News in Louisiana's Cajun Bayou

Leave it up to the staff at Louisiana's Cajun Bayou Visitors Center to share the latest and most popular news, events, and press about Lafourche Parish.

Find Your Inner Cajun in Louisiana's Cajun Bayou

Cajun. It’s a word that encompasses so many things in Louisiana’s Cajun Bayou. Cajun is a lifestyle that defines families, traditions, and experiences. And at its heart, Cajun is about people- not just the folks who live here, but also our visitors, who we welcome like family and encourage embracing our authentic way of life. Once you begin you adventure up and down the Bayou, we think you’ll find you’ve always had a little piece of Cajun in you, too. These are some great ways to find your inner Cajun here in Louisiana’s Cajun Bayou!

Take A Swamp Tour

One of the best ways to dive right in to the Cajun atmosphere is on a swamp tour. Choose a fast-paced airboat tour or a meandering pontoon boat… either way, you’ll come back feeling (and maybe speaking) a little more Cajun. Whether you’re feeling adventurous or looking for some relaxation, our swamp tours will take you on a journey that you’ll never forget. Our tour guides are storytellers who know how to weave a tale … and make you feel like you’ve jumped right into a great book full of Cajun culture and tradition. And you won’t be just listening to the story; you’ll become part of it as you interact with wildlife, feel warm breezes, and listen to the sounds of the swamp. 

Go On A Fishing Trip

There’s something about being on the water in Louisiana’s Cajun Bayou that’s so peaceful, yet so exhilarating. With so many types of fish and seafood – shrimp, crabs, oysters -- to be caught in our bountiful waters, hopping on a charter fishing trip is a satisfying and memorable way to spend the day. Cajuns love to fish. It’s a pastime shared with friends and family and an experience our charter captains are eager to share with visitors, too. They’ll teach you how to cast a line, explain how Cajuns make their living on the water, and take you to favorite spots where you’re guaranteed to reel in the big one. A beautiful day on a boat with an ice chest full of fish (and probably some beers from our local brewery, Mudbug) will have you feeling as proud as a Cajun bringing in their daily catch. 

Explore Our Museums 

Visit our many museums –for adults and kids alike, and truly immerse yourself in the Cajun experience, learning how we work hard but also know how to truly enjoy life. Live the life of a real Cajun as you touch handcrafted boats more than 400 hundreds years old, hear the sounds of the French Acadian language still spoken today, take kids on an interactive drive through sugarcane fields, or use your own hands to make shrimping nets. Just like those nets, the Cajun lifestyle is beautifully woven into the history of Lafourche Parish, all up and down the Bayou. The first Cajuns didn’t just live here; they worked and made a living from every natural element available to them, just as they do today. 

Eat Our Food

Cajuns live to eat! With so much flavor and history behind every bite, our world-famous cuisine is one more experience we love to share with our guests. Learning how to crack open crabs and peel shrimp and crawfish are rites of passage for visitors seeking to become honorary Cajuns. And if you don’t know what you’re doing at the Cajun table, don’t worry: there’s always a local expert around to teach you. A Cajun’s motto is, “The best way to a person’s heart is through the stomach,” and that’s a promise delivered. Once you’ve had the crash course in boiled seafood, don’t forget to try the home-cooked meals and overstuffed poboys you’ll find at any of our restaurants up and down the Bayou. You won’t leave Louisiana’s Cajun Bayou hungry, that’s for sure. You’ll learn to eat – and maybe even cook – just like a Cajun.

Louisiana’s Cajun Bayou in Lafourche Parish is a place with an authentic Cajun lifestyle unlike any other. Is your inner Cajun ready to explore “Where Cajun Runs Deep?” Come see the unpolished, unspoiled beauty of the Bayou. Plan your trip today


Louisiana’s Cajun Bayou Tourism Honors Tourism Partners

In honor of National Travel and Tourism Week, Louisiana’s Cajun Bayou Tourism (LCBT) honored two local tourism partners with the “Spirit of the Bayou Tourism Award.”  The award honors Lafourche Parish tourism partners who deliver the Louisiana’s Cajun Bayou brand and provide visitors with outstanding customer service. 

