Louisiana Vacation Ideas

Louisiana Vacation Ideas #1: The Audubon Nature Institute, in New Orleans, is great for the whole family. There are hands-on exhibits at the Interpretive Center. The Planetarium will wow you with its 30-foot diameter dome. Explore the 86 acres of forest on the three walking trails.

Walk among the free-flying butterflies in the Butterfly/Hummingbird Garden. The Botany Center features displays of some of Louisiana's native plants.

Louisiana Vacation Ideas #2: Take a Louisiana Swamp Tour. One of the companies that will take you into the swamp is Alligator Bayou just south of Baton Rouge. Board their all weather boat and explore deep into the bayous, swamps and lakes of Spanish Lake Basin. Some of the sights you can expect are old-growth cypress trees, egrets, herons, ibis, and cormorants. And, of course, lots of alligators.
Louisiana Vacation Ideas #3: The Barataria Preserve, outside Marerro, is part of Jean Lafitte National Historical Park. it consists of forested wetland, swamp, and flat treeless marsh. You can explore the preserve either on foot or by canoe. There are 8 miles of hiking trails, including 2 ½ miles of boardwalk. There are 9 miles of canoe trails and 20 miles of waterways are open to all types of boats.

Louisiana Vacation Ideas #4: Calling all duck lovers. The annual Gueydan Duck Festival is held each august in Gueydan.

It's a four-day festival with events like duck and goose calling, duck carving & painting demonstrations, outdoor cook off, skeet shoot competition, dog trials, wine & cheese party, and the Grand Parade. Oh, and lots of music too.

Louisiana Vacation Ideas #5: If you like to eat and drink then you will enjoy the New Orleans Wine & Food Experience.

Held every year at the end of May, the focus is a dinner from one 38 of the city’s best restaurants along with an international selection of wine.

During the five day event enjoy street parties along with wine and cooking seminars.

While eating, drinking, and browsing the art and antique displays you will be entertained by live music.

Louisiana Vacation Ideas #6: The Louisiana Purchase Gardens & Zoo, located in Monroe, provides fun entertainment for the whole family. There are 80 beautiful acres full of birds, reptiles and animals.

The Catwalk showcases the exotic White Bengal Tiger, the Red Bengal Tiger, the mysterious Black Jaguar, and the Lions of Africa. See the giant Anaconda and Python in The Reptile House. Take the Bayou Safari boat ride down the bayou to see the Camels, the Lechwe, and the Addax.

Louisiana Vacation Ideas #7: New Orleans Jazz National Historical Park celebrates the cultural history of jazz in its birthplace, the city of New Orleans. You can enjoy live performances on both indoor and outdoor stages as well as jazz exhibits. The musical performances cover a wide range of jazz styles.

Throughout the year there are special events including interpretive music demonstrations and lectures on a wide variety of jazz related topics. You can take ranger guided or self-guided walking tours of historical jazz sites in the French Quarter.

Louisiana Vacation Ideas #8: Travel to Louisiana for the New Orleans Mardi Gras, the greatest party in the world. Mardi Gras can occur on any Tuesday from February 3 through March 9. During the 12-day period leading up to Mardi Gras, nearly 70 parades are held. It’s two weeks of impromptu partying, costumes, pageantry, and of course, beads. Mardi Gras is celebrated around the world but New Orleans does it best.
Louisiana Vacation Ideas #9: Jazz is everywhere in New Orleans. For jazz purists, Preservation Hall is the place to go for classic New orleans jazz. It's a dark and spartan venue with a worn wooden floor and wooden benches to sit on. But Preservation Hall has been showcasing traditional jazz in the French Quarter since 1961.

Other great New Orleans jazz institutions are the former gambling and whorehouse Tipitina's and Snug Harbor where you can see some of the best musicians in the world in a close-up intimate setting. And then there's the Mid-City Bowling Lanes, a.k.a. Rock 'n' Bowl where dancing, bowling and modern jazz combine and the party goes on into the wee hours of the morning.

Louisiana Vacation Ideas #10: The Louisiana State Fair runs for two weeks at the end of October and the beginning of November. There are plenty of family activities including 40 midway rides, musical entertainment, musicians, and clowns. You can see cheerleading competitions, milk a cow, pony rides, or watch chickens hatch. Other events are the Junior Livestock Show, dog obedience competition, horse agility and competition, beef & steer shows, and more. Louisiana Vacation Ideas #11: Louisiana is a great place for a nice vacation scenic drive. The Bienville Trace Scenic Byway is a 450 mile long stretch of road through hills and forests and past many lakes and state parks. There are plenty of places to stop and enjoy fishing camping or a family picnic.

Longleaf Trail Scenic Byway is another good drive. It runs 17 miles through beautiful Kisatchie National Forest in western Louisiana. Kisatchie Bayou Recreation Area and Longleaf Vista are good places to visit here as the incredible scenery is quite popular with the many hikers and backpackers that use the trails. The landscapes here are a unique mix of longleaf pine forest, mesas, buttes, wildflowers, and unusual rock formations.

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