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At the Southern end of Highway 1, the seven magical miles of Grand Isle hold all the wonders that Louisiana nature can offer. Oleander and crepe myrtle, palms, ferns and windblown oak trees on Cheniere ridges welcome migrating birds in season. The marshes teem with aquatic life and water birds. On Grand Isle, time slows and the visitor can savor a unique Louisiana experience.
Europeans came to Grand Isle with Spanish land grants, and by the early 1800s there were active sugar and cotton plantations. But it was as a recreation spot that Grand Isle gained fame, as visitors from nearby New Orleans enjoyed the breezes and seawater while staying in early hotels. Writers Kate Chopin of "The Awakening" and Lafcadio Hearn of "Chita" both used the atmosphere of Grand Isle as a setting for nineteenth century fiction. Today's visitors find a thriving seaside community with petroleum and seafood industries as well as everything the visiting sportsman, tourist or camper could want.
The State of Louisiana maintains a mile of beachfront at Grand Isle State Park on the easternmost end of the island. The park looks out toward nearby Grand Terre island, once the lair of the legendary pirate (or smuggler, if you choose) Jean Lafitte and site of the ruins of U.S. Army Fort Livingston. Grand Isle State Park has a 400-foot long public fishing pier with a nearby fish-cleaning station. State officials say that over 280 species of fish are known to live in the waters around this sandy spur. The camping area of the park can accommodate up to 100 families or groups with nearby bathhouses with running water and an adjacent dump station.
GRAND ISLE TOURIST COMMISSION
2757 LA Highway 1
Grand Isle LA 70358
The name Gretna, immortalized by a popular play from the last century, recalls Gretna Green, Scotland - a haven for young couples who wish to elope. Gretna captures this romantic history by offering Valentine's Day weddings at its Gretna Green Blacksmith Shop. Gretna welcomed German immigrants to the West Bank and their story, along with the earlier migration into southeast Louisiana, is magnificently told in the German American Cultural Center. Gretna was also an important railroad center. In the city's historic area, one can find the oldest Firehouse in America - the David Crockett Fire Company #1, complete with a museum and a blacksmith shop that recall the area's nineteenth century heyday. Gretna's historic area is home to several charming shops and restaurants, as well as the Jefferson Parish courthouse and other public, historical buildings.
GRETNA OFFICE OF TOURISM & VISITOR CENTER
P.O. Box 404
Gretna, LA 70054
Phone: (504) 363-1580
Toll Free: (888) 4-GRETNA
Named for the onetime president of the Illinois Central Railroad, James Harahan, Harahan and the adjacent communities of Elmwood, Jefferson and River Ridge are pleasant regions nestled at the bend of the Mississippi River. Although primarily residential, these areas contain a large shopping center, restaurants, industrial and office parks. The AMC Palace Theater in Elmwood is ranked #7 nationally! These areas are also home to world-renowned Ochsner Foundation Clinic and Hospital, Jefferson Parish's headquarters and the University of New Orleans' Nims Center's Film Studio.
A vibrant community fueled by its vital shipping route to the Gulf of Mexico, Harvey is a hub of activity along its port, as well as its boulevards. This community is out front continuing the effort in maintaining Jefferson's role and position in the environmental, energy and shipping industries. Harvey is also home to numerous subdivisions, businesses, hotels, and the Fountain Park Centre, a 20 acre commercial development with retail, banquet facilities, restaurants, and office space.
Named for early plantation owner Duncan Kenner, this town boasts the historic area of Rivertown along the banks of the Mississippi, the Pontchartrain Center on Lake Pontchartrain and its neighbor the Treasure Chest Casino. Science and nature exhibits, theater performances, even The Kenner Planetarium and MegaDome Cinema which are a must-see. Kenner is home to the Louis Armstrong International Airport.
