Baton Rouge, the second largest city in Louisiana with a population of approximately 230,000, is a real gem of the south. This capital city offers more than 300 years of history, a diverse culture, delicious food, and unique architecture. Nicknamed the “Red Stick,” it also serves as an excellent hub for exploring nearby cities like Lafayette and New Orleans, both of which are just an hour away.
History & Museums
Home to more than 20 museums and multiple historic sites, Baton Rouge is a great place for learning, experiencing different cultures, and immersing oneself in history. Louisiana’s Old State Capitol is located only blocks from the USS Kidd, Louisiana Art & Science Museum, and the Old Governor’s Mansion. Visitors should also take the time to see the Audubon State Historic Site and Oakley House, Heritage Museum and Cultural Center, and Zachary Historic Village.
Baton Rouge is in the heart of Plantation Country. Several plantations are within an hour’s drive of the city center and include The Myrtles, Magnolia Mound, Nottoway, Mount Hope, and Rosedown. The Myrtles Plantation is more than 220 years old — a southern antebellum mansion featuring extensive ironwork and hand-painted stained glass. If you fall in love with this city while you’re exploring, as so many often do, you might want to look at Baton Rouge houses for sale. You’re sure to be impressed, as many homes imitate the antebellum-style of the region’s magnificent plantations.
Baton Rouge offers many different activities for families with children. The zoo is great for all ages with its alligators, giraffes, elephants and special exhibits, such as the otter pond, safari playground, and aquarium. The Bluebonnet Swamp Nature Center features 105 acres of live animal exhibits, flora and fauna, art exhibits, gravel paths, boardwalks, and forests. Botanical Gardens at Independence Park has seven different gardens including rose, iris, and a butterfly garden. There are also several community parks, two water parks, a children’s museum, and public farms that hold special holiday events.
Whether you enjoy live music, casinos, dive bars, or dance clubs, you’ll find exciting nightlife in Baton Rouge. Craft micro-brews can be found at Baton Rouge Distillery, and the best whiskey is not far away at Hayride Scandals. Test your luck on the slots at Hollywood Casino or catch a live show at The Spanish Moon.
Many outdoor adventures can be found within minutes of the city’s center. One of the most popular attractions is the 14-acre Hilltop Arboretum at Louisiana State University, a model of the south’s natural landscape with a vast collection of trees and shrubs. Book a private paddle boarding tour or yoga paddle board class, hit 18 holes of golf at the Santa Maria Park Golf Course, and visit the Tickfaw State Park for camping and hiking.