Introduction to Lafayette, Louisiana

Lafayette is located in the southern central part of Louisiana, at the intersection of Highways 10 and 49. It is the fourth largest city in Louisiana and is the only major city in Louisiana that has grown in population since the year 2000. Lafayette resides in an area called Acadiana, which is known as the Cajun Heartland, and is the unofficial Cajun Capitol of the south. Lafayette lies 15 miles west of the Atchafalaya Basin and 35 miles north of the Gulf of Mexico and is surrounded by bayous, swamps and marshes along with forests and prairies. The city got its name in 1844 when it was named after the French Marquis de Lafayette.

Lafayette has a history almost as colorful as the history of the state of Louisiana, which actually was governed by 10 different flags from the period of time beginning 1541 until 1803 when it became a possession of the United States. The rich French heritage of Lafayette was mainly due to "Le Grand Derangement" in 1755. That year, thousands of French Canadians were forced from their homes because they refused to renounce their Catholic religion for the Anglican Church and pledge allegiance to the British flag. More than half of the Acadians lost their lives as their homes and crops were burned by the British and they floundered at sea. Most of the survivors ended up in Louisiana after the King of Spain allowed them to settle in South Louisiana. They eventually ended up in the areas around Lafayette, where they could raise their own crops and fish and trap according to their traditions. Thus, the Cajun culture was born. Interestingly, the word Cajun originated when the French of noble ancestry would call the Acadians "le Cadiens," dropping the "A." Later, the Americans who could not pronounce "Cadien" shortened the term and just called them "Cajuns". These Cajun people were known for their unique culture. They are deeply religious, hard working but enthusiastic and fun people. Their food, spicy and flavorful, became famous throughout the country and still is a favorite among the visitors of the "Bayou Country."

In 1803, Louisiana had become a part of the United States. President Thomas Jefferson negotiated the Louisiana Purchase with Napoleon because of the region's importance to the trade and security of the American mid-west. Much of the produce of the mid-west traveled down the Mississippi River so this area became vital for America. The fertility of the land in this region gave rise to important crops such as sugar and cotton, making the planters of Lafayette some of the richest in America. After the Civil War, sulfur was discovered in 1869 and oil was discovered in 1901. Now Louisiana has become one of the leading producers of oil and natural gas in the country.

Lafayette Points of Interest

Lafayette has a strong tourism industry, attracted by the wonderful Cajun food of this region. It has more restaurants per capita of any city in the entire area. The city has a thriving arts community, consisting of theatre, visual arts, and especially music. Cajun music is a combination of bluegrass and French with a little European folk music thrown in. Almost every weekend, there is a music, dance or street festival and the city is known for its great Mardi Gras celebrations when Lafayette explodes with color and wild costumes.

Because of its year-long warm climate, Lafayette is known as "The Sportsman's Paradise". The bayous and swamps are great places for canoe rides and the fishing is very popular. In addition, there are championship golf courses nearby and lots of hiking and biking trails to explore. The Louisiana Ragin Cajuns is the team name of the University of Louisiana at Lafayette. In 1960, the name referred only to the football team which was formerly called the Bulldogs, but now the name refers to all the sports of the university, including basketball and baseball. And, since 2003, Lafayette is home to the Lafayette Bayou Bulls, its semi pro football team.

Lafayette has a diversified and interesting college life. The University of Louisiana at Lafayette is the largest campus within the eight-campus University of the Louisiana System and the second largest university in Louisiana. It is recognized mostly for its excellence in computer science and its graduate courses in environmental biology. In addition, Lafayette is home to the South Louisiana Community College and the Louisiana Technical College at Lafayette.

Located only 135 miles from New Orleans, Lafayette is a popular destination for tourists looking for the flavor of New Orleans; the food, music and festivals rival its famous neighbor and the warm climate is perfect for a relaxing southern vacation. As the Cajuns say, ""Laissez Les Bon Temps Roulez," or "Let the Good Times Roll!"



