Destrehan Plantation gift shop carries wide variety of unique items

Each year, thousands of national and international visitors to St. Charles Parish pass through the doors of the gift shop at Destrehan Plantation to search through a variety of locally produced, handmade items that many times cannot be found anywhere else in the world.

The gift shop has existed for as long as the doors of Destrehan Plantation have been open, but the shop moved to the building it operates in today in 2000.

“Since then, it has served not only as a souvenir shop for visitors to our community, but as a complete retail entity in its own right,” Joshua Pardo, manager of the gift shop, said. “Both residents of St. Charles Parish and visitors from abroad can find many unique, oftentimes locally handmade products that cannot be found anywhere else – making these items perfect gifts and mementos for special occasions, holidays and just because.”

Pardo added that the most popular products sold speak to both visitors and Louisiana natives equally.

“Given how tied food and cuisine is to the identity of Louisiana and its residents, we are proud to carry a wide variety of locally made snacks and treats, from Haydels Gooey Cakes to Southern Fixings Pralines and Lollis Chocolates,” he said. “People come from near and far to get their favorite Louisiana snacks fix – especially alligator jerky.”

Pardo also highlighted a popular selection of jewelry dyed with indigo that cannot be found anywhere else in the world.

“Speaking of indigo, we also have an exclusive soap with Louisiana Sunshine Soap Company called ‘Destrehan Indigo’ that is sold exclusively on our shelves,” he said. “Additionally, we work with local groups, like the St. Charles Art Guild and encourage local artists to bring their work in. We also host our annual spring and fall festivals, wherein local artists and merchants from all over Louisiana bring their items and artwork for sale, and we always try to get their work on our shelves – these items oftentimes cannot be found anywhere else but during our festivals or in-store.

“We are available at all times to hear out and support local artists!”

The gift shop also has a variety of locally made, handcrafted merchandise from artwork and jewelry to artisanal soaps and candles. The shelves are lined with books relating to local, national and world history that join others on cooking and gardening.

Pardo said the shop also carries more private label and branded items than they ever did before, including a whole line of cane syrup and raw sugar with the plantation’s own private label that’s carried year round.

“Additionally, we have the usual souvenir items – magnets, postcards, pins, baseball caps and t-shirts. However, one of our most popular items you certainly cant find many other places – Destrehan Plantation branded handmade wooden barrels available in sizes ranging from 1 liter to 10 liters,” he added.

The gift shop has an online store where visitors can shop from the comfort of their homes.

“Items are added daily to the online store, and we are definitely dedicated to making our ecommerce presence better and better,” Pardo said. “We oftentimes have an online sale going on as well.”

To view items available, visit and click on “shop.”

While the plantation’s gift shop gets plenty of visitors from outside the parish, Pardo said they have locals who visit the shop daily.

“I am thankful to say we have many local residents who have become regulars that come into the shop when they need a snack or need to stock up on gifts for their loved ones,” he said. “We wouldnt be here without the locals and their support. Every August, we do a Locals Week in-store discount should you show a Louisiana state ID.”