CITY OF KENNER
624 Williams Boulevard
Kenner, LA 70062
Phone: (504) 468-7293
This west bank community, Marrero, is home to the Barataria Preserve, part of the Jean Lafitte National Historic Park and Preserve offering bayous, swamps, marshes and hardwood forests with eight miles of boardwalks and walking trails for exploring Jefferson. In addition, Marrero is also a thriving community of neighborhoods, schools, businesses, and restaurants.
This East Bank community on the South shore of Lake Pontchartrain was once the site of the Colapissa Indian Village on the natural raised banks of a bayou along which a trail ran into New Orleans. This Metairie Ridge was ideal for farming, the name Metairie in French refers to small, leased farm holdings. Today in "Old Metairie", Metairie Club Gardens is a charming residential area first developed in the early decades of the twentieth century. Metairie Road winds along the old trail through upscale shopping centers and new developments. Metairie also has great retail shopping, with Lakeside Shopping Center and Clearview Mall, and countless free-standing boutiques. Metairie is home to schools, churches, hospitals, subdivisions, restaurants and an abundance of hotels.
Town of Jean Lafitte
Named for the legendary pirate who once made his hideaway here, the town of Jean Lafitte is a waterway refuge rich in Louisiana culture. You can explore the bayou country, dance to Cajun music or stay overnight at one of the many inns that overlooks the marshes of the breathtaking Bayou Barataria Basin.
A thriving fishing village since the 1700's, the Barataria region is still the point of departure for fishermen and their trawling nets filled with shrimp, crab and oysters. You, too, can experience some of the best fishing in Louisiana, whether by boat, private charter or atop Lafitte's public fishing pier. Lafitte is an excellent way to be immersed in the beauty and mystique of Louisiana wildlife.
TOWN OF JEAN LAFITTE TOURIST INFORMATION CENTER
799 Jean Lafitte Boulevard
Lafitte, LA 70067
Phone: (504) 689-2299
Once a passageway for pioneers headed to the Western frontier, Westwego borders some of Louisiana's most picturesque bayous and swamps. Westwego's adjacent 580-acre Bayou Segnette State Park is a great escape from the hustle and bustle of the city. Nestled on the banks of Bayou Segnette, the park's extensive grounds comprise the most popular state park in Louisiana.
It is also home to the John A. Alario Event Center and Bayou Segnette Sports Complex, developed for conferences, tournaments and performance events.
The City of Westwego is the launching point for several swamp tours and bayou excursions and is the locale of an excellent seafood market offering fish caught fresh from Louisiana waters.
Sala Avenue is the city's Historic District and is currently being redeveloped for the enjoyment of locals and visitors. The long awaited Westwego Farmers and Fisheries Market features fresh produce, seafood, arts and crafts Saturdays from 9am to 1pm with special FREE outdoor concerts during the summer and fall! The Westwego Historic Museum is located in the century-old fisherman's exchange building and features an old time hardware store and completely furnished upstairs living quarters with antique furniture.
WESTWEGO TOURIST INFORMATION CENTER
10 Westbank Expressway
Westwego, LA 70094
Phone: (504) 436-0812
Fax: (504) 436-0877
The Causeway Spans 24 miles and is the longest bridge over water in the world. The bridge's parallel spans are made of prestressed panels supported by over 9,000 concrete pilings. The first span opened to the public in 1956, the second in 1969. The result was one way driving safety on straight, two lane railed surfaces 80 feet apart connected by seven crossovers that function as pullover areas for auto emergencies.An estimated 40,000 cars cross the Lake Pontchartrain Causeway Bridge each weekday as it is the connection of Greater New Orleans' south shore and north shore communities.
Blue Star Memorial Highways
Lafitte & MetairieLeo Kerner/Lafitte Parkway on Highway 3134 in Jefferson Parish, between the intersection of Barataria Boulevard and the Jean Lafitte Tourist Information Center is named a Blue Star Memorial Highway!
Transcontinental Drive between W. Napoleon Avenue and W. Metairie Avenue is also named a Blue Star Memorial Highway!
The median along Veterans Memorial Boulevard at the intersection of Causeway Boulevard now has the Blue Star Memorial Placard near the Purple Heart Monument