10+ Unusual Things to Do in Baton Rouge

As the sun dips, paddleboarding on University Lakes transforms—wait until you see what emerges from the water at twilight... Ready?
Date Published
March 8, 2024

Table of Contents

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Hey there, you ever find yourself dreaming about that perfect blend of urban action and homespun charm? Well, drop a pin on Baton Rouge, Louisiana, 'cause this city's got it all. Imagine gliding on paddleboards in the calm University Lakes, right before noshing on the finest Southern brunch that'll make your taste buds sing at The Gregory. We're talkin' a place where historic whispers echo through venerable churches, and galleries showcase slices of local genius you'll find nowhere else. I know, seems like I'm painting quite the picture, huh?

And before you start thinking 'bout those big ol' cities with their snazzy high-rises, let me drop some real talk: Baton Rouge is where you can get down and dirty with a Cajun cooking class, or become one with nature without trading in your city slicker card. We're diving into every nook and cranny – from bike trails and science centers to the toe-tappin' rhythms of jazz clubs when the sun dips low. So, why exactly should you put Baton Rouge on your must-visit list? Brace yourself, we're about to strut down the vibrant streets of this Louisiana jewel and uncover the magic that makes folks stick around. Trust me, you'll wanna stick around for this journey.

Paddleboarding on University Lakes

Imagine gliding across the glassy surface of a lake, surrounded by the lush greens of a vibrant college campus. That's right, you're not just in Baton Rouge, you're in the middle of an outdoor adventure right on University Lakes! Baton Rouge outdoor adventures just leveled up, and you're about to see why.

These serene lakes provide the perfect escape from the city hustle. It's not just about hopping on a board; it's about freedom and tranquility. And talk about an Instagram-worthy snapshot! When it comes to Baton Rouge paddleboarding spots, this place takes the cake—or should we say, the lake?

Spend the morning paddling around and you might forget you're smack dab in the middle of Louisiana's capital. Here's what makes it so special: you’ve got the backdrop of the state university, the buzz of students and families, and the peace that comes from being on the water. It's like a mini-vacation with an educational twist, perfect for singles, college kids, or the whole fam.

As for what's nearby? You're a stone's throw away from some of Baton Rouge's greatest hits. Once you've worked up an appetite, there's plenty of local grub to dive into. Trust me, after a couple of hours on the water, a po'boy never tasted so good.

So who's this perfect for? Whether you're a paddleboarding pro or just itching to try something new, University Lakes is where it's at. Friendly for all skill levels, it's a spot that'll woo adventurers and chill-seekers alike. Now, go grab a board and make some waves in Baton Rouge!

Behind the Scenes at The Gregory

Picture this: walls adorned with modern art, the sound of clinking glasses, and the sizzle of something delicious wafting from the kitchen. Welcome to the backstage magic of The Gregory, where Baton Rouge dining experiences take a bow in the spotlight!

Enthralling food enthusiasts and brunch aficionados, this place isn't your average fork-and-spoon deal. I mean, think tantalizing flavors, think signature cocktails, and think a kitchen where the chef isn't just a chef but a culinary virtuoso. This isn't just eating; it's a performance for your taste buds and, lucky for you, behind-the-scenes tours are on the menu!

Cue the Broadway lights because The Gregory is all about that jazz – a symphony of local ingredients and contemporary techniques. And speaking of brunch spots, The Gregory knocks it out of the park. Whether you're on the hunt for sweet, savory, or a bit of both, this brunch scene is the opening number to a perfect day.

  • Brunch Stars: You've got to try their shrimp and grits – it's the talk of the town for a reason.
  • Cocktail Cameo: Sip on mimosas that sparkle brighter than a Broadway marquee.

Plan to spend at least a couple hours here, because you'll want to savor every act. It's a hit with the crowd that loves digging into the art of food, where every plate is more Instagrammable than the last.

