Lafayette is a gorgeous spot in the heart of Cajun country far from the crowds of Bourbon Street.  Just off I-10 are countless attractions to “spice up” your travel plans!  Here are 8 amazing reasons to visit Lafayette!

McGee’s Louisiana Swamp & Airboat Tours

Experience Louisiana’s vast and mysterious Atchafalaya Swamp on a breathtaking, eco-sensitive tour.  Let loose on an airboat or get up close with the wildlife on a canoe or kayak.  Each adventure takes you deep into the beauty of the largest swamp in the U.S.


TABASCO® Brand Factory Tour & Museum

(temporarily closed)

About 150 years ago, Edward McIIhenny built a hot sauce empire right on Avery Island.  TABASCO® is still family-owned and the only hot sauce bottler in the world.

You can take a tour of the history and production of TABASCO® Sauce on Avery Island, Louisiana. Visit the TABASCO® Museum, Pepper Greenhouse, Barrel Warehouse, Blending and Bottling, Avery Island Conservation, Salt Mine diorama, TABASCO® Country Store, and 1868! Restaurant.


Jungle Gardens and Bird City

This pristine spot in the heart of Avery Island is perfect for nature-loving guests.  Enjoy magnificent gardens and attractions that were originally part of McIlhenny estate.

Bird City was founded by Mcllhenny in 1895 to protect the snowy egrets.  It has since become a world-renowned center for conservation and a magnificent spot to see the egrets nesting in early spring.


Jean Lafitte Acadian Cultural Center

And you thought Mardi Gras was a New Orleans thing!  Explore the roots of Cajun culture at the Acadian Cultural Center.  Learn about the migration, settlement, and contemporary culture of the Acadians (Cajuns) and other area groups.

Private, ranger-led programs, films, exhibits, and events share a variety of local traditions including Mardi Gras, music, storytelling, dance, and food, and explore the mysteries of the Atchafalaya Basin, Louisiana’s wildest place.

Lafayette Mardi Gras

Vermillionville Living History Museum & Folklife Park

Brilliant red color?  Small town?  Not quite- but a great reason to visit Lafayette!  Vermillionville is a charming, 23-acre site brimming with outdoor recreation, history, music, food, and more.

Enjoy a full day of fun with programs, guided tours, and activities.  Here’s a taste of what you can do:

Historic Village

Live Music

Boat Tours

Cooking School

Dance Lessons

Immerse yourself in the Acadian, Creole, and Native American cultures from 1765 – 1890.  It’s a fascinating peek into a unique chapter of our American story.


Martin Accordions, Inc.

Push through the eye rolls and plan a stop at the Martin Accordion Factory.  The family-owned company is always happy to share the story of Cajun/Creole music history and gives your group tour a good-time boost!

Watch in real-time as the accordions are crafted and listen in to a spirited demonstration. You’ll have a hard time getting the eye-rollers back on the bus!

Martin Accordion

St. John’s Cathedral

Lafayette was founded as a primarily Catholic community, and St. John’s Cathedral is a magnificent reminder of this heritage.  Take a guided tour of St. John’s, highlighting the Catholic faith in Acadiana and one of the oldest pipe organs in the south.  Don’t forget to check out the 500-year-old live oak while you’re here!


Private Zydeco Dance Party

Plan a group trip to Lafayette and the party comes to you! Chubby Carrier and the Bayou Swamp Band brings 26+ years of funky, Zydeco sound right to your group.  It’s a full night of food and fun!


And So Much More…

These are 8 amazing reasons to visit Lafayette, but there are so many more! Lafayette welcomes you in and wraps you up in Creole comfort! You get the full Cajun experience in the place where it all started. Amazing food, crawfish bakes, mysterious swamp tours, and (of course!) a rich culture of international music make Lafayette the perfect place for a group trip!

Destinations Beyond Expectations gives you the inside scoop!

Stevie G., host of the podcast Destinations Beyond Expectations, invites you to listen as he chats with the locals and shares Lafayette’s hidden treasures.  You’ll pack your bags before the podcast is done – Allons!!

Lafayette, What Do You Know About Festivals?