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St. Joseph Plantation
St. Joseph Plantation

St. Joseph Plantation

3535 Louisiana 18, Vacherie , Louisiana

The Basics

St. Joseph Plantation was built for the Scioneaux family using slave labor. Gabriel Valcour Aime, known as the Louis XIV of Louisiana, later bought it for his daughter when she married. After the Civil War, it was sold to the Waguespack family, who have retained ownership ever since.

Visitors can tour the house and its manicured grounds, see the cabins where the family’s slaves lived, and explore interesting exhibits detailing what life was like on the plantation both for the slaves who worked the sugar fields and the wealthy owners that lived here. Visitors often combine a trip here with a visit to the Museum of Slavery or visit as part of a plantations tour.

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Small-Group Tour of Laura and St. Joseph Plantations from New Orleans
Likely to Sell OutLikely to Sell Out
Small-Group Tour of Laura and St. Joseph Plantations from New Orleans
star-4.5
$128.00 per adult
Traveler Favorite
A memorable plantations tour!
Today, we did a plantations tour with Ellen. She picked us up in a new, spotlessly clean van and gave us a great overview commentary of NOLA and the areas that we passed through. She also offered recommendations and answered all the questions we had regarding restaurant recommendations in the French Quarter and beyond. Merci bien, Isabelle and Ellen, for making our tour a fun and memorable day!
Matthew_P, Nov 2021

