In search of the best and most fun things to do in Lafayette, LA
Lafayette is the fourth-largest city in Louisiana. It is located in Cajun Country in southwestern Louisiana and has diverse forms of attractions.
During your exploration, visit the Paul and Lulu Hilliard University Art Museum, try one of the great restaurants, wedding venues, watch a performance at the Acadiana Center for the Arts, take a tour of the Tabasco Factory on Avery Island, and take on other fun Lafayette attractions and activities.
You can visit the Lafayette Science Museum and the Children’s Museum if you’ve got kids with you. There are also amazing restaurants and unique attractions to make you have a great experience.
Let’s explore the best things to do in Lafayette, Louisiana.
Things to Do in Lafayette, LA
1. Enjoy the local culture at Acadian Village
The Acadian Village is a 32-acre private park located on Greenleaf Drive in Lafayette.
Established in the 1970s, the Acadian Village is devoted to preserving Acadian history and is one of the best things to do in Lafayette LA.
The park is a farmland that has been converted into an 1800s Cajun village, consisting of eleven buildings, seven of which are original 19th-century homes given out by ancestors of the families who owned the structures and dwelled in them.
You would be awed by the buildings as they demonstrate the unique construction techniques of the period with high peaked foods, wooden pegs of cypress wood, and high peaked roofs.
Acadian Village offers tours and the grounds are available for rent for meetings, weddings, and other events. The park is open from January to the end of October, Monday to Saturday.
Address: 200 Greenleaf Drive, Lafayette, Louisiana.
2. Alexandre Mouton House
The Alexandre Mouton House, also known as the Lafayette Museum is a darling historical landmark in Lafayette popular for being the home of the first Democratic Governor, and 9th Governor of Louisiana.
The museum is currently dedicated to promoting and conserving the history and culture of the Mouton Family and other many historically significant families that have chosen the house as their home.
Here, you get to learn about the awesome architecture, the unique ways that the home’s inhabitants lived, and the features of the home including the dogtrot that links the kitchen to the home.
Aside from Alexandre Mouton, visitors can learn about the lives of occupants like Samuel and Benjamin Paxton, Judge Cornelius Voorhies, and Dr. W.G. Mills.
Address: 1122 Lafayette Street, Lafayette, LA 70501
3. Kart Ranch
Opened to the public in 1985, Kart Ranch has been offering entertainment and high-speed fun to guests of all ages. It is family-owned and operated.
Kart Ranch is well recognized for its go-kart track where 5-minute speed-filled rides are offered to its racers. Also, the ranch has a Kiddie Kart track, a laser tag arena, a water wars facility, a castle clash, and even an adventure golf course.
Join other gamers in enjoying a trip to the Battle Botz Arena and the arcade, while youngsters can enjoy attractions like the Kiddie Train, the Spin Zone Bumper Cars, and an indoor soft play area.
It is indeed one of the best things to do in Lafayette.
Address: 508 Youngsville Highway, Lafayette, Louisiana 70508.
4. Paul and Lulu Hilliard University Art Museum
Located on Girard Park Drive, the Paul and Lulu Hilliard University Art Museum is one of the top attractions in 1 Lafayette.
Established in 1964, it is the art museum for the University of Louisiana named after Paul and Lulu Hilliard, the major donors for the construction of the museum.
Covering 33,000 square feet, its facility features over 11,000 square feet of exhibition space.
The collection in this museum consists of more than 4,000 art objects traced from the 18th to the 21st century, including artworks from America, Asia, and Europe.
More collections include ancient Egyptian art, Japanese woodblock prints, folk art, and works by local artists of Louisiana.
Address: Girard Park Drive, Lafayette, Louisiana.
5. Azalea Trail
Looking for a notable symbol in Lafayette? The abundant azaleas that line the streets are not just common but a beautiful and vibrant symbol of the city.
With a variety of colors from whites, reds, pinks, purples, and a lovely hue of salmon, the azaleas stem down 20 miles of the city’s streets. Some of the more important bushes have been surviving for over 50 years.
