Sitting on the site of a former sugar plantation owned by Etienne de Boré, today Audubon Park extends over 340 acres, and is located between the Mississippi River and St. Charles Avenue, across from Tulane and Loyola Universities. In the back of Audubon Park on the Mississippi River you will find the Audubon Zoo, one of the highest rated zoos in the United States, with a fine collection of exotic animals in nature habitats. Some of the special exhibits include the Louisiana Swamp Exhibit, the Sea Lions, the World of Primates, Jaguar Jungle, the White Tigers, the Rhinos, the Dragon's Lair, and Monkey Hill. Audubon Zoo also has an animal-themed water park, an endangered species carousal and a petting zoo.
Audubon Park has both tennis and golf. The Audubon Park Golf Course is over 100 years old, but has been recently completely redesigned by Dennis Griffiths and has 18 holes and features contoured fairways, manicured Tif Eagle greens, four lagoons and exquisite landscaping on a par 62, 4,220-yard layout set among hundred year-old oak trees.
2. New Orleans City Park
City Park was once part of the Jean Louis Allard Plantation, and is located alongside Bayou St. John, an important early route from the Gulf of Mexico to the Mississippi River. Formerly a forest, the present-day park spans about 1300 acres, and is one of the biggest urban parks in the nation. City Park has the largest collection of mature oaks in the world, some over 600 years old. The Park boasts an historic carousel dating from 1906, listed on the National Register of Historic Places, inside the Carousel Gardens Amusement Park. Storyland is a fairytale playground, where children have played for generations.
City Park is home to the New Orleans Museum of Art, and the Sidney Bestoff Sculpture Garden. The Park is the place to be at Christmas when it is aglow with lights for the annual Celebration in the Oaks display.