Savor all the unique cuisines and Louisiana experiences that New Iberia has to offer. Visit the liveoak lined Main Street and stop by an art gallery or dine at a local restaurant with Cajun and Creole influences and fresh Louisiana seafood. Fondly called “The Queen City of the Teche,” this area is known as the spiciest, saltiest, sweetest place on Earth from the abundance of hot pepper sauce,salt domes and sugar cane fields.
New Iberia is renowned for its unique culture and cuisine, which draw from the melting pot of its Spanish-French-African American-Creole heritage. Spaniards led by Francisco Bouligny founded the town in 1779 on the banks of the Bayou Teche. The area was then settled by Acadians (French immigrants who came to be called Cajuns) who were exiled by British troops from Nova Scotia, Canada and eventually made their way as refugees to Louisiana.
Enjoy the historic side of New Iberia by walking down the award winning Main Street. Our historic commercial district won a 2005 Great American Main Street Award® sponsored by the National Trust for Historic Preservation® for its successful revitalization efforts. Visit the Bayou Teche Museum, a collection of our history, culture and artistic riches to be enjoyed and explored.Take a walking tour of our East Main Street National Register Residential District and capture the setting in the famed Dave Robicheaux novels of New Iberia’s native and Pulitzer Prize winning author James Lee Burke. All along the Bayou Teche, you’ll see why legend has it the pirate Jean Lafitte buried his treasure beneath the oaks lining the banks.
Another breath-taking treasure not to be missed is the Shadows-on-the-Teche, an antebellum home which was once occupied by Union soldiers during the Civil War. Costumed soldiers give a glimpse of the past and host a reenactment with battles, cannon fire and artillery demonstrations each November.We are also home to the South’s largest source of quality religious articles, the Rosary House which offers hand-made rosaries, devotional candles, statues and medals.
Don’tmiss New Iberia’s events and festivals throughout the year. Mardi Gras is a time of revelry and celebration with parades and balls in anticipation of our solemn Lenten season. The Iberia Performing Arts League stages plays year-round at the newly renovated Essanee Theater. Cajun concerts can be enjoyed at the Sliman Theater for the Performing Arts, the old Evangeline Theater, located in downtown New Iberia. Held in September, the Louisiana Sugar Cane Festival is an annual celebration of the sugar cane harvest, a principal crop locally referred to as grinding. October brings the World Championship Gumbo Cook Off, a festival and fundraiser for our Greater Iberia Chamber of Commerce.
A visit to our city will be rewarded with history and culture, a feast for the senses – sights, sound and taste – unlike anything you have ever experienced.