By: Louisiana Office of Tourism | LouisianaTravel.com
Slidell/Covington: Tracks laid down by the Illinois Central Railroad were converted into paved walking and biking paths known as the Tammany Trace, a rails-to-trails project that runs 31 miles between the St. Tammany Parish cities of Slidell, Abita Springs, Mandeville and Covington. Along the trail, you can expect to see pine forests, peaceful bayous, bird life galore and plenty of opportunities to see local sights. Slidell highlights include the beautiful waterfront restaurant Palmettos on the Bayou, and attractions include the shops of the historic downtown itself. In Abita Springs, you’ll find dining spots including the Abita Café and Abita Brew Pub, and attractions like the out-of-this-world Abita Mystery House. Sit down for a meal at The Barley Oak or The Lakehouse, or take a side trip to Fontainebleau State Park. And in downtown Covington, where the Tammany Trace ends, you’ll find a wealth of local charm at spots throughout its historic downtown.
New Orleans City Park
New Orleans: New Orleans City Park is the crown jewel of Louisiana’s urban green spaces — and it’s perfect for families on bikes. Paved trails weave through City Park’s 1,300 acres, past numerous attractions that include the New Orleans Museum of Art, Carousel Gardens (its spectacular hand-carved carousel figures, some of them more than 100 years old, are not to be missed!), Louisiana Children’s Museum and New Orleans Botanical Garden. If you’ve pedaled around the park and are still looking for more to do nearby, take Esplanade Avenue to the French Quarter — there are designated bike lanes throughout the route. Learn more about things to do in New Orleans City Park.
Levee Bike Path
Baton Rouge: Situated on top of a levee overlooking the Mississippi River and downtown Baton Rouge, the appropriately named Levee Bike Path is a 4.31-mile paved trail that ends at Farr Park. The Levee Bike Path goes past some of Louisiana’s capital city’s best attractions for families, including the Louisiana Art & Science Museum, the USS Kidd Veteran’s Museum and the Old State Capitol (open for tours). Bike or walk the streets of downtown Baton Rouge to grab a bite to eat at Cocha, The Vintage, Downtown Seafood or Jolie Pearl Oyster Bar.
Red River Bicycle Trail
Shreveport: The Red River Bicycle Trail is a riverfront path that begins in downtown Shreveport — north Louisiana’s largest city — and runs for eight miles south of town. Along the way, you’ll find two of the region’s most exciting family attractions, Sci-Port Discovery Center and Shreveport Aquarium, plus a number of urban green spaces including Veterans Park.
Sam Houston Jones State Park
Lake Charles: Sam Houston Jones State Park offers outdoor adventure and metropolitan charm within short distance of each other. At the park you’ll find a 7.6-mile loop trail that takes you through a lush pine and hardwood forest, past calm bayous and through some of the most active bird migration areas in Louisiana (the park is within the heavily trafficked Mississippi Flyway). Just 10 miles south is Lake Charles, southwest Louisiana’s largest city. Bike down the lakefront boardwalk, check out some of the restaurants and historical homes in and near downtown, and get a feel for the local culture at attractions that include the Mardi Gras Museum of Imperial Calcasieu and the USS Orleck Naval Museum.
Discover more biking trails across Louisiana.