*Remember – these are just ideas. Enjoy your visit your way!*
Click here for the Printable Version.
Plan ahead and schedule a personalized eco tour with Grosse Savanne Eco-Tours, located on the East Side of the Creole Nature Trail, or a charter trip with one of Southwest Louisiana’s professional fishing guides. These adventures take you outside the city limits into the heart of the area’s marshes and waterways; plan to drive 30-60 minutes before reaching your destination. Being in the midst of quiet and serene surroundings, you’ll quickly discover why Louisiana is called “Sportsman’s Paradise.” Estimated Activity Time: 1 – 5 hours
If you prefer urban outdoor adventures, hit the waterways with a paddle board rentals from Paddle Up, LLC, or kayak rentals from Lake Area Adventures and navigate through Prien Lake or the Calcasieu River. We recommend late afternoon/evening trips to experience the beauty and solitude of a Louisiana sunset. Estimated Activity Time: 2 - 3 hours
Remain one with nature with a drive along the West side of the Creole Nature Trail All- American Road. View alligators, over 400 bird species, and marshlands teeming with life, as you travel along the Creole Nature Trail All-American Road. The trail also offers 26 miles of natural Gulf of Mexico beaches and fishing areas. Start your Creole Nature Trail journey at Creole Nature Trail Adventure Point (open Monday-Saturday) in Sulphur.
(Click here for detailed Creole Nature Trail itineraries)
Visit one of the limited local food stops along the trail for a down-home, Cajun lunch or stock up on a variety of homemade specialties for a beach picnic before hitting the trail. While at the beach be on the lookout for seashells. If you’re lucky you might even find a “sea bean” – a pod carried all the way from Central and South American forests.
Afterward, try your hand at crabbing. With just a few supplies that can be found at local bait shops, you’ll be catching crabs like a pro. Louisiana blue crabs are easy to catch, making it an activity the whole family can enjoy. Estimated Activity Time: 4 - 5 hours (including 1 hour for lunch)
Conclude your weekend excursion with a trip to the trails or secluded rivers of Sam Houston Jones State Park. The 1,087-acre park features abundant wildlife, tree-filled lagoons, and a mixed pine and hardwood forest, creating a unique natural environment. Head out on one of the three hiking trails that wind through the park and explore the banks of the various tributaries to the Calcasieu River. Trail options vary for leisure and serious hikers. The park also features a disc golf course. Estimated Activity Time: 1 - 3 hours
Return from the wilderness to explore downtown Lake Charles. Download the free Historic Tour App for a self-guided tour of the Charpentier Historic District. After a full day of exploration, treat yourself to a delicious meal at one of our Top 20 restaurants – many even have outdoor seating. Estimated Activity Time: 1 - 2 hours