capital of Louisiana, United States and seat of East Baton Rouge Parish

Baton Rouge is the capital of Louisiana, USA. Located on the east bank of the mighty Mississippi River, Baton Rouge is Louisiana's second largest city, home of Louisiana State University, major port facilities, and a variety of attractions.

Understand edit

The name of Baton Rouge was given on 17 March 1699, Pierre Le Moyne, Sieur d'Iberville, led an expedition along the Mississippi River. The early French explorers found a pole stained with blood of fish and animals that served as the dividing line between the Bayougoula and Houmas Indians. It is from this "red stick" that Iberville called the city le Baton Rouge, French for "red stick". The city was founded in 1721.

State Capitol Building

The small town here was selected as the new capital of state of Louisiana in 1817, and it's been growing since. The capital was returned to New Orleans for a while during and after the troubles of the American Civil War, but it's been back here since 1882.

Climate edit

Baton Rouge has a semi-tropical climate, perfect for outdoor activities.

The weather is consistently warm from May to September. Be warned that, like the rest of the Southern United States during the summer, it can become down-right miserable, with sustained temperatures in the 90s (°F) with 100% humidity. Proper medical precautions should be taken if you plan on partaking in outdoor activities, such as ample amounts of sunscreen and hydration. Also, there are many days throughout July that are classified as "ozone days" due to severe ground-level ozone, which can damage the health of sensitive individuals.

Winter is usually mild and short-lived. Spring is glorious with cool nights and warm, sunny days. A light jacket is all that is needed. Fall is mild and only a light sweater is needed in the evenings.

May is considered the best month to visit, good for outdoor activities and sightseeing.

Precipitation is reasonably well-distributed and ample throughout the year with an average annual precipitation of 55 in (140 cm)

  • Average summer temperature: 81.3°F (27°C)
  • Average winter temperature: 52.5°F (11°C)
  • Average annual temperature: 67.5°F (20°C)

Baton Rouge, like many cities in the Gulf States, has what is known as 5 seasons. The 5th season is hurricane season, the time of year between June 1 and November 30 when hurricanes are most likely to form.

Tourist information edit

Get in edit

By plane edit

By train edit

LSU Old Law Building

While there is no Amtrak train service to Baton Rouge, connecting bus service can be booked with the Sunset Limited between New Orleans and Los Angeles as well as with City of New Orleans, which runs to and from Chicago.

By car edit

From New Orleans, Baton Rouge is an 80-mi (129-km) northwest drive on I-10, which drives into the heart of downtown. The distance between the two Louisiana cities is an easy 90-min drive if you avoid weekday rush hours; if you catch the traffic of commuter rush hours at either end it can take a lot longer.

If you're driving in from anywhere east of Louisiana, come into Baton Rouge via I-12, which will take you north of Lake Ponchartrain and bypasses New Orleans. From the west, I-10 connects Lafayette, Houston, San Antonio, Tucson, Phoenix, and Los Angeles with Baton Rouge. From the east, I-10 connects Baton Rouge with New Orleans, Mobile, Pensacola, and Jacksonville. If you're coming from Chicago, St. Louis, or Memphis follow I-55 South and merge onto I-12 West and continue driving for roughly 45 mi (72 km).

By bus edit

In town the bus companies have their own separate stations & stops in downtown (Flixbus, Greyhound and Megabus) and in the east side of town (Turimex):

