For many years the USA has been the country of superlatives. It has 51 states and every region is well worth seeing. Mighty skyscrapers, huge cities, but also endless landscapes, like the Grand Canyon and the coast of the Pacific Ocean in the west characterize the country. Particularly charming, for example, is the state of Louisiana, in the southern states and characterized by its hot and humid climate. Here is the birthplace of jazz, the music made famous by blacks and now danced all over the world. The most famous river that characterizes the state is the Mississippi, which is a superlative highlight with its alligator swamps. This is exactly America at its best. Here is our list of the 16 most beautiful places in Louisiana.
16. Avery Island
Avery Island is located in the mouth of the Mississippi River into the Gulf of Mexico. It became famous due to deposits of salt, which is called salt dome. The island itself is only 49 meters high and 4 kilometers wide. However, it also became world famous for the production of Tobasco sauce, a hot chili sauce that has been on the market since 1868.
The exact recipe is a secret, which makes it so world famous. Salt was also extracted here until 1863. Only a small part is accessible to tourists, the rest, which consists of workers’ settlements and family property, is private and may not be entered. So visitors will have to settle for the Tabasco Visitor Center and the Jungle Gardens.
15. Baton Rouge
Just under 250,000 people live here in the capital of Louisiana, which of course is also on the Mississippi River. It is located farthest inland and can be reached by ocean-going ships as the last stop. As a result, it became a popular commercial center with many green areas, but also high-rise buildings and a well-known business center. One of the most popular landmarks of the city is the Louisiana State Capitol, which was completed since 1932 and has a 137-meter tower similar to the Rockefeller Center in New York.
It is the tallest capitol in the entire states and the tallest house in the city on the River. A highlight of a trip to the city is Louisiana’s Old State Capitol, where admission is free. It is a beautiful old building that resembles a castle. Of course, there are still plenty of shopping opportunities here, which are limitless in the US. You can also take a walk along the Mississippi River, where the most beautiful buildings in the city are located.
14. Chauvin Sculpture Garden
A garden with many sculptures is located in the south of the state and is called Chauvin Sculpture Garden. Every Sunday from 10 am to 4 pm there is a program that you can attend. In the Nicholls Studio Gallery, which is also located here, are some exhibitions. Especially for art lovers such a trip is an absolute must. Most of the figures that are here in the garden were made by Kenny Hill, an artist who is well known here. So if you want to take a nice walk through the park, this is the place to be and enjoy the ambiance and the numerous sculptures and really relax. A green space with a gallery full of art is a good alternative for a short trip on the weekend, but also for guests who spend their vacation here.
13. Bayou Sauvage National Wildlife Refuge
The Wildlife Refuge is a region where there are numerous swamps and their inhabitants that live here protected. Covering more than 23,000 hectares, or about 93 square miles, the wildlife refuge within the boundaries of New Orleans is probably the largest urban wildlife refuge in the entire United States. Wading birds, in particular, are at home here.
But also the brown pelican, an extremely rare bird has found its breeding ground here. Swamp rabbits, reptiles, amphibians and mammals that have found their habitat here can also be seen. Fish, such as catfish, crappies and bluegrills also live in the waters and channels that have been created here. In the fall through spring, more than 75,000 waterfowl live here, which is a very large number.
12. Mississippi River
The Mississippi River is probably the most important river in the entire state. It is known and loved not only for its transportation routes and ocean-going vessels far inland, but also for the tourist boats that sail along it. At 3,778 km, this flows right across the USA and has a tributary that is just as popular, the Missouri. Mighty masses of water push their way through various states, including Louisiana, of course. New Orleans lies on the Mississippi, but so does the state capital, as the last ocean-going city: Baton Rouge.
The source of the mighty river lies in Lake Itasca. Then it makes its way through various states, such as Minnesota, Missouri, Illinois, Arkansas, Kentucky, Tennessee, Mississippi and last but not least Louisiana, where it flows into the sea at New Orleans. It also forms the border of Wisconsin and Iowa. 13 right tributaries and 10 left form a gigantic river system that flows right across the USA.