The beauty of these flowers and how they wind in and out of the city birthed the Azalea Trail and remains one of the best walking tours any visitor would take in Lafayette.
The trail would touch Lafayette’s most famous attractions like the Cathedral of St. John the Evangelist, the Mouton Plantation, the Heymann Performing Arts Center, and the Girard Park.
If you wish to walk the Azalea Trail, the best starting point is the Lafayette Visitor’s Center, which provides maps and more information about the landmarks along the trail.
For fun things to do in Lafayette, LA, do add a visit to your bucket list of places to visit in Lafayette.
Address: 1400 NW Evangeline Thruway, Lafayette, LA 70501
6. Kid’s fun time at Children’s Museum of AcadianaThe Children’s Museum of Acadiana is a first-hand museum with interactive exhibits that teach children practical knowledge on various subjects such as food, money, health, and other essential topics.
The museum was founded in 1990 and is housed in the old Heymann Food Center on East Congress Street in downtown Lafayette.
The Children’s Museum of Acadiana organizes several programs like classes, school field trips, workshops, and Boy Scouts and Girl Scouts programs.
If you are in thought of what to do in Lafayette with kids, this is an amazing place to visit.
The museum also plays host to special events such as garage sales, Art Stomp, the Spooktacular Halloween Party, and performances. This includes several kinds of birthday parties called Bonne Fete Party Packages.
Address: 201 East Congress Street, Lafayette, Louisiana.
7. Premier Lanes
Premier Lanes exists as a popular and dear member of Lafayette’s entertainment scene and offers a unique atmosphere to enjoy an amazing game of bowling and more within its facilities.
Premier Lanes was opened in 1984 and is a community favorite. Ever since its opening, patrons have frequented it over the years. Premier Lanes is outfitted with 32 world-class bowling alley lanes and with a lot of arcade games for other visitors to enjoy.
In addition, Premier Lanes regularly show sporting events on their big screens. Patrons favor the late hours of the weekend because they get to enjoy a few games of glow bowling.
Address: 3227 Ambassador Caffery Parkway, Lafayette, LA 70506
8. Lafayette Science Museum
Located on Jefferson Street in downtown Lafayette, the Lafayette Science Museum showcases displays on various science subjects like paleontology, geology, marine biology, and much more.
The museum was founded in 1968 with a focus on offering hands-on experiences to any curious person, including children and adults.
It is devoted to education and encourages school field trips. There are many programs designed for children like Flight Adventures as well as planetarium programs offered for the general public such as The Modern Universe.
Address: 433 Jefferson Street, Lafayette, Louisiana
9. Southern Stone Indoor Climbing
It does not matter if you are a professional climber or completely new to the sport, Southern Stone Indoor Climbing is a lovely place to visit and enjoy diverse disciplines of rock climbing.
It would take newbies only ten minutes to traverse some of the center’s walls with trained coaches available to assist them at every point.
Southern Stone Indoor Climbing encourages diverse times of climbing disciplines including bouldering, where no ropes or harnesses are required to a maximum height of 14 feet.
Top-rope climbing is the most popular type of climbing at Southern Stone in which visitors will climb in pairs with a belayer.
There are also auto-belayer devices available for solo climbers to help visitors scale the highest walls of Southern Stone. Advanced climbers have sport climbing walls available too
Address: 109 Grand Avenue, Lafayette, LA 70503
10. Avery IslandLocated just southwest of Emma, Louisiana, Avery Island adds to our teeming list of best things to do in Lafayette.
Situated in the heart of the Louisiana bayou country, Avery Island is the home of the world-renowned McIlhenny Tabasco Company
You will see many popular sights on the island like the Tabasco Pepper Sauce Factory Tour. And though its bottling process only takes place from Monday to Thursday, the sauce is still offered every day.
There are the Jungle Gardens and Bird City which are open every day including Restaurant 1868, where you can eat local Cajun dishes.