Not flying solo? No problem – The Gregory has a table big enough for the whole crew. Gather friends, family or even that charming acquaintance you ran into at the art gallery. What's more, it's nestled in the heart of downtown, making it a prime starting point for your Baton Rouge escapades.

So, buckle up and ready your applause for a culinary Bravo! And when you're done, make sure to stroll around downtown Baton Rouge and soak up the vibrant after-brunch scenes that make this city truly one-of-a-kind.

Discover Baton Rouge's Historic Churches

You're wandering through Baton Rouge when you spy the top of a steeple peeking out above the cityscape. Intrigued, you find yourself standing in front of a grand, historical church, the kind of building that's been around for hundreds of years, witnessing the unfolding tapestry of a city's history brick by brick.

Baton Rouge's historic churches are not just buildings; they're architectural telltales of the past that continue to echo through time. Whether you’re a history buff or just looking for a serene spot to reflect, these sacred spaces are open to anyone needing a dose of serenity or a whisper of the past.

Let's peek inside, shall we? Inside a church like this, the vibe is colossal. It's like every prayer, sound of the choir, and footstep taken by its parishioners has been embedded in the walls, creating a listen-and-you-shall-hear experience. And you, lucky duck, get to feed off that energy.

If you're the plan-ahead type, you'll appreciate knowing that you don't need an entire day here. An hour or two will do, giving you plenty of time to take in the intricate stained glass windows and feel the chill-inducing silence that fills the air. It's a poignant reminder that you're standing in a place of longstanding faith and community.

People from all walks of life come here, and it doesn’t matter if you're single, with your family, or a group of thrill-seeking friends—the historic churches of Baton Rouge welcome one and all. Couldn't we all use a moment of peace now and again?

And get this: these churches aren’t just for Sunday mornings. Often, they're surrounded by Baton Rouge's bustle—cafes, shops, little parks—giving you a comfortable mix of the divine and day-to-day.

So, when you're in town, don't just walk past. Step in and discover what these hallowed halls have to offer. Marvel at an overwhelming sense of history that is both spiritual and absolutely earthly. It's beautiful, it's serene, and it's waiting for you. Enjoy this hidden piece of Baton Rouge's soul and get ready to be moved. If these walls could talk, oh, the stories they would tell!

Hidden Gems of Baton Rouge Art Galleries

Picture this: You're meandering through Baton Rouge's vibrant art scene, where every turn is a new brushstroke of creativity. Baton Rouge art galleries are not just walls with paintings; they're lively hubs where the city's soul is splashed in brilliant colors. The art scene here has a flair for the exquisite and unique, making it a haven for those of you with an eye for the eclectic.

Baton Rouge art galleries are unique because they embody the rich cultural tapestry of Louisiana. If you're up for a treasure hunt, these galleries house everything from Southern folk art to contemporary masterpieces. You can chat with local artists, sneak a peek at a live demonstration, or even get your hands on a one-of-a-kind piece that screams, "I've got the best taste ever."

Nestled in downtown or tucked away in up-and-coming neighborhoods, each gallery offers a different ambience. Whether you're looking for a quiet afternoon soaking in some artsy vibes or a lively evening event with fellow art enthusiasts, there's a spot for you.

And oh, don't just dash and run through these galleries. Spend some time, at least a couple of hours, to truly appreciate the exhibits. Get lost in a canvas, or even better, find yourself in one.

Here's who should really perk up their ears: if you're a die-hard art aficionado, a curious vacationer, or someone looking to spruce up their living room with something that's not mass-produced - these hidden gems are your go-to.

So next time you're wondering where the Baton Rouge art scene can whisk you away to, step into one of the Baton Rouge art galleries. Whether you're on a solo art pilgrimage, looking to bond with a special someone over brushstrokes, or corralling your family for a dose of culture, you're in for a treat.

Ready to experience the masterpieces up close? Let your art adventure begin!

