Austin to Panama City Road Trip Guide


The first thing that comes to mind when we think Austin, TX, is music. Yet, it is only when people are in this city that they realize how it has so much more! This predominantly college and University city has plenty to offer for everyone.

You can take a ballet class in the city’s world-class ballet studio, and paddle along the river the same evening. You can have a shop-till-you-drop experience and the next thing you know, you’re in a museum learning history. You will need to experience this city yourself to find out why it has been voted as the best city to live in, on so many occasions, throughout the years.

While the nightlife, the bars, the Zilker Park, and the Barton Springs Pool makes it slightly difficult to depart this city, you must use your weekends to head east and explore all the dynamic roadside attractions along the Gulf Coast.

With two to three days on your hands, you can make it all the way to Panama City in Florida. This beach city on St. Andrews Bay in Bay County is the perfect destination to unwind and destress for all you college students looking for a fun-filled road trip.

Make plans to visit St. Andrews State Park for camping, swimming, and boating. Take a break from the water and head to the ZooWorld Zoological and Botanical Conservatory to look at the exotic and endangered species. Your choices are simply endless!

Share this road trip guide


Max RV length
Max trailer Length
Road trip length: 2-3 days
Recommend rig: any
audience: all

Point of Interest

Pensacola Beach

You may be heading off to a beautiful water-resort-city, yet you should still stop by Pensacola for its amazing beach and surfing experience. Being on the Gulf Coast, Pensacola’s waters are quite different from the calm and warm water-bodies of Panama City. Here, the water comes to you in hearty waves which makes it a great surfing spot.

The water seems to be alive at this beach along with its white sands, stunning vistas, and laid back vibe. It makes for a great resting spot before heading towards the final destination of your road trip. The next best thing about Pensacola Beach is its eateries. If you’re with the kids then the kid-friendly restaurants such as the Flounder’s Chowder House, Red Fish, Blue Fish, and Boardwalk Café will win their hearts, as well as yours.

French Quarters

There’s no such thing as driving past New Orleans, Louisiana, and not visiting its Crown Jewel. The French Quarter is perhaps one of the most famous things NOLA is known for. This historic neighborhood is a perfect mixture of old and new and hosts the French Quarter Festival every year.

The French Market is new, but it is reimagined from the old. Then there are the fashion-savvy modern boutiques right alongside antique stores. Recent eateries right next to the oldest restaurants in the neighborhood with the likes of Antoine’s, Arnaud’s, Galatoire’s, and Brennan’s make for an entertaining evening.

The reason why the French Quarter is so revered is that it has that timelessness to it. One of the best and most picturesque sights of the French Quarter is around dusk when the birds begin to take flight and the French Quarter comes to life like a classic oil painting.

Magnolia Mound Plantation

From a popular theme park to an old Historic Landmark, your trip from Austin to Panama City is certainly going to be varied. Magnolia Mound Plantation in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, is not just an old structure from the late 18th century, it is also an architectural study that recognizes the influence of early French settlers in Baton Rouge.

The home was built a long time ago and changed ownership many times over the years, with each owner leaving their own alterations and traces behind. No alteration was too big though because even now when you gaze upon the wooden house of Bousillage, you’ll be able to recognize the 18th and 19th-century appearance. Besides, all the owners and their stories add a distinct type of charm to the historic landmark as you take its tour.

The first person to own this property was James Hillen, one of the earliest settlers who arrived in 1786. Five years later, John Joyce from Ireland became the owner of the property until seven years later, he died mysteriously and the property was sold to new owners.

Houston FunPlex

Your first stop from Austin needs to be in a city that is as sweet as its name. Houston FunPlex is an amusement park in Sugar Land, TX, that allows you to be a kid again and allows the kids to be, well, kids. The establishment offers endless enjoyment and fun with friends and family.

The amusement park keeps you thoroughly entertained with activities as diverse as skating, bowling, and go-karting. The park features a two-story PlayPort, endless rides, arcade games, virtual reality experiences, and much more. One of the top attractions of the park is the bumper cars and the Ferris Wheel.

This amusement park can keep you and your family entertained for the better part of a day, especially with all the food and beverages provided to keep you fed and hydrated to go on for even longer. The park has no age restriction and there’s something for everyone, be it kids, tweens, teenagers, young adults, and even older folks.


Panama City, FL, is almost an island surrounded by water from three sides. Hence, visitors get a chance to enjoy numerous activities in one city. The biggest and most popular attraction of the city is, of course, the 20-mile stretch of beach, where everyone from the locals to tourists flock to on sunny days.

On days when it’s not exactly beach weather, the crowd heads off to the other dynamic spots in the city such as the Florida Caverns State Park, the Gallery of Art, Escape Manor, Science & Discovery Center of Northwest Florida and much more. A day or two is far too short a time to explore the wonder of this beautiful city so make sure you visit all that you can when you are here!

Share this Road trip guide