Learn about Louisiana’s earliest Native American inhabitants, experience an oil rig firsthand, or do a little shopping, all in St. Mary Parish. Take a stroll back through time when you visit the Chitimacha Museum in Charenton, where you’ll find the story of the tribe known as “the people of many waters.” View the Chitimacha’s famous handcrafted baskets, preserved artifacts, and other intriguing exhibits.
Explore St. Mary Parish’s oldest settlement by visiting the Berwick Heritage Museum, which is maintained by the Berwick Historical Society. Walk through the halls of one of the first homes built in the area, filled with fine antiques and countless photographs documenting the hamlet’s story. Then, head over to First Street in the Berwick Historic District for a walking tour of the oldest parts of town. Taking place the third Saturday of every month, the Berwick Town Market is an event you won’t want to miss. Browse wares from local artisans and farmers, offering everything from clothing and handmade furniture to locally grown vegetables and sweet treats. End your day with a delicious meal from a variety of vendors at the Lighthouse Food Truck Park while taking in an idyllic sunset over the Berwick Bay and the preserved Southwest Reef Lighthouse.
In Franklin, architecture lovers will bask in the exquisite details of the historic homes and shops that exude Southern charm on the historic district walking tour of downtown. Take in the Greek Revival architecture of the 1800s with a stop at the stunning Shadowlawn plantation. Nearby, authentically restored to its original glory, the Grevemberg House Museum showcases the lifestyle of its occupants during the mid-19th century.
For an experience truly unique to St. Mary Parish, visit The Rig Museum in Morgan City. This site is touted as the only place in the world where the public can board an authentic offshore oil rig, Mr. Charlie. Explore the rig’s interactive displays and equipment used for diving and remotely operated vehicles.
For aviation enthusiasts, the Wedell-Williams Aviation and Cypress Sawmill Museum should be the destination of choice. Located in Patterson, this distinctive museum shares the origin stories of two large pieces of Louisiana history—aviation and lumber. Enjoy exhibits of classic aircraft and memorabilia as well as relics from Louisiana’s lumber industry.
With such a vast and varied history, Louisiana’s Cajun Coast is a true gem of America’s past and present. Start planning your next jaunt through St. Mary Parish and the Cajun Coast by visiting cajuncoast.com.