Louisiana is full of rich culture, so it is only necessary to explore Louisiana on foot through some of the most strikingly beautiful hiking trails.
There is no other way to explore Louisiana except for seeing all of the wildlife and nature of the state that you wouldn’t be able to experience in the city.
The nature in Louisiana is incredibly diverse so there is so much to explore throughout the state.
From coastal trails to swamps, there is so much to see in Louisiana that you won’t ever want to leave!
You will most definitely need an extended stay in Louisiana to make sure that you have experienced the best hiking in Louisiana!
Below you will find a guide to the best hiking in Louisiana so that you can plan your trip so that you can see as much of Louisiana’s diverse ecosystem as possible.
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1.Wild Azalea Trail, Kisatchie National Forest, Woodworth
The Wild Azalea Trail is named after the wild azalea flowers that can be found on this Louisiana trail.
Found in the Kisatchie National Forest, the Wild Azalea Trail is 24 miles long and is the longest hiking trail in the whole state! If you are not up for hiking 24 miles in one day, you are able to choose sections of the trail to walk.
The Wild Azalea Trail features creek crossings and 1,100ft elevation throughout the trail which allows you to view the entire landscape.
There is a good mixture between flat and hill throughout this trail so it may be more suitable for more advanced hikers.
2.Grand Isle State Park, Grand Isle
Grand Isle is 2 hours away from New Orleans and is home to the Grand Isle State Park.
This hiking trail is particularly special as it is a 2.5-mile loop so you end up back where you started so it is doable in a day, and it is also on the migration path for lots of species of birds.
This trail is perfect for keen birdwatchers and you are able to take binoculars to get a closer look.
As the trail is perfect for birdwatchers, there is a range of species that you are able to see. There is also the Grande Isle Birding Trail which allows birdwatchers to see species including pelicans and spoonbills.
3.Cane Bayou Trail, Fontainebleau State Park, Mandeville
The Cane Bayou Trail in the Fontainebleau State Park is 3.7 miles long both there and back so you are able to complete the trail during a day.
The trail takes you through to a marsh and lake which is home to alligators and owls which you may be lucky enough to see during your visit to the trail.
The Fontainebleau State Park can be found north of Lake Pontchartrain and is a short drive away from New Orleans. The park is actually set on the beach so there are a lot of ecosystems within this trail for you to enjoy.
4.Barataria Preserve, Marrero
Just outside New Orleans is the Barataria Preserve which is a trail that is made up of short boardwalks connecting other trails together to form this one.
The trail stretches across the Louisiana wetlands and allows you to experience the true essence of the state as it is a favorite trail amongst hikers in the area. Along the trail are bald cypress trees to guide you along the way.
There is lots of nature and wildlife to see along the Barataria Preserve as there are palmettos surrounding you through the trail, and you may even be lucky enough to see armadillos along the way. There is also a view of the New Orleans skyline along the trail.
5. River Loop Trail, Tickfaw State Park, Springfield
Located a short distance away from both New Orleans and Baton Rouge is Tickfaw State Park that is home to the River Loop Trail.
The trail consists of scenery such as pine forests and swamps so you can see an array of views of Louisiana.
On the trail, there are smaller trails on boardwalks that you can explore away from the main trail if you are looking to see more of Louisiana.
The trail is 2 miles long and combines both the use of boardwalks and dirt trails which help to enhance your stability when hiking.
As the trail leads through a swamp, you may be able to see creatures such as alligators, snakes, and turtles on your way through.
6.Caroline Dormon Trail, Kisatchie National Forest, Provencal
Outside Alexandria is the Caroline Dormon Trail in the Kisatchie National Forest which is a favorite trail for hikers, horseback riders, and bikers.
The trail is well labeled and is mostly a dirt trail so you can ride your bikes on the same surface during the whole trail.
The trail is 10.5 miles long but isn’t a loop, so you need to take this into consideration when hiking through the trail.
The trail ends at a campsite if you wish to camp overnight after completing the trail. It is mainly through woodland but you are able to cross over some streams on the trail which makes it a very peaceful hike.
There is a 500ft elevation on the trail so may be unsuitable for some beginners.
To conclude, Louisiana is home to some of the most beautiful hiking trails that allow you to experience lots of different aspects of the state.
You are able to experience streams, woodland, lakes, marshes, swamps, and beaches throughout these trails so you can see lots of different perspectives and ecosystems in Louisiana, as well as a lot of different wildlife that lives in these habitats.
Most of the trails are a short distance away from cities such as New Orleans and Baton Rouge so you are able to visit the trails and stay in the city.
You can also camp near some of the trails if you want which makes them very accessible. You can choose the distance you go down the trails as you do not have to complete them all in one day.
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