  • 3 Flixbus, (bus stop) 138 Florida St (River Rd & Florida St. Bus will board along the yellow curb on the south side of Florida St, opposite from a parking lot). Service to Baton Rouge from Houston and New Orleans. Additional local pick-up at the Greyhound bus station at 1253 Florida Blvd and the Chevron station at 1295 Highland Rd. Check your tickets for pick-up/drop off locations.
  • Delta Bus Lines, (Greyhound bus station) 1253 Florida Blvd (same location as Greyhound on Florida Blvd & 13th St), +1 662-335-2144, fax: +1 662-335-2174. Connects Memphis to Baton Rouge through Cleveland,Robinsonville, Shelby, Tunica and Clarksdale. Passengers transfer in Cleveland to continue towards Indianola, Greeneville, Jackson. Tickets with Delta Bus lines can also be booked with Greyhound (see below).
  • 4 Greyhound Lines & Quicklink, (bus station) 1253 Florida Blvd (Florida Blvd & 13th St), +1 225 383-3811, toll-free: +1-800-231-2222. Greyhound travels primarily on I-10 (Houston, Beaumont Vidor, Baton Rouge, Lafayette, New Orleans); US 90 (Baton Rouge, Lafayette, New Iberia, Morgan City, Thibodaux, Houma, Raceland and New Orleans). Some variations of the Houston to New Orleans route make additional stops in Port Arthur, Orange, Baytown and/or Lake Charles while other routes continue towards Montgomery via Mobile without stopping in New Orleans. Passengers transfer in Lafayette to reach Shreveport. They also offer a more frequent and less expensive commuter service to New Orleans on their Quick Link brand who have separate stops at a Chevron gas station at 2915 Highland Rd and the Albertson's store on 2950 College Dr (at I-10).
  • 5 Megabus, (bus stop) NE corner of N 22nd St & Convention St (next to CATS Terminal). Service to Baton Rouge from Houston and New Orleans
  • 6 Turimex Internacional, (bus stop) Agencia La Tiendita at 6031 Siegen Ln (Siegen Strip mall at Siegen Lane (SR-3246) & Cloverland south of the US Hwy 61 junction), toll-free: +1-800-733-7330. Service to Baton Rouge from Houston, Raleigh NC and points in between. Buses continue south into Mexico from Houston and San Antonio. In Louisiana they only stop in Hammond & Lafayette. In town they have additional stops at W Spring Valley & S Colt Rd and at 17453 Old Hammond Hwy.
  • 1 Capital Area Transit System (CATS), (bus terminal) 2250 Florida Blvd (22nd St & Florida Blvd), +1 225 389-8282. Capital Area Transit System (CATS) operates city buses in and around Baton Rouge. The marked location is the central bus transit center/bus station for CATS.

Get around edit

See edit

Government edit

  • 1 Louisiana State Capitol, State Capitol Dr, +1 225-342-7317. Louisiana's new state capitol building dominates the city's skyline. It's an impressive Art Deco style skyscraper, built as part of the grand vision of Louisiana's colorful political boss of the 1920s and 1930s, Huey P. Long, who met his end by assassination in its halls.    
  • 2 Old State Capitol, 100 North Blvd, +1 225 342-0500. Tu-Sa 9AM-4PM. This 19th-century castle serving as the State Capitol before Gov. Huey P. Long built the new skyscraper. It is now a museum.    
  • 3 Louisiana Governor's Mansion, 1001 Capitol Access Rd, +1 225 342-5855.

Museums edit

  • 4 Louisiana Art and Science Museum, 100 S River Rd, +1 225 344-5272, .    
  • 5 Capitol Park Museum, 660 N. 4th St, +1 225 342-5428. Near the State Capitol this museum features two floors of exhibits related to Louisiana culture, with such curiosities as Louis Armstrong's first bugle, Huey P. Long's tombstone, and a Civil War Confederate submarine with hand-cranked propeller.
  • 6 LSU Rural Life Museum, 4560 Essen Ln, +1 225 765-2437, . Admission includes access to an indoor museum, an outdoor collection of historical structures and some reconstructions of historical structures, and a botanical garden. Historical structures include slave quarters previously owned by one of the founders of the LSU. Those interested in the history of slavery and the period thereafter should be aware that they may find some of the interpretative signage whitewashes the treatment of African Americans.    

