Back in May I had the opportunity to tour the Audubon Butterfly Garden and Insectarium in New Orleans, Louisiana, part of the Audubon Nature Institute. It was my last day in town, it was pouring rain, and I was honestly too tired to accomplish anything that was too much trouble. Turns out this attraction was located about a block from my hotel downtown on Canal Street. It’s open Tuesday – Sunday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., and tickets are $16.50 for adults, $12.00 for children, and $13.00 for the 65+ crowd. Be sure to look around at all of the tourist pamphlets in nearby hotels for an admission coupon. I can’t remember exactly what I paid, but it was around $11.00 – well worth finding the coupon.
There are a lot of exhibits worth seeing here. My favorites are the Butterfly Garden and the pinned insect collection. There were “caves” to walk through to experience how underground bugs live, insect cams to watch real, live bugs at work (here is a link to the cockroach cam for your viewing pleasure, sponsored by Animal Planet; and here is the Ant Cam), and even a café where you can eat bugs called Bug Appétit. I didn’t do the latter. There was also a fantastic recreation of a Louisiana Swamp, and all of the critters that would normally be found there.
I should point out that the Butterfly Garden and Insectarium is part of a larger group of Audubon attractions in the New Orleans area. There is also the Audubon Zoo, the Audubon Aquarium of the Americas, he Entergy IMAX Theatre at the Butterfly Garden and Insectarium, and you can get in to all of these places for one fee if you buy the Audubon Experience Package – $44.50 for adults, $27.50 for children, and $31.50 for seniors. This package allows a person into each attraction once over a 14 day period, so no need to rush around to see everything in one day (unless that’s all the time you have).
You can go online here and send a number of free Audubon E-cards, each featuring fantastic photography of various animals from some of the Audubon facilities. I was also able to download an App for the Insectarium from my iPod Touch before my trip to help me plan. Just go to the App Store and search for Audubon Apps. This particular App is FREE.
Here are my best photos of the bugs:
Lynn and I in the Butterfly Garden:
Here are my three traveling companions at the Café:
Emily, Doer of Stuff