Cajun Culinary Class Adventure

Imagine this: you're slicing and dicing, the enticing aroma of spices fills the air, and a jazz band plays in the background. You're not just in Baton Rouge; you're in the heart of its flavors at a Cajun culinary class! This isn't your average cooking lesson; it's a full-on, hands-on immersion into Baton Rouge local cuisine. Throw on an apron and get ready to whip up some unforgettable meals that'll make your taste buds do a happy two-step.

So, what's cooking in these classes? You'll tackle classics like gumbo, jambalaya, and étouffée, and let me tell you, the secret's in the roux! Get ready to learn from local chefs who breathe Cajun and Creole cooking. They've got stories that'll make you laugh, recipes that'll make you drool, and skills that'll stick with you long after you leave the bayou.

These classes are ideal for anyone; It doesn't matter if you're the lead chef in your kitchen back home or if you've barely mastered boiling water. You'll leave with the confidence of a Baton Rouge chef, ready to impress friends and family alike. Spend a couple of hours, and you'll have more than just a meal; you'll have a deeper appreciation for Baton Rouge's rich culinary heritage.

Cooking classes in Baton Rouge are seemingly designed for groups, but don't fret if you're flying solo or with your partner; the welcoming atmosphere makes it easy to mingle and share a few laughs. It's perfect for foodies, adventurous couples, and anyone who wants to spice up their culinary skills.

Now, don't forget to explore the surroundings! Many of these cooking experiences are nestled in cozy spots that invite you to walk off that hearty meal. From the bustling downtown to quiet, oak-lined streets, you're just a stone's throw away from the next Baton Rouge treasure. Keep your belly full, your heart light, and your spice cabinet ready for action!

Family Fun at Baton Rouge Nature Centers

Get ready to unleash the wild side of fun with your kin in Baton Rouge's vibrant nature centers! Picture this: kiddos laughing, birds chirping, and you? You're just soaking in that sweet, sweet serenity. Consider this your ticket to the perfect family-friendly outing.

Baton Rouge nature centers are a fantastic magnet for families looking to escape the hustle and experience the great outdoors. Whether your crew is full of tiny tots or cool teens, these spots got something for everyone. You'll find hands-on activities that not only entertain but enlighten, because, let's be real, who doesn't love a side of education with their expedition?

Now, let's break it down for you:

  • Exhibits: Think interactive and so alive, you'll second-guess if you're still in a city.
  • Trails: Easy enough for the little ones, yet intriguing enough for the wise ones.
  • Programs: Designed to spark curiosity and the "oohs" and "aahs" in your family.

These nature centers aren't just about looking at pretty plants; they are full-on ecosystems ripe for exploration. You can easily spend half a day here, and trust me, time flies when you're having this much fun! And if you're thinking about picnic spots, well, you just hit the jackpot.

If your family squad thrives on outdoor excitement but still craves the creature comforts, these centers hit the sweet spot. The right balance of wilderness and well-maintained facilities make for a stress-free day (because nobody wants to play 'find the restroom' in nature).

So, who's ready for a day of discovery, awe, and perhaps a friendly squirrel or two? Suit up, pack some snacks, and let the natural charm of Baton Rouge take the wheel. It's family fun, the nature way—it's just waiting for you to dive in!

Psst... don't forget to grab your camera. These are precious moments you’ll want to look back on!

Baton Rouge by Bike Trail Exploration

Imagine the wind rushing past you, the sun peeking through the lush trees, and the freedom you feel as you glide along the scenic bike trails of Baton Rouge. That's right, grab your helmet and get ready to cycle your heart out on an adventure where cityscapes meet nature's playground.

Baton Rouge parks and recreation are the gateways to experiencing the city's natural beauty. Nothing beats the Baton Rouge bike trails, with a charm that invites cyclists of all skill levels. Whether you prefer a leisurely ride or a challenging workout, you'll find a path just for you.

