7 Incredible Hidden Gems In Louisiana To Visit In 2024

7 Incredible Hidden Gems In Louisiana To Visit In 2024

With its diverse natural beauty, rich cultural heritage, delicious cuisine, and renowned southern hospitality, Louisiana is a popular vacation destination. But if you’re a traveler like us, you will also want to visit some attractions off the beaten path for sure.

How do you choose the best ones, you ask? As usual, we’re one step ahead and have already tested the waters, quite literally in some cases. On this list, you will find the 7 incredible hidden gems in Louisiana to visit in 2024 that we have hand-picked for you.

Recommended: 7 Incredible Hidden Gems In Alabama

Fort Proctor

Set on a small island in Lake Borgne, Fort Proctor is an abandoned Civil War fortress. It was built to protect New Orleans and the Mississippi River Delta from potential naval threats. Although it was never actually used as planned, it played an important role in Louisiana’s rich cultural heritage. Its unusual location in the serene wetlands also makes for great photos.

To get there, you need to launch a boat from Campo’s Marina in Shell Beach – an inflatable kayak will do as it’s not far from the shore. Another option is to take a guided tour.

Abandoned Jazzland in New Orleans

Six Flags was a thrilling theme park that catered to families with children and seekers of fun in general. Sadly, it closed with Hurricane Katrina and was never renovated as it was judged to be too expensive.

But don’t hang your head. It can still be enjoyed today for an exciting urbex exploration. You will come across muddy clowns, fallen mermaids, and broken Mardi Gras figures. The park is also often visited by alligators which creates a fascinating contrast.

Note that entering the park can be quite dangerous and is prohibited. But you can observe it pretty well from the outside and snap some captivating photos.

Gator Country LA Alligator Park

Thanks to the abundance of swamps, bayous, rivers, and marshes, Louisiana is known to be home to a large population of alligators. Gator Country LA Alligator Park provides a unique opportunity to learn about these animals and see them safely from up close.

Watch a feeding show, hold baby gators, snakes, and dragons, or take a swamp tour. A part of the park is also a petting zoo, which will please small children in particular. All that is under $20 per person.

No visit to New Orleans would be complete without a stop at Carousel Bar & Lounge. This famous bar is a part of the Hotel Monteleone and revolves like a merry-go-round. Thanks to that, it made it to the list of TOP 20 bars in the world by Vogue Living.

Take a ride on the carousel while sipping the Vieux Carré – the bar’s signature cocktail. You can also complement your drink with a delicious appetizer and enjoy some live entertainment as a backdrop, usually in the form of jazz or piano serenades.

Lafayette Cemetery

Lafayette Cemetery No. 1 is yet another hidden gem of New Orleans. It’s one of the oldest city-governed cemeteries and features many beautiful tombs, statues, and mausoleums. It appeared in many movies, such as Interview with a Vampire or Double Jeopardy, and also served as an inspiration to many literary works.

Retreat yourself from the hustle and bustle of the city and soak in the spiritual atmosphere. There are also many guided tours available that will make your experience even better with some fascinating stories and anecdotes.

Louisiana Swamps & Stand-Up Paddle Boarding

Louisiana boasts incredible wildlife and a unique way to explore it is through its spread water system. You can do so on a canoe, kayak, or paddle board, which has been gaining popularity, especially in the Fall season.

So, which swamps are the best to paddle your way through the natural beauty of Louisiana? Bayou Segnette State Park is definitely our choice number one. It’s located in New Orleans, which makes it easily accessible. Apart from regular paddle boarding, you can also try SUP fishing and stay in one of its floating cabins there.

Other great options include Atchafalaya Basin, Barataria Preserve Trails, or Lake Martin. In all of them, you can spot various bird species, alligators, and other native animals and plants.

Mardi Gras World

If you’re in or around New Orleans, you definitely shouldn’t miss a visit to this exceptional museum. As the venue says – it’s a place where every day is Mardi Gras – so you can enjoy the beloved southern festivities even though they just ended.

Mardi Gras World offers an insight into the history and traditions of the parade, a collection of traditional floats, costumes, and other props, and you can also try some masks and costumes on. The best part? It’s conveniently located in downtown New Orleans and the museum even offers complimentary shuttle service from the French Quarter.