There are so many amazing places to visit and see in Louisiana—and some are more off the beaten path than others. Check out some of the most amazing gems in Louisiana today.
1) Louisiana Sports Hall of Fame, Natchitoches
A true testament to Louisiana’s incredible contribution to National and college level sports, the sports hall of fame should not be missed. Not to mention, the building itself is an incredible example of modern architecture and was named by Azure magazine the Top Architecture Project in the World in 2013.
2) Louisiana History Museum Alexandria
This popular museum highlights the unique contributions that people from central Louisiana made in the creation of the state as well as houses one of the biggest collections of Louisiana artifacts in the state.
3) Rip Van Winkle Gardens, New Iberia
Roam around the 25 acre grounds with peacocks and majestic oaks at this hidden wonderland in Central Louisiana. The home at the center of the grounds was the summer retreat for Joseph Jefferson, a famous 19th century actor who was best known for his role as Rip Van Winkle. Jean Lafitte is also said to have buried treasure beneath the trees here.
4) Poverty Point World Heritage Site, West Carroll Parish
Do you realize that we have a UNESCO designated world heritage site right here in Louisiana? West Carroll Parish is home to this site, which has been determined by carbon dating to have originated between 1800-1200 BCE. When these mounds were active, they were the largest of their kind in North America.
5) Mandalay National Wildlife Refuge, south of Houma
South of houma, this wildlife refuge is only accessible by boat—and those that have already fallen in love with all the flora and fauna this area has to offer are okay with keeping it that way.
6) Creole Nature Trail, Southwest Louisiana
Also known as “Louisiana’s Outback”, the creole nature trail was one of the first nationally designated Scenic Byways and includes state highways 14, 82, 27, 384, and 385 in Southwest Louisiana.
7) Jungle Gardens, Avery Island
Deep in the heart of Avery Island in Louisiana, you’ll find a unique garden retreat populated by a wide variety of jungle plants from all around the world. Keep your eyes peeled for the Sunken Garden and the Buddha’s Pavilion.
8) Laser Interferometer Gravitational Wave Observatory, Livingston
The mission of this major observatory and research facility is partnered with a sister observatory in Hanford Washington and is used to observe and research gravitational waves. The lab is free and open to the public once a month and offers over 50 science museum exhibits.
9) Beidenharn Museum Monroe
Dive into the fascinating Coca-Cola memorabilia that fills this museum—and then don’t forget a walk around the absolutely gorgeous gardens afterwards.
10) Gardens of the American Rose Society, Shreveport
Did you know that we have the headquarters of the American Rose Society right here in Louisiana? Check out their beautiful roses throughout the year at their headquarters.
Have you ever been to one of these places? Let us know your favorite in the comments below!