Oak Alley Plantation Tickets, Tours and Reviews

This post is a review of Oak Alley Plantation near New Orleans, with information on how to get tickets, what tours are available, what you will see there and analysis of online reviews. 


 

 

Oak Alley Plantation is often thought of as the most iconic plantation in Louisiana.

With its massive, 300-year-old Live Oak trees, well-preserved mansion, and close proximity to New Orleans, Oak Alley has become a must-do for many travelers to the Big Easy.  

Be sure to read our post that compares Oak Alley with other plantations near New Orleans.

TIP: Admission to this plantation is included in the New Orleans Power Pass! Get free admission to over 26 attractions around New Orleans, and skip the lines with the Power Pass.


DIRECTIONS, HOURS AND TICKETS 

How to Get Here

There is no public transportation to Oak Alley. If you have a car, we recommend using this link for directions to Oak Ally Plantation

Oak Alley Plantation is located approximately 1 hour west by car from New Orleans in Vacherie, LA. 

Guests without a car must either rent one or go with a tour company.  

Expect to pay around $70 for the trip, which includes transportation and the cost of admission to the plantation. Costs are usually lower for children depending on each individual tour company.

 

Map and Directions to Oak Alley Plantation

 


Hours

The plantation is open every day except New Year’s Day, Mardi Gras Tuesday, Thanksgiving Day, and Christmas Day.

  • March – October: 9:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m. daily
  • November – February: 9:00 a.m. – 4:30 p.m. Monday – Friday; 9:00 a.m.- 5:00 p.m. Saturday & Sunday

Tours of the house run on the hour and 1/2 hour daily.


Tickets

Tickets can be purchased upon the arrival at the plantation.

Prices (not including tax):

  • $25 – Adults (19 yrs & older)
  • $10 – Youth (13 to 18 yrs old)
  • $7 – Children (6 to 12 yrs old)
  • Free – 5 yrs & younger
  • Discounts offered with ID:  AAA, Military, Senior 65+, First Responders, Teachers, and Students 19+

TIP:  Admission to this plantation is included in the New Orleans Power Pass! Get free admission to over 26 attractions around New Orleans, and skip the lines with the Power Pass.

 


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PLANTATION HIGHLIGHTS

The “Big House”

 Tours of this mansion run every half hour and are included in the cost of admission.

Guides dress up in antebellum clothing and take groups through the many different rooms of the home, all the while sharing stories of how the property developed, why it eventually declined, and where it stands today.

A majority of guests who visit the mansion are very impressed with their experience. Several reviewers enjoyed both the beauty and the history behind this building, making sure to take several pictures during their trip.

There are very few negative reviews, and none of them indicated any serious problems with the tour. Couples were the most likely to enjoy this guided walk around the house.

 

 


Live Oaks 

The row of (nearly) 300-year-old live oak tree is what differentiates Oak Alley from other southern plantations.

The mansion’s balcony offers a great view and photo opportunity, though nothing emphasizes the true magnitude of the trees like a picture of someone standing next to one of them!

Several guests visit Oak Alley just to see the beautiful trees. Reviewers claim that this plantation features oak trees larger than cars!

Some visitors felt that the pictures of this location simply didn’t do it justice. Even customers who didn’t enjoy their visit were taken aback by the size and grandeur of these Oaks.

Couples, families and those who brought a friend for the trip were most likely to leave a positive remark about the foliage.

 

 


Slavery at Oak Alley Exhibit

One of the newer exhibits on the property, “Slavery at Oak Alley” features 6 reconstructed cottages that tell the story of the enslaved people who resided at the plantation. This tour includes a lot of live performances re-enacting life on the plantation for slaves.

Although this journey may not be for everyone, most visitors feel that it is important to experience.

A few guests were disappointed with the level of detail that they put into this interpretation of the plantation lifestyle, but this wasn’t a common complaint.

In fact, an overwhelming majority of reviews for this exhibit are absolutely stellar. Couples were the most likely to appreciate this tour.

 

 


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REVIEWS OF OAK ALLEY PLANTATION OVERALL

Oak Alley Plantation currently has a 4 ½ star rating on TripAdvisor.

A very small percentage of reviews for this historic location is negative, indicating that most visitors absolutely love exploring the grounds.

As a matter of fact, some guests felt that it was quite easy to spend several hours discovering Oak Alley.

Thousands of positive comments recommend a visit to this estate. By and large, couples were the most likely to enjoy their trip.