Total Population124,982
Male Share of the Population48.9%
Female Share of the Population51.1%
Senior Citizens12.1%
Employed Population 16+
Age of the Population33


% of people married38.8%
Average household size2

Education and Earnings

Population % with Bachelor Degree or Higher35.1%
Median Earnings25+$34,216
Median Earnings Without High School Qualification$16,633
Median Earnings With High School Degree$25,672


Median Family Income$64,805
% Above Poverty Level80.9%
% Below Poverty Level19.1%

Commute & Sprawl

Average Commute Time21 minutes
% Working from Home2.7%
% Walking and Biking to Work3.3%
% Using Public Transportation0.8%


People Living Alone35.2%
Median Gross Rent$800
Median House Value$173,900


Other(often includes Hispanic and African American)42%
French Except Basque19.8%
West Indian0.4%
Trinidad Tobago0.1%
+ Show More

Lafayette Almanac

Nearest Large City117 miles W of New Orleans, Louisiana
County Lafayette Parish
Metro AreaLafayette
Standard Zip Codes70501, 70503, 70506, 70507, 70508
P.O. Box Zip Codes70502, 70505, 70509, 70593, 70596, 70598
Company Zip Codes70504
Phone Area Codes337
Time ZoneAmerica/Chicago
Daylight SavingsThe city observes Daylight Saving Time.

Lafayette Climate

Nearest Weather Stations


  • Temp ranges are avg daily min and max for the month
  • Precipitation is rainfall (and rainfall equiv of snowfall)

Distance2.7 miles
Jan Temp42 to 62 F
Apr Temp58 to 78 F
Jul Temp74 to 91 F
Oct Temp58 to 81 F
Annual Precip62.1 inches
Distance14.5 miles
Jan Temp41 to 62 F
Apr Temp56 to 79 F
Jul Temp72 to 93 F
Oct Temp57 to 82 F
Annual Precip63.2 inches
Distance21.8 miles
Jan Temp41 to 61 F
Apr Temp58 to 78 F
Jul Temp73 to 91 F
Oct Temp59 to 80 F
Annual Precip60.8 inches

Neighborhood and Nearby Area Names

According to the US Postal Service, Lafayette, its neighborhoods, and/or surrounding areas are also referred to as:

Univ Of La At Lafayette (70504)

Energy Center (70598)

Note that not all alternate names are acceptable for use in US Post Office addresses.

Nearby Cities and Towns

LocationPopulationMedian Family Income
Breaux Bridge8,286$42,361

Lafayette Public Libraries

Lafayette Public Library
301 W CONGRESS ST LAFAYETTE, LA 70501 (30.226562, -92.019567)
Lafayette, Louisiana
(337) 261-5781

library logo

More Information for Librarians

Lafayette Hospitals

Acadia Vermilion Hospital
2520 N University Ave
(337) 234-5614
Community Specialty Hospital
408 Se Evangeline Trwy
(337) 234-4031
Heart Hospital Of Lafayette
1105 Kaliste Saloom Road
(318) 449-1370
Women's & Children's Hospital
4600 Ambassador Caffery Pkwy
(337) 521-9100
Lafayette Physical Rehabilitation Hospital
307 Polly Ln
(337) 314-1111
Lafayette General Surgical Hospital
1000 W Pinhook Rd Ste 100
(337) 289-8088
Lafayette General Medical Center
1214 Coolidge Blvd
(337) 289-7991
Our Lady Of Lourdes Regional Medical Center
4801 Ambassador Caffery Pkwy
(337) 470-2000
Optima Specialty Hospital
1131 Rue De Belier
(337) 991-0571
Lafayette Surgical Specialty Hospital
1101 Kaliste Saloom Road
(337) 769-4100
The Regional Medical Center Of Acadiana
2810 Ambasssador Caffery Parkway
(337) 981-2949
Park Place Surgical Hospital
4811 Ambassador Caffery Parkway
(337) 237-8119
Lafayette - Amg Specialty Hospital
310 Youngsville Hwy
(337) 839-9880
Lafayette Behavioral Health Unit
302 Dulles Dr
(337) 262-4100
Louisiana Extended Care Hospital-lafayette
1214 Coolidge Street
(337) 289-8180
Post Acute Specialty Hospital Of Lafayette
204 Energy Drive Parkway
(337) 232-1905
University Medical Center
2390 W Congress St
(337) 261-6000
Click the Visit School Site buttons to go directly to a school's website and learn more about the school and programs it has to offer. School website will open in a new tab.
Click the Request Info buttons to request more information from a representative at the school.

