Louisiana is known for its swamps and wetlands, and they are a must-see whether you are a visitor or even a local. The largest preserve in Lousiana is worth a road trip and it's even free to explore. This destination needs to be on your things to do in Louisiana list. If you are lucky, you might even encounter an alligator swimming below you.
The Barataria Preserve is just one section of the six in the Jean Lafitte National Historical Park and Preserve. It is located in Marrero, Louisianna and is ginormous. In all, this preserve is a massive 23,000 acres.
This area is filled with swamps, wetlands and bayou canals. As you stroll across the many boardwalks and dirt trails, you will probably see snakes, alligators, turtles and other wild animals.
There are a few trails at this Preserve and each has something different to offer. Three of the most popular ones connect, so if you are down for a 4-mile hike (round trip), we suggest you hike all three trails for the full experience.
You will be taking the Palmetto Trail to the Bayou Coquille Trail and then finally, to the Marsh Overlook Trail.
When you leave the visitor's center, you will start on the Palmetto Trail; it's a long 1.1-mile boardwalk that follows a swamp where you might see some slimy wildlife. You will hit a second parking lot area and the Bayou Coquille Trail will start here, which is only 0.5 miles of the entire hike.
At the end of the Bayou trail, there is a marsh overlook platform that makes a great spot for pictures and a break before the last part of the trek. The Marsh Overlook Trail is the last on the list and there have been many sightings of alligators on this one, so keep an eye out.
Once you make your way back to the visitor's center, you will have trekked 4.6 miles, but it won't even feel that long because of all the scenery and places to explore.
With all the adventures and hidden spots in Louisiana, you need to take a road trip to all of them. A few include this large park in New Orleans that has a massive botanical garden and this majestic property that has 300-year-old oak trees.
The Barataria Preserve
Address: 6588 Barataria Blvd., Marrero, LA 70072
Why You Need To Go: This massive preserve has many trails you can explore and you might even see wild animals like alligators at this destination.