With 14,500 people populating French Quarter-style streets, Thibodaux is sure to charm you with the feel of New Orleans but all the hospitality and personality of a small town. Shops and restaurants throughout downtown mimic the style of the Big Easy, located just 35 miles away, but business owners here instantly make visitors feel like family. And those visitors are especially lucky at this time of year because they’re treated to all sorts of holiday cheer, festive décor and special deals.
HIT THE STREETS
It’s easy to navigate downtown Thibodaux. The streets are numbered, there’s on-street parking near whatever shop or restaurant you’d like to visit, and everything is quite walkable once you decide where to leave your car. If the weather is cooperating, you should take a walking tour of the downtown area so you can explore the rich history and architecture of Thibodaux while supporting local shops and eateries each step of the way.
Typically, Thibodaux hosts some memorable festivals, but COVID had different plans for those events in 2020. However, restaurants and stores are open and putting out their welcome mats for visitors. These locally owned shops have adapted during these uncertain times, many of them now offering curbside pickup for their customers.
BEST SMALL-TOWN FOOD SCENE
Thibodaux has been named one of the country’s top small-town food scenes by USA Today 10Best for the past two years, so you’ll be able to find some big flavors in this little town. If you’re interested in fine dining, Fremin’s Restaurant on West Third Street is a top choice and we highly recommend the seafood Napoleon. Just across the street you’ll find Cinclare’s Southern Bistro, which offers a popular alligator and andouille cheesecake, a savory-not-sweet treat that will make you rethink cheesecake. (And alligators!) One street over – on West Fourth – you’ll find Spahr’s Seafood, famous for its bloody Marys, catfish fingers and crawfish bread. If you’re looking for lighter fare, from a delicious sandwich to a delectable cupcake to a delightful cup of coffee, the Weeping Willow Café and Bakery back on West Third is a great place to kick off your day or give your afternoon a jump start with a rush of sugar or caffeine.
SHOP 'TIL YOU DROP
If you’re in the mood to shop and would like to support small businesses this holiday season, Thibodaux boasts one-of-a-kind, locally owned stores with distinctive offerings. Johnny’s Men’s Shop on West Third is where the men of Lafourche Parish have been going to find everything from ties to school uniforms since 1956. While supplies last this month, they’re throwing in a set of whiskey stones with purchases of $200 or more. Meanwhile, the Sugar Boutique on West Second specializes in women’s clothing, shoes and jewelry. And The Bead Hive on West Fourth offers a full selection of jewelry and handmade crafts; they’ve extended their hours this month to help accommodate Christmas shoppers. If seeing those crafts puts you in an artsy mood, the Purple Penguin Art Company on West Third offers classes for artists young and old, from kids to bachelorette parties.
Whether you’re a visitor and it’s your first time exploring downtown or you’ve lived here all your life but haven’t been to these small businesses, we encourage you to take some time this month to discover all the charms of Thibodaux.