Now, let's talk trails. One of the best spots for you to start pumping those pedals is the Mississippi River Levee Bike Path. Not only do you get to ride alongside the mighty Mississippi, but you can also sneak peeks at the city's stunning skyline. Here's a Pro tip: make sure your phone's charged, because those river views are insta-gold!

And guess what? Baton Rouge doesn't stop at daytime rides. As the sun sets, the city's bike paths offer a whole new vibe – think magical evening rides with a side of cool breezes. It's perfect if you're a night owl or just looking to beat the Louisiana heat.

Whether you're going solo, bringing a date, or enjoying a family outing, cycling in Baton Rouge is something no one should miss. It's awesome for people who love staying active or anyone who just wants a new perspective of the city. So how long should you spend here? Well, that's the beauty of it – take as long or as little as you like. There's always more to explore!

Remember to check out the city's bike trail maps and get those wheels rolling! You're not just going for a ride; you're embarking on an unforgettable journey through Baton Rouge. Ready, set, pedal!

Dive into Baton Rouge Science Center

Are you ready for a brain-boosting adventure that's as fun as it is educational? Baton Rouge Science Center is where you'll want to be! It's more than your average walk-in-and-look-around museum – this place is a hands-on wonderland where science becomes as accessible as it is fascinating.

From jaw-dropping exhibits to mind-bending interactive challenges, this is one of the Baton Rouge educational attractions that can't be missed. Whether you're a tiny Einstein or just a curious Joe, you'll find something to awe over. Plan to spend a good chunk of your day here because there's enough to see and do to keep the whole family entertained for hours.

While you're learning about the mysteries of the universe, don't forget that it's not just for the kiddos. Baton Rouge Science Centers are designed to ignite the curiosity of all ages. Solo explorers, couples on date night, or even a group of friends looking for a quirky afternoon hangout – y'all are in for a treat.

Stroll through the space exhibits or dive into the ocean depths - every corner you explore sparks a whole new world of discovery. And when you get hungry from all that exploring, you'll find plenty of spots nearby to grab a bite, making it a perfect pit-stop for those midday munchies.

Oh, and for the complete science fanatics: check out their special events and exhibitions. They’re always adding new stuff, so there's a good chance you'll stumble upon something extra special.

So, put on your thinking cap and come ready to play with science. By the time you leave, you might just be seeing the world with new eyes. Plus, who doesn't like the idea of playing with cool gadgets and calling it learning? Get ready, because at the Baton Rouge Science Center, fun and knowledge go hand in hand like peanut butter and jelly.

Baton Rouge Farmers Market Finds

Imagine the sun peeking through a bouquet of fresh sunflowers as you stroll past stands bursting with homegrown goodness. Welcome to the heart-pounding heart of Baton Rouge shopping districts—the Farmers Market. Oh, and don't get me started on the juicy tomatoes that look like they were painted by the sunrise itself!

This is no ordinary market; it's a carnival of fruits and veggies so vibrant, you'll think you stepped into a technicolor dream. Baton Rouge farmers markets are the place to be for all you foodies, families, and fun-lovers looking for that perfect Saturday morning vibe.

Grab a basket, 'cause you're gonna want to load up on the locally-made jams that dance on your taste buds like a jazz band on Bourbon Street. Peaches? Plums? How about some homemade pies that'll give grandma a run for her money, huh? Bet your taste buds are tingling already! But it's not just about the food—oh no—it's a festival for the senses and a paradise for produce pilgrims.

Spend a leisurely hour or two; you won't just shop, you'll meet the local heroes who grow the greens and bake the goodies—and trust me, they've got stories that'll stick with you like the lingering heat of a Cajun spice.

Whether you're a single culinary seeker, a family hunting for the fresh and the fun, or a local looking to reconnect with your roots, this market is your merry match. And hey, bring cash and a big tote—you're gonna need both!