Military and historical sites edit

  • 7 Pentagon Barracks Museum, 702 River Rd. These barracks have been used by used by the Republic of West Florida, Spanish, French, British, Confederate States Army, and United States Army over the years.  
  • 8 Veteran's Memorial Park, 599 State Capitol Dr #523. Daily 6AM-9PM. Veterans memorial and old arsenal museum. Also note Capitol Lake is right behind.

Other edit

  • 9 Louisiana State University (LSU) (Exit Dalrymple on I-10). LSU is a Tier 1 ranked university, and the flagship university for Louisiana. Aside from its academic excellence, the LSU campus in Baton Rouge is over a century old, and a historic delight for visitors. The campus is lush and green, with oaks that are as old as the campus itself. Historical Highland Road runs down a section of LSU, making the campus an easy visit for any tourist. Must sees include Tiger Stadium, the Indian Mounds, the Quad, the outdoor Greek Amphitheater, and the acres of beautiful, pedestrian friendly grounds. Food is available on campus at the Student Union for visitors, or you can eat at The Chimes, which is on Chimes Street running parallel to the LSU campus. edit    
  • 10 Bluebonnet Swamp Nature Center, 10503 N. Oak Hills Parkway, +1 225 757-8905. Tu-Sa 9AM-5PM, Su noon-5PM, closed M. Featuring wildlife and ecology exhibits, a 65-acre cypress-tupelo swamp, navigable by boardwalk filled with wildlife such as birds, bobcats, foxes, turtles and alligators. $3 for adults, $2.50 for aged 65+, $2 for age 3-17, free for aged 2 and younger.    
  • 11 Magnolia Mound Plantation House, 2161 Nicholson Dr, +1 225 343-4955.    

Do edit

Parks and zoos edit

  • 1 Baton Rouge Zoo, 3601 Thomas Rd, +1 225 775-3877, fax: +1 225 775-3931, . Enjoy the Otter Pond, L'aquarium de Louisiane, Parrot Paradise, the Cypress Bayou Railroad, the Safari Playground & KidsZoo petting zoo.    
  • 2 Mike the Tiger's Habitat, 16 N Stadium Dr, +1 225 578-4823. Where you can visit the live LSU tiger mascot in his habitat.  
  • 3 Blue Bayou Water Park / Dixie Landin', 18142 Perkins Rd. (near I-10 and Highland Rd), +1 225 753-3333. This is the largest amusement park in the area. The main attraction is the enormous waterslide "Conja".    
  • 4 Independence Park, 7500 Independence Blvd, +1 225 928-7860. This park has Botanic Gardens, a tennis facility, the Independence Park Theater, and another water park (called Liberty Lagoon).
  • LSU Lakes, LSU (Exit Dalrymple at I-10). The LSU Lakes are an attraction for residents in Baton Rouge. Composed of several lakes near LSU, they are open to the public for fishing. In addition, there are extensive running tracks that run next to the lakes for miles for walking, jogging, and running. You can easily mix and mingle with LSU college students, all of whom consider the LSU Lakes part of their home campus.

Theaters edit

  • Swine Palace Productions (in LSU's "theater-in-the-round" Reilly Theatre). Originally a livestock-judging pavilion, Swine Palace are Baton Rouge's premier professional theater company.

