New Orleans

New Orleans is about 530 miles southwest of Nashville. The route between Nashville, TN and New Orleans, LA is one of great adventures – thrills, history, mountains, spectacular views, wildlife, nature, cuisine, cultures, golf, racing and more than you can imagine. Each city has much to offer. What is the distance from New Orleans to Nashville? About 530 miles. Photo: Photo: SeanPavonePhoto/Fotolia

»Nashville to New Orleans By Plane

Nashville to New Orleans By Plane


The Nashville International Airport (BNA) is a busy mid-sized airport which sees an average of 12 million travelers a year. Delta, United and American Airlines offer flights from Nashville to New Orleans with a stopover in Atlanta, Houston or Dallas, respectively. Fares start at $374. Southwest offers some direct flights, with others including a stopover in Houston. Fares start at $317.

There is ample parking and a variety of ground transportation options at the Nashville International Airport. The airport also is home to a variety of shops, cafés, restaurants, newsstands and convenience stores. If there is something you need before you board your flight you can most likely find it at the airport.

The Louis Armstrong New Orleans Airport (MSY) is another mid-sized airport, but offers many of the services and connections as larger airports. Ground transportation is readily available including shuttles, taxis, rental cars and public transit. A variety of shops and restaurants, including several that specialize in local gifts and food options, are available. Photo: offfstock/Fotolia

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»Nashville to New Orleans By Train

Nashville to New Orleans By Train


There is no direct train service between Nashville and New Orleans. There are three daily busses from Nashville to Birmingham, AB where travelers can connect with Amtrak’s seven-hour Crescent service to New Orleans. Alternatively, travelers can bus to Memphis, TN and from there connect with Amtrak’s 59 City of New Orleans train to New Orleans. Both trains feature reserved coach seats (starting at $37 from Birmingham and $48 from Memphis) and Superliner Roomette (starting at $150).

A Viewliner Roomette is also available on the trip from Birmingham starting at $170. Both roomettes accommodate 2 adults with seats that convert to a bed and a pull down top bunk. The Viewliner also includes en suite bath room and shower. With the sleeper compartments, meals are included on both the Crescent and 59 City of New Orleans trains. Other amenities include free Wi-Fi, checked baggage, bicycle check, and a dining car that serves light meals. Seating is available in the dining car. Photo: missgrace/Fotolia

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»Nashville to New Orleans By Bus

Nashville to New Orleans By Bus

There are several bus options from which to choose. Greyhound offers a daily route from Nashville to New Orleans leaving at 3:25am and arriving at 5:40pm after a transfer in Montgomery, AL. Prices start as low as $62 one way. Greyhound busses also link Nashville and Memphis five times a day.

Amenities on board include checked baggage, reclining seats and ample leg room, air conditioning, free Wi-Fi, and bathroom. Greyhound is an economical way to travel. It also takes away the hassle of driving and allows you to enjoy the scenery. Photo: SeanPavonePhoto/Fotolia

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»By Car

By Car


New Orleans is about 530 miles southwest of Nashville. The fastest route by car is to take I-65 out of Nashville to Birmingham, AL and exit on I-20 which will take you to New Orleans. This drive will take between 7-8 hours depending on the number of stops along the way. For a slightly longer trip, but to stop at one of America’s most historic cities, continue on I-65 south of Birmingham to Montgomery, AL for a taste of its culture and charm. Carry on with I-65 to Mobile, TX and connect with I-10 heading west to New Orleans.

There are two options if you are interested in a slower but more scenic and interesting route. The first takes you through Tennessee and Mississippi while the second takes you along the western side of Alabama.

For the first option, take US Hwy 64 to Savannah, TN, then continue to Selmer, TN and take US Hwy 45 south to Tupelo, MI. Continue to Interstate 20 to Meridian, MS where you’ll connect to Interstate 59 which takes you all the way to New Orleans. This drive is roughly nine hours, not including stops.

For the second option, take I-65 to US Hwy 43. This highway takes you through western Alabama until you connect with I-10 to New Orleans. This route is roughly 10 hours without stops.

Before leaving Nashville visit some of the city’s wonderful attractions. Nashville, also known as “City Music U.S.A” has long been known as the country music capital of the world.

For a fun and unique day trip from Nashville, visit Dunbar Cave State Park. Only 60 miles from Nashville, the park boasts Dunbar Cave which is eight miles long and includes prehistoric art. Take I-24 West out of Nashville which takes you straight to the State Park. To explore the cave, you must sign up beforehand for a group tour.

Another excursion is the Nashville Zoo. The 200-acre zoo also hosts a historic plantation farmhouse. Just six miles southeast of downtown Nashville, it is easy to access and make a great family outing.

If you choose to take US Hwy 64 through Tennessee and Mississippi, your first stop should be Savannah, TN. Freshen up on your Civil War history at the Shiloh National Battlefield. There is no entrance fee for this national historic site. Your next stop on this journey should be Tupelo, MI, the birthplace of Elvis Prestley. Visit the birthplace museum and shop for collectibles. From Tupelo, continue to Interstate 20 to Meridian, MI where you’ll connect to Interstate 59 which takes you all the way to New Orleans.

If you choose to take the western Alabama route, take I-65 past Franklin, TN and veer off on US Hwy 43. Take your first stop in Tuscumbia, AL, the birthplace of Hellen Keller. Explore the grounds and the home of this historic American icon. Admission is $6 for adults and $3 for students aged 5-18. Special rates apply for seniors and military.

Continue on US Hwy 43 and stop at Moundville Archaeological Park to explore Chickasaw and culture. In-depth or self-guided tours are available and the newly renovated museum is a wealth of information. Abridged family tours for 10 people and under are available for $30.

Demopolis, AL is another great place to stop for the night with plenty of bed and breakfasts and old home. Stop at the Gaineswood Plantation House to explore. Now a national historic landmark, the Gaineswood Plantation House is a well-preserved example of American history. Photo: nandyphotos/Fotolia

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»By Bike or Walking

By Bike or Walking

With 562 miles between them, biking from Nashville to New Orleans is an adventurous feat in and of itself. Google Maps does highlight the Natchez Trace Parkway, a 444-mile route that was used by American Indians and settlers. Known as “Old Trace”, the road played an important role in America’s past. Today it offers scenic driving options, hiking opportunities, and is a designated cycling route. Camping is also available. Google offers turn by turn instructions and various stopping points along the way.

Plenty of walking and hiking options exist along the Natchez Trace trail. The National Park Service has a good overview of hikes and walks.

New Orleans is an iconic city with something to offer every visitor. Whether it’s history, music, cuisine, outdoor activities, shopping, or arts and culture, New Orleans has plenty of options. The possibilities are endless in “the Big Easy.” Photo: Sherry LeBlanc-Hayes/Fotolia

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Nashville to New Orleans: Distance & Other Travel Tips