So go ahead, find the Baton Rouge farmers market nearest to you, and discover what makes our local soil's labor so darn irresistible. You'll leave with a smile, a feast fit for a king, and the kind of memories that, just like the best Creole tomatoes, are ripe and ready to be savored.

Serenity at Baton Rouge Public Gardens

Picture this: You're wandering through a lush oasis, the soft hum of nature plays like a symphony all around you. Welcome to the Baton Rouge public gardens—a piece of paradise where time stands still and the city fades away. Nestled in the heart of Baton Rouge's busy life, these gardens offer a sanctuary for your senses, and let's face it, a heavenly break from your smartphone screen!

You might think, "Oh, it's just another park," but hold that thought! Baton Rouge's public gardens are the perfect spot for just about anyone. Whether you’re a solo adventurer seeking a quiet corner to read, a lovebird sharing a serene stroll, or that super cool parent looking for a spacious spot to tire out the kiddos, Baton Rouge parks and recreation knows how to deliver.

Now, imagine yourself here: Sun-kissed paths lined with flowering beauties, the scent of fresh flora teasing your nose, and the sight of vibrant butterflies that could outshine any Instagram filter. That's right, no filter needed here because nature’s got you covered! Spend an hour, or spend the day—there's no rush when you're basking in this kind of tranquility.

And the best part? These gardens aren't just a feast for your eyes. They're a hub for community events too! Of course, you can always find a quiet bench to reflect on how delightful it is that you didn't have to spend a dime for this exquisite experience—yep, it’s totally free.

So, whether you're rocking 'me time', craving 'us time', or wrangling an entire family, the Baton Rouge public gardens are nothing short of a little slice of heaven. And when you're done here, you've got all of Baton Rouge's charm just minutes away, waiting to keep the good times rolling.

So, go ahead, slap on some sunscreen and waltz into this garden bliss. It's about time you added a pinch of green to your day and a whole lot of Zen to your spirit!

Local Flavor at Baton Rouge Food Trucks

Imagine your taste buds doing a little dance with every bite; that's what happens when you're munching on some of the most scrumptious eats from Baton Rouge's food trucks! These rolling restaurants bring the heat to the streets, serving up a blend of lip-smacking local grub that's perfectly seasoned with that Southern charm.

Foodies, unite! Baton Rouge food trucks scoot around town dishing out all sorts of culinary delights. Whether you're craving a zesty shrimp po'boy or dreaming of a sizzling gourmet burger, you'll find a truck that caters to your every whim. Swing by on a sunny afternoon, and you might just stumble upon an impromptu feast on wheels.

With menus changing faster than a chameleon on a rainbow, no two visits are quite the same. Here's a little insider intel—many of these trucks are right at home near the bustling university area, perfect for a quick bite between exploring or after a game. But remember, the treasures of the Baton Rouge food truck scene aren't bound to one locale; they roam wild and free!

  • Find your flavor festival: These trucks are usually tucked around local events, so keep your eyes peeled!
  • Expect to spend: Anywhere from ten to oh-my-goodness-I-want-everything minutes making your choice.
  • Crowd pleaser: Whether you're flying solo or rolling deep, food trucks make everyone feel like part of the Baton Rouge family.

Diving into the Baton Rouge food truck scene is like hitting the jackpot of casual dining experiences. It's not just a meal, it's an adventure that feeds both your stomach and soul. So, wear comfy shoes and make sure your phone’s ready to snap some drool-worthy pics because every bite is Instagram gold. Go ahead, let the tantalizing aromas lead you to your next food truck love affair in Baton Rouge—it's a foodie's rolling paradise!

Baton Rouge Jazz Clubs by Night

Imagine the sultry sounds of a saxophone filling the air as you step into the vibrant nightlife of Baton Rouge. The city's jazz clubs are not just venues; they are time capsules that transport you straight back to the days when jazz was king. Slip into the rhythm of the night and let the rich history of Baton Rouge's jazz scene embrace you like an old friend.

