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Enjoying Louisiana’s Scenic Byways

The history and natural wildlife of Louisiana make it one of the richest and most rewarding experiences when visiting or living in the area. The easiest way to experience the state is to enjoy its scenic byways that are situated all throughout Louisiana. While the northern portion of the state offers a unique experience, it is the southern portion of the state, along the coastline that is considered the most enjoyable.

The Bayou Teche Scenic Trail
Beginning just southwest of the state’s capital in Baton Rouge, the Bayou Teche scenic trail is a unique byway that meanders down to the southernmost portion of the state. Individuals can take the self-guided byway tour and see all that the area can provide. A leisurely visit across the area can take up to two days. You will witness huge moss-draped oak trees and dense vegetation. In the tradition of a true bayou experience, you will witness 135 miles of some of the most beautiful semi-tropical regions across southern Louisiana. The byway ends in Arcadiana.

Certainly one of the richest and most opulent areas, the byway traverses huge bodies of water that were once the resource of a diverse cypress lumber producing industry. It was back in the early 1900s when the cypresses and huge oaks (up 250 feet tall) were used to supply the lumber industry throughout the South. Many of the opulent mansions designed in Greek Revival architecture dot the landscape. It is here where many of the most abundant sugar cane crops were grown back then and still today. It is important to take the time to visit many of the communities and villages along the way to enjoy the Arcadian people that live comfortably along the bayous of southern Louisiana.

The Scenic Louisiana Bayou Byway
If you have a couple of days where you can simply take in all that southeastern Louisiana can offer, do not miss the scenic Louisiana Bayou Byway. Winding through 13 different parishes, and over 500 miles, you can explore many of the rarely traveled back roads through small towns that include Ascension, Iberville, East Baton Rouge, St. Helena and St. Tammany, along with others.

Here, you can experience some of the rich Louisiana culture and historical hotspots that few very seldom visit. If you are the adventurous type, stop along many of the historic districts that are on the designated National Register as unique landmarks in Louisiana. Here, you will see much of the connection Louisiana has to Africa, Canada, Asia, the Caribbean Basin and Europe, especially France. Many of the historic courthouses you will find along the Louisiana Bayou Byway hold historic records that date back to the early 1700s.

The Scenic Jean Lafitte Byway
Situated in the heart of Arcadiana, the Jean Lafitte Byway offers an enormous amount of rich history, culture and food. To stop along and see many of the hotspots could require three days or more.

Here, you will experience the southernmost marshlands of the Deep South. It is home to some of the most diverse agriculture production fields that include sugar cane and verdant rice. You will also find crawfish ponds that are cultivated specifically for growing and harvesting this delectable mudbug. During the springtime, much of the marsh area is littered with some of the most beautiful water hyacinths that display their full bloom for weeks.

With all the amazing Victorian homes, wildlife and rich history, it is important to spend the time traveling over the back ways of southern Louisiana, down to the coastline of the Gulf of Mexico.

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