Other edit

Mall of Louisiana
  • Red Stick Farmers Market, 501 Main St (Fifth Street, between Main and North Street). Saturday mornings from 8AM-noon. The Red Stick Farmers Market, operated by BREADA (Big River Economic and Agricultural Development Alliance), is a producer only market with over 50 vendors that has been in operation for nearly ten years. Located on Downtown Baton Rouge, the market is open in conjunction with The Main Street Market. Going to the Market is a great way to experience culture and goods from local vendors and farmers.
  • 6 Tour the USS Kidd, 305 South River Rd (Downtown Baton Rouge). The USS Kidd, a WWII era US Navy destroyer, offers tours to locals and tourists alike. A real delight if you are a WWII or military enthusiast or if you have children.    
  • Tailgate during an LSU home game, LSU (Exit Dalrymple on I-10, go right to LSU), +1 225 635-6277. LSU has an incredible tailgating scene. It's not uncommon for 100,000+ people to be tailgating in and around LSU--Tiger Stadium has a seating capacity of over 102,000! You'll be amazed at the number and friendliness of the crowd. Plan on arriving hours before the game to be able to park within a reasonable distance (< 2 miles). And *always* feel free to ask for a burger or gumbo from fellow tail-gaters as it's tradition to be friendly and open with fellow fans.
  • Tin Roof Brewery Tour (Exit Nicholson at I-10), +1 225 377-7022. Fridays from 5PM to 7PM. Baton Rouge's only microbrewery. Excellent guided tours every Friday at 6PM with three free beer samples for those over 21. Definitely a must for any beer lover. Free.

Buy edit

  • 1 Mall of Louisiana, 6401 Bluebonnet Blvd, +1 225 761-7228. Large shopping mall in the south part of town, just off the Bluebonnett exit of I-10. Mall also includes nearby shopping centers, the AMC Movie Theater, and many restaurants.    
  • Perkins Rowe. A new mixed-use development at the corner of Perkins Road and Bluebonnet Blvd. Has many retail shops, restaurants, and Cinemark Movie Theater
  • Denham Springs Antique Village, about 18 miles east of Baton Rouge on North Range Aveune (LA 16) between Centerville Street (LA 1032) and Railroad Avenue. Antiques are a pretty serious matter in this town.

Eat edit

  • Anthony's Italian Deli, 10248 Florida Blvd (Driving west on Florida Blvd from down town it is in a small store front area on the left after Oak Villa. Look for the Italian flag sign.), +1 225 272-6817, . M-Sa 9:30AM-6PM. This is a great place to go for good deli food and classic Italian dishes like spaghetti and meat balls and great muffuletta. Eat at the deli and enjoy the atmosphere and the personalities. $8-13.
  • The Chimes. An LSU staple for generations, at the North Gates of campus on Highland. Predominantly frequented by students and faculty, The Chimes serves a mix of standards with Louisiana Cajun/Creole fare, and has one of the best beer selections in town.
  • Fleur de Lis, 5655 Government St, +1 225 924-2904. Tu-Sa 10AM-10PM. Baton Rouge's other half-century old pizza parlor, originally a gas station on the outskirts of town, the Fleur de Lis is a family restaurant with a dedicated old Baton Rouge clientele. Cash or check only.
  • George's, Perkins Road (just south of the Overpass).
  • Rock n Sake, Perkins Rd (near the overpass). Sushi restaurant and bar; fun hip place with an awesome bar and fantastic food.
  • India's Restaurant, 5230 Essen Ln. Southern part of the city, convenient just west of the Essen Ln. I-10 exit, +1 225 769-0600. Good, reasonably priced Indian food; buffet or menu.
  • Louie's. open 24/7. A traditional diner right at LSU's North Gate.
  • Parrain's, 3225 Perkins Road (in the mid-city district), +1 225 381-9922. Su-Th 11AM-10PM, F Sa 11AM-11PM. Parrain's has established itself as one of the best places to experience traditional Louisiana cuisine, most notably its fried seafood.
  • The Pastime. A half-century old pizza parlor and bar serving easily the best pizza in the city. Also the home of "Boudin Pizza", a unique South Louisiana concoction representing the collision of Acadian and Italian cultures.
  • Piccadilly Restaurants. Headquartered in Baton Rouge, the Piccadilly chain has been serving traditional, home-style meals since 1944 at affordable prices. Southern favorites include: Fried Chicken, Crawfish Etouffee, Carrot Souffle and Pecan Pie. Meals include entree, two sides and bread. $5-10.
  • Raising Cane's Chicken Fingers, 14929 Market St, +1 225 408-1658. Home-grown chain of fast-food restaurants that serve only chicken finger meals, and have proven so adept at doing it that they have successfully expanded to other markets in the South and increasingly beyond. Side items available include crinkle-cut fries, Texas Toast, cole slaw, and the mysterious-yet-addictive special dipping sauce.
  • Sporting News Grill, 4848 Constitution Ave, +1 225 636-5347. Sporting News Grill's casual upscale atmosphere encourages everyone to relax and have a great time while catching sports action on high definition flat screen TVs placed strategically throughout the restaurant.
  • TJ Ribs, 2324 S Acadian Thrwy, +1 225 383-7427. M-Sa 11AM-11PM, Su 11AM-10PM. Famous for pork and beef ribs, but also accommodates diners with other eating habits. LSU legend Billy Cannon's Heisman Trophy is on display here, as he exchanged it for lifetime eating privileges. $10-15.
  • Tsunami. A sushi restaurant perched high above the city on the roof of the Shaw Center. The establishment has one of the best views in the entire city.
  • Zeeland Street Market (in the Garden District just north of the LSU Campus). It is one of the best places in town to get soul food. Locally famous for their delicious heaping plate lunches, Zeeland Street Market is a favorite for college students with a hankering for a home cooked meal. The plate lunch menu rotates daily and all of the ingredients are fresh from local markets. Take special note that Zeeland's is only open for breakfast and lunch.
  • Bystro Byronz. Two locations: Mid-City on Government Street and Willow Grove off of Perkins Road near Perkins Rowe. A neighborhood restaurant known for burgers and other bistro-inspired dishes.