The island’s nature preserve permits visitors to see flowers like camellias, azaleas, bamboo, and animals such as egrets, alligators, and deer.
Address: Avery Island Rd, Avery Island, Lafayette, Louisiana
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11. Enjoy the taste and sounds of Prejean’sDine on authentic and utterly delicious Cajun cuisine at Prejean’s Restaurant. Opened first in April of 1980 by Bob Guilbeau, the Prejean’s Restaurant is located along Interstate 49.
After 40 years of excellent service, the legacy was transferred to the new owner, Tim Metcalf, an owner of other restaurants in the area.
Prejean’s is devoted to gratifying the culinary cravings of patrons while showcasing some Cajun culture as well.
It offers a tantalizing range of dishes with appetizers like the Alligator Sausage Cheesecake and Louisiana Crawfish, the Croc de Jacques, and Crawfish Enchilada.
Popular and awesome entrees to try at Prejean’s include the Shrimp Skillet Creole, the Oyster Saxaphone, and the Blackened Tilapia.
Prejean’s is open all through the week and diners can come through their doors from 10:30 am.
Address: 3480 NE Evangeline Thruway, Lafayette, LA 70507.
12. Champagne’s Cajun Swamp Tours
Champagne’s Cajun Swamp Tours provides ecotour adventures in the hub of the bayou and swamp regions of Louisiana.
They offer guided tours that take visitors through the Lake Martin Cypress Island Preserve with Spanish moss, cypress trees, birds such as woodpeckers, herons, owls, and reptiles like alligators snakes, and frogs.
They offer two-hour tour(s) which is/are available in English or French starting from a dock on Lake Martin and covering other areas.
There are also tours for school trips that up to 105 students and special tours like photography, bird watching, and night tours.
13. Test your knowledge and skills at Escape Room Lafayette
With eight exciting and puzzle-filled rooms to select from, Escape Room Lafayette is an incredible option for groups that want to experience entertaining and interactive gaming experiences.
Each room in Escape Room is designed so that teams are tested in terms of attention to, wits, problem-solving skills, and even code-breaking.
The escape rooms at Lafayette can accommodate as little as two and as many as eight players, each allotted 60 minutes and at different difficulty levels.
Prove your stance to be a wizard at the Public Wizard School escape room or figure out the actual culprit behind a murder that has been framed against you at Mystery Manor or escape before a madman comes back in the Cabin escape room.
This makes what to do in Lafayette for some fun, quite a perfect addition to your bucket list of fun things to do in Lafayette, LA. These rooms and more await you at Escape Room Lafayette.
Address: 5520 Johnston Street, Suite D, Lafayette, LA 70503.
14. Take on Cajun Food Tours
Cajun Food Tours is a tour company in Youngsville that provides Cajun food tours coupled with explanations of the history and culture of Cajun.
The tour groups accommodate up to 14 people in a customized tour bus that stops at six different locations for Cajun dish tastings such as boudin, etouffee, cracklin,’ gumbo, fried seafood, and king cake.
Places where the bus stops include the Cajun Market Donut, Poor Boy’s Riverside Inn, La Cuisine de Maman, and more.
Cajun Food Tours was established in 2011 and does well in introducing visitors to the local cuisine of Lafayette. It was voted the Tastiest Town in the South.
15. Enjoy delicious food at T-Coon’s Restaurant
T-Coon’s Restaurant is popular for serving up the best possible home-cooked food in the fastest time possible. They have been in this business for four generations, offering delectable meals to the Lafayette crowd.
It is owned and led by David Billeaud, a sixth-generation Broussard native with a French pedigree, offering wholesome breakfasts, satisfying lunches, and awesome dining options.
Though the restaurant does offer daily specials, there are some tested and confirmed menu offerings that please visitors. First-timers ought to try the Fried Shrimp, or Catfish Jambalaya, the T-Coon Breakfast Special, Catfish Court bouillon, or the Meatball Fricassee amongst others.
However, there is one thing guests should not forget to order, T-Coon’s delectable biscuits and gravy combos!