The 2017 recipients of the award are Airboat Tours by Arthur Matherne and Herbert Adams of E.D. White Historic Site. The awards were presented by LCBT President & CEO, Timothy P. Bush and Lt. Governor Billy Nungesser, who is traveling around the state to celebrate a fifth consecutive record breaking year for tourism in Louisiana.  The event was hosted the Jean Lafitte National Park Wetlands Acadian Cultural Center in Thibodaux.

“Here in Louisiana’s Cajun Bayou, we have wonderful and supportive partners who work really hard and are great ambassadors for our community and the experiences this area offers,” said LCBT President & CEO Timothy P. Bush. “I say often that as the destination marketing organization, we don’t deliver the experiences to visitors, that role is what our partners do. I am extremely thankful that this area has so many wonderful partners who deliver the Louisiana’s Cajun Bayou brand through their work. We are very proud to honor Airboat Tours by Arthur Matherne and Herbert Adams for their contributions to tourism. They are shining examples of the 560 people who work in our local tourism industry every single day and provide value to our industry through their continuous hard work.”

Other highlights from the event include:

LCBT Launches New Destination Website

On Monday, LCBT launched a new website built to support the Louisiana’s Cajun Bayou brand, launched earlier this year. Designed by Tomahawk Tourism, the website features a new design that focuses on strong visual images of the area, simplistic navigation, and a storytelling element that showcases the natural, unapologetic culture found up and down the Bayou in Lafourche Parish.

“This new website will be a great extension to showcase the Louisiana’s Cajun Bayou story to visitors,” said Bush. “So many visitors plan their travel online today. We felt it was important to create a website that will inspire and assist visitors in planning their visit to the area.”

“We are beyond proud to have worked with Louisiana’s Cajun Bayou Tourism on this project, said Tomahawk Tourism USA CEO Marica Mackenroth Brewster. “They knew exactly how they wanted to portray Louisiana's Cajun Bayou online and the demographic to reach. The background research, strategy, content planning, and artistic direction were developed throughout a series of brain bouncing sessions which resulted in a stunning end product. From the navigation structure to the robust functionality, this website is positioned to engage and inspire visitors to experience Louisiana's Cajun Bayou.”

Wetlands Cultural Byway Videos

Louisiana’s Cajun Bayou Tourism and Houma Area Convention & Visitors Bureau have partnered together to produce a series of videos to promote the Wetlands Cultural Byway, which stretches over 250 miles between the two parishes.  The three videos focus on a multigenerational family, a group of millennials, and a couple looking to enjoy a romantic weekend getaway, all experiences that can be found along the byway.

Lt. Governor Touts State Tourism Numbers and Bass Trail Launch

Lt. Gov. Nungesser shared highlights about the positive growth of tourism for Louisiana. He also talked about the roll out of Louisiana Bass Trail, designed to get more fishing enthusiast traveling through some of Louisiana’s best state parks. The initiative highlights seven lakes at eight state parks throughout north Louisiana. To learn more about the Louisiana Bass Trail, visit LouisianaBassTrail.com.

National Speaker to Talk Online Reputation Management

LBCT will wrap up its National Travel and Tourism Week activities by hosting a tourism workshop on Sense of Place and Reputation Management, presented by Jim Brody. Brody is the president and CDN (Chief DMO Nerd) for Sense of Place, a company dedicated to helping destination marketing organizations and their partners navigate the digital landscape. He has a keen understand of digital marketing and reputation management. 

 


Meet Louisiana's Cajun Bayou

There's a destination just 35 miles south of New Orleans you haven't met yet, but once you do, you will understand why Louisiana's Cajun Bayou in the coastal destination of Lafourche Parish is worth meeting. 

Louisiana's Cajun Bayou is all about the experiences you'll have as you travel up and down the Bayou. As the Bayou stretches for over 100 miles, you will know you have arrived at the right place when you ask for directions and our friendly locals say, you've got to go "up the Bayou" or "down the Bayou." It's a little different, but so are we. 

We don't claim to be the most polished of places to visit and that's really part of our charm. Here we celebrate a Cajun lifestyle like no other. This unapologetic culture is all up and down the Bayou and is filled with outdoor experiences like fishing and swamp tours, along with regular celebrations such as food, music and festivals. 

Once you visit us on the Bayou, you will learn why our stories and experiences define living life on the Bayou. From fishing in the Gulf of Mexico to enjoying a big bowl of Gumbo, from spotting an alligator on a swamp tour to learning how to blend cocktails with our locally made rum, Cajun runs deep here on the Bayou.

