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Published: April 20th 2012
Front of house
Picture taken at the levee which is in front of the house
Touring the low country along the rivers in Louisiana can be a lot of fun and stopping at some of the “plantations” can be enlightened. We stopped at several “plantations” and this is about our stop at the Oak Alley close to Vacherie, Louisiana. This plantation was built between 1837 and 1839. The mansion has a square floor design which surrounds the central hall. On the outside one can quickly see the roots of the name Oak Alley and large oak tress that run toward the river which one cannot see today since there is a flood levees in place. On the four sides of the house there are 28 Doric columns, which was a common feature of many of the mansions located on river roads such as this one. You will notice that prices to get into the various houses usually run around $20 and if you get a discount it will be small, perhaps a dollar. The discount here was $1.00. Some publications indicate there is an AAA discount and/senior/children discount. Keep in mind this is a tourist attraction designed not to preserve history, but to make a profit.
You can reach the location either by your own
Oak Alley Back of House
This photo is of the back of the house just as you go into the grounds
personal motorized transportation and tours are available form New Orleans via tour buses. We noticed the cost of entrance and the bus ride was around $50 per person from most companies and if you take in a couple of plantations there is another discount.
Before going to any of the “plantations” you might be well advised to do a little research on those you plan to tour. While there is not a lot of material available in the Dallas area at either the library or book stores, there is some materials available on the internet and lots of pamphlets and books in the Louisiana area. Doing some pre-arrival research will help you determine what is fact, fiction and “hype”. You will get a lot of “hype” as these are tourist attractions and the owners want to make you feel good about your tour.
Oak Alley is on the National Historic Landmarks The house has high ceilings and large windows. The floors were originally marble however today they are wood. The tour of the house was interesting however one is always thinking about the tour guide who has been “programmed” for each section you will enter. Asking her a
Bell At House
Bell located at side rear of house used to notify field hands and other of certain happenings on the plantation such as dinner and supper
specific questions will more than likely not result in an answer.
The owns welcome picture taking however not with a flash. Taking pictures on the grounds is a photographer’s delight. A professional photographer must pay a fee for shooting such things as a wedding, etc. After leaving the main house there is a short walk to the auto museum. Don’t get too excited as there are just two 1930’s cars in the shed. Across from the museum is a tent that ahs been erected to duplicate one of those of a Confederate officer. A tour agent will give you some history as you notice the “tip jar” sitting right in front of you.
Just a short walk is the gift shop and restaurant filled with the usual tourist items for this type attraction. We chose not to eat at the restaurant after reviewing the menu and noticing the rather high prices for lunch. You can walk throughout the grounds at your own leisure without feeling rushed.
While we think the admission fee is too high especially for a family, it seems to be the going rate in the area for these type attractions. We think this location,
A View Toward The House
Looking toward the hosue
in spite of some shortcomings, is still a five star attraction within that area
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