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Upcoming Events

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“Giants of Jazz: Art…

Oct 19 - Dec 17, 2017
This spring, art and music converge as The Historic New Orleans Collection… more

Amazing Scavenger…

Oct 19, 2017 - Jul 03, 2027
Turn New Orleans into a giant game board with this fun scavenger hunt… more

David Hansen's Garden…

Oct 19, 2017
Since 2006, Hansen's Garden District Jazz Trio has performed every night at… more

David Hansen's Garden…

Oct 19 - Dec 29, 2017
Since 2006, Hansen's Garden District Jazz Trio has performed every night at… more

East of the…

Oct 19, 2017 - Jan 07, 2018
The New Orleans Museum of Art (NOMA) will present East of the Mississippi:… more

East of the…

Oct 19, 2017 - Jan 07, 2018
The New Orleans Museum of Art (NOMA) will present East of the Mississippi:… more

Heart of the House

Oct 19, 2017 - Jan 08, 2026
In The Voodoo Garden, All Ages. Heart of the House puts the spotlight on House… more

Houmas House Presents…

Oct 19 - 31, 2017
For the month of October, there will be a 6:00 pm and 7:00 pm haunted tour.… more

Jazz in the Park

Oct 19 - Nov 2, 2017
Jazz in the Park returns this fall running from September 14th to November… more

Lilith in Loa…

Oct 19, 2017
From Laurel Canyon to the West Village, Nashville to New Orleans, the LOA Bar… more

The Fountain Lounge…

Oct 19 - Nov 18, 2017
Join us for Amanda Ducorbier at the Fountain Lounge in the Roosevelt Hotel.… more

The Historic New…

Oct 19 - 21, 2017
The Historic New Orleans Collection's Laura Simon Nelson Galleries for… more

22nd Annual Pasta &…

Oct 20 - 20, 2017
Join us for an unforgettable evening ..Paris, Montmare, Cabaret, Can Can, and… more

Boo at the Zoo

Oct 20 - 28, 2017
Bring your little ghosts and goblins to Boo at the Zoo Presented by Bryan… more

Concerts in the…

Oct 20 - 20, 2017
The Historic New Orleans Collection's popular outdoor music series Concerts in… more

Golden State Warriors…

Oct 20 - 20, 2017
Come experience NBA basketball at its best as the Pelicans take on the NBA's… more

Magazine St. Art…

Oct 20, 2017
Magazine St. Art Market is a unique way to experience the best of our local… more

Oktoberfest NOLA

Oct 20 - 21, 2017
Cost $8 - children 12 and under free - tickets available at gate … more

Saenger Theatre…

Oct 20 - 28, 2017
Plan your escape to the new musical comedy getaway ESCAPE TO MARGARITAVILLE!… more

The Fountain Lounge…

Oct 20 - Dec 29, 2017
Join us for Sam Kuslanr at the Fountain Lounge in the Roosevelt Hotel. While… more

“Giants of Jazz: Art…

Oct 19 - Dec 17, 2017
This spring, art and music converge as The Historic New Orleans Collection… more

Day-Trip Ideas Outside of New Orleans

When you plan a trip to New Orleans, it's easy to set your sights solely on the attractions of the city proper. But take our word for it: There are some awesome adventures to be had just a short drive away. Here are some of our favorite ways to go exploring beyond the Big Easy.

Tour the Plantations of River Road

Outside of New Orleans is a 70-mile long stretch of highway known as River Road. Nestled up against the Mississippi River, you'll find more than a dozen grand old plantations. This is old Louisiana architecture at its most scenic.

Destrehan Plantation is the closest plantation to New Orleans and oldest in the lower Mississippi Valley. After touring the plantation, be sure to see a craft demonstration: blacksmithing and open-hearth cooking are just a couple. Laura Plantation offers tours based on former owner Laura Locoul's 19th century memoirs, as well as specialized tours based on the history of slavery and more.

oak alley plantation

Visit the San Francisco Plantation and look for the hand-painted ceilings and decorations that recall plantation life in the years just before the Civil War. Nottoway Plantation is remarkable for its sheer size — it claims to be the South's largest antebellum mansion — while Oak Alley, with its tunnel of majestic oak tree canopies, can easily claim to have the most iconic front yard of them all. Costumed tour guides tell the story of Southern sugar barons at Houmas House Plantation & Gardens, and at St. Joseph Plantation, you can catch a glimpse of life as it was lived in the 1800s.

Big Fun on the Bayous

Explore south Louisiana's swampy backcountry located just an hour outside of New Orleans. From high-speed airboat tours to gentle flatboat excursions, a variety of swamp tours are available. Join a swamp tour with Cajun Encounters. They will guide you through the beautiful and pristine Honey Island Swamp where you might see one of our exotic critters such as nutria, bald eagles, wild boars and the king of the swamp — the alligator. Get a bird's eye view of the lush wetlands with Southern Seaplane/Air Tours on the Bayou, which offers air tours of Barataria Bay and beyond.

alligator

For a bigger bite of the action, visit Insta-Gator Alligator Ranch & Hatchery. Here, you'll see literally thousands of 'gators, and can even hold one for an awesome photo opportunity.

Get out on the water with Bayou Barn, where you can rent kayaks and canoes for guided and self-guided tours through the quiet, easily navigable waterways around Jean Lafitte National Historical Park and Preserve. You'll see wildlife up close while seeing firsthand the unspoiled beauty of Louisiana's bayou country. Bonus: on Sundays, Bayou Barn hosts "fais do-dos,"  Cajun dance parties that feature talented zydeco bands and savory local dishes. These are all-ages affairs, so bring the whole family.

Tasty Trips Near New Orleans

The legendary cuisine of Louisiana offers plenty of spots for tasty adventures. Head down to Louisiana's Cajun country for a tour of McIlhenny Company's Tabasco pepper sauce factory on Avery Island, or, if you like the idea of catching your dinner, hire one of Louisiana's many charter fishing boats, whose captains can take you to where the fish are biting, no matter the time of year.

Louisiana's Northshore, across Lake Pontchartrain from New Orleans, is also a sure bet for fishing adventures on the inland bayous. It's also home to some great restaurants. To satisfy your hunger for seafood and the outdoors, try Palmettos on the Bayou. With an outside dining area surrounded by old Louisiana forests and Bayou Bonfouca, you're sure to find an abundance of local flavor here.

Get more trip ideas around New Orleans and start planning your trip to the Big Easy!

photo credit: Oak Alley Plantation: Flickr/Michael McCarthy