Address: 1900 West Pinhook Road, Lafayette, LA 70508.
16. Get down to Cypress Island
Cypress Island is a preserve located along with Lake Martin between Lafayette and Breaux Bridge. It spreads about 9,500 acres with protected cypress swamp and hardwood forest land.
You will see the Visitor Center at the southern end of the lake where LA Highway 353 and Rookery Road meet.
There is a picnic pavilion here and the start of the 2.5-mile Levee Trail that guides visitors through the preserve and around the lake.
From January down to June, several kinds of birds come to the preserve to make their nests, the likes of roseate spoonbills, little blue herons, and several types of egrets like great, cattle, and snowy egrets.
Plan to explore this beautiful area with your loved one on a romantic day trip. It is one of the top things to do in Lafayette.
17. Have fun at Moncus Park
Moncus Park was opened in January of 2022.
It was born out of a movement to secure and preserve the property formerly known as The Horse Farm – the equestrian center of the Southwestern Louisiana Industrial Institute.
In 2018, construction to transform the land into a world-class park started after several supporters’ advocacy and hard work. While in 2021, the second wave of construction for the other half of the 125-acre property commenced.
Moncus Park bears its name following a massive donation from philanthropist James Moncus, with the park’s operation funded fully by donors and local organizations confirming it as a community park in every bit.
It is open from 5 am to 10 pm and guests to the park can enjoy exploring the Ravine Gardens, walking the park’s 1-mile loop trail, absorbing sun rays on the many grand lawns, or spending time relaxing at the Cajun Prairie.
The park is also home to a hammock grove, a water playground, a fishing pier, and a veterans memorial.
Address: 2913 Johnston Street, Lafayette, LA 70503.
18. Acadian Cultural Center
Dedicated to intimating the public about the culture of the Cajun people, the Acadian Cultural Center is another lovely place to visit in Lafayette.
The center is situated on Fisher Road, just a few miles from the Vermilionville Historic Village, and focuses on the origins, migration, and settlement of the Acadians, or Cajuns, who were originally from Canada before they settled in Louisiana.
There are portable media players available for guests to borrow at the Visitors Center.
There are also films, exhibits, and ranger programs including ranger-guided boat tours on the ship called Cocodrie.
More activities include special events like music, dance, storytelling, and Girl Scout and Boy Scout programs, school field trips, and summer camps.
Address: 501 Fisher Road, Lafayette, Louisiana.
19. Visit the spectacular Cathedral of St. John the Evangelist
The Cathedral of St. John the Evangelist is one of the most magnificent buildings in Lafayette and is included on the National Register of Historic Places.
The cathedral which is a glorious towering red and white brick building is found on the aptly-named Cathedral Street and provides a calm experience to anyone who wishes to visit.
The artistic works are particularly impressive and include stained glass windows representing Saint John the Evangelist’s like and various oil paintings, making the visit well worth it.
Also, one can explore the building itself on a guided tour, you can cap off your visit with a trip to the gift shop and on-site museum.
Address: 515 Cathedral St, Lafayette, LA 70501, USA
20. Eat great at Roly Poly
The Roly Poly restaurant has a way of making you think as though they are giving something away on your first visit.
There is normally a line at the counter, and they usually give customers free drinks while they wait. Roly Poly makes sandwiches, not just any kind of sandwich.
Located on Coolidge Street, the Roly Poly restaurant is so good that the company decided to open 125 stores across the country to make their customers happy.
They have no big secret to their successful service delivery and management. They use fresh ingredients and interesting flavor combinations that are not found anywhere else, coupled with fast service.
Ingredients like fresh sliced avocado, green leaf lettuce, alfalfa sprouts, fresh tortillas, and Roma plum tomatoes are the standard. They’ve got probably everything you would ever want in inwrap, be it hot or cold. They have hundreds of combinations!
You will like the Chipotle Cheese Steak with sliced steak, cheddar, melted jalapeno jack, green peppers, onions, and mushrooms immersed with mild chipotle dressing. They serve it with fresh salsa.
