The Great River Road is your path out of Donaldsonville toward New Orleans. When you see the Sunshine Bridge looming off to your left, climb the levee for a view of the Mississippi River and the ocean-going vessels that ply its waters. At about the 16 mile point, see the historic St. James Cemetery, and a bit farther on, Oak Alley, one of the most beautiful plantations in the state. You could spend the night here, or continue a few more miles to Laura Plantation for a fascinating look into the world of the early Creoles.
More plantations await as you continue downriver, including Evergreen, one of the finest remaining plantation complexes in Louisiana. In Edgard, visit the 240-year-old St. John the Baptist Catholic Church. The last 20 miles of your trip will be through small towns and past industrial sites, but you should not encounter a lot of fast traffic. You can cross the Mississippi River to New Orleans on a ferry at Gretna or Algiers, and begin to enjoy one of the world's most exciting cities.