Drink edit

The Baton Rouge Metro Council has outlawed many drink specials in establishments classified as bars, so if you're looking to save a buck, you should stick with drinking in restaurants. However, if you're looking for that bar atmosphere, there are several places to choose from. Baton Rouge's blue laws were repealed in 2007, but restrictions on drink specials are still in effect.

  • Chimes Restaurant and Oyster Bar (The OC), 3357 Highland Rd, +1 225 383-1754, fax: +1 225 387-5413. M-Sa 11AM-2AM, Su 11AM-11PM. The largest selection of beer, both bottled and on tap, in the Capitol City area and maybe the entire state. They serve practically anything you can think of. Be sure to ask about "Drinking around the world". There are several reports of bottled beer being served past its prime, but anything on draft seems fine.
  • The Chimes East, 10870 Coursey Blvd (between Airline Hwy and Sherwood Forest Blvd), +1 225 296-4981. M-Sa 11AM-2AM, Su 11AM-11PM. A newer sister store of the Chimes Restaurant.
  • Churchill's, 7949 Jefferson Hwy Ste C, +1 225 927-4211. "Premium Cigars & Elixirs", also frequently has live music and tastings.
  • Happy's Irish Pub, 136 Third St. A low-key downtown bar with an eclectic mix of college kids, professionals and everyone in between.
  • Tigerland, Bob Pettit Blvd. A group of bars just south of LSU for those really into the college bar scene; with student favorites such as Freds, Tiger Bar, JL's Place, etc. This is also a place fraught with druken bar fights.
  • Bulldog, 4385 Perkins Rd (between Acadian and College, behind Red Zephlin Pizza), +1 225 303-9400. 11:30AM-2AM. Great place to socialize with friends and drink a lot of different beers. They have passable food and cocktails as well. Make sure to have valid ID as they will card.

Sleep edit

Connect edit

Go next edit

Routes through Baton Rouge
Lake CharlesLafayette  W   E  LaPlaceNew Orleans
END  W   E  → Jct N   SCovingtonSlidell
NatchezSt. Francisville  N   S  LaPlaceNew Orleans
OpelousasKrotz Springs  W   E  → Jct N   SCovingtonSlidell

This city travel guide to Baton Rouge is a usable article. It has information on how to get there and on restaurants and hotels. An adventurous person could use this article, but please feel free to improve it by editing the page.