Address: 1004 Coolidge St, Lafayette, Louisiana
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21. Catch a show at Heymann Center
Heymann Center is the largest and most welcoming Performing Arts Center in Lafayette. With a wide range of performances that appeals to tastes and age groups, it is one of the top things to do in Lafayette.
Here, music of all genres can be enjoyed with live shows from international stars in the worlds of Western, Hip-Hop, Country, and lots more besides.
Maybe, you would love to engage your funny side with one of the regular stand-up shows here, or if you’re checking at the right time, you could even participate in a bodybuilding contest!
Whatever interests you, just know that there is always something going on at the Heymann.
Address: 1373 S College Rd, Lafayette, LA 70503
22. See feathered friends at Lake Martin Rookery
Lake Martin Rookery
If you are in Lafayette, the perfect place to get a perfect retreat from the hustle and bustle of modern life is at Lake Martin Rookery.
The area is recognized for its abundant natural wildlife, and you together with your family have the option to explore at will.
You may even decide to take one of the guided tours if you prefer a more comprehensive discussion of the exhibited flora and fauna.
There are so boat tours on the lake, which is an opportunity to potentially sight an alligator in the wild. The serenity and tranquility of the whole area you to enjoy nature at its best.
Address: Rookery Road, Lafayette, LA 70517
23. Enjoy a leisurely afternoon with the locals
If you are searching for the best way to spend an afternoon in Lafayette, then you have the Lafayette Farmers and Artisan Market to see to that.
The market is popular for its fantastic food – ranging from desserts you can enjoy on-site to take-home meals – to the stall that sells top-quality arts, gifts, and crafts.
The market welcomes pets and families, so you can take the entire family along and check out the local ware and may even dance to the beautiful on-site music!
The market is only open on Saturdays, from 8 am to 12 pm.
Address: 2913 Johnston St, Lafayette, LA 70503
24. Lafayette must-visit: Vermilionville
Vermilionville is a museum and park devoted to sensitizing the public about the culture of south-central Louisiana.
The park is located on Fisher Road close to the Lafayette Regional Airport and sits on 23 acres along the banks of the Bayou Vermillion. Its focus is on Creole, Acadian, and Native American cultures from 1765 to 1890.
The park features 19 attractions, with 13 artisans exhibiting the early settlers’ crafts and seven restored homes.
It also hosts Native American Culture Day events, workshops such as Canning and Preserving, and musical performances featuring local musicians.
Vermilionville also organizes tours including Adult Group Tours and Boat Tours.
This makes what to do in Lafayette, for History lovers, a recommended addition to your bucket list of things to do in Lafayette, LA, for fun.
Address: 300 Fisher Road, Lafayette, Louisiana
25. Soak up the atmosphere at Parc Sans SouciJust like many other spots in Lafayette, Parc Sans Souci is named after French inclination (the park’s name means “No Worries” or “Carefree”).
It is very appropriate a name, too, as the laid-back ambiance of the park is perfect for a walk in the grassy environs or a relaxing picnic.
There is an outdoor concert venue at the heart of the park, and it has a landmark living sculpture as a feature.
The letters “LAFA ETTE” are permanently fixed, allowing you space to stand with your arms raised thereby making a “Y” shape for a photo opportunity that celebrates the city.
Opening hours for the park are Tuesday to Friday, 11 am – 5 pm and 10 am – 4 pm on Saturday. It is closed on Sundays and Mondays.
Address: 201 E Vermilion St, Lafayette, LA 70501
26. Enjoy Bon Temps Grill
If you are looking for a place to bring the family for dinner, then head to Bon Temps Grill. It is a friendly, lowly neighborhood place and adds to our exciting list of things to do in Lafayette.
This restaurant is also a place to unravel authentic ‘swamp edge cuisine’, a blend of Cajun and Creole dishes that are hard to separate but are defended with passion.
