Audubon Butterfly Garden and Insectarium in New Orleans

When I planned out our time in New Orleans, I originally decided on doing the Aquarium of Americas one day and the Audubon Butterfly Garden and Insectarium on a separate day.

Audubon Butterfly Garden and Insectarium

Even though the recommendation to visit both of these places came from Sarah from New Orleans CVB, I never bothered to ask how long each one was. So after our time in the aquarium, I realized that we can easily head over to the Insectarium on the same day. And you know what that meant. We just got ourselves a full, extra new day to explore New Orleans at the end of our trip. (Great little bonus).

So to break it down for you. The aquarium can take up to two hours to explore. This obviously depends on your kids. Then walk over to the Insectarium which is about a 15-minute stroll from the Aquarium. Then spend about two hours enjoying all things bugs.

It is a perfect kid day.

Audubon Insectarium e

Recommendation – one thing I always do before going to any animal park or attraction is to check out the different shows or cool things that are unique to the place. This way you can time your visit around the schedule of what you want to do most.

In our case, my kids were all gung-ho on checking out the Bug Appetit. No this isn’t feeding time for bugs. But rather feeding time for humans to try different bug dishes. And we made it just in time before it, they shut down, so definitely check the schedule.

Bug appetit hours - Audubon Butterfly Garden and Insectarium

Crazy statistic – did you know that almost 50% of the world has bugs as part of their diet?

This truly shocked me. Not that half of our planet dines on creepy crawlers, but that my kids couldn’t get enough of it. My kids – who are picky eaters, barely eat anything at home – ate: Chocolate-covered crickets, cookies with mealworms, and egg nog with a wax worm.

Bug Buffet - Audubon Butterfly Garden and Insectarium

Eating Bugs Video

The museum is truly one of the most innovative we’ve ever visited. Aside from seeing the bugs, you get to do a lot of interactive stuff.

audubon insectarium e

Fieldwork fun (inside).

field camp at the audubon insectarium e

You can even touch some unusual-looking bugs.

hands on experience audubon butterfly and insectarium

An amazing underground exhibit – of how life is for bugs under the ground.

bug life at the bug museum new orleans

Love Bug show – this was one of my favorites. For one, I barely knew anything about Love Bugs, and two it was done in a really fun way.

love bug exhibit at bug museum new orleans

Exploring different ecosystems and the bugs that live in them.

exploring around the butterfly garden and insectarium

Build-your-own bug. My kids spent almost one hour just at this one thing.

build a bug Audubon Insectarium e

Butterfly Garden New Orleans

Butterfly Garden – the garden isn’t big. But the best part about it is, you can’t reach out and touch the butterflies, however, if a butterfly lands on you it’s ok to touch them. So you know what happened, for the first time in my kids lives, they were still. I mean still for like five minutes, without movement. This is unheard of. I need to build one of these in my house.

Audubon Butterfly Garden

Video Fun

Info About the Audobon Butterfly Garden and Insectarium in New Orleans

  • The museum encourages you to use all five senses as you explore North America’s largest museum devoted to insects and their relatives.
  • It was voted voted “A top museum for you and your kids” by, 2009.

What is the Audubon Society About

  • Audubon’s Mission: “To conserve and restore natural ecosystems, focusing on birds, other wildlife, and their habitats for the benefit of humanity and the earth’s biological diversity.”
  • Although Audubon had no role in the organization that bears his name, there is a connection: George Bird Grinnell, one of the founders of the early Audubon Society in the late 1800s, was tutored by Lucy Audubon, John James’s widow.
  • It works through mobilizing the strength of its network of members, Chapters, Audubon Centers, state offices and dedicated professional staff to connect people with nature and the power to protect it.

Some Projects the Audubon Society Does

  • Protection of the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge and other fragile habitats
  • The ongoing recovery of the imperiled California condor and brown pelican
  • Adoption of innovative policies that balance habitat protection with green energy development on millions of acres
  • Continuing restoration of the Everglades and Long Island Sound
  • Nearly 500 local Chapters nationwide that engage members in grassroots conservation action
  • More than 2,500 Audubon-designated Important Bird Areas identify, prioritize and protect vital bird habitat from coast to coast–in partnership with BirdLife International, the IBA conservation efforts support species and their habitats across the Western Hemisphere.

Who Was John James Audubon

  • John James Audubon (1785-1851) was not the first person to attempt to paint and describe all the birds of America (Alexander Wilson has that distinction), but for half a century he was the country’s dominant wildlife artist.
  • His seminal Birds of America, a collection of 435 life-size prints, quickly eclipsed Wilson’s work and is still a standard against which 20th and 21st century bird artists are measured.
  • Audubon was born in Saint Domingue (now Haiti), the illegitimate son of a French sea captain and plantation owner and his French mistress.
  • In 1803, at the age of 18, he was sent to America, in part to escape conscription into the Emperor Napoleon’s army. He lived on the family-owned estate at Mill Grove, near Philadelphia, where he hunted, studied and drew birds, and met his wife, Lucy Bakewell.
  • He continued to draw birds as a hobby, amassing an impressive portfolio.
  • In 1826 he sailed with his partly finished collection to England. “The American Woodsman” was literally an overnight success.
  • Audubon spent his last years in senility and died at age 65. He is buried in the Trinity Cemetery at 155th Street and Broadway in New York City.

Information for Visiting The Audubon Butterfly Garden and Insectarium

Address: 6500 Magazine St. New Orleans, LA 70118

Phone: 800-774-7394

Hours: Tue – Sun | 10am – 5pm


– $16.50 Adult Admission

– $12.00 Child (2 -12) Admission

– $13.00 Senior (65+) Admission

– Free for Audubon Members

Last Updated on August 17, 2023

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