Iberia Parish’s variety of activities make it a playground for all ages. Youth groups and families have plenty of adventures to choose from, whether they involve local wildlife, history and culture, sweet treats or splashing in the water. Most attractions in the parish are family friendly, and the Iberia Parish Parks and Recreation Department operates 14 parks totaling almost 400 acres of green space.
DAY ONE - INTO THE WILD
Breakfast at TABASCO® Restaurant 1868
Avery Island’s on-site restaurant has a casual, cafeteria style and serves Tabasco-infused Cajun favorites like boudin and pepper jelly biscuits daily. Parents can enjoy a cup of coffee or the Bloody Mary Bar from the wraparound porch with a view of the Tabasco factory and country store.
Tabasco Factory and Country Store
Tour the history and production of TABASCO® Pepper Sauce, including: Museum, Green House, Mash Warehouse, Blending and Production, Avery Island Conservation, Salt Mine diorama and TABASCO® Country Store. Kids will enjoy the salt mine exhibit and sampling Tabasco® ice cream and soda at the country store. Guided factory tours and cooking classes are available by appointment.
Kids can run wild at Avery Island’s Jungle Gardens, made up of 170 acres of semitropical landscape, birds and wildlife. Eleven different garden areas include the Marsh Trail, Long 2 Lagoons, Buddha’s Temple, the Wisteria Arch, Palm Garden, Bird City and more. Nature trails and garden paths are easy for children to navigate. Take a safe selfie with their resident stuffed porch alligator, Monsurat.
Lunch at Duffy's Diner
A 1950s style dining experience awaits at this local favorite, where hot dogs, burgers, grilled cheese, fries, nachos, downhome dishes and a family bucket of fried chicken make up the menu. Treat the kids to soft-serve Borden's ice cream or a banana split for dessert.
New Iberia's newest island is an RV resort with a 9,000-square-foot pool, lazy river and splash pad. Live music and public swim pool hours are available for non campers on select days. Campers can fish the stocked pond on-site and stay at one of 185 available RV sites. The TropiCajun bar and restaurant serves specialty drinks for adults and snowcones, ice cream, nachos and more for the kids.
Spend an afternoon, a day or your whole stay at our state parks. Rent a waterfront cabin at Cypremort Point State Park, a man-made beach on the shores of Vermilion Bay where fishing, sailing and swimming opportunities abound. Lake Fausse Pointe State Park offers camping and cabins, along with hiking, fishing, boat rentals, a water playground and plenty of wildlife.
Dinner at Landry's of New Iberia
This locally-owned restaurant offers Cajun favorites and camp cooking, such as crawfish etouffee, fried seafood and gumbo. They also have grilled chicken and steak for picky palates. Go on a Friday or Saturday night to experience live Cajun music and dancing.
DAY TWO - GARDENS & FARMS
Voted “Best of the Teche” for the past 20 years, Meche's makes its donuts from scratch starting at 4 a.m. Tues. through Sun. Kid-friendly favorites include filled donuts, cinnamon rolls, apple fritters and oversized donuts covered in sprinkles.
Rip Van Winkle Gardens
Kids can explore the tree where Jean Lafitte buried his treasure, learn about the 1980 collapse of a giant salt dome beneath Lake Peigneur, tour an 1870s mansion and meet the resident peacocks. More gators and birds—over 260 species—can be found at Rip's Rookery, and a sighting of the Roseate Spoonbill, which gets its pink color from eating crawfish, is especially memorable.
Daily plate lunches, from red beans and rice on Mondays to Southern fried chicken on Thursdays, can be found at this soul food diner. With Brenda Placide in the kitchen, kids will feel like mom is cooking for them at home.
Author of two children's books and a visual art teacher himself, gallery owner and artist Paul Schexnayder paints with a sense of humor. His whimsical work, along with that of more than 15 other artists from the area, is on display. The gallery also hosts monthly workshops, private art lessons and art receptions throughout the year.
Go on a Farm Tour
Tour and pick your own fruits—from peaches to blackberries and citrus— at Eddie Romero's Fruit Orchard. Meet baby animals and learn things you never knew about farming, gardening and aquaculture at Leaning Oak Farm. Learn about supported urban food farming focused on pesticide-free, bio-dynamic, and space intensive food growing practices at Iberia Community Garden. Guest gardening and a 'harvest your own' farm stand are also available. Book a custom farm tour, field trip, cooking demonstration or workshop to learn about grass fed cattle, nutrition and conservation at Gonsoulin Land and Cattle.