Recent reviews from experiences in New Orleans

star-5
Spring Break
Carlan_M, Sep 2021
Small-Group Whitney Plantation, Museum of Slavery and St. Joseph Plantation Tour
Our tour guide was the so patient, kind and knowledgeable! I highly suggest using this company if you are considering touring. Whitney plantation was so REAL , so RAW! Covid 19 guidelines adhered to! Went with teenagers and they loved it and were engaged in excursion! Thank you
star-5
I’d definitely go again.
Jessica_J, Jun 2021
Small-Group Tour of Laura and St. Joseph Plantations from New Orleans
The whole experience was terrific!! Gazele was great!! The plantation were very clean and beautiful.
star-5
Awakening
Shantae_C, Aug 2021
Small-Group Whitney Plantation, Museum of Slavery and St. Joseph Plantation Tour
Love the stories and the ability to really showcase the history and challenges that the enslaved had to go through! History should never be forgotten or erased!
star-5
A Terrific Tour To Laura and Destrehan Plantations!
Jim_M, Oct 2021
Small-Group Tour of Laura and St. Joseph Plantations from New Orleans
My wife and I contacted Isabelle, owner of Tours by Isabelle, the day prior to our scheduled Tuesday tour. Isabelle told us that she had been trying to reach us because there was only one other party of 2 that wanted to take a tour, but the tour was a different one than the one we scheduled. There was nobody else scheduled for the tour we were interested in. How sad it was to learn that! The Covid-19 coronavirus was obviously taking it’s toll on tourism in New Orleans. Isabelle then offered to provide us a private tour in her vehicle for an additional amount, rather than the planned 14-passenger van that we expected to be nearly full of fellow tourists. The additional amount was very reasonable so we agreed, and she told us she would pick us up at 11:30am the next day. Isabelle also told us that St Joseph Plantation was closed because of damage from Hurricane Ida, but she had booked another tour to Destrehan Plantation to go along with visiting Laura Plantation. That change was fine with us. Promptly at 11:30am on Tuesday, Isabelle picked us up at our hotel, showed us a large plastic-laminated map of the metropolitan area on one side and the locations to which we would be traveling on the other, and we were on our way. As we made the approximately one hour drive to Laura Plantation, Isabelle explained to us the types of industries, the types of vegetation, and a brief history of the areas we were passing through and answered our questions. Isabelle also told us something we had never heard before: The City of New Orleans is an island! When we arrived at Laura Plantation, we joined only one other couple in the tour of the plantation hosted by guides in period dress. The hour-plus tour began by describing the history of the plantation and its owners while we toured the main house where we saw several rooms with period furnishings. We then toured the grounds behind the main house and learned about the slaves that were on the plantation and also toured a small building that once housed slaves. We learned that in 1872 the plantation was renamed in honor of Laura Locoul, a great granddaughter of the original plantation owner whose “Memoires of the Old Plantation Home” describe the plantation and those who lived there. Isabelle then drove us for about 40 minutes to Destrehan Plantation where we had another guided tour hosted by guides in period dress and, with again, only one other couple. In the Plantation Home, we saw a number of rooms with period furniture and learned that the original Home was completed in 1787 making it the oldest Plantation Home in the lower Mississippi River Valley. Our small group also saw some other buildings and slave cabins on the grounds. The Destrehan Plantation property closed at 4:30pm, and Isabelle had us back to our hotel by 5:30pm as she had originally estimated. Isabelle then texted me 9 pictures of my wife and me in various situations while we participated on the two tours. What a nice surprise! We strongly recommend that anybody who wants to see 2 plantations in the Lower Mississippi River Valley in one day choose Tours by Isabelle. Isabelle has been a small business tour owner for over 40 years since she first arrived in New Orleans, and she knows the City of New Orleans and the surrounding area very well. Also, if Tours by Isabelle is an option for another Viator tour you are considering, we recommend you choose Tours by Isabelle. You will be very glad you did! If you want to take a tour in the New Orleans area, this would be a good time to do it. The crowds are small, but the locals, like Isabelle, are very eager and capable to provide visitors engaging and long-remembered experiences.
star-5
Whitney Plantation Tour
Michelle_C, Jun 2021
Small-Group Whitney Plantation, Museum of Slavery and St. Joseph Plantation Tour
It was one of the best tours I have ever done . The tour guide,Giselle was wonderful ! She was very knowledgeable .The subject matter of the tour is sensitive and she was very empathetic and caring. I was hesitant to take the tour being a black women but it was worth it.
star-5
Whitney and St Joseph plantation tours
Erinn_G, Jun 2021
Small-Group Whitney Plantation, Museum of Slavery and St. Joseph Plantation Tour
Tours by Isabelle is tour company we used. Our tour guide Giselle was amazing. Both plantations that we visited gave us a real history lesson. This is great tour to do if you plan on going to New Orleans.
star-5
Two very different Experiences rolled into One
LOREE_L, May 2021
Small-Group Tour of Laura and St. Joseph Plantations from New Orleans
Rene our driver was great and so informative. Kristyn at Laura was incredible and so full of poise. Very informative. St. Joseph's was also informative but different since it was from a descendant's POV. Hard to hear the truth of the past but important to learn.
star-5
Humbling experience.
Jaelah_H, Aug 2021
Small-Group Whitney Plantation, Museum of Slavery and St. Joseph Plantation Tour
My group and I truly enjoyed ourselves with the tours of the plantation. The Whitney plantation was very humbling and sorrowful. It was well needed to see how my ancestors lived and so forth. The St. Joseph tour gave in-site of the lives of the master while the Whitney plantation gave in-site of the slaves and their lives. Very educational. John was an excellent guide and very friendly. Many laughs and good vibes. John was very informative and a true southern gentleman. He was punctual on arriving and departing. The van was clean, rode smooth, and was comfortable. I would recommend this tour to everyone.
star-5
A must do!!
helmersc18, Feb 2020
Small-Group Tour of Laura and St. Joseph Plantations from New Orleans
Excellent tour of two very different plantations! Guides are well-versed in the history, portraying the lives of both the “big house” and the “back of the house” in a respectful and illuminating the way of life of this time period!
star-4
Emotional
qiana_l, Nov 2020
Small-Group Whitney Plantation, Museum of Slavery and St. Joseph Plantation Tour
I didn't like that your wi fi dont work u are left to visit alone so u are giving a website to down load audio . It didn't work so we was lost to take guess at what we saw
star-5
St. Joseph and Whitney Plantation Tour!
Sharon_S, Oct 2020
Small-Group Whitney Plantation, Museum of Slavery and St. Joseph Plantation Tour
Great Experience! I highly recommend it. Not only did we get a tour of both plantations but Miss Isabelle was full of knowledge about the history of Louisiana and the unique terrain of the area. Loved it! Will definitely do another one when I am back next Spring!
star-5
Enjoy the plantations!
lionheart716, Feb 2020
Small-Group Tour of Laura and St. Joseph Plantations from New Orleans
Madeline was our driver/guide on the bus, and she is fabulous. She knows her history and is spell-binding in how she tells her stories. The tours at each of the plantations were given by staff at each location, and were just okay. We had more time at Oak Valley, so I brought a bagged lunch that I enjoyed under the massive oaks.

Things to Know Before You Go

  • Admission to the plantation is via paid ticket.

  • Discounted tickets are available for students, youths, seniors, and active military. Children under 5 go free.

  • A visit to St. Joseph’s connected sister plantation, Felicity, is included in the ticket price.

  • The renowned architect Henry Hobson Richardson was born here in 1838.

  • Throughout October, the plantation hosts daily “mourning tours” detailing the Creole customs and rituals that used to be observed after the death of a family member.

  • Parts of the movie 12 Years a Slave were filmed at the Felicity plantation.

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How to Get There

St. Joseph Plantation is located at 3535 Highway 18 in Vacherie, 50 miles (80 kilometers) outside New Orleans. Most people opt to visit as part of a tour with transport provided, or by car. There is free parking at the plantation. Access via public transport is difficult.

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When to Get There

St. Joseph Plantation is open from Thursday to Tuesday. It is closed on Wednesdays and major holidays. Guided tours depart on the hour from 10am–3pm, with tours early in the day tending to be quieter.

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Museum of Slavery

Gain insight into what life was like for the slaves who spent their days working in the fields and homes of plantation owners at the nearby Whitney Plantation’s Museum of Slavery. Through first-person narratives, the museum aims to present a true picture of the often terrible conditions in which the enslaved people lived and the many hardships they had to endure.

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