The restaurant grills its food with aromatic mesquite wood that adds a fine nip to the meats. Have a taste of their grilled pork chops packed with apple and tasso (pork shoulder.)
They also have superb local craft beer on tap and some lovely local cocktails.
Address: 11211 W Pinhook Rd, Lafayette, LA 70503
27. Eat, drink and knock bowls at Rock ‘n’ Bowl
Looking for what to do in Lafayette, LA?
Designed to offer everything you could want from a night out, Rock ‘n’ Bowl is amongst the fun things to do in Lafayette, LA, for a memorable time.
You are assured of getting diverse entertainment, great fun, and excitement all from the comfort of the same venue.
Of course, bowling makes any evening round, and you will also have the chance to catch one of the well-known live music acts that have made customers give this experience very strong reviews.
If you wish to have a dish as a cap for your evening, Sainte Marie restaurant is stand by and would never disappoint.
If you want to dance, bowl, and have a nice time with your family and friends, Rock ‘n’ Bowl in Lafayette will always be in contention.
They are open from Wednesday through Sunday from 11 am to 12 am (closed on Mon & Tue)
Address: 905 Jefferson St, Lafayette, LA 70501
28. The French Press
At French Press, breakfast is turned into an entirely new affair. At first look, it is a tastefully decorated and cozy casual dining place in downtown Lafayette.
French Press offers lunch and dinner, but their breakfast has become the talk of the town and what distinguishes this place from others.
Their chef, Justin Girouard handles his native Cajun cuisine in a way that becomes modern and with effect from his spin.
It is innovative and well-recognized at the same time, the perfect comfort food that leaves you full and satisfied.
Girouard prepares the dishes using only fresh and local ingredients, and he even makes sausages himself. His Cajun Benedict is world-class: toasted French bread with two poached eggs soaked with gumbo made of chicken and Hebert’s boudin sausage. There is also Andouille sausage, sprinkled with fresh scallions.
Address: 214 E. Vermilion St., Lafayette, Louisiana.
29. Longfellow-Evangeline State Historic Site
Located on North Main Street in St. Martinville, just about 18 miles southeast of Lafayette is another interesting attraction called the Longfellow-Evangeline State Historic Site
The Longfellow-Evangeline State Historic Site is the oldest state park in Louisiana, focusing on the culture of the Bayou Teche area of Los Angeles.
The Bayou Teche is a long waterway that stretches 125 miles in south-central Louisiana, with the site exploring various cultures of the region including Creoles, Cajuns, Native Americans, and more.q
Henry Wadsworth Longsworth in his poem, “Evangeline,” talks about two Acadian lovers, Evangeline and Gabriel. The tree where they met in the tale and Evangeline’s grave are located on the site.
You can also go on guided tours of the Maison Olivier, a historic 1815 plantation home.
Address: 1200 North Main Street, St. Martinville, LA 70582
30. The Acadiana Center for the Arts
Located on West Vermilion Street, the Acadiana Center for the Arts is a gallery and performance venue in downtown Lafayette.
The center has its James Devin Moncus Theater, featuring theatre, films and music, and visual performances.
The museum houses several engaging exhibits in its galleries, as well as workshops and arts and cultural classes in its educational spaces.
Some of the programs hosted in the center include Arts Grants for Teachers, Teaching Artists Program, Student Arts Expo, Touring Arts Performances, and more.
Several spaces in the center are available for rent for special events like weddings and meetings. They include the Board Room, the Art House, the theater, and the Atrium/Cafe.
Address: 101 West Vermilion Street, Lafayette, LA 70501.
Want more of Louisiana? do check out our list of things to do in Monroe for a memorable vacation.
Plan your trip to Lafayette
Lafayette promises a great experience for both the locals and visitors. It has so many engaging attractions that offer guests a lot of excitement.
From parks to museums to historic sites to restaurants to Theatres, you will have a classic vacation experience with your family.
Start planning your trip to this lovely city and if you need some guidance, do well to check back here anytime.
Have a great trip.