Come for a proper introduction and see the unpolished, unspoiled beauty of the Bayou when you visit Louisiana's Cajun Bayou in Lafourche Parish. 


Best Museums in Lafourche Parish

History and culture are a big part of what makes Lafourche Parish so unique. The variety of museums in our community creates a hands-on and authentic experience into our deep Cajun heritage known around the world. From centuries old boats to sugarcane harvesting lessons, these are just a few of the best museums to visit as you get to know “up and down” Bayou Lafourche.

Best Museums in Lafourche Video

For museum hours and locations, visit our Things to Do page.


Four Reasons to Love Fall Festivals

Let’s be honest, fall in south Louisiana makes us swoon. After a hot summer, we look forward to cooler air, falling leaves, and the aroma of hot gumbo. Festival season along Bayou Lafourche is another reason we are excited about the fall. It’s the best time of year to truly experience the Cajun lifestyle and friendly folks that love to host a great party. Throughout the fall, you’ll find many of our unique festivals as you travel up and down the bayou.  These are our favorite reasons to love fall festival season! 

Food

Food is the main attraction at any festival you visit. The smell of delicious dishes will hit you long before you arrive at the entry gate. Fairs and festivals are the best place to experience many different types of Cajun cuisine. From gumbo and spicy jambalaya to fresh seafood and crispy cracklins, the variety of culinary delights is endless. 

Music

Music is at the heart of festival life in Lafourche. Dozens of live bands will take the stage to showcase the sounds of Cajun heritage. Musicians jam on instruments like the washboard and accordion and you can even catch big-name headliners at evening shows. Dancing is part of the tradition, too. If you get close to the dance floor, be ready to join in the fun. Learning the zydeco two-step is easy with the help of seasoned dancers ready to show you our famous footwork. 

Culture

Festivals have their own unique theme and focus on the diversity that makes Lafourche like no other place in the world. Many feature arts and crafts shows that are a perfect place to buy authentic gifts so you can carry our traditions home with you. Food and music are a big part Cajun culture but you can also experience our way of life through festival events such as pirogue races, boat building, fishing, duck calling contests, and storytelling.  

People

You will feel a sense of welcoming throughout your entire festival experience. It’s the spirit of our people and the pride they have for culture and heritage that make Lafourche festivals so enjoyable. Their passion for celebration and tradition is contagious. Everyone you meet is rooted in southern, Cajun hospitality. By the time you head home, you’ll be beaming with Cajun pride and ready to come back for more.

We love fall festival season in Lafourche and it’s not hard to see why. Come live the bayou festival life and join in our celebration. Check out the full list of upcoming fair and festivals. We can’t wait to see you in the fall!


Favorite After Five Cocktail Spots

It’s no secret that Lafourche Parish is a great place to “pass a good time” and with all our cocktail hot spots, happy hour has never been tastier. Enjoy some downtime on the bayou as our bartenders mix up some of the most unique drinks you’ll find in Lafourche. These are our top picks for the best places to grab a drink after five. 

Cinclare

Cinclare, a new addition to Downtown Thibodaux and has been wowing both food and drink lovers with their eclectic cocktails and rustic menu. Every week features a new cocktail like the Waterlily; mixed with Plymouth Gin, Creme de Violet, Cointreau and fresh lemon juice. You’ll want to try out their fresh, contemporary southern cuisine while you’re there. 
Open nightly Wednesday-Saturday. 

Mudbug Brewery

Mudbug is brewing up great local beers bursting with distinct flavors that center on our Cajun culture. Sample unique brews like the King Cake Ale, White Boot Louisiana Blonde Ale, and Intracoastal IPA. Eight beers are always on tap in the tasting room open Thursday-Saturday evenings. Hint: Grab your favorite brews to share back home at our local grocery stores.

Donner-Peltier Distillery

Our favorite mixed drinks are made with liquor from Donner-Peltier Distillers in Thibodaux. Taste the Oryza Chiller made with their signature vodka or the mojito mixed with Rougaroux Rum made from sugarcane right here in Lafourche. You’ll find their spirits at most area bars including specialty drinks at Spahr’s Seafood, Fremin’s, and Alumni Grill. Learn about the distilling process on a guided tours and tastings Monday- Saturday.

