The Antebellum south comes to life at the many plantations that line the Mississippi River, a throwback to the city’s agrarian past. Located as close as an hour outside of New Orleans, you can tour these stately mansions and hear stories from all perspectives, from the famous local families that built and owned them to the views of the slaves who worked there. Learn why the kitchens are not part of the main house and find out how residents lived in comfort before air-conditioning. Many of the plantations serve lunch so you can make a day of it or just visit one or two. Some offer overnight accommodations with dinner and breakfast. For a list of tour companies that offer plantation tours see below. For a list of plantations, see here.