Reviews for the tours described above are generally very favorable.

Although they have received some negative comments, most visitors have a wonderful time exploring Oak Alley Plantation with the help of a tour guide.

Several guests indicated that their docent was very knowledgeable, providing a lot of valuable information about the mansion and its history.

Customers were most likely to leave a glowing review after taking one of these plantation tours with either their family, friends or significant others.

Read some of the reviews here.

 


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TOURS TO OAK ALLEY PLANTATION

In addition to tours offered at the plantation, there are also a few companies that offer day trips to Oak Alley.

These trips typically last for approximately 5-6 hours, giving you plenty of time to explore the grounds.

This is a perfect opportunity for anyone who wants to avoid driving to and from the area, allowing them to just sit back and enjoy the ride.

Ticket prices typically fall in the $70 range (less for children).


Gray Line Tours 

This trip is offered twice daily with departures at 12 pm and 1 pm. The tour is about 5 hours in total (including travel time).

Gray Line has very good reviews in New Orleans, and most guests who took this particular tour were very impressed.

Tickets

  • Adults $67 
  • Seniors 65+ $62
  • Children (6-12) $33 

Cajun Pride Tours 

This very highly rated tour departs at 12:30 pm and runs between 5-6 hours. Unlike Gray Line, Cajun Pride offers hotel pick-up for their customers.

Tickets

  • Adults $59 
  • Children (3-12) $40

Cajun Encounters 

This tour departs earlier than the other two companies and provides hotel pick-up. Departure time is between 9:00 am-9:30 am (depending on your pick-up location). The duration of the tour is approximately 7 hours (including travel time).

Although they have received some negative reviews, it’s worth noting that they do provide hotel pick-up. Unlike their competitors, they offer a tour that starts in the morning, which may be preferable to some people.

Tickets

  • Adults $62.75
  • Children (4-11) $49.75
  • Infants (0-3) Free

 

For more information on visiting other plantations with a tour company, check out our post covering New Orleans Plantation Tours.

 


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HISTORY 

The incredible Live Oaks that welcome guests to the mansion and give the property its name were planted between 1725-1750, though why they were planted and by whom remains a mystery.

Valcour Aime, a prominent sugarcane farmer, purchased the land in 1830 and established a community of enslaved people to care for the plantation.

A few years later Aime traded the plantation with his brother-in-law Jacques Telesphore Roman who would eventually build the mansion that sits on the property today. The mansion was completed in 1837 and was built entirely by slave labor.

There was a large enslaved community that lived on the property throughout the antebellum period. One of the most famous enslaved men to reside there was Antoine, who gained great recognition for grafting “paper shell” pecan trees.

The Roman family continued to live at Oak Alley until just after the Civil War when it was sold at auction due to the high cost of maintaining it.

The plantation was not damaged during the war but quickly fell in disrepair. Oak Alley relied heavily on slave labor, and with the ratification of the 13th Amendment, it became impossible for the plantation to continue operating as it originally did.

In 1925,  Andrew Stewart purchased the property as a gift for his wife Josephine. Together, the Stewarts initiated a restoration project that would span the rest of their lives.

In 1966, a few years before her death and decades after her husband’s, Josephine established a non-profit foundation to preserve the home and 25 acres of the grounds. Josephine Stewart passed away in 1972.  

As the longest resident of Oak Alley and in honor of her memory, all the clocks in the mansion are stopped at 7:30, the time of Josephine’s death. Both she and her husband are buried on the property.

In 1978 Oak Alley became officially designated as a National Historic Landmark.


Ghosts at Oak Alley Plantation 

As with most antebellum plantations of the South, Oak Alley is rumored to be home to some spiritual activity. Of course, there is great debate as to how much truth is behind these tales, but a few of the more well-supported stories include:

  • A woman who very much resembles Mrs. Stewart, the last private owner of the property, has been seen looking out the window of the mansion’s lavender room after dark.
  • The sound of a horse-drawn carriage and the whirl of dust being kicked up by some sort of presence, both of which were unaccompanied by a material explanation.
  • A candlestick that flew across the room in front of a tour guide and 35 guests.
  • Empty chairs rocking in unison.

Movies, TV Shows and Music Videos Filmed at Oak Valley Plantation

  • Midnight Bayou
  • Ghost Hunters
  • Nightrider
  • Primary Colors
  • Interview with a Vampire
  • Beyoncé’s Déjà Vu Music Video

 


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