Flanagan's 

Flanagan’s Restaurant Bar is great for gathering with friends and family and known for its refreshing Long Island Ice Tea. Dine on weekly specials featuring Cajun cuisine while you sip your cocktail.
Open daily Tuesday-Sunday.

Beck's

Head down the bayou to the back porch of Beck’s for beautiful view of Bayou Lafourche. Enjoy live music from local musicians while dining on steaks, burgers, and Cajun cuisine. Happy hour is from 3-7 pm every Tuesday and Wednesday. 

Frank's Lounge

For the “World’s Best” Blood Mary stop by Frank’s Lounge in Des Allemandes where the friendly, laid back atmosphere will have you feeling like a true Cajun. You won’t meet a stranger at this stop! Cold beer and margaritas are also popular.

Cher'Amie's

A tasty seafood restaurant, Cher'Amie's, is just down the bayou and has a variety of drink specials every week. Martini Monday, Tequila Tuesday, Wine Down Wednesday…the list goes on! You’re sure to have a cool, refreshing beverage any day.

These are just some of the great places along the Cajun Bayou to grab a cocktail. Be sure to view our full list of restaurants and bars up and down the bayou. There’s always something to see and do on the bayou! Get your Guide to the Bayou Life and plan your trip today. 


6 Ways to Enjoy Summer Fun on the Bayou

Along the Cajun Bayou, the days of summer center on relaxation and fun. Fishing, shopping, and sightseeing are just a few ways to do just that in Lafourche Parish. Here are some of the top ways to unwind and unplug on the Bayou.

1. Downtown Thibodaux

Downtown Thibodaux offers a wide array of historical attractions and entertainment with local shops, eateries, and unique architecture. Stroll through the diverse selection of boutiques where you’ll find gifts for your friends and family such as handbags, jewelry, and artwork. Then, visit one of the many restaurants that offer a variety of food like fresh seafood and homemade pizza. Architecture lovers can stop by and see St. Joseph Co-Cathedral which features spectacular stained-glass windows and Egyptian marble accents. When the sun goes down, the nightlife comes alive with music and drinks at the many local bars like the Piazza throughout the downtown area. 

2. Bayou Country Children’s Museum 

In the heart of Thibodaux you’ll find the Bayou Country Children’s Museum filled with bayou life fun for the little ones. Kids will learn how to be a true Cajun through hands-on exhibits like the estuary water table and sugar cane alley.  The museum also provides educational camps throughout the summer that focus on topics like dinosaurs and science. 

3. Bayous and Waterways 

Boating and fishing are the perfect escape from your busy schedule and allows time to relax and enjoy the tranquility of the bayou. Our experienced charter fishermen say trout, redfish, and blue crabs are just a few of the many fish you are likely to catch in the summertime while exploring lush waterways. Check out the many ways you can fish through the boat launches and charter options available. 

4. Golden Meadow/ Fourchon 

One of the summer’s most thrilling events in Lafourche is the Golden Meadow-Fourchon International Tarpon Rodeo. This rodeo has become one of the most popular in the south and has been drawing in tarpon anglers for more than sixty years. Popular events include watching the fishermen bring in their prize winning catches and The King of the Catch cook-off where you’ll sample some of the tastiest seafood in the south like red snapper, tuna, and crab. 

5. Cool Treat Stops

After a hot summer day, cool treats are the best way to beat the heat in Lafourche Parish. Sip the flavors of an authentic southern snowballs like wedding cake, satsuma, or spearmint topped off with sweet condensed milk. Ice cream and shakes are also a favorite at stops like the traditional Goal Post Drive-In. 

5. Thibodaux Splash Pad


Photo courtesy of Fox 8 WVUE

Chill out in the new Splash Zone at the Thibodaux Municipal Pool. This recent addition to the park features more than 20 water experiences including sprinklers, water dumps, and timed water shows. It's a great way to beat the summer heat in Louisiana's Cajun Bayou!  


What's Biting on the Bayou

The best way to enjoy the warm, salty breeze filling the air is on a fishing trip in Bayou Lafourche. Whether you are an experienced angler or a first-time fisherman, knowing what’s biting and what bait to bring is the first step as you set out on your bayou adventure.

