19 Secretely Amazing Places to Retire in Louisiana

Written by Shreya Agrawal
Published: October 8, 2023
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Louisiana is famous for its vibrant culture, delectable cuisine, and distinctive landscapes. Therefore, it can provide retirees with a captivating blend of history, art, and natural beauty. While cities such as New Orleans and Baton Rouge may be the first to come to mind, the state has numerous hidden gems that make it an exceptional destination for retirement.

1. Natchitoches: Louisiana’s Oldest City

Calm Waters on Cane River Lake in Historic District of Natchitoches, Louisiana from Church Street Bridge

Looking down upon the Cane River Lake from the Church Street Bridge in Natchitoches, Louisiana, oldest permanent settlement in the Louisiana Purchase. The riverbank stage is on the left.

©Brad Dison/iStock via Getty Images

Natchitoches, founded in 1714, immerses retirees in a rich historical setting. The city has exploration opportunities at Fort St. Jean Baptiste and the Natchitoches Historic District. Nestled on the serene Cane River Lake, Natchitoches also has charming waterfront homes and picturesque views. The city’s annual Christmas Festival and year-round cultural celebrations embrace Louisiana’s diverse heritage, if retirees like that.

2. St. Francisville: Quaint Southern Living

St. Francisville Gazebo

A gazebo in a park with Spanish moss in St. Francisville, Louisiana

©Sabrina Gordon/iStock via Getty Images

St. Francisville has well-preserved antebellum architecture as well as beautiful plantations like Rosedown and Myrtles. The town also has ample opportunities for outdoor enthusiasts, being close to Tunica Hills and the Mississippi River. Thus, the vibrant arts scene and historic charm make St. Francisville a perfect destination for retirees interested in culture.

3. Covington: A Taste of the Northshore

Saint Tammany Parish Courthouse (former)

Covington, Louisiana

©BOB WESTON/iStock via Getty Images

The town of Covington is nestled in the scenic Northshore region, known for lush greenery, parks, and outdoor recreation. The town also has excellent healthcare facilities, including St. Tammany Parish Hospital. Thus, Covington’s thriving arts scene and galleries make it an artistic haven for retirees.

4. Grand Coteau: Historic and Spiritual

Barn in Grand Coteau

“Old yellow barn in Grand Coteua, Lousiana.”

©itsjustluck/iStock via Getty Images

Grand Coteau is home to the Jesuit Spirituality Center, where retirees can explore their spiritual interests. The town’s historic buildings and serene atmosphere also provide them a unique setting for retirement. Thus, the breathtaking countryside views and a slower pace of life make Grand Coteau an appealing choice.

5. Breaux Bridge: Crawfish Capital of the World

Bridge over Bayou Teche, Breaux Bridge, Louisiana, USA

A rusty and dilapidated Bridge over Bayou Teche in Breaux Bridge, Louisiana, United States.

©Dietmar Rauscher/iStock via Getty Images

Breaux Bridge immerses retirees in Cajun culture with its music, dance, and authentic cuisine. Nestled along the Bayou Teche, the town also has picturesque waterfront views. Community festivals like the Crawfish Festival and Zydeco Breakfast also provide lively entertainment.

6. Minden: Friendly Small-Town Living

A scenic river flowing in Webster Parish in Louisiana

A scenic river flowing in Webster Parish in Louisiana

©Norm Lane/iStock via Getty Images

Minden is known for its close-knit and friendly community. The town offers outdoor activities such as fishing and boating on Lake Bistineau, as well as visits to the scenic Germantown Colony Museum. Its proximity to nearby Shreveport also provides access to healthcare and cultural attractions.

7. Thibodaux: Bayou Living


Turtle swimming in Thibodaux reservoir

©Mudbug Photography/iStock via Getty Images

Thibodaux embraces the bayou lifestyle with opportunities for fishing, boating, and bird-watching. The town’s historic district is adorned with antebellum homes, thus providing a charming atmosphere. Cultural events and festivals also celebrate the region’s rich heritage.

8. New Iberia: The Heart of Cajun Country

Azalea Garden

Azaleas at the peak of blossoming surrounded by huge oaks draped in spanish moss on a bright, sunshiny day. Gardens at Avery Island, New Iberia, Louisiana.

©Warren_Price/iStock via Getty Images

New Iberia immerses retirees in Cajun culture with music, food, and historic attractions like Avery Island. The town enjoys the tranquil beauty of the Bayou Teche and oak-lined streets. Historic homes such as Shadows-on-the-Teche and the Bayou Teche Museum also offer glimpses into the rich past.

