2023 Louisiana Visitors Guide
Louisiana offers attractions for travelers of all types, from party lovers to history buffs. New Orleans is a destination not to be missed, especially during Mardi Gras when the streets are filled with the wild excitement of parades, parties, and live music. The historic sites of the French Quarter, the live jazz clubs, and the Louisiana State Museum are other New Orleans attractions well worth exploring. South of Lafayette is Bayou Country, an area featuring several different swamp tours and excellent fishing. The city of Baton Rouge is the state capital, with magnolias and antebellum mansions in abundance. A significant location in the American Civil War, Central Louisiana houses an array of museums and historical sights pertaining to this period. Shreveport and Bossier City in the northern part of the state provide the region’s best gaming options. Louisiana’s countryside is laden with historic plantations, many of which are open for public tours.
Central Louisiana Visitors Guide
The heart of Louisiana has much to offer visitors, from arts and culture to fine dining and shopping to outdoor activities such as hiking and biking. The historic architecture draws many visitors to this part of the state, and there are numerous examples of homes from the Victorian era still standing and available for tours. The city of Alexandria boasts a Zoological Park that houses over 500 animals, including 20 endangered species. Another popular attraction in this part of the State is the Creole Nature Trail All-American Road, a 180-mile stretch that focuses on the varied and unique Louisiana wilderness. Central Louisiana figured prominently in the Civil War and there are several area attractions that examine this era of American history. Nearby Natchitoches features a Jazz and R&B; festival every spring and is also known for its role as the backdrop for the film Steel Magnolias.
New Orleans is legendary. The city offers an unparalleled blend of history and culture that is vibrantly expressed through events, restaurants, and cultural venues. Whether taking in live theater, shopping the unique galleries and boutiques or attending one of the many festivals, there is plenty to do in New Orleans. Each year the city attracts thousands of visitors for Mardi Gras, a celebration of epic proportions boasting parades, street parties, and costume balls. No visit is complete without a tour of the city’s historic French Quarter, a bustling cultural center and the heart of New Orleans. The French Quarter features a host of live music clubs, which offer everything from traditional New Orleans-style jazz to rock to country; a rich selection of restaurants, including Cajun, Creole, Southern and French cuisine; and guided tours, which delve into the area’s culture and explore the wealth of historic sites.
The layout of the City of New Orleans was designed by Audrien de Pauger in 1721 around what is now called Jackson Square at the center of the French Quarter. The French Quarter is the ideal place for tourists to begin exploring New Orleans – the area is filled with history, French and Spanish architecture, musicians, artists, shopping and more. Several attractions are also in this area including the St. Louis Cathedral, the Louisiana State Museum, Bourbon Street, and dozens of hotels and restaurants.
Lafayette Visitors Guide
The city of Lafayette enjoys a reputation for French culture with a Louisiana twist, offering a showcase of Cajun, Creole and Zydeco influences. Catering to visitors is a number of accommodations complemented by shops, restaurants, and other traveler services. Dining, in particular, holds a special place when it comes to attractions in Lafayette, with diners able to revel in cooking styles that are unique to Louisiana. For family entertainment, Lafayette offers the Children’s Museum with a variety of hands-on displays and the Lafayette Museum, a building that offers a comprehensive chronicle of local history. The famous Louisiana bayou is located nearby as well and provides a world of wonder for visitors seeking an authentic Louisiana wilderness experience. The cultural lifestyle and natural resources of the bayou can be explored at the Jean Lafitte National Historical Park and Preserve.
Lafeyette Swamp Tours
Experience South Louisiana’s natural beauty on a swamp tour of the Atchafalaya Basin or the Cypress Island Preserve’s Lake Martin!
Boat trips into the swamps featuring nature. Designed for photographers, birders & nature lovers. Featured on 36 national and foreign TV shows, many newspapers, travel books and guides. 337-261-5150
Cajun Country Swamp Tours
Enjoy a professional, insightful eco-tour by a Cajun naturalist with B.S. degrees in Zoology/Botany. View birds, alligators, huge moss-draped cypress trees and much more. See nature at its best! Come with me & experience my passion & Joie de Vivre! 337-319-0010
Champagne’s Swamp Tours
Personal, authentic, guided ecotours into the Atchafalaya Basin Swamp and Louisiana’s largest nesting area of wading birds. 337-845-5567
Baton Rouge, literally red stick, got its name from French explorers in 1699 when the territory was designated by poles soaked in animal blood. More than 200 years after its discovery, Baton Rouge became the capital of Louisiana in 1849. Today this culturally diverse city is not only a thriving metropolis, but it is also a popular tourist destination. Baton Rouge’s riverfront entertainment district is constantly hosting lively festivals and its port is among the largest in the nation. Baton Rouge is home to two state capitol buildings, the Old State Capitol and the New Capitol Building, both open to the public. Louisiana State University and Southern University are also available for tours. Several plantations, all with a story to tell, are scattered about the area. Among the most popular are Magnolia Mound Plantation and Mt. Hope Plantation.
Shreveport Visitors Guide
Situated in northwestern Louisiana, the economy of Shreveport has relied upon many industries, including steamboating, cotton, oil, and gas. Today, the city is a thriving commercial center known for its casinos, cultural venues, entertainment, and shopping. Shreveport is rich with cultural events, one of the most exciting being the eight-day Red River Revel Arts Festival in October, which showcases international visual and performing arts. Gamers appreciate the large-scale casinos in Shreveport, and the two horseracing tracks just minutes away in Bossier City. Discover Louisiana’s history at the Louisiana State Exhibit Museum, where displays, murals, and artifacts bring the past to life. Automobile enthusiasts relish the chance to see an assortment of vintage cars and motorcycles at the Antique & Classic Vehicle Museum. For visitors inclined towards the arts, the Meadows Museum of Art displays pieces from around the world and houses an assortment of temporary exhibits.
Bossier City Visitors Guide
An industrial suburb of Shreveport, Bossier City is known as one of the region’s most popular gaming destinations. With three full-service casinos and world-class thoroughbred racing at Le Cheval Arenas and Louisiana Downs, Bossier City provides a host of gaming options. But the city has much more to offer, whether it’s learning about the area’s history at Bossier Parish Library and Historical Center, sampling the city’s spicy cuisine at local restaurants and cafes or taking in some live musical entertainment. Sports enthusiasts enjoy BattleWings Arena Football League games from April to July. For visitors interested in exploring the area, Shreveport’s attractions and amenities are a short drive away on one of several bridges connecting the two cities.