11 Awesome Day Trips from Lafayette Louisiana – Best of Acadiana!

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Best Day Trips from Lafayette LA

One of the things I LOVE about Lafayette Louisiana is the abundance of cool little towns that are great day trips from Lafayette. In this post you’ll find 11 awesome trips – many can be done in an afternoon road trip. It’s nice to get out of town and explore! And Lafayette Louisiana is the perfect starting point for exploring the Acadiana region in South Louisiana.

There are lots of small towns near Lafayette that are worth a day trip, or in some cases an evening of music and dancing. And since Lafayette is the heart of Cajun Country you should enjoy some great Cajun cuisine on these one day adventures in Louisiana.

RELATED: 7-Day Itinerary Lafayette Louisiana Cajun Country USA

 

Amazing day trips from Lafayette Louisiana

 

 

Here’s my list of 11 amazing (and FUN) day trips from Lafayette LA

Arnaudville

  • 30 minutes from Lafayette

Arnaudville LA is one of my favorite day trips from Lafayette. It’s a pleasant 30-minute drive northeast of Lafayette. With a population of about 1,000 the town sits at the junction of the Bayou Teche and Bayou Fuselier, hence La Jonction was the nickname given by the French population.

Arnaudville Tree is a great big live oak tree with exposed roots that you can actually stand underneath.

Little Big Cup is the place to go for brunch in Arnaudville, trust me – you will have a feast! You can dine indoors or out on the patio overlooking the Bayou.

Afterwards visit NUNU Collective art gallery down the road. And then head to the beer garden.

Bayou Teche Brewing – Local brews! Three brothers opened a brewery to create beers that compliment the Cajun and Creole food of South Louisiana. Live music Friday 7 – 9 pm and Sundays 2 – 5 pm. Free public brewery tours and paid private tours available.

If you visit Arnaudville at the end of April be sure to attend the Etouffee Festival – you just missed it this year – it was Friday April 26 to Sunday April 28, 2019. Check back later for 2020 dates – not yet announced.

 

Little Big Cup restaurant deck Arnaudville LA

Little Big Cup restaurant in Arnaudville features indoor and outdoor dining

 

Atchafalaya National Wildlife Refuge

  • 50 minutes from Lafayette

Located 35 miles (55 km) northeast of Lafayette the Atchafalaya Refuge is a wonderful place to go fishing, paddling, or birding. Check their website for more info. Explore the swamps and the bayous by kayak or canoe.

In case you are wondering, a bayou is a slow moving stream or creek, often with interesting inhabitants like alligators.

Always give wildlife space (at least 30 feet/10 m) and do not try to sneak up close to an alligator to get photos. Use a telephoto lens to get closeup photos of wildlife.

Atchafalaya is derived from the Choctaw Indian phrase hacha falaia which means long river.

 

Avery Island New Iberia

  • 30 minutes from Lafayette

Visit the Tabasco factory for a tour. Also visit Bird City, Jungle Gardens, and Rip Van Winkle Gardens. Avery Island is about a 30 minute drive from Lafayette.

Avery Island sits on top of a giant rock salt deposit – probably from an ancient seabed. And Avery Island could get swallowed up by the water again as the sea levels rise. So you best go visit now :)

 

Buddha at Jungle Gardens in Avery Island, home of Tabasco pepper sauce

Buddha at Jungle Gardens in Avery Island, home of Tabasco pepper sauce

 

Joseph Jefferson Mansion at Rip Van Winkle Gardens in New Iberia Louisiana

Joseph Jefferson Mansion at Rip Van Winkle Gardens in New Iberia

 

Breaux Bridge

  • 20 minute drive from Lafayette

Buck & Johnny’s Zydeco Breakfast is the place to be in Breaux Bridge on a Saturday morning from 8 to 11:30 am. Put on your dancing shoes and shuffle over to the dance floor. You can also get your Crawfish fix in Breaux Bridge and then walk it off with this walking tour.

 

Chicot State Park

  • 1 hour drive from Lafayette

Enjoy fishing, boating, hiking, and camping. There’s also an arboretum with a nice walk and some information about the area. Chicot State Park is 55 miles north of Lafayette, about 1 hour drive.

