20 miles north of Lafayette and the third-oldest city in the state, Opelousas is known for its rich heritage of Cajun and Creole ancestry, and wonderful music and food. Opelousas hosts several popular festivals throughout the year. In the 18th and 19th centuries it served as a major trading post between New Orleans and Natchitoches.
Opelousas is known as both the spice center of the world, and as the center for Zydeco music.
Shopping and Entertainment
If you love antiquing, you’ll love Opelousas. The city is home to some of the area’s best antique and novelty gift shops like Back in Time, Doucet's Acadiana Antiques, Durio's Curios, Jardiniere Flowers & Gifts, and the Spotted Cat Antiques & Flea Market.
Try one of the oldest-running community theaters in Louisiana at the Opelousas Little Theater, or if you’re feeling lucky there’s the Evangeline Downs Racetrack, Casino & Hotel.
Local culinary legends make their home in Opelousas. Want to see where Tony Chachere’s Creole Seasoning is made, Lou Ana Cooking Oil is produced, or Targil Seasoning, Inc. spices are mixed? They’re all here in Opelousas!
An Opelousas institution since World War II, come and taste real Cajun smoked sausage and tasso at Savoie’s Sausage Grocery.
Parks and Recreation
Since 1946, the Yambilee Festival is held each year in Opelousas. Concerts, a parade and beauty pageant, and a cooking competition highlight the festival that starts on the Wednesday before the last full weekend of October and continues through the weekend.
The Original Southwest Louisiana Zydeco Festival, held in Opelousas since 1982, features live performances by Zydeco musicians throughout the festival.
The city operates two recreation centers offering a variety of summer programs, and maintains a total of nine public parks.