5 Things to Do in Gonzales & Ascension Parish | Tour Louisiana

Things to Do in Gonzales & Ascension Parish

Stroll through the grounds of a historic estate, dance and eat the day away at the famous Jambalaya Festival, and meander along the Mississippi River. These are just a few of the many things to do in Ascension Parish. Home to the towns of Gonzales, Donaldsonville, and Sorrento, the parish is steeped in history and offers plenty of compelling places to dine, shop, and explore. Whether you’re driving through the “Bayou State” or unloading your bags at an elegant bed & breakfast, don’t miss out on the sights, sounds, and tastes of Louisiana’s Sweet Spot, Ascension Parish.

Embrace History at The Great River Road Museum and Historic Estate


Located on the grounds of Houmas House, The Great River Road Museum opens visitor’s eyes to what early life along the lower Mississippi was like. The culture, commerce, folklore and music was a fusion of all the foreign countries that discovered and developed this new territory. From the wealthy owners of great sugar empires, to the humble lives of the enslaved, this museum details how each lived and survived by this powerful body of water.






Experience the Famous Jambalaya Festival

Your senses will lead you straight to the Jambalaya Festival , held in Gonzales, Jambalaya Capital of the World. This family-friendly event features World Champion Jambalaya served throughout the weekend. Yet there’s far more to this festival than the savory tastes of Louisiana’s most famous dish.

Try your hand at winning a prize from one of the Midway games and soar on the Ferris wheel and other carnival rides. Watch over 100 cooks compete to win the World Championship Title. Don’t miss out on any of the live music playing throughout the festival.

If you’re looking to experience the one-of-a-kind culture of southern Louisiana all in one place, stop by the Gonzales’ Jambalaya Festival.


Discover the Arts of Ascension

Ascension Parish is home to a variety of art and artists. One of the region’s most famous artists is Alvin Batiste, a self-taught folk artist whose work has been critically acclaimed. Explore Alvin’s art in his own studio and frame shop, where you might catch him working on his next masterpiece.


For more art, check out the River Region Art Gallery in Gonzales to see more works by local artists. Then stroll through the River Road African American Museum to learn more about the history and culture of African American in the rural communities of south Louisiana.



Explore the Bayou Outdoors

If the outdoors is calling your name, soak up the sun as you explore Louisiana’s riverfront with Donaldsonville's Historic Portal to the Past, seven wayside exhibits that tell the history of Donaldsonville by way of a walking self-guided tour. 

Start off your day with a game of golf at Pelican Point Golf Course in Gonzales, an 18-hole, British-style design—with Louisiana flair, of course. Play your way through what was once a sugar cane farm, taking in all the natural splender as you try to keep your score down.

After a round of golf and some time spent browsing the outdoor shops at Tanger Outlet Center or the Cajun Village in Sorrento, Acadian homes that are specialty shops with a Coffee House and two live alligators. (Big Boy and Nubby)

See the Mississippi River at the Riverwalk areas in Donaldsonville or Houmas House where you’ll enjoy the breeze flowing between massive oak trees and the charming paved path alongside the Mississippi River. Gaze out at the waterway and you'll see river boats passing by, just as they have for decades before.

Dine with the Locals

Did someone say turtle soup? Some of Louisiana’s best dining is right here in Ascension Parish. From casual to fining dining it is Louisiana’s Sweet Spot to dine. Houmas House, for example, has the Turtle Bar and two restaurants that serve traditional Louisiana cuisine and reflects the locally grown produce, providing a true farm-to-table experience.

For another authentic dining experience, stop by  The Grapevine Cafe, award winning cuisine, a unique blend of Cajun, Creole and African traditions in historic Donaldsonville.

Sugarfield Spirits provides local flavor and Louisiana tradition in handcrafted spirits and Gilla Brewing Company is Ascension’s first brewery, specializing in fruited sours, New England IPA’s and pastry stouts.

Needless to say, you’ll need your appetite when you visit Ascension Parish, Louisiana’s Sweet Spot!


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Contact Information
6967 Highway 22
Sorrento, LA 70778
Ascension Parish
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