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The vast Mississippi River delta and its coastal marshes form the majority of settled land in the southern state of Louisiana, and its most famous city is New Orleans, a multi-cultural, multi-lingual and totally fascinating mix of culture, history and religion. The state capital is Baton Rouge, and the unique Cajun County holds Lafayette as its main city. Millions of tourists flock to New Orleans every year for its festivals and vibrant nightlife, with many using car hire in Louisiana to tour this eclectic region.
The most convenient pick-up point for car rental in Louisiana is the airport, with its eight internationally trusted companies waiting to serve your needs. Represented are Budget, Hertz, Alamo, Avis, Enterprise, Thrifty, Dollar and National, most of which also provide pick-up and drop-off points downtown and in other Louisiana cities. To make sure of your preferred vehicle at the best rates, compare car hire before your trip.
New Orleans International Airport, also named after jazz genius Louis Armstrong, is the major air transport hub for most arrivals in Louisiana, and most other forms of ground transportation here range from poor to non-existent. Self-drive is literally the only reliable way to see this fascinating state and its varied cultures. A number of Interstate highways cross the state, making touring with car rental in Louisiana an enjoyable experience.
Driving on the Interstate highways here is straightforward, although more care needs to be taken on the narrow, winding roads in the deep Creole and Cajun country districts. In the bayou districts, watch out for alligators on the roads! Don’t drink and drive unless you’re happy to risk jail time and a US $1,000 fine, and remember that seat belts and child seats are mandatory.
For unbeatable natural beauty, head for the unique Sicily Island Hills, surrounded by the Mississippi and Ouachita rivers’ flood plains and home to a magnificent waterfall, forests and an amazing range of wildlife. The iconic French Quarter of New Orleans was spared Hurricane Katrina’s devastation and is the hub for historic buildings, buzzing nightlife and a museum devoted to the quarter’s famous Creole Voodoo Queen, Marie Laveau.
Summers in sub-tropical Louisiana are extremely hot, humid and long, compensated for by short, mild winters. The Gulf of Mexico is the climate’s main influence, and the summer months are the wettest, especially in the southern region. Summer highs sit at around 35ËC or higher and winter lows average 15ËC. Extreme weather is common, and includes tornadoes, thunderstorms and the devastating tropical cyclones that sweep in from the Gulf of Mexico.