Baton Rouge grants a strikingly different experience from those of the small-town stops throughout your voyage. In 1699 French visitors called the spot “red stick” (baton rouge) because of a boundary marker pole, stained with animal blood, on the river bluff. This energetic port houses over 300 years of history, seen in the unique architecture and through the unique arts and culture scene. Here, history-facing museums and landmarks fraternize with forward-looking art and industry to showcase all that Baton Rouge has to offer.
Choose to explore the diversity of this city, take a walk down the river path alongside the boat or meander through the city streets. Politics is engrained into the culture of Baton Rouge. The contrast can be seen in the accounts of past settlers on display at the Old Louisiana State Capitol and inside the corridors of the current capitol – an Art Deco skyscraper. As the home of the Louisiana State University main campus and several smaller colleges, Baton Rouge buzzes with a youthful zeal of a college town while holding fast to its graceful Southern traditions. During the fall, LSU’s home football games pack the immense Tiger Stadium, and the revelry is known to spill into the streets. A revival has begun in the city center; sites of interest include a riverfront casino, the USS Kidd floating museum and Shaw Center for the Arts, an ultra-contemporary complex that clusters an art museum, gallery spaces, theaters, and restaurants in the heart of downtown.