- Mon: 5am-10pm
- Tue: 5am-10pm
- Wed: 5am-10pm
- Thu: 5am-10pm
- Fri: 5am-10pm
- Sat: 5am-10pm
- Sun: 5am-10pm
Located a short ride from downtown New Orleans, Lafreniere Park is a hidden gem in Metairie, in the neighboring suburb of Jefferson Parish. This beautiful park offers lots of wide-open green space, a 2-mile walking trail, athletic fields, Frisbee golf, a children's playground, a carousel, a dog park and more. There's also outdoor exercise equipment for the fitness crowd. Perhaps the park's greatest feature is the picturesque lagoon that runs throughout the property. The park is also home to numerous events throughout the year, including concerts, a holiday light celebration and fireworks displays.
Parking and public transportation at Lafreniere Park
There are several parking lots in the park, more than enough to accommodate normal park traffic. If you're using public transportation, you can take the Canal-Cemetaries streetcar heading away from downtown to the end of the line and then transfer to the Veterans Blvd. bus, operated by Jefferson Transit. Ask the driver to let you off at Downs Blvd., then cross the street and walk the short distance to the park. Please note: Veterans Blvd. is very busy so keep this in mind when crossing the highway and always make sure you cross at the traffic light.
Best and worst time to go to Lafreniere Park
One of the worst times to visit the park is during athletic tournaments when the crowds can be really thick. Although they are fun to watch, you might want to check the park's event calendar to see if any tournaments are scheduled so that you can plan accordingly. A good time to visit the park is during special events like the Uncle Sam Jam. This family-friendly event is held annually on July 3 and features live music, food vendors and a fireworks display at 9 p.m.
Admission to Lafreniere Park
Admission to the park is free. The park is open daily from 5 a.m. until 10:00 p.m. The park does charge for some special events. For instance, if you want to see the Christmas lights during the annual Holiday in the Park celebration, you'll pay about $3.00 per car.
Must see/do at Lafreniere Park
Kids of all ages will enjoy a ride on the Carousel, which also has one handicapped accessible chariot. A trip through Marsh Island is also recommended. This man-made ecosystem offers a glimpse into the world of native Louisiana flora and fauna. After strolling through the park, pick a spot (any spot is breathtaking) and sit around the lagoon and simply relax and enjoy nature at its best.
Other places to visit near Lafreniere Park
Veterans Blvd. is a bustling major highway and you can find numerous places to visit near Lafreniere Park. The park has a concession stand but you should consider indulging your ice-cream sweet tooth by creating your very own creation at Marble Slab Creamery, located a few miles from the park. If you enjoy laser tag, bumper cars, arcade games and other fun activities (and who doesn't?) Laser Tag of Metairie is a great place to spend a few hours with friends or family. If you're looking for more of an adult diversion, stop by Lager's International Ale House; there's pub fare and nearly 200 different types of craft, locally brewed and bottled beer.
Insider tip for visitors to Lafreniere Park
If possible, bring a loaf or two of bread with you to feed the ducks. They are plentiful and you'll see them throughout the park, along with an assortment of other feathered friends.
Author's bio: Myra Faye Turner is writer living in New Orleans. During a recent trip to Lafreniere Park, she saw a huge, furry nutria, several roosters and a cute white bunny rabbit.