11. Atchafalaya Basin
Atchafalaya Basin is the largest marsh in the United States and is located in the western Mississippi Delta. There are many swamps in the region and in recent decades the Mississippi River had to be tamed because flood waters constantly threatened the cities. This was the only way to build the sewers and put the river in its place. Few people live in the basin itself, precisely because it often floods unsightly. If you want to hike here, you are welcome to do so on designated trails, but you should have some knowledge of marshes and swamps. There are also guides for hire that can be booked in advance.
10. Melrose Plantation
This is the name of a famous museum located on the plantation today that tells about life on site. Louisiana is deeply rooted in the slavery of blacks. This was the typical North and South problem that plagued the U.S. in the past The plantation has a 200-year history, and is credited to Marie Therese Coincoin, a slave who lived on the farm with her 10 African-French children.
The legacy continued and the descendants living on the Chane River can be proud of their past and the ancestors who accomplished so much. The small museum features a loving history that it presents as part of an exhibit. In the 20th century, there was a children’s home here that was also legendary and shaped the culture in the area.
9. Laura Plantation
Formerly known as l’Habitation Duparc, it is now called Laura Plantation. It is a sugar plantation that is approximately 12,000 acres in size. Over time, it continued to grow and formed numerous plots. Cultivation was started as early as around 1804, but to this day it remains a popular tourist destination in Louisiana. The estate belonged to Duparc since that year, who was from France an important part of the American Revolution.
It is a powerful estate, which to this day makes many profits. Duparc acquired the land from Acadians who had been in the country only 20 years. He then had a farm built there. His house was built right in the middle of an Indian village, which was named Colapissa. His house was built by slaves and they also worked on the plantation.
8. New Orleans
Who does not know it, the capital of jazz, New Orleans is located on the Mississippi River, which flows directly after into the Gulf of Mexico. But the city has more to offer than numerous music bars and the music of the blacks. Here you can visit the World War II Museum, which has numerous exhibitions, but also Jackson Square, City Park and French Square. Here is an atmosphere like on the Reeperbahn, numerous clubs and bars, but also the Vooo Museum are known points of contact in this region of the city.
In City Park you can sit back and enjoy the green lungs of the city. It is possible to go for a walk on laid out paths. Families with children are also well catered for here, with playgrounds and paths far from traffic and noise. These, however, can also visit the Audubon Zoo in New Orleans. Here there are even white tigers, but also monkeys, zebras, giraffes and all the animals that live and are at home on other continents.
7. Louisiana Wetlands
The swamps and watery coastal regions are located in the southern part of the state. There are numerous ecosystems in the wetlands. In the delta of the Mississippi River, there are numerous islands and headlands that characterize the land. They are called bayou. Some parts of the land are covered with high water all year round, which is why very few people live here, because the land is difficult to farm.
Bogs and swamps dominate the landscape, which is also covered with lowland deciduous forests, cypress, freshwater and brackish swamps. The Mississippi River is an important lifeline for the country of Louisiana, but also for its inhabitants. Through the delta, the country is connected to the Gulf of Mexico. Many animals have made their home here and have gathered in the wetlands.
6. Oak Alley Plantation
Louisiana has many plantations, one of which is Oak Alley Plantation on the west side of the Mississippi River. Today it is a historic site and can only be entered with admission and hours. There is a restaurant and lodging at the plantation. Cottages for overnight stays are available, but there is also an extensive history about the plantation. The house, which was built here around 1700, stood behind two rows of oak trees, 28 in number. Probably the most famous plantation in the Old South, it attracted numerous visitors who spent their vacations here and planned their trips through Louisiana from this idyllic spot.
