Where to Go Camping in Louisiana

New Orleans might get all the attention, but it's not the only place worth visiting in Louisiana. If you're looking for enchanting groves of cypress trees, quiet beaches or the red-cockaded woodpecker, get out of the city and explore the rest of the state.

Louisiana is home to 19 state parks and more than 30 recreation areas, including wildlife management areas, wildlife refuges and historic parks. Whether you want to camp, hike or just spend the day sightseeing, Louisiana has it all. Stay up north for a hiking, swimming and camping or head down to the coast for unforgettable wildlife viewing. 

More: Where to View Unique Wildlife in the U.S.

Northern Louisiana

With six state parks, there are more than enough places to get outside in northern Louisiana. Whether you want to camp or just take a day trip, there are a number of places to visit for a full day of fun and wildlife watching. Here are a few of the best spots.

Lake Bistineau State Park

By Michael McCarthy (msm62166) [CC-BY-2.0], via Wikimedia Commons

With groves of cypress trees and a variety of hiking trails and fishing holes, this state park is one of the best places to go camping in Louisiana. After you pitch your tent at one of the 67 campsites, strap on your hiking boots and try the 10-mile hiking trail or 1/2-mile nature path.

There are 14 deluxe cabins and seven standard cabins if you don't want to sleep in a tent. The deluxe cabins have kitchens, air conditioning, bedrooms and bathrooms, while the standard ones offer a more primitive cabin camping experience.

More: 8 Spots for Lakeside Camping

Upper Ouachita National Wildlife Refuge

For an exciting day trip, pack a lunch and head to this wildlife refuge. Here you'll find the endangered red-cockaded woodpecker and Louisiana black bears. A variety of other animals can be seen here, including alligators, deer, beavers and bald eagles.

Southern Louisiana

Take a trip down to the Gulf of Mexico for a tropical Louisiana camping trip. In this region you'll find two state parks, four wildlife refuges and two state wildlife refuges, all of which offer spectacular scenery and plenty to keep you busy.

Sabine National Wildlife Refuge

Sabine National Wildlife Refuge—Considered an Internationally Important Bird Area—is a great spot to view a variety of wildlife. Stroll along the 1.5-mile wetland walkway to see birds, alligators, swamp rabbits and other animals wading in the marshes.

More: 9 Nature Trails for a Family Hike

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