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Experience New Orleans’ wild bayou country on an exciting, family‐friendly airboat ride! This approximate 2‐hour boat tour winds through the mossy cypress swamp close to Jean Lafitte National Historical Park and Preserve, named for the 19th‐century pirate and smuggler. While onboard, enjoy lively commentary from a native guide as you admire lush, forested shoreline and spot local wildlife.


  • Self-drive to swampland close to New Orleans for an airboat ride
  • Enjoy a fast, thrilling ride on tidewater cypress swampland near the Jean Lafitte National Historical Park and Preserve
  • See alligators, turtles, snakes, egrets, herons, ibis and other wildlife
  • Choose from morning and afternoon departures on a small or large airboat
  • Small-group tour limited to eight people (small airboats) or 25 people (large airboats) for a more interactive experience

Recent Photos of This Tour

What You Can Expect

New Orleans Airboat Ride

Cypress swamps assume very different ecosystems based on their location

Choose a morning or afternoon tour and meet your airboat at the embarkation point in the town of Jean Lafitte, an historic fishing village named for a notorious 19th‐century pirate and privateer, located approximately 30 miles (48 km) from New Orleans. Prearranged coach pickup is also available from your downtown New Orleans or French Quarter hotel.  
Upon arriving at the airboat launch site, board a large airboat holding 15 to 25 passengers or a small airboat limited to six to eight passengers. Hold on tight as you airboat takes off into the tidewater cypress swamp near Jean Lafitte National Historical Park and Preserve. Enjoy close proximity to the water from your seat in the flat‐bottomed airboat. As you zip through the bayou, check out signature cypress trees dripping with moss and massive tupelo‐gum tree rising straight from the water. 
Depending on the season, you may spot alligators basking in sun on the shore or lurking in the water. Rest assured that the swamps are teeming with wildlife year‐round. Spot turtles, snakes, raccoons, nutria and many native birds –  you may even spot a bald eagle!
Your airboat tour ends at the embarkation point. Before leaving this iconic Cajun town, pop into the local albino alligator exhibit or grab a delectable shrimp Poboy to go (own expense). Then drive or board your coach back to New Orleans. Note: This tour does not include hotel pick‐up or drop‐off unless hotel pickup and drop‐off is selected at checkout. If you have selected hotel pickup and drop‐off please specify your hotel details in the 'special requirements' field at the time of checkout or advise the local operator directly after booking.

Customer Reviews

Alison B Australia

5 star rating: Highly Recommended January 2017

Fantastic!! The swamps and bayous were just as I'd imagined them to be. The scenery was beautiful and peaceful. The tour was small and intimate. We saw heaps of aligators and different species of birds.


5 star rating: Highly Recommended January 2017

This was a blast! We got to go fast, see gators, and learn about the Louisiana wetlands.

Niki S

5 star rating: Highly Recommended January 2017

We didn't pay for many tours on this NOLA trip but this was one thing we did do and it was so worth it. The total trip was an hour and 45 minutes and it was fun from start to finish. Our boat guide was George. He is born and raised in this part of LA and is super knowledgeable about the bayou, the animals, the flora and fauna, and all things environmental and economical. He was truly a joy. It was unfortunately on the colder side when we went out so we weren't able to see any gators swimming around. Happily, he brought a little buddy along with him. A 3 foot long male gator named Slater. Oh, I loved him so. He was a mellow little dude and we all had a chance to hold him.
Even if it's not a sunny day when you go out, I recommend bringing sunglasses. The wind is whipping and it's hard to keep your eyes open otherwise - something my husband learned the hard way. You might want to bring a water bottle as well. You don't get wet and don't have to walk through difficult terrain or anything so you can wear whatever you want.
So this was the large boat tour. The boat holds about 25 people and we had 22 on our trip. I don't think this took away from our experience. I was wondering if I should not have cheaped out and just paid for the small boat tour but then I saw that our boat went to all the same places as the small boat. It's not as though being on the small boat gave you the benefit of going deeper into the canals. The boats left and returned at the same time. Frankly, I think the small boat people were ripped off.
We rented a car and drove here. It seems absolutely ludicrous to pay 40 per person for a ride. Enterprise runs a deal where you can rent a car for 30 for 72 hours from Friday-Monday non-Airport locations. Take advantage of this. This way, you can drive yourself to this location, to the plantations, and anywhere else your heart desires.
I have to commend Viator on their customer service. We were originally scheduled for the 8th but the temperatures were near freezing that day. I called and they allowed me to switch it to the next day, when temps would be up 25 degrees. Thank you, Viator, for have a human answer the phone, and for having that human help me right away.


5 star rating: Highly Recommended December 2016

This was the highlight of the whole trip it's unique to Louisiana. Our guide JJ was extremely knowledgeable as he grew up in the bayou and educated us about the perils the swamp is facing. He was really well equipped to discuss alligators, which was the whole reason I went on this trip. He was fascinating to listen to, his personality was major PLUS, and he was very courteous and fun to spend time with. The airboat itself was a blast wear the headphones, you'll thank me for this, and I saw scenery that was awesome and so very beautiful.


5 star rating: Highly Recommended December 2016

George our tour guide was amazing and gave everyone a lot of knowledge and entertainment.


5 star rating: Highly Recommended November 2016

Our guide was a local who knew about the area extensively! We are also very thankful to the staff who helped us with our ticket issue.We thoroughly enjoyed this trip and we highly recommend it as a day tour from New Orleans!

Launa M

5 star rating: Highly Recommended November 2016

This was SO MUCH FUN. The guide was great and incredibly talented at driving the boat through the swamp. Something we would absolutely do again. We even got to hold a young alligator at the end of the ride. We would all absolutely recommend this. Remember to wear warm clothes, the wind gets chilly.


5 star rating: Highly Recommended November 2016

AMAZING in every single way! Our guide was the best man for the job

Hampton V

5 star rating: Highly Recommended November 2016

Great Time. Jay was the Man. Made the tour fun and informative.


5 star rating: Highly Recommended October 2016

Great ride on a small airboat. Saw plenty of wildlife. Very enjoyable trip.

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