Louisiana's Highway 1 starts in the northwest corner of the state, running southeast via Shreveport-Bossier, Alexandria and Baton Rouge, finishing with a flourish at the Gulf of Mexico. Grand Isle is the final stop at the end of the road, a small island connected by bridge to the mainland. With a population that drops to less than 2,000 in off-season, this strip of land becomes a popular playground come good weather, drawing in anglers, artists, sunset-seekers, bird-watchers and city-dwellers retreating from the urban crush of New Orleans.
Grand Isle was the setting for Kate Chopin's novel, Awakening, but since her time, the little island has suffered hurricane force winds on more than one occasion, an awakening of a different sort. Hurricane Katrina ripped through here en route to New Orleans in 2005, but rebuilding efforts have got the place mostly back to its former cheery state.
The fishing might be the biggest lure here, with charter boats plying the surrounding waters on deep-sea excursions, or penetrating the marshes to cast off for trout, redfish, and croaker. Some even claim this is one of the top ten fishing spots in the world, don't miss the chance to test the waters for yourself.
Those more interested in relaxing beside the sea will be happy to find beaches accessible, as well as short nature hikes and picnic spots in Grand Isle State Park at the west end of the island.
Accommodation is in high demand during peak season, so book well in advance.
Grand Isle is about 110 miles south of New Orleans.