Located in the Deep South of the States, Louisiana boasts an intoxicating mix of different cultures, cuisines and communities. While New Orleans understandably dominates most visitors’ itineraries, the rest of the state’s cities and regions are also well worth exploring as Acadian, Creole, French and Spanish influences are all on show.
Set right down in the south, the Creole State is bordered by Texas, Arkansas and Mississippi with the glittering Gulf of Mexico lying to its south. While its northern uplands are home to hills, prairies and woodlands, its southern half consists of beautiful beaches, bayous and barrier islands with the majestic Mississippi River forming its western boundary.
Due to its unique ambience, energy and culture, most people’s first port of call is, of course, the Big Easy. Renowned for its multicultural make-up and fun-filled Mardi Gras celebrations, New Orleans is home to numerous historic neighborhoods, cemeteries and landmarks as well as pounding music and nightlife scenes. In addition, you can also take scenic cruises along the river or tour around the pretty plantations and murky swamps full of alligators that lie nearby.
Besides exploring NOLA and the Louisiana Wetlands, it is also worth visiting both Lafayette – the center of Cajun Country – and the state capital of Baton Rouge. While the former has some brilliant culture, cuisine and nightlife to delve into, the latter has interesting attractions and museums to check out alongside both the old and new State Capitol buildings.
Other than this, the most popular spots to visit in the state are the atmospheric Oak Alley Plantation, the centuries-old settlement of Natchitoches and the various bayous and battlefields that make up the Jean Lafitte National Historical Park and Preserve.