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Historic Downtown Covington Itinerary

Browse Covington’s art galleries, such as the St. Tammany Art Association.
Browse Covington’s art galleries, such as the St. Tammany Art Association.
Do you view getaways and vacations as opportunities to pamper yourself, dine well, shop? If so, they're waiting for you in historic downtown Covington, a charming place to spend the day in a grown-up way, among the fine galleries, eclectic shops, excellent restaurants and more – and the district is just steps away from several bed and breakfasts...

Build your strength
Get ready for the day with breakfast at Coffee Rani. Strategically located at the intersection of Boston Street and Lee Lane, this pleasant spot offers wonderful pastries and coffee as well as a full breakfast selection. (Other excellent breakfast options include the cheery Beck-N-Call Café and Mattina Bella.)

Looking on Lee
Start your quest on Lee Lane, a short street but one that offers a high degree of browsability. Eclectic and appealing shops display handmade and estate jewelry, all-cotton clothing, antiques, decorative items for the home and more.

Hail Columbia
A couple of blocks west of Lee Lane, you'll find Columbia Street, itself worth a day's exploration. There are several fine art galleries, including Brunner, Tripolo and Savoye Originals, as well as the St. Tammany Art Association, with multiple gallery spaces and an art studio for classes. You'll find interesting shops and boutiques, good restaurants, all housed in 19th- and early 20th-century buildings. If you're in town on a Saturday morning, check out the Covington Farmers Market in the 600 block of N. Columbia (also Wednesdays at nearby Covington Trailhead) for beautiful produce, regional prepared specialties and live music from a gazebo, all shaded under generous live oaks. The Saturday market is open from 8 a.m.-12 p.m.

Looking for lunch?
If you didn't nosh your way through the farmer's market, downtown Covington offers many opportunities to eat local, among them New Orleans Food and Spirits, Buster's, Lola, Columbia Street Rock-N-Blues Café and Winos and Tacos. Or grab a latte and gourmet sandwich or soup at St. John's Coffeehouse and hang out with the locals for a break.

HJ Smith's Son General Store is a Covington landmark.
HJ Smith's Son General Store is a Covington landmark.
Jeff Greenberg
Check out HJ Smith's Son General Store and Museum, a Covington institution since 1876 and in the same family all that time. It's free and fascinating, a glimpse into Covington's past. Then head over to nearby Covington Brewhouse, on Lockwood, for an interesting look at how beer is made. If you're there on a Saturday, you can even take a tour of this up-and-coming microbrewery—first tour starts at 10:00 a.m.
Across the street, explore the new Covington Trailhead Visitor's Center, featuring a campanile, bandstand, exhibit hall and gallery, and bronze statue of Ronald Reagan. On Wednesdays, the Covington Farmers Market offers fresh produce, light lunches, and live music from 10:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. The recently completed plaza serves as Covington's trailhead (and terminus) for the Tammany Trace, the 31-mile-long rails-to-trails hike and bike path. A stroll on the Trace takes you through more of downtown Covington.

Covington cucina
After you've worked up an appetite, Del Porto Ristorante is a respite indeed. Named the best Italian restaurant in the whole New Orleans area, Del Porto is all about great flavor and the creative kitchen skills of husband-wife chefs David Solazzo and Torre Bagalman. Check out the wine list and settle in for a relaxing evening of great food.

If you go...

Coffee Rani, 985-893-6158,
Beck n' Call Café, 985-875-9390,
Mattina Bella, 985-892-0708,
St. Tammany Art Association, 985-892-8650,
Brunner Gallery, 985-893-0444, (by appointment)
Tripolo Gallery, 985-893-1441,
Covington Farmers Market, 985-892-1873,
New Orleans Food and Spirits, 985-875-0432,
Buster's Place Restaurant and Oyster Bar, 985-809-3880,
Lola Restaurant, 985-892-4992,
Columbia Street Rock-N-Blues Café, 985-892-9949,
Winos and Tacos, 985-809-3029
St. John's Coffeehouse, 985-893-5553,
HJ Smith's Son General Store and Museum, 985-892-0460
Covington Brewhouse, 888-910-2337,
Covington Trailhead Visitor's Center, 985-892-1873,
Tammany Trace, 985-867-9490,
Del Porto Ristorante, 985-875-1006,

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