Lake Pontchartrain

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Lake Pontchartrain: Our most recommended tours and activities

New Orleans: Swamp Zipline Tour with Transfer Option

1. New Orleans: Swamp Zipline Tour with Transfer Option

Travel to the banks of Lake Ponchartrain, in the quaint historic town of Frenier, to see the Maurepas swamp from a unique perspective. Suspended above it on this zipline tour, admire the animals of the swamp and the panoramic views. Start the day with a transfer from your hotel in New Orleans, if the option is selected. Upon arrival, meet your host who will provide safety equipment and instructions for the day’s activities. Use the lockers provided to store loose items. Begin the adventure from atop a 60-foot start platform. Marvel at the views of the magnificent Maurepas Swamp and Lake Ponchartrain. View the historic town of Frenier and the New Orleans skyline. As you traverse the course, take on five separate zip lines, two suspension bridges, and a one-of-a-kind spiral cypress tree staircase. The swamp zipline course is roughly a half-mile long, and it takes approximately 1.5 hours to complete. Become immersed in nature. As you soar through the course, you may see alligators, turtles, snakes, whitetail deer, wild boar, raccoons, opossums, armadillos, egrets, herons, and much more from the comfort and safety of the treetops.

From New Orleans: Swamp Airboat, 2 Plantation Tours & Lunch

2. From New Orleans: Swamp Airboat, 2 Plantation Tours & Lunch

After being picked up from your hotel in New Orleans in a 13-seater high-roof van, your enthusiastic historian driver-guide will take you on a scenic narrated drive out of New Orleans, preparing you for a pilgrimage back in time.  After crossing over the Mississippi River on a high bridge, you will arrive at a remote swamp to board a small airboat. With your Cajun boat captain, glide comfortably over marshes and deep into secluded bayous. Discover the swamp’s fascinating fauna and flora, including alligators, turtles, and exotic birds.  Next, you will drive upriver through sugar cane fields to arrive at Laura Plantation. Enjoy a guided tour of this Creole plantation dating back to 1804. Hear the compelling stories of Laura's family saga, as well as stories of the West-African, enslaved people who worked on this sugar plantation. At the end of the tour, visit the museum exhibit dedicated to "Slavery on Laura Plantation" in a restored overseer's cottage. Back on the old River Road, you will pass by Felicity Plantation, where "12 Years A Slave" was filmed, and St Joseph Plantation, where the "Queen Sugar" TV series was filmed. Stop in front of Oak Alley Plantation to admire its parallel rows of centuries-old oak trees. After crossing over the Mississippi River on the Sunshine Bridge, you will arrive at the iconic "Sugar Palace", Houmas House Plantation. Lunch will be served in their elegant dining room, with genuine Cajun cuisine. Then, enjoy a guided tour of the mansion with a guide dressed in Antebellum costume. After the tour, enjoy some free time to stroll around the splendid gardens, before you return to New Orleans. Sample Lunch Menu (subject to seasonal changes) Luncheon includes home-baked bread and butter, iced tea or soft drink, dessert, and coffee.  Choice of Entrees: Grilled Chicken Caesar Salad (gluten-free without croutons): Served with tender romaine lettuce, croutons, and parmesan cheese Crown Jewel Hamburger: Grilled 7oz burger topped with cheese, bacon, mayo, ketchup, lettuce, tomato, and onion served with French fries Shrimp Po Boy: Shrimp, crispy fried and served on New Orleans French bread with shredded lettuce, tomatoes, and Creole mayonnaise Breast of Chicken (gluten-free without grits): Skin-on breast of chicken, served with stone-ground grits, roasted veggies and rum-spiked Houmas House beehive honey glaze Vegetarian Pasta: Veggies and baby heirloom tomatoes with fettuccine pasta and parmesan cheese Choice of Dessert: White Chocolate Bread Pudding Turtle Creole Cream Cheese Cheesecake

New Orleans: Destrehan Plantation, Houmas House & Lunch

3. New Orleans: Destrehan Plantation, Houmas House & Lunch

After being picked up from your hotel in New Orleans in a 13-seater high-roof van, your enthusiastic historian driver-guide will narrate your scenic drive upriver to two historic plantations on the shores of the Mississippi River. On the journey, drive by the shores of Lake Pontchartrain and miles of cane fields extending from the Mississippi River to the back swamps. Learn about Louisiana's geography, geology, and incredible history en route.  The first stop is Destrehan Plantation the oldest documented plantation in the Mississippi River valley, constructed in 1787. Learn about the history of the site, see where Charles Deslondes led the 1811 Slave Revolt, and discover its dramatic outcome. Then you are driven further upriver on the old Mississippi River road, passing the ruins of the Tezcuco Plantation and hearing about its history. Soon afterward you will arrive at the "The Sugar Palace", more commonly known as Houmas House. Here, you will enjoy a gourmet Creole lunch in a grand dining hall. There are even refreshing Mint Juleps available for purchase if you wish to really experience the Southern Plantation life. After lunch, you will enjoy a guided visit to the Greek Revival mansion on this very opulent plantation. Your guides, in period dress, will lead you through rooms filled with period antiques and Louisiana artwork. Afterward, you will have time to stroll around the stunning gardens in the shadows of ancient oaks, before visiting the very gift shop. Sample Lunch Menu (subject to seasonal changes) Luncheon includes home-baked bread and butter, an iced tea or soft drink, a dessert, and coffee.  Choice of Entrees: Grilled Chicken Caesar Salad (gluten-free without croutons): Served with tender romaine lettuce, croutons, and parmesan cheese Crown Jewel Hamburger: Grilled 7oz burger topped with cheese, bacon, mayo, ketchup, lettuce, tomato, and onion served with French fries Shrimp Po Boy: Shrimp, crispy fried and served on New Orleans French bread with shredded lettuce, tomatoes, and Creole mayonnaise Breast of Chicken (gluten-free without grits): Skin-on breast of chicken, served with stone-ground grits, roasted veggies and rum-spiked Houmas House beehive honey glaze Vegetarian Pasta: Veggies and baby heirloom tomatoes with fettuccine pasta and parmesan cheese Choice of Dessert: White Chocolate Bread Pudding Turtle Creole Cream Cheese Cheesecake

From New Orleans: St. Joseph and Laura Plantations Tour

4. 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.

Other Sightseeing Options in Lake Pontchartrain

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What people are saying about Lake Pontchartrain

Overall rating

4.8 / 5

based on 783 reviews

We had an amazing time. It was just myself and the hubby on a private zip. Our guides were amazing. I would definitely recommend this company. They even showed us a couple tricks to try as we ziplined Brenda

This was one of the most interesting tours I have ever been. Tour guide was fantastic, she was so knowledgeable. New Orleans has so much history. I would highly recommend this tour.

On time, tour guide shared interesting information about all the stops we did , very knowledgable and so much history , would do again

Our bus tour was excellent the hostess was very informative and very knowledgeable

She was very knowledgeable and she made the entire tour a pleasure.