The guides of Southern Style Tours use their knowledge of local history, culture, and culinary delights to lead guests on jaunts around the city. Air-conditioned minibuses carry day-trippers on morning and afternoon trips through the French Quarter during Southern Style's city tours. Routes wind past celebrity houses and famed toolsheds as expert guides give an overview of New Orleans's history, pausing for a spooky detour that winds through the St. Louis Cemetery and its gothic aboveground tombs. Trekkers also observe the lingering effects of Hurricane Katrina on New Orleans’s Lower Ninth Ward and find inspiration by witnessing rebuilding efforts led in part by Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie's initiative. Guides launch urban expeditions seven days a week, with tours running twice per day, first from 9 a.m. to noon and again from 2 p.m. to 5 p.m. Pickup begins 30 minutes prior to each excursion.
Formed in 1989, the Louisiana Tour Company started out by organizing Swamp tours narrated by knowledgeable boat captains. Today, the company has grown to offer other excursions such as city Ghost tours on foot, visits to plantations in a van, and Airboat tours of swamp and marshland on the backs of indigenous amphibians. Three-hour New Orleans City and Post-Katrina tours invite sightseers to load up into a minibus to visit city landmarks and areas ravaged by Hurricane Katrina.
For more than three decades, Save Our Cemeteries has preserved the architectural and cultural beauty of historic cemeteries with restoration work, lectures, photography sales, and guided tours of the city's above-ground coffin repositories. At 10 a.m. from Friday through Sunday, cemetery sightseers can take a gander at the oven wall vaults and stone tombs of St. Louis Cemetery No. 1, which was founded in 1789 as the burial ground for famous Louisianan revolutionaries, chess champions, and voodoo queen Marie Laveau.
Witches Brew Tours guide groups and walking tours through all angles of the haunts and mysteries of the French Quarter, where spirits, witches, voodoo, and vampires dwell. Fully licensed guides tell tales of vengeful ghosts and the history of Marie Laveau, the Queen of Voodoo. Guests can participate in walking, trolley, or mule-drawn-carriage tours through the city’s winding streets or the maze of mausoleums at St. Louis Cemetery No. 1.
Even unbelievers can glean some new knowledge from Magic Tours. Professors, historians, and journalists are among the guides that lead the cemetery and ghost tours, so they're not only spooky, but also historically accurate. And since New Orleans has a reputation for its cemeteries and outlandish burial customs, they have plenty of facts to spill on each tour. The oldest haunt they explore is the Saint Louis Cemetery, which has been open for business since 1789. Over the past two centuries, thousands of locals—famous and anonymous—have come to their final rest there, including legendary voodoo practitioner Marie Laveau.
After Frankie Cheek discovered segway tours while visiting Italy, he decided to start his own company in his native New Orleans. When he was boarding a plane back home, Hurricane Katrina struck, redirecting him to Louisiana’s grandfather country: France. While exploring Paris in the wake of the devastating tragedy back home, Cheek drew inspiration for his future segway tours—he was resolved, according to his website, to "help a city rich in history move forward while riding the most high-tech transporter available." Since returning to New Orleans, he’s led daily segway adventures, whirring groups of sightseers around the French Quarter, the riverfront, and Jackson Square with the ease, maneuverability, and safety-minded attitude of a cool biker gang. Plus, through a partnership with other tour companies, Cheek can also guide guests through swamps, plantations, and supposedly haunted locales.