Our Adventure Guides put together a list of the most frequently asked questions visitors ask about the FREE Creole Nature Trail All-American Road.
- Where does the Creole Nature Trail start?
The trail loops through Calcasieu and Cameron Parishes along the coast. A great place to start your journey is at the Creole Nature Trail Adventure Point, 2740 Ruth St. Sulphur just south of Exit 20 on Interstate 10, just south of Sonic Drive-In. To view an interactive trail map, click here.
- How long does it take to drive the Creole Nature Trail?
The core loop is 108 miles and can take the better part of a day (6-8 hours) to adequately enjoy all of the stops along the route. The entire trail is 180 miles with eastern & western extensions along the coast. If you only have half a day (4 hours), consider doing one side of the trail by going down to the Gulf of Mexico and head back up the way you came. For perspective, if you were to head directly from Creole Nature Trail Adventure Point to Holly Beach on the Gulf, it would take rough 45 minutes.
- Where can we see alligators?
Alligators can be seen sunning themselves in the spring and summer months along the Wetland Walkway, Pintail Wildlife Drive and swimming in the roadside canals. More alligator spotting tips here.
- Other than driving the Creole Nature Trail, are there any other activities we can do?
Walk along the boardwalks at the Blue Goose Walking Trail, Wetland Walkway or the Pintail Wildlife Drive trail. Bring a bucket to collect seashells along the Gulf Coast beaches. Take the Cameron Ferry to spot dolphins! You may even try your hand crabbing or fishing along the way. Hog Island Gully is a local favorite spot for crabbing.
- Are tours available?
Grosse Savanne’s vast property of over 50,000 acres is nearly split in half by the Creole Nature Trail All-American Road, a nationally acclaimed “Louisiana Outback” wildlife and photography trail. Grosse Savanne Eco-tours has unlimited access to a multitude of various ecotypes including both fresh and saltwater marshes, cypress swamps, native coastal prairies, pine forest plantations, and agricultural lands.
- Are there any places to eat along the trail?
Try out either T’Boys Cajun Grill in Creole and Anchor's Up Grill in Cameron for some delicious, home-cooked Cajun cuisine. In the mood for a picnic? One picnic area that offers great views of the Intracoastal Waterway is Intracoastal Park. The park features a number of amenities including pavilions, camper sites, two boat launches, picnic tables with barbeque pits and a playground for the kids. The Gulf beaches also offer great spots if you bring a blanket or just want to have a tailgate lunch. In order to keep the areas nice and free of debri, make sure to pick up whatever items you bring to a picnic area such as bottles or other trash, we call this our Carry-In, Carry-Out policy.
- Where are restrooms located along the trail?
In Hackberry, there are facilities at the Wetland Walkway. Brown’s and Dollar Store with a minimum purchase. At Cameron Prairie National Wildlife Refuge, the visitors center is open on weekdays.
- If I catch some fish or crab, are there local restaurants who can cook it for me?
The Catch and Cook Program now allows anglers to experience the excitement of catching your fish, then having a local restaurant prepare it for you. Several local restaurants in Lake Charles are now participating in the new program. To find out more about the Catch and Cook Program, visit www.fishla.org/catch-and-cook/
- Where is the best place to view birds?
For someone who is unfamiliar with our area, simply getting to a great birding spot could present a bit of a challenge. With that in mind, here are some of our absolute favorite areas for great birding action.
10. Do you have any tips?
Before you hit the Trail, pack your sunscreen, mosquito spray, camera or smartphone and download the touring app. You never know what kind of wildlife you’ll see! Services are limited in Louisiana’s Outback so make sure to fuel up before you head out. It may also be good to pack some good ole trail mix or better yet, grab some links of boudin for the road trip! For a complete list of essential services along the trail, click here.