Welcome to Time Out
The best of Louisiana
New Orleans is obviously the #1 destination in Louisiana, and there are many great things to do in the Crescent City. But for an equally unique experience, get out of the city and explore other parts of Louisiana. Known as the “Bayou State” and “Sportsman’s Paradise,” Louisiana is dominated by wetlands, the Gulf of Mexico, swamps, and other natural features that are excellent spots for fishing and boating. Southwest Louisiana is Cajun country - home to boudin, spicy crawfish, and Cajun and Zydeco music. North of New Orleans you’ll find many small, historic towns with beautiful oaks, moss, magnolias, and other flora. Plantation Country is a feast for the eyes, and the state capital, Baton Rouge, is worth a visit for SEC football and a view into Louisiana’s colorful political history. After a visit to New Orleans, take some time to explore the best of the rest of Louisiana, including the city's top museums. Done something on this list and loved it? Share it with the hashtag #TimeOutDoList and tag @TimeOutEverywhere. Find out more about how Time Out selects the very best things to do all over the world.
Sure, Louisiana is best-known for music and food, from Shreveport’s country crooners and fried chicken to Lafayette’s zydeco and boudin to New Orleans’ brass bands and beignets. But the state’s roster of things to do shine well outside the walls of its top restaurants and music lounges: the best museums in Louisiana are, in some ways, some of the best (and most bizarre) across the globe. Whether your visit to the Pelican State is centered around Baton Rouge or somewhere in the more remote bayou-laced location, there is a fascinating museum within striking distance awaiting your visit.
In Louisiana, food is a way of life. From high-end eateries to down-home cooking, there's something for everyone to enjoy. Though some of the preparations and techniques might seem unusual, the payoff is always delicious. Any cuisine that takes its protein from the mud and makes it taste amazing deserves praise. There’s also no shortage of great beverage options to wash down that Creole and Cajun fare, including local brews and craft cocktails.
New Orleans is known around the world as the birthplace of jazz—creating the inspiration for a plethora of other musical styles—and Louisiana is also one of the only places in the world where you can hear zydeco music. The Creole and French-speaking area of the state is still producing traditional and contemporary versions of the classic Cajun sound. Here's our list of the best festivals and music venues to visit in the Bayou State.
Louisiana is an oasis for fishermen, hunters and anyone who loves the outdoors. The Pelican State offers unprecedented experiences to connect with nature—bring your camera and your sense of adventure to explore our rural recommendations.
In Louisiana, they do things a little differently than anywhere else. And though the state shares some customs and attitudes, each parish—what they call their counties—has its own history and traditions vastly different from the next. When you visit Louisiana you feel like you've been transported to a different country. It's a little bit Southern and a little bit French, mixed with some Spanish, Caribbean, German, African and Vietnamese flair. If America is a giant melting pot then Louisiana is the gumbo pot—it's spicy and has a lot of ingredients but if you take your time, it all comes together and warms you from the inside. So, forget your passport and travel south to enjoy these unforgettable Louisiana experiences.