Small-Group Airboat and Plantations Tour with Gourmet Lunch from New Orleans

836 Reviews | New Orleans, USA

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9 hours (Approx.)
Hotel pickup offered
Mobile Ticket
Instant Confirmation

Keeping you safe during COVID-19
What you can expect during your visit
Face masks provided for travelers
Hand sanitizer available to travelers and staff
Regularly sanitized high-traffic areas
Temperature checks for travelers upon arrival
Transportation vehicles regularly sanitized
A note about this tour
All of our driver-guides have been fully vaccinated. All high touch areas on our tour vans are sanitized and our vans are thoroughly cleaned between every tour. Disposable Facemasks are available onboard our vans for travelers who would like to have them.

Overview

A grand mélange presentation of Cajun and Creole cultures including a high-speed airboat tour of the cypress swamps. Visit Laura Plantation, built in 1804, and learn about Laura's personal family saga. Enjoy a gourmet, unlimited buffet lunch in the elegant dining room of Houmas House Plantation, followed by a guided tour of this grand mansion. The small-group atmosphere ensures a more personal experience.

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Schedule

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Hotel Pickup

Additional Info

Reviews

Average 4.68 out of 5 stars based on 836 verified reviews from Cool Destinations and TripAdvisor

5 stars
625
4 stars
168
3 stars
30
2 stars
12
1 star
1
echoksi, Nov 2021 Verified
Isabelle’s tours was professional & took great care of us. Stephen and John were awesome tour guides!
Tony637, Nov 2021 Verified
John was our guide and he was wonderful. He was very knowledgeable and entertaining. Fun facts, history and personal experience growing up in Louisiana made John the perfect guide. The airboat experience was also amazing. We visited two plantations and our experience was great, educational and entertaining. Very happy with the whole experience. Tours by Isabelle was top notch and well worth the money we spent.
darcel48423, Nov 2021 Verified
The whole day was very well organized. The airboat ride was a fun adventure. We saw a lot of wild life up close, and learned many new things about the swamp and plantation life. The gourmet lunch was delicious. Our main tour guide shared a lot of New Orleans history. She also saw to our comfort and enjoyment of our day! Thank you
badaracs2, Oct 2021 Verified
Wow! I don't know where to begin! But the title says it all: They do not charge ENOUGH for this tour. You get way more than your money's worth!I was planning a bucket-list visit to New Orleans and vicinity, which included myself, wife, sister, and brother-in-law. We love Louisiana, the history, nature, and lovely people. So I searched TripAdvisor and other sources for a highly-rated tour that included plantations. This one showed up at the top (of course -- based on high reviews), and it included an airboat component, which was a bonus since we wanted to do that as well. And lunch! And pickup/drop-off too!First, I had some questions about the flexibility of pickup locations as well as details about the airboat. When I called the company's number, whom should I get on the phone but Isabelle herself! What a lovely person to speak with! Isabelle clearly knew her business AND cared about her customers above all else. She took time to answer all my questions and set me at ease. They were flexible with pickup locations, promised that I would receive a call or text the day before, with precise pickup time (which I did receive, of course!), and even went into the history of the different airboat options they've offered in the past -- until they realized that most of us really want a small airboat with a more personal tour experience. So they got rid of all the huge airboats, and now everything is done with small airboats that accommodate just a few couples and their guide, for a more relaxing experience. (And it was!)When the day arrived, our driver, René, showed up punctually in the Isabelle Tours van. And this fellow is WAY more than a driver. As he chauffeured us about throughout the day, René spent the entire time telling us about Louisiana -- the history, people, customs, language, heritage, foods, drinks, and best places to find them -- anything you might ever want to know. René was way up in the driver's seat of the van, and with a plastic divider (for COVID-19 precautions), but we had NO trouble hearing every word he said because, not only did he have a high-quality speaker system in the van so he could speak at a normal volume and we could hear, but in fact, René spent his entire career life as a TV station meteorologist working in major cities across the U.S. and Canada -- so you can imagine ... he has the most amazing TV "broadcaster pipes" and enunciation! And why did he switch careers in his recent years to be a tour guide? Because he is a Louisiana native, and he just couldn't stay away any longer. You can tell that Louisiana runs in his blood, and he loves nothing more than to run these tours, where he can share his passion for the land with folks like us who were on tour with him that day.But we must move beyond the chauffeur/tour guide. Everything about the day was equally top-of-its game. We started with the airboat tour, where Captain Shawn took us out on the bayous. As expected, we were in a lovely SMALL airboat with just ourselves (two couples) and a third couple. It was a fantastic day, and there was nothing rushed about the airboat tour -- except, of course, when we sometimes got up to top cruising speed and enjoyed hanging onto our hats, glasses, and clothing as we sped across the waters to the next stop! The bayous we visited were home to numerous gators (yes, they came up to the boat so we could see them up close, while Capt. Shawn told us all sorts of interesting facts and stories based on his experience, knowledge, and love of the creatures) -- as well as herons, egrets, cormorants, and other wildlife