Lafayette Public Schools

Early College Academy
320 Devalcourt Dr
(337) 521-8956
Total Enrollment 203
David Thibodaux Career And Technical High School
805 Teurlings Dr
(337) 262-5962
Total Enrollment 447
Milton Elementary School
222 West Milton Ave
(337) 521-7740
Total Enrollment 869
Lafayette Middle School
1301 West University Ave
(337) 521-7900
Total Enrollment 536
Lafayette High School
3000 West Congress St
(337) 984-5284
Total Enrollment 2383
Edgar Martin Middle School
401 Broadmoor Blvd
(337) 521-7910
Total Enrollment 740
S.j. Montgomery Elementary School
600 Foreman Dr
(337) 521-7750
Total Enrollment 570
N. P. Moss Middle School
805 Teurlings Dr
(337) 521-7920
Myrtle Place Elementary School
1100 Myrtle Place Blvd
(337) 521-7760
Total Enrollment 313
Northside High School
301 Dunand St
(337) 521-7990
Total Enrollment 852
Plantation Elementary School
1801 Kaliste Saloom Rd
(337) 521-7780
Total Enrollment 541
Prairie Elementary School
2910 Ambassador Caffery Parkwa
(337) 521-7790
Total Enrollment 850
Truman Elementary School
200 Clara St
(337) 521-7810
Total Enrollment 427
W. D. Smith Career Center
200 18th St
(337) 521-7570
Lafayette Charter High School
516 East Pinhook St
(337) 521-7585
Total Enrollment 98
Alternative Instructional Model Academy (aim)
516 East Pinhook Rd
(337) 521-7580
Ossun Elementary School
400 Rue Scholastique
(337) 521-7770
Total Enrollment 872
O. Comeaux High School
100 West Bluebird Dr
(337) 521-7970
Total Enrollment 1900
Acadian Middle School
4201 Moss St
(337) 521-7840
Total Enrollment 541
Acadiana High School
315 Rue Du Belier
(337) 521-7950
Total Enrollment 1741
L.j. Alleman Middle School
600 Roselawn Blvd
(337) 521-7850
Total Enrollment 1018
Alice N. Boucher Elementary School
400 Patterson St
(337) 521-7610
Total Enrollment 786
Paul Breaux Middle School
1400 South Orange St
(337) 521-7860
Total Enrollment 780
Broadmoor Elementary School
609 Broadmoor Blvd
(337) 521-7620
Total Enrollment 685
Woodvale Elementary School
100 Leon Dr
(337) 521-7830
Total Enrollment 603
Live Oak Elementary School
3020 North University Ave
(337) 521-7730
Total Enrollment 704
N. P. Moss Annex
801 Mudd Ave
(337) 521-7590
Evangeline Elementary School
610 East Butcher Switch Rd
(337) 521-7670
Total Enrollment 647
Carencro High School
721 West Butcher Switch Rd
(337) 521-7960
Total Enrollment 1232
J.w. Faulk Elementary School
711 East Willow St
(337) 521-7680
Total Enrollment 652

Lafayette Private Schools

St Genevieve Elementary School
201 Elizabeth Ave
Total Enrollment 492
St Genevieve Middle School
91 Teurlings Dr
Total Enrollment 177
Family Life Christian Academy
2223 Dulles Dr
Total Enrollment 119
Immaculate Heart Mary School
800 12th St
Total Enrollment 91
Sts Leo-seton Catholic School
502 Saint Leo St
Total Enrollment 498
Lafayette Christian Academy
220 Portland Ave
Combined Elementary And Secondary
Total Enrollment 696
Cathedral Carmel School
848 Saint John St
Total Enrollment 721
Holy Family Catholic School
200 Saint John St
Total Enrollment 143
Our Lady Of Fatima School
2315 Johnston St
Total Enrollment 845
Ascension Episcopal School
1030 Johnston St
Combined Elementary And Secondary
Total Enrollment 662
First Baptist Christian School
201 W Convent St
Total Enrollment 175
Gethsemane Christian Academy
701 E Pinhook Rd
Total Enrollment 39
St Pius Elementary School
205 E Bayou Pkwy
Total Enrollment 644
Teurlings Catholic High School
139 Teurlings Dr
Total Enrollment 653
Sources :
Additional Details
Lafayette Careers
Lafayette career and employment information.
Lafayette Colleges
Lafayette colleges and trade schools.
Lafayette Graduate Schools
Lafayette Graduate and Business Schools
Study Online in Lafayette
Additional Resources
Info for Lafayette Government Officials

Are you an official in the Lafayette government or quasi-government agency such as the chamber of commerce, visitors bureau or economic development council? If so, visit our information page for government officials to see how CityTownInfo can support you.

Back to Top