned community on one of Mississippi’s largest private recreational lakes. Located just outside of Hattiesburg, and only 90 minutes from New Orleans, Big Bay Lake blends seamlessly into its natural surroundings. Waterfront homesites are available for building custom homes and retreats starting at $70,000 and several resale homes are usually available for immediate purchase. Both the homes and homesites within this community provide unique opportunities to create the perfect home or weekend getaway.

It’s time to relax, unplug, make memories, and create new traditions at Big Bay Lake. Whether you are a boating or fishing enthusiast or just a family who loves to make a big splash, Big Bay Lake is simply about the lure of the water. Come enjoy sun-kissed, fun-filled days at Big Bay Lake, where the little things make life… “Big!”  Call for a boat tour today at 877-4BIG-BAY or visit


Dining & Entertainment


Welcome the spring season—and now Sunday brunch—with delicious food and wine shared together at Briquette, the celebrated seafood destination from restaurateur Anna Tusa, Owner of New Orleans Creole Cookery. With Briquette, Tusa puts seafood and contemporary coastal cuisine at the center of the dining experience. Briquette is also known locally for its enthusiasm for high quality, often hard-to-find wines and spirits and recently won the Wine Spectator Award of Excellence for its discerning, expansive wine list.

Bubbly Briquette Brunch started in March and features bottomless mimosas and rosé along with specialties like Crawfish Hash, Shrimp & Grits, Bananas Foster Waffles, Chicken & Waffles, and the Brunchin’ Burger. Eye openers like bourbon milk punch and Briquette Bloody Marys add to the Sunday flavor. For more info, call the restaurant or follow it on Facebook.

Briquette is currently open for dinner Thursday-Sunday, 3 p.m. until close, and for brunch on Sundays, 10:30 a.m. – 4 p.m. Briquette is located at 701 S. Peters Street in the Warehouse District. Book your table today by calling the restaurant at 504-302-7496 or via OpenTable.

Tito’s Ceviche & Pisco

Take a quick trip to Perú without leaving New Orleans—Tito’s Ceviche & Pisco brings exceptional, authentic Peruvian cuisine to Uptown at 5015 Magazine Street. Helmed by Executive Chef and Owner Juan Lock, Tito’s features seafood favorites, including a variety of melt-in-your-mouth, all-natural ceviches, and well-spiced beef entrées, delectable duck confi, and unforgettable lamb shank dishes.

The restaurant takes pride in freshness, offering only the highest quality ingredients in its dishes and handcrafted cocktails. The bar at Tito’s is famous for its Peruvian wine and pisco selections, signature pisco cocktails, and imported beers.

Tito’s offers intimate indoor and atmospheric courtyard seating and is open seven days a week. Lunch is served Monday through Friday, 11:30 a.m. – 3 p.m. Happy hour runs Monday through Friday, 3 p.m. – 6 p.m., and features a variety of drinks and small plates. Dinner runs 6 p.m. – 10 p.m. Saturday hours are 11:30 a.m. – 10 p.m., and Tito’s Sunday Brunch is available from 10:30 a.m. – 3:00 p.m. For more information, private events, catering, and reservations, visit, call 504-267-7612, or follow Tito’s on Instagram and Facebook.


Travel Resources

AAA 24/7 Roadside Assistance

Now is the perfect time to dream about your future road trip escape. When the time is right and you’re ready to jump in the car, you can make sure your road trip stays on track with the peace of mind that accompanies AAA 24/7 Roadside Assistance. AAA covers you in any car, SUV, or pick-up truck even if you’re not the driver. AAA provides members with free towing, free tire change, free lock-out assistance, free minor mechanical first aid, free jump start, and free delivery of emergency fuel.

For a limited time, readers of New Orleans Magazine can join AAA for only $53 and get two household members free (promo code 175697). Current AAA members can add two new household members free (promo code 175699). For more details, see AAA’s ad in this issue, call 844-330-2173, or visit Join AAA today.