1. From New Orleans: St. Joseph and Laura Plantations Tour
After being picked up from your hotel or B&B in New Orleans in a 13-seater high-roof van, your historian driver-guide will narrate the scenic drive upriver to 2 historic plantations on the shores of the Mississippi River. On the way, drive along the shores of Lake Pontchartrain, through swamps, and sugar cane fields. After crossing the Mississippi River on a high suspended bridge, drive along the famous River Road and stop to admire the mansions, outer buildings, and oak trees in front of both Evergreen Plantation and Oak Alley Plantation. Your first stop is at St Joseph Plantation for a guided visit of this family-owned, working sugar cane plantation. Here one of the owners will show you around the home and farm which has been in operation since 1877. This plantation, and their sister property "Felicity Plantation" are also the location where "12 Years a Slave" was filmed. Then, continue downriver to Laura, a Creole plantation from 1804. Learn about the 4 generations of women who ran this plantation. Learn how the work of the West-African slaves influenced all segments of the Creole culture, best evidenced today in the local cuisine, music, family-centered traditions, architecture, and lifestyle. At Laura's Slavery Museum Exhibit, hear personal stories of individual men, women, and children who lived there, illustrating how the lives of the enslaved, both Créole and American, were intertwined with those of their owners. On your return drive back to New Orleans, pass by the famous Whitney Plantation, and old cypress swamp groves.