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This is the land of the Big Easy, where alligators lurk in the dark swampy bayous, where jazz trios jam until dawn. Louisiana is a food-lover's dream, with Cajun and Creole exploding with flavor and available everywhere — usually accompanied by refreshing beverages and energetic live music. The air in Louisiana is electric, fueled by the food, the music, the big-hearted people and a magnetic clash of cultures: mostly huntin'-and-fishin' Protestants in the north; blue-eyed, dark-skinned French-speaking creoles along the Cane River in the middle of the state; washboard-rattling, Zydeco-dancing Cajuns to the west of New Orleans; and of ...

This is the land of the Big Easy, where alligators lurk in the dark swampy bayous, where jazz trios jam until dawn. Louisiana is a food-lover's dream, with Cajun and Creole exploding with flavor and available everywhere — usually accompanied by refreshing beverages and energetic live music. The air in Louisiana is electric, fueled by the food, the music, the big-hearted people and a magnetic clash of cultures: mostly huntin'-and-fishin' Protestants in the north; blue-eyed, dark-skinned French-speaking creoles along the Cane River in the middle of the state; washboard-rattling, Zydeco-dancing Cajuns to the west of New Orleans; and of course, New Orleanians themselves.

Known for its fantastic festivals — including Mardi Gras and the jazz fest — New Orleans is the place that loves to party. Even after the destruction and devastation of Hurricane Katrina in 2005, New Orleans is still a vibrant and lively place where, hurricanes be damned, the good times roll on.

Debra Landau
About the Expert

Debra Landau has written eight Lonely Planet guidebooks, including books on the USA, Caribbean, and the South.

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Debra Landau for Triporati

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