that we were able to see and photograph.The rest of the day included touring two plantations and having lunch. The lunch was a buffet consisting of excellent local food -- Creole and Cajun specialties including gumbo and crawfish etouffee -- prepared by an experienced chef at the plantation.I had feared that the two plantation tours would be somewhat redundant. But nothing could be further from the truth! The first was a Creole planation that was absolutely amazing, and nothing at all what I had expected it to be like. Our guide on this tour was a young lady named -- coincidentally -- Renée, who was born and raised in Louisiana, and has as much a passion as her namesake (our chauffeur/guide) for telling its history. She narrated with such depth of expression that we could almost envision the inhabitants of this "Laura Plantation" going about their rich and colorful lives before our eyes. Of course, there were sad stories of slavery, deaths in the family, and many other bittersweet things to know about the plantation's story. But Renée told it all with matter-of-fact candor, since history must never be forgotten lest it repeat itself.The final leg of the day was at "Houmas House" plantation, which better fit my preconceptions (think: Gone with the Wind), since this was owned and developed by more "northern" (non-Creole) families. The property and gardens are absolutely breathtaking, and our guide at this plantation spoke so fast that I had to put my listening in high gear! Not because she was trying to "rattle off" a script -- like guides on many other tours do -- but, on the contrary, because she was also quite passionate about this plantation and wished to share just as much as she possibly could about its history and people within the bit of time allotted for our visit!At the end of this very full day, on the journey back to our drop-off points, René rounded out his presentation by providing in-depth descriptions and recommendations for all the best places to find dinner and entertainment during the rest of our sojourn in New Orleans and vicinity.So, back to this review's title ... If we had paid double what they charged for this full-day, multi-faceted tour, it would still have been an excellent deal. Isabelle, René, Renée, Captain Shawn ... all of the many people who made this day so wonderful ... thank you! You obviously love what you do and care very much about the customers you serve. Keep up the excellent work, and maybe we will see you for an encore of this fine tour next time we visit NOLA!
dominiquelV5145EE, Oct 2021 Verified
Rene was a wonderful tour guide! He was very knowledgeable about the history of New Orleans. I really enjoyed the smaller group, it felt more personal.
J288NUjenniferf, Oct 2021 Verified
We had a wonderful day. Really enjoyed the airboat and plantation tours. Gisele was great and extremely knowledgeable. We would recommend this tour to anyone. Thank you
Discover05200442518, Oct 2021 Verified
Our tour guide, Gisele, was excellent. She was so informative and polite. The van ride out was a separate bonus tour! The airboat ride was the true highlight of the trip, seeing the bayou, gators and birds. Laura plantation was beautiful, and such a history lesson. The lunch at Houmas House was great, the food was fresh, of a good quality and plentiful. Houmas House was a modern wonderland on the outside, a step back in time on the inside. It would be difficult to compare the two plantations; you will enjoy the both in their own right. The small group size was perfect. And finally. Isabelle. I’ve never had a better experience booking a tour, she helped every step of the way. (We were arriving from out of town the morning of the tour and a bit of logistics was involved.)
Michelle, Oct 2021 Verified
My husband I thoroughly enjoyed this tour. We loved the mix of swamp airboat rude and two completely different styles of plantations. Rene did a fabulous job and along with having fun we learned some historical things that we were not aware of. Rene also shared favorite restaurants, bars and jazz clubs. I highly recommend.
Maxxwell, Oct 2021 Verified
Gisele, our tour guide was amazing! Kept the conversations going, gave great stories about the area as well as her own experiences. Renee (Laura Plantation), for being a young lady she knew a mountain of information. She was articulate, friendly, and a great tour guide. The Houmas House lunch was so good!!! Staff is so friendly and felt like I was a part of the family. The Home tour had so much to offer with history as well as a nice part regarding an honorable man who freed his slaves. The Ragin Cajun group gave us a great time on the airboat ride. We saw tons of gators and the boat capt made sure we not only got the fast ride, but also the leisure bit to not miss out on the wildlife.
Victor, Aug 2021 Verified
This tour consisted of three parts; an airboat tour of the swamp in the morning, a visit to Laura plantation in the early afternoon, and visit to Houmas House in the mid-afternoon. The airboat tour was a blast and Rodney, our captain, was informative and funny. We learned a lot about the ecology of the swamp and the different plants and animals, especially the alligators, who came right up to the side of the boat. Touring Laura plantation gave us a very real look back at the wealth and brutality of life on a sugarcane plantation. Our guide, Logan, really helped to drive the experience home. At our final stop, Houmas House, we had a wonderful buffet lunch. We explored the grounds which included an oriental garden, the alley of oaks, and even a walk to the top of a levee with a view of the Mississippi. During the entire trip, our tour guide Giselle was fun, welcoming and engaging. She tied everything together with a beautiful bow.I really can't say enough good things about this experience. It exceeded our expectations and I would recommend it one hundred percent.

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Product code: C-2292GRAND

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