Dinner & A Movie
Have an early dinner at La Pizza Mia, from basic cheese to seafood, smoked BBQ chicken and peppers in an homage to Avery Island. There's classic spaghetti and meatballs and shrimp pasta too. The Grand 10 Theater is a short drive from the restaurant and has stadium seating and 3D capabilities.
DAY 3 - CULTURE & SHOPPING
The cafeteria format makes things easier for youth groups and families with young children. It's a great place to meet locals, including French speakers who meet weekly at the French Table. Kids will like the stuffed animals gracing the walls and Dave Robicheaux's Bait Shop.
Learn about our history at our museums. Whether your kids or students are interested in plantation homes or our culinary history, there is something for everyone in the New Iberia National Register Historic District. Take your pick!
Bayou Teche Museum
The museum offers entertainment, interactive and educational opportunities for visitors of all ages, from the "salt mine experience" to regional music recordings, and the history of our area's sugar cane agriculture. The museum is also the permanent home of well-known “Blue Dog” artist and native son George Rodrigue's California artist studio.
Older kids will enjoy seeing 19th century toys and clothes and hear the stories of the Weeks children who lived at this sugar plantation home owned by the National Trust. Self-guided tours of the gardens with specialized QR (Quick Response) codes are included in the tour. The site offers Games and Chores of Long Ago for student groups. This includes a tour and 45 minutes of 19th century-based activities for students.
Conrad Rice Mill
Learn about the Acadians and how rice is grown, processed and bagged and see the country’s oldest operating rice mill in action.Try free samples and shop for KONRIKO products, local foods, arts, crafts, books, and gift baskets at the company store.
Tip: Save on admission at Bayou Teche Museum, Shadows-on-the-Teche and Conrad Rice Mill with the New Iberia Historic District Pass.
Another morning option and a short drive from New Iberia, the museum documents the last 200 years of the sugarcane industry and the manufacturing process from sugarcane to sugar. Also learn about the cypress lumber industry and the days of the steamboat. Younger kids will enjoy the swamp room with over 40 native stuffed species and playing on the playground outside the museum. Grab a lunch plate at the Coffee House and traditional French bread and ginger cakes at LeJeune's Bakery. Take Highway 87 along Bayou Teche on the way back and view plantation homes shaded by centenary live oaks.
This New Iberia tea room serves soups, salads & sandwiches along with over 200 loose leaf and bagged teas, including bubble tea. The menu includes kids' favorites, such as mac & cheese, grilled cheese and peanut butter and jelly sandwich. You can also order a big cheese plate complete with fruit, deli and crackers to share.
Shopping & Sweets
Head down the New Iberia Historic District to shop for kids toys and apparel at For the Little Ones or books and games at Maddie's Books and Treasures. Bird on the Bayou also offers a wide variety of souvenirs, accessories and arts & crafts for the whole family. For a mid-afternoon snack, stop at Fudge It, a sweet eatery serving up cupcakes, cookies, gelato, cake pops and, of course, fudge. At Cane River Pecan Company you can sample flavored pecans as well as pecan specialty products like boudin pie and king cake in season, so you can try before you buy.
Bayou Teche National Paddle Trail & New Iberia City Park
Launch a kayak from the PJ Allain Waterfront Park and Sculptural Garden or the New Iberia City Park boat launch. The latter also has a playground, hiking trails with plenty of ducks to feed, and Bayou Wheels Skatepark for skateboarders, inline skaters and scooters. Contact Bayou Teche Experience or TECHE Project for paddle tour information. You can also rent bikes from Bayou Lit Bikes for sightseeing during the day on New Iberia’s 3.2-mile bike trail, or take a glow-in-the dark-night tour with your favorite music.
Dinner & Bowling Night
Specializing in boiled, fried and grilled seafood, R&M's Boiling Point is known for its boiled crabs and crawfish, poboys and crawfish etouffee. The kids menu includes grilled cheese and popcorn shrimp. Cajun Bowl offers recreational bowling and games in a family atmosphere.
Visit the Library
Eight branches make up the Iberia Parish Library System, with activities for all ages ranging from Toddler Time to story times, socials, movie nights, crafts and more. In the summer, the library offers an extensive free summer program for ages 5-17 and a summer reading program for all ages. Visit IberiaLibrary.org for locations.
Festivals & Events
All our festivals, from Mardi Gras to the Books Along the Teche Literary Festival, are family friendly with activities like parades, carnivals and petting zoos. Don’t miss Farm Fest every September for old time family fun and games, and the Delcambre Seafood & Farmers Market whose vendors offer everything from face painting to sweets, handmade baby items, candy, popcorn, children’s books and dolls.
This multi-purpose facility hosts a wide variety of kid-friendly events, from rodeos and 4-H shows to the circus and concerts. Check our calendar of events for dates.
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