Today, there is a hotel here that reflects a piece of contemporary history. But besides the work of art, it is a memorial, which in ancient times was burdened with slavery. Today, anyone who sees the hotel live for the first time is left breathless. It is breathtaking and modern at the same time.
5. Jean Lafitte National Historic Park and Preserve
The national park has an extensive history that includes everything from pirates to wild animals. That’s why it’s so popular with tourists. You can see a lot and still be in the middle of nature. The park was named after a personality, Jean Lafitte, who lived during the pirate era. To this day, the landscape here and the numerous animal and plant species have stood the test of time. It is possible to hire a guide who knows all the secret places of this park and will lead the guests on the best tracks.
One should not develop fears when seeing the giant spiders, but alligators and frogs can also live a quiet life here. The park is located at the gates of New Orleans and is a suitable destination especially for hikers and photographers. Besides the animals, the landscape is breathtakingly beautiful and you can decelerate. It is a good contrast to the lively life in New Orleans. There is a visitor center, from here you can go into the realm of alligators and snakes. There are also a few deer in the park.
4. Grand Isle
The large island is located in the Gulf of Mexico and still belongs to Louisiana. It is connected with the mainland by a bridge and a dam. The capital of the island also has the same name and numerous sights. Unfortunately, the island was destroyed a few times by a hurricane. But still the landscape here is very charming and in the national park, which has the name Grand Isle State Park, you can find many animals.
Besides the campsite and numerous residences, there are beautiful beaches here and the island can be used for swimming. Numerous tourists find their way here, even though three hurricanes in a row, Gustav, Rita and Karina, destroyed it. People are rooted to their homeland here and keep rebuilding everything. Thanks to the guests, money comes into the island’s coffers and the houses and hotels can quickly reopen.
3. Breaux Bridge
You feel like you are in the Wild West when you walk through the town of Breaux Bridge, which is located in Louisiana and attracts lots of guests. Especially once a year during the crawfish festival, all hell breaks loose. The town is famous for its crawfish stew, which was invented here and in now exists all over the world. The scenic Lake Martin is located in the city area. Many people come here from the surrounding areas to swim.
Boat tours can be booked on the lake. In downtown Breaux Bridge there is an Antique Mall. With numerous antique stores. The small town is very rural and many animals have found a habitat here, not only around the lake, but also in the countryside around the town, which has a population of just under 9000. Sometimes small towns in the U.S. that reflect the lives of the people are worth seeing.
The city of 18000 inhabitants is located in the northwest of Louisiana, very close to the border with Texas, but the states of Oklahoma and Arkansas also play an important role and can be reached relatively quickly. Only 2 kilometers from the city flows the mighty Red River, which rises in Texas and is more than 2000 kilometers long. It flows into the Atchafalaya River. A beautiful vacation area near here is the 9 square kilometer Sibley Lake, which has several beach resorts and is considered a recreational area.
There are several significant plantations near the city that reflect the life of the old USA and are very relevant to tourism. Another distinctive feature is formed by the oldest general store in Louisiana, which is located here and bears the name Kaffie-Frederick, Inc, General Mercantile. The most beautiful downtown has been restored and now has its antique buildings back. Bayou Pierre Alligator Park is home to numerous alligators that can be fed. The entire area around the city is very attractive and attracts more than 1,000,000 million tourists annually.
This beautiful city is located in the southern part of the state and is described as the heart of Acadiana. It was inhabited by French Canadians as early as the 18th century is the capital of Cajun Country. There are many different influences from Spanish, American and Native Americans, but African roots also make the city special. In addition to restaurants, festivals and historic sites enliven this part of the country. Nearby is a historic village with 6 homes from the past.
The place is called Vermilionville Living History & Folklife Park. A group of showmen catapult one into the past century. Acadian Village is also such a place where you can live history. With its church and an art gallery, it’s a great place to live like it was in the 19th century. The gumbo stew as a favorite dish should definitely be tried during a visit. You can find it in a place called “The French Press”.