There are so many beautiful hiking trails in Louisiana.
When you live on the Mississippi River, you’re guaranteed to be surrounded by incredible scenes of nature. And there’s no better way to experience Louisiana’s greenery than taking on of its many hiking trails.
Summertime is the best time to explore the natural diversity on offer in New Orleans, and the entire gulf coast. Feeling inspired, we’ve decided to round up our favorite spots to connect with nature and rightfully wear out our hiking boots!
Here are our favorite hiking hotspots in and around New Orleans:
1. Jean Lafitte National Park
Although 30 minutes out of the city, this national park has six sites scattered across south Louisiana. Each visit will be distinctively unique, with the everchanging nature and animals that call this National Park home. Great for gator sightings and bird fanatics, you never know who you’ll end up meeting on your hike at Jean Lafitte.
2. Audubon Nature Institute
Not just a great hike, but a great day out for the entire family. Audubon Park is a non-profit that operates a family of ten museums and parks dedicated to nature. Audubon Louisiana Nature Center is famous for its nature trails, a true wilderness experience in the middle of a New Orleans East neighborhood. This place boasts beautiful scenes of the unique forest ecosystem in Louisiana, constantly changing as seasons come and go.
3. Bayou Sauvage
Another great option if your looking for alligators, Bayou Sauvage is another great swampy addition to the best hikes in and around New Orleans. Check out the Ridge trail, a stunning 6.8-mile path exposing you to Louisiana’s marshy beauty.
4. Kisatchie National Forest
Although it’s a three hours drive away from New Orleans, this National Forest is a Louisiana gem. It’s the only National Forest in the state and offers forested piney hills and hardwood bottoms of seven central and northern parishes. It is part of the Cenozoic uplands and has large areas of longleaf pine forests, perfect for that perfect Insta snap.
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5. Mississippi River Trail
You don’t have to leave the city for a great hike. The Mississippi River has a great infrastructure for hikers, bikers, and fitness fanatics! The West Bank’s trail is 5.3 miles in length, while the East Bank’s trail starts at Audubon Park and runs west for a whopping 60 miles! Regardless, both offer stunning views of the city, and the Mississippi River.
6. Couturie Forest
An absolutely gorgeous option for your weekend hike, Couturie Forest is located in NOLA’s City Park. Therefor you can make a day of it! This forest is the location of the highest point of elevation in New Orleans (only an astonishing 43 feet).
7. Woldenburg Park
A riverfront park with 16 acres of green space, jogging paths, and gorgeous Mississippi river views. You can’t go wrong if you choose Woldenburg Park for your afternoon hike. Start by exploring the monuments and public art scattered around, before winding down the Mississippi River.
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8. Louis Armstrong Park
Another incredible park in the hustle and bustle of New Orleans. With extensive influence in NOLA’s music history, this park is located right next to Congo Square. So add a splash of culture to your hike by exploring this 31-acre gem in the center of the city.
9. Clark Creek
If it’s a waterfall you’re after then it’s another three hour drive out of New Orleans to our neighbors in Mississippi. The 4.1-mile trail is an incredible way to experience the natural beauty of the South. The stunning creeks, towering trees, and plentiful greenery, Clark Creek is definitely worth the trip.
Featured Image: RyanKosmides via Shutterstock