9. Opelousas: Zydeco Capital

Green Building Opelousas

A green building during the summer in Opelousas, Louisiana

©Sabrina Gordon/iStock via Getty Images

Opelousas, known as the Zydeco Capital of the world, attracts music enthusiasts. The cultural heritage of the town can also be explored at the Creole Heritage Center while local restaurants offer authentic Creole and Cajun cuisine.

10. St. Martinville: Picturesque Bayou Town

Beautiful Evangeline Pond in St. Martinville, Louisiana

Peaceful and quiet view of the pond in the park of Louisiana

©Cheri Alguire/iStock via Getty Images

St. Martinville’s bayou setting appeals to retirees who value scenic beauty and a peaceful lifestyle. The Evangeline Oak Park is a tranquil spot overlooking Bayou Teche. Meanwhile, cultural history can be explored at sites like the African American Museum and the Acadian Memorial.

11. Rayne: The Frog Capital

Brick Facade Louisiana

The side of a brick building on a rainy day in Rayne, Louisiana

©Sabrina Gordon/iStock via Getty Images

Rayne proudly hosts the annual Frog Festival, celebrating its title as the Frog Capital of the World. The town has the warmth of small-town living and a strong sense of community. Authentic Cajun dishes are also readily available at local restaurants like the Frog City Café.

12. Donaldsonville: Historic Elegance

Ascension Parish Courthouse 1/2

Donaldsonville, Louisiana

©BOB WESTON/iStock via Getty Images

Donaldsonville’s historic homes and buildings show the town’s well-preserved architecture. The scenic beauty of the Mississippi River and riverside parks further enhances the experience. Museums like the River Road African American Museum also contribute to the rich culture of the town.

13. Plaquemine: The City of Hospitality

historic Plaquemine Lockhouse

famous historic Plaquemine Lockhouse

©Meinzahn/iStock via Getty Images

Plaquemine is famous for its warm and welcoming community. The city is home to historic attractions like the Plaquemine Lock State Historic Site and Iberville Museum. Local restaurants also serve delectable Cajun and Creole cuisine.

Thus, all these towns are great options to retire, especially if you love Cajun food, cultural attractions and peaceful spots.

Why Retire in Louisiana?

Louisiana is a unique state. There are plenty of reasons why it is a great place to retire. Here are some compelling reasons why retirees find Louisiana appealing:

Rich Cultural Heritage

Louisiana is a melting pot of diverse cultures, primarily influenced by French, Spanish, African, and Creole heritage. Retirees can immerse themselves in this rich melange of culture, through the vibrant music scene, lively festivals and the delectable cuisine. Cities like New Orleans and Baton Rouge are hubs of cultural activities where retirees can experience jazz, blues, and Cajun and Creole flavors.

Scenic Beauty

Louisiana has diverse landscapes including serene bayous, lush swamps and picturesque rivers. The state’s natural beauty provides plenty of opportunities for outdoor activities such as bird-watching, fishing, and hiking. The Northshore region along Lake Pontchartrain and the Atchafalaya Basin are also popular spots for nature enthusiasts.

Culinary Delights

If you’re a foodie, you’re in the right place. Louisiana is famous for its distinctive cuisine, characterized by flavorsome dishes like gumbo, jambalaya, crawfish étouffée, and beignets. Retirees can indulge in delicious Creole and Cajun dishes at local restaurants.

Festive Spirit

From Mardi Gras in New Orleans to the Crawfish Festival in Breaux Bridge, retirees can participate in lively celebrations that showcase the state’s joie de vivre.

Historical Significance

The state has a rich historical legacy, with antebellum plantations, historic districts and landmarks like the French Quarter in New Orleans. Retirees who are interested in history can explore these sites and learn more about Louisiana’s role in American history.

Affordable Cost of Living

Louisiana has a relatively low cost of living compared to many other states. Housing costs, in particular, are affordable, making it an attractive option for retirees on a fixed income. Additionally, the absence of state income tax on Social Security benefits is a definite financial advantage for retirees.

Healthcare Facilities

The state is also home to several well-regarded healthcare facilities, including the Ochsner Health System and Tulane Medical Center in New Orleans. Access to quality healthcare is an important consideration for retirees, and lucky for them, Louisiana provides several reliable options.

Proximity to Urban Amenities

While Louisiana has a lot of tranquil small towns and rural areas, it is also home to noisy, vibrant cities like New Orleans and Baton Rouge. Retirees can therefore enjoy the best of both worlds by residing in charming towns while still having easy access to urban amenities.

In conclusion, Louisiana’s unique blend of culture, natural beauty, affordability, and warm community spirit makes it an excellent choice for retirees who seek a rich and fulfilling retirement experience.

The photo featured at the top of this post is © Nina Alizada/Shutterstock.com

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About the Author

Shreya is a climate scientist. She also studies paleontology and evolutionary biology. She enjoys reading all kinds of literature and listening to rock music in her free time.

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