 

Cypress trees and their "knees" at Chicot State Park in South Louisiana

Cypress trees and their “knees” at Chicot State Park in South Louisiana

 

Eunice

  • 45 minute drive from Lafayette

Eunice is an excellent day trip from Lafayette if you want to get to know more about Cajun culture and history. Mr CC Duson named the town Eunice, in honor of his wife. Go to Savoy Music Center for a Cajun jam session from 9 til noon on Saturdays. Visit the Cajun Music Hall of Fame and Museum. Be sure to visit Prairie Cajun Cultural Center on Saturday afternoons for Cajun music and dancing, then enjoy a cooking demo – all FREE.

Eunice is 40 miles northwest of Lafayette and it’s about a 45 minute drive.

 

Photos and biographies of musicians at the Cajun Music Hall of Fame and Museum in Eunice Louisiana

Photos and biographies of musicians at the Cajun Music Hall of Fame and Museum in Eunice Louisiana

 

Grand Coteau

  • 20 minute drive from Lafayette

Grand Coteau is about a 20 minute drive north of Lafayette. There’s a beautiful church in Grand Coteau, St Charles Borromeo. Be sure to visit Chicory’s Coffee and Cafe for breakfast or lunch.

 

Welcome to Historical Grand Coteau Est. 1909 - wooden sign

Grand Coteau Louisiana welcome sign with friendly reminder not to litter :)

 

Lacassine National Wildlife Refuge

  • 90 minute drive from Lafayette

Lacassine wildlife refuge is a great place for birding and wildlife spotting. I saw Roseate spoonbills, alligators, and nutria when I visited. Fishing season at Lacassine is from March 15 to October 15.

The drive from Lafayette to Lacassine is about 90 minutes.

 

Lake Martin

  • 20 minute drive from Lafayette

Lake Martin LA is great for birdwatching, canoeing, kayaking, hiking, or a swamp tour.

Do you want to go kayaking with alligators?! I did the sunset kayaking trip on Lake Martin with Pack and Paddle, but I didn’t see any alligators, although I’m sure they saw me. Where I did see alligators is during my walks alongside the water and when I took a Swamp Tour at Lake Martin. I paid $20 for the tour, it was educational and enjoyable and it’s around 2 hours long.

Lake Martin is about a 20 minute drive east of Lafayette.

 

Grey Heron takes flight at Lake Martin near Breaux Bridge Louisiana

Grey Heron takes flight at Lake Martin near Breaux Bridge Louisiana

 

Foils enjoying the Swamp Tour at lake Martin Louisiana

Looking for alligators on the Lake Martin Swamp Tour

 

 

Opelousas

  • 30 minute drive from Lafayette

Opelousas is 24 miles north of Lafayette so it takes about a half hour to drive there. Enjoy walking around this small town looking for all the fiddles on display. Fiddle Mania features a bunch of oversize fiddles created by local artists.

 

Fiddle Mania - Beautiful violin artworks created by local artists on display in downtown Opelousas Louisiana

Fiddle Mania – Beautiful violin artworks created by local artists on display in downtown Opelousas Louisiana

 

St Martinville

  • 30 minute drive from Lafayette

Visit the Evangeline Oak, Acadian Memorial, African American Museum, and Longfellow-Evangeline State Historic Site. St Martinville is about a 30 minute drive from Lafayette.  There is no shortage of great places to eat in St Martinville. Grab a bite at The Brown Skillet II,  Clambeaugh’s, Graton Eatery, or St John Restaurant.

 

Flags wave at the entrance to Longfellow Evangeline State Historic Site in St Martinville LA

Flags wave at the entrance to Longfellow Evangeline State Historic Site in St Martinville LA

 

Map of Lafayette LA Day Trips

 

 

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11 Amazing day trips from Lafayette Louisiana to explore Acadiana

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About the Author

Susan Moore spent 7 months traveling around Southeast Asia back in the 90's. Returning to Canada she found a job working on rotation in Siberia Russia. She later moved to Austin Texas where she started a bookkeeping business, allowing her to work remotely. Currently Susan is in year 4 of living a nomadic life, roadtripping around the USA and Canada and writing about her experiences with a focus on hiking and cultural encounters. Read all about Susan » You can reach Susan Moore at Facebook or Twitter or Instagram

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