Speckled Trout

Local charter fisherman, Captain Bobby Lynn Gros, says the speckled trout are on fire right now. Any reef or island in Lake Raccourci or Timberlier Bay to the west of Leeville is holding fish. The key to a solid catch is finding clean water and using live shrimp as bait. Trout are running anywhere from 11 to 18 inches in length but are plentiful. Weed through the little ones, and you'll end up with a full ice chest. To the west of Leeville, fish Bay Andre and Barataria Bay with the same set up, clean water, live shrimp, pogies, and croakers are the best baits to lure the specks.

Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries states that any kept speckled trout must be over 12 inches in length and not exceed a count of 25 per person. Please refer to the website for regulations. 

Blue Crab

Blue Crab season is in full swing during the summer months. All you need is some thick string, a dip net, a bucket, or ice chest, and bait – turkey or chicken necks work great. Tie your bait to the end of the string and toss into the water and wait for a slight tug. Slowly pull in your line and be ready to scoop up your crab with your net. Boil them in a hot pot with some potatoes and corn and enjoy a Cajun crab boil!

On June 11 and 12, 2016, you can fish without a fishing license in Louisiana. Check out the details on recreational licenses on the Department of Wildlife and Fisheries’ website www.wlf.louisiana.gov/licenses/fishing or www.wlf.louisiana.gov/licenses/hunting.


5 Reasons to Enjoy Mardi Gras in Lafourche

Before Ash Wednesday, before Lent, before all of the sacrificing and fasting that these times call for… there’s Mardi Gras. And Mardi Gras season along the Bayou is a time for feasting and fun! It’s the time to “live it up” before having to “give it up.” Along Bayou Lafourche, Cajuns celebrate Mardi Gras with many traditions that highlight their vibrant culture while creating an atmosphere like no other. Here are our top 5 reasons why you don’t want to miss Mardi Gras on the Bayou:

1. King Cake Galore

What’s a Mardi Gras celebration without King Cake? There really is none. But, forget what you’ve heard about traditional King Cakes because we do it a little differently on the Bayou. Whether it’s King Cake Beignets at Spahr’s Seafood Restaurant or Mudbug Brewery’s delicious King Cake Ale (a locally brewed beer with a King Cake twist), you can enjoy King Cake many different ways while celebrating Mardi. Looking for a more traditional King Cake? Not a problem! You can find our local bakeries here.

2. Feasting and Fun

Don’t stress about packing a sandwich or a bag of chips! The Bayou has you covered. Here, you’ll witness a true Bayou-style parade including streets lined up with barbecue pits and boiling pots of seafood, all made for the sole purpose of feeding parade goers. Hamburgers, hot dogs, sausage and crawfish just to satisfy your delight! The atmosphere is full of the delicious smells and the sound of the best dancing music. There’s no better way to celebrate the Mardi Gras season than with the best food and the best music to create the best time!                                                                  

3. True Family-Friendly Fun

When we celebrate Mardi Gras, it’s a party fit for everyone! Whether it’s a family-friendly environment to enjoy the beautiful floats and throws, or the vibrant life of the Downtown areas, there’s always a place for every parade goer on the Bayou. And forget the idea of the massive, overwhelming crowds of larger cities. We make room for everyone to have access to the beautifully decorated Mardi Gras floats. Being only a few people away from the parade route, you’ll be sure to fill up your bag with plenty of your favorite Mardi Gras throws!

4. The People

These parades are where the locals go. Forget not knowing anybody, because here everyone knows EVERYBODY! You’ll find generations all attending the parades together. Granny will be rocking on the porch with a baby waiting to watch Momma pass on a float. Everyone is there to greet you with a big smile and a grand-ole time! Even if you had to travel here, we’ll get to know you and welcome you in. We’re all friends and family along the Bayou, so don’t be surprised if a complete stranger offers you a burger, a beer or a place to watch the parade.

5. Our Unique Routes (aka where you watch the Parades)

Whether you find yourself “Up da Bayou” or “Down da Bayou”, there’s something special about our parades. If you think you missed anyone along the route, don’t panic! The Bayou provides routes that are within blocks of one another. So mark your spot and catch the driver’s side, then cross on over a few blocks to catch the passenger side fun. It’s double the fun and double the experience!

So come visit us on Bayou Lafourche for Mardi Gras! Carnival Season 2016 started on January 6th and runs through Mardi Gras day on February 9th. 


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