1 Swamp tours

Watch out for alligators lurking in the ghostly, Spanish-moss-shaded bayous.

2 Napoleon House, New Orleans

Steeped in old New Orleans elegance, this gorgeous family-owned bar has stayed the same for generations, complete with flickering lamps and a romantic subtropical courtyard.

3 Mardi Gras

From the masking and dancing of New Orleans’s urban spectacular, to Cajun country’s medieval customs, Louisiana’s Fat Tuesday is unlike any other.Mardi Gras and other New Orleans festivals &

4 Maple Leaf on a Tuesday, New Orleans

Rebirth Brass Band on the stage, smoke getting in everyone’s clothes, and riotously happy music fans tearing the roof off this tumbledown neighbourhood bar.

5 Laura plantation

By far the River Road’s most intriguing and illuminating account of Creole plantation life.

6 Cajun and Creole festivals

Celebrating anything from sweet potatoes to world music, these country festivals offer superb opportunities to enjoy Cajun and zydeco music, crafts and lots of delicious food.

7 Angola prisoner rodeo

An unbelievable spectacle, with lifers slugging it out for guts and glory in this notorious maximum-security prison.

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