So, where's the best spot to catch some live jazz in Baton Rouge? The answer is simple: head on over to the heart of downtown where the music scene thrives. Clubs here are intimate, the musicians are passionate, and every performance feels like a one-of-a-kind experience. You'll be grooving to improvisations and classic tunes that resonate with both young patrons and the old souls at heart.

A Baton Rouge jazz club is perfect for anyone seeking a laid-back yet electrifying night out. Whether you're on a romantic date or hanging out with friends, the ambiance in these clubs is sure to seduce you. And it's not all about late-night revelry; it's about appreciating the art form that has significantly shaped American music and culture.

Plan to spend an evening and savor the music that spills onto the streets. Nearby, you might find cozy eateries where you can grab a bite before the show or chic bars to discuss the night's performance over a cocktail afterwards. And who is this scene best for? If you adore live music and relish in the fusion of new and nostalgic experiences, these jazz clubs are calling your name.

Dress to impress or come as you are—Baton Rouge's jazz clubs are all about the music, and every visitor is a VIP in the house of blues and jazz. Whether you're a jazz aficionado or curious first-timer, the city's pulse beats strongest in these musical havens.

And remember, it's not just a night out; it's a journey through the soul of Baton Rouge. Let the music tell the story as you create unforgettable memories alongside the soundtrack of the city. Ready to jazz it up? Check out some of the hottest Baton Rouge jazz clubs that keep the spirit alive till the break of dawn.

FAQ

Q: Things to do in Baton Rouge for adults?

A: Hit up a live music spot, tour the art museums, or dine at a fancy Creole restaurant.

Q: Things to do in Baton Rouge today?

A: Check out local events, stroll through the downtown area, or visit the Capitol Park Museum.

Q: Fun things to do in Baton Rouge for young adults?

A: Young folks can enjoy the vibrant nightlife, explore hip cafes, or kayak on the bayou.

Q: Things to do in Baton Rouge this weekend?

A: Visit the farmers market, catch a football game, or join a historical walking tour.

Q: Things to do in Baton Rouge with kids?

A: Take the kiddos to the zoo, the Louisiana Children's Museum, or a splash pad in the summer.

Q: Things to do in Baton Rouge at night?

A: Enjoy rooftop bars, go to a jazz club, or see a show at the theater.

Q: How do I spend a day in Baton Rouge?

A: Tour the historic landmarks, enjoy Cajun cuisine, and walk along the Mississippi Riverfront.

Q: What is Baton Rouge best known for?

A: Baton Rouge is famous for its political history, LSU Tigers, and Cajun and Creole culture.

Q: Does Baton Rouge mean red stick?

A: Yep, "Baton Rouge" translates to "red stick" in English, a nod to a boundary marker once found there.

Q: What does the French word Baton Rouge mean?

A: "Baton Rouge" is French for "red stick," which references a local Native American landmark.

Final Words

So, we've dived into paddleboarding, peeked behind the scenes of a local brunch favorite, and stepped back in time at historic churches. We've brushed up on our art appreciation, spiced things up in a Cajun cooking class, and embraced family time surrounded by nature. Our adventure didn't stop there; we pedaled through parks, got smart at the science center, and savored the freshest finds at the farmers market. We found tranquility in public gardens, indulged in street food delights, and grooved to the rhythm of jazz.

Whether you're a longtime local or just visiting, you gotta admit, there's no shortage of things to do in Baton Rouge. It's a city brimming with culture, adventure, and, let's be real, some pretty amazing food. So go ahead, explore these spots and let Baton Rouge’s charm reel you in. Trust me, it's worth it!

Meet the Author
Aria Ohlsson
Aria Ohlsson, the Instagram storyteller extraordinaire, takes you on adventures through her enchanting narratives. An avid hiker, she scales peaks and weaves tales of mountaintop triumphs. When she's not conquering trails, you'll find her immersed in classic novels, finding inspiration for her next tale.
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