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Take a Hike When You Visit Louisiana Coast

Boardwalks and hiking trails offer great views of flora and wildlife, especially for birding.

Visit Louisiana Coast’s hiking trails and great outdoors will rejuvenate your mind, body and spirit. Many trails offer boardwalks for easy navigation and peaceful communing with nature. So, come take a walk with us!

Calcasieu/Cameron Parish
Visit Lake Charles, Louisiana’s Playground

The winding Lakefront Promenade caresses the lake as it provides a pleasant atmosphere for walkers, bikers and joggers from the Marina past the Civic Center to the Veterans War Memorial. The newly-enhanced Civic Center Seawall and Park has added attractions with Millennium Park, Veterans Memorial Park, PPG Interactive Fountain, 9/11 Memorial and beautiful indigenous marsh vegetation.

Just south of Lakefront Promenade is the noteworthy stretch of Lake Charles' finest homes and sweeping oak trees along Shell Beach Drive. A 1.75 mile stretch of road, the drive skirts the southern shore of Lake Charles. It was once the continuation of the Old Spanish Trail, and for decades before the opening of the 1950 Calcasieu River (I-10) Bridge on the north edge of the lake, transcontinental drivers were treated to some of the most sumptuous architecture and gardens on this very drive. Many properties have boathouses that reflect the styles of the houses.


St. Tammany Parish
Louisiana Northshore, St. Tammany Parish

The Northshore has miles of hiking trails in accessible outdoors, and the terrain is no more than a gentle slope on many of these hikes.

Lovely Northlake Nature Center is a 400-acre preserve located along the banks of Bayou Castine. There are about 7 miles of trails taking you through three different eco-systems. Among the sights: a grove of giant magnolias, boardwalk overlooking a beaver lodge, and, if you’re lucky, you might catch a glimpse of the center’s flock of wild turkeys.

Over in Lacombe, Big Branch Marsh National Wildlife Reserve offers 15,000 acres of south Louisiana eco-systems. Visitors enjoy hiking, fishing and birding along its waterways and trails. The two-mile Boy Scout Road Interpretive Trail includes a boardwalk and overlook at Bayou Lacombe, and birders will likely spot the endangered red-cockaded woodpecker here.

The state park trails at Fairview-Riverside in Madisonville and Fontainebleau in Mandeville also offer boardwalks and plenty of opportunities for wildlife spotting and birding (over 400 species have been recorded at Fontainebleau).

The 130-acre Camp Salmen Nature Park’s peaceful respite includes 3.3 miles of trail system in various stages of development in Slidell. Budding botanists appreciate the Camp Salmen Live Oak, accessed via the Camp RidgeTrail and listed on the Live Oak Society Registry, as well as the presence of pitcher plants sprinkled through the boggier areas of the park.

If a leisurely stroll is more your speed, walk along Lakeshore Drive’s paved path in Mandeville. The cool breezes off Lake Pontchartrain and the shimmering sunlight on the water will make your heart sing.


Iberia Parish
Iberia Travel

Plan your next outdoor adventure in Iberia Parish, home to two state parks with bountiful hiking and wildlife sighting opportunities. 

Stroll through Rip Van Winkle Gardens’ 15 acres of semi-tropical gardens featuring Asian statuary and friendly peacocks. Stop at Café Jefferson for a relaxing lunch under ancient moss draped live oaks overlooking Lake Peigneur.

Park your RV or rent a cabin at Lake Fausse Pointe State Park, which is adjacent to the Atchafalaya Basin, one of the great natural wonders in North America. Experience this isolated Louisiana swamp and its 1,000-year-old large bald cypress trees via numerous boardwalks and walking trails.

Cypremort Point State Park offers easy access to the Gulf of Mexico with a beach area, birding, cabin rentals and gorgeous sunsets on the water. Located in the heart of a Louisiana marsh, the site contains an abundance of wildlife. The quiet observer may happen upon nutria, muskrat, alligator or a number of bird species native to the state. Deer, black bear, rabbits, opossum and red fox also make their home in this area.

Make sure to bring your binoculars when you visit Spanish Lake. A walking trail loops along the lake and approximately 240 species of birds were recorded there. Take a break at the Meditation Garden after a walk on the New Iberia City Park trail.


Jefferson Parish
Visit Jefferson Parish
We invite you to get away from it all and hike the boardwalks and trails of Jefferson Parish, LA! Just ten minutes from the action of New Orleans, experience the one-of-a-kind wonder that can only come from exploring our outdoors.

Explore the trails of the Barataria Preserve of Jean Lafitte National Park. The Preserve offers a taste of Louisiana's wild wetlands. It's 26,000 acres include bayous, swamps, marshes, and forests. Walk along boardwalks and dirt trails to spot animals including alligators and over 200 species of birds plus an ever-changing array of wildflowers and plants. The Preserve features beautiful nature trails, birding trails, and a visitor center featuring a kids’ activity center, Junior Ranger program, bookstore, and more. Guided tours are offered. Great place for hiking, canoeing and enjoying nature!

Get back to nature on the Wetland Trace Boardwalk. Stroll along 41 acres of wild wetlands. The many trails include covered pavilions, scenic overlooks and benches. It is a popular place to see various wetland wildlife like alligators, turtles and herons as well as marsh plants like lilies and orchids.

Grand Isle State Park, on Louisiana's only inhabited barrier island, offers scenic beach hiking trails and spectacular sunset views.

Bayou Segnette State Park features nature trails that offer you the chance to spot plants, trees and wildlife from both swamps and marshland.

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Louisiana Coast Adventure Guides