Honey Island Swamp Tour Nature lovers should step out of the city, to experience another side of Louisiana. Gliding through the quiet wetlands of Honey Island swamp, our group drifts past house boats. Eventually, the muddy water here will transform as we follow some of the endless serpentine channels. As our boat slows, expert guides point out the incredible wildlife – bald eagles that circle high above the trees, stoic herons, small turtles basking in the warmth of the sun, wild pigs that happily trot about and camouflaged alligators writhing through the murky water. The Honey Island swamp is at once mystifying, and uniquely beautiful. Knobby cypress trees are reflected with mirror like precision on the water creating a dizzying, other-worldly scene, while Spanish moss hangs from branches evoking an eerie dream-like atmosphere.
Oak Alley & Laura Plantation Tour Few plantations are more photographed than Oak Alley, where a stunning Antebellum mansion is framed by a quarter mile of oak trees with typical Southern romance. Inside, guides clad in period costume lead guests throughout several rooms, ultimately leading to the wrap around balcony with enchanting views. In contrast, the second plantation on the tour, Laura, is a Creole style building with a yellow facade framed by red doors and green shutters closely resembling the architectural style and colour scheme of the Caribbean, which was in vogue at the time. The 200 year old sugarcane plantation includes a walk through the ‘big house’ and slave quarters. Be sure to look out for the beautiful grapefruit trees, bearing enormous fruit. Each tour places the opulence of the time in the context of slavery showing all points of view.
This original travel article first appeared in the Spring 2017 issue of City Style and Living Magazine.