Head to Louisiana for warm weather and excellent spring break getaway activities. Whether you want to tour museums and zoos, relax on the beach, ride bikes on scenic trails, or tee off for that elusive hole-in-one, the Pelican State has it all. Book a stay at one of numerous Louisiana vacation rentals today. From the capital city of Baton Rouge to the small town of Mandeville to New Orleans, these eight spring break vacation destinations in Louisiana offer great fun and food.

1. Baton Rouge

Landscape view of capitol building
Baton Rouge, the state’s capital, features numerous fun attractions for spring break. Take everyone to the Louisiana Art and Science Museum, where interactive scientific galleries and hands-on exhibits intrigue visitors of all ages. Explore the universe at the museum’s space discovery center and amazing planetarium, which offers multimedia experiences. Nature lovers don’t want to miss the international collection of animals at BREC’s Baton Rouge Zoo. Train rides, a petting zoo, a playground, and a cafe make it a full and exciting day. Whenever your crew gets hungry, head to Louie’s Cafe, a local student favorite. This 1950s-style 24-hour diner serves great bacon cheeseburgers and fries topped with Swiss, cheddar, and jack cheese.

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2. Bossier City

Bayou with trees on the side
Source: Flickr/Dallas Krentzel

Situated on the Red River in northern Louisiana, Bossier City features the Horseshoe Bossier City casino complex, offering places to eat that fit student spring break budgets. For a fascinating look at Air Force history and vintage aircraft, visit the 8th Air Force Museum inside Barksdale Air Force Base. Spend days exploring the great outdoors at Red River National Wildlife Refuge near the city, starting at the interpretive visitor center. Discover bold Creole and barbecue flavors at Bodacious BBQ, home of the “botato,” a pulled-pork-and-cheese-stuffed delight. At the Chocolate Crocodile, it’s hard to resist biting into a delicious apple covered with caramel, cheesecake, peanuts, or, well, you know.

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3. Shreveport

Lake and horizon with orange sky
Source: Facebook/Cross Lake Shreveport, LA

Cross the Red River from Bossier City to Shreveport for Creole, Cajun, and French culture. The Spirit of the Red River Cruise from Downtown Shreveport gives you an entertaining look at the waterway. If you’re lucky, your spring break coincides with Holiday in Dixie, an annual 10-day festival that’s one of the oldest in the South. Festivities include parades, carnival rides, games, and live music. Looking for indoor activity? Jump into the fun at Air U Trampoline Park, equipped with plenty of foam pits for safety. Have fun jumping solo, or play a friendly game of trampoline dodgeball with your spring break buddies. When you get hungry, dig into fried seafood platter dinners or opt for a bountiful plate of spaghetti and meatballs at Ernest’s Orleans Restaurant. Before leaving this spring break vacation destination, take selfies with Elvis’s statue in front of the Shreveport Municipal Auditorium.

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4. Alexandria

Road going to the beach
Source: Flickr/Michael Gras, M.Ed.

Travel down the Red River to the central Louisiana town of Alexandria and the Arna Bontemps African American Museum. Originally Bontemps’s birth home, the museum houses historic artifacts, photographs, and other pieces of his works. A tour of the Original Town Historic District gives you more insight into the region. The Louisiana History Museum, another popular attraction, highlights state and local historical events. For a wild time, ride the train and see lemurs and other wildlife roaming free in Alexandria Zoological Park.

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5. Lake Charles

Outdoor plants and horizon with sky and clouds
Source: Flickr/Louisiana Travel

Nestled in southwest Louisiana, scenic Lake Charles is a wealth of all things Cajun, and host to four casino complexes, including L’Auberge Casino Resort and the Golden Nugget. For an up-close look at alligators and other wildlife, travel along the Creole Nature Trail. There are enough fascinating museums in town, such as the Mardi Gras Museum, Children’s Museum, and the USS Orleck Naval Museum, that visiting one each day keeps your family occupied the entire spring break week. Before you leave, explore the Cottage Shops Cultural District, full of unique items with local flavor.

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6. New Orleans

Garden with houses in the background
Things that make New Orleans “The Big Easy” and “The City That Never Sleeps” make it a great spring break vacation destination. Sure, you missed Mardi Gras, but a visit to the city’s Mardi Gras World gives everyone a taste of the fun. Savor city sights and sounds during a Mississippi River cruise on the Steamboat Natchez, complete with music from its steam organ. For sports activities, rent kayaks and gear from Bayou Paddlesports and go kayaking at Bayou St. John, or rent bikes from Arts District Bike Rental, ride to Lafayette Square, and watch the world go by. Don’t miss the historic French Quarter. Let a visit to the Southern Food and Beverage Museum whet your appetite, then satisfy it with fried catfish or peppers stuffed with seafood at Cafe Reconcile.

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7. Mandeville

Seashore, sea, and sky
Source: Flickr/John Nutter

Find spring break activities a short drive north from New Orleans by crossing the Lake Pontchartrain Causeway Bridge into Mandeville. Relax on Fontainebleau State Park’s beaches on Lake Pontchartrain’s shore, or rent bikes at Brooks Bike Co-op to cruise on the multi-use trail that used to be railroad tracks. If golf is your thing, play one or both 18-hole courses at Beau Chene Country Club, a private club that accepts reservations from members of other clubs. Liz’s Where Y’at Diner doesn’t require reservations to enjoy delicious coffee and breakfast or brunch items, including French toast with bacon or crab cakes Benedict.

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8. New Iberia

View of plantation house from outside
Source: Flickr/Michael McCarthy

In New Iberia, Louisiana, the spirit of “joie de vivre,” the joy of life, makes it a great place to spend spring break. Visitors enjoy touring the Shadows, a classic Revival-style mansion built in 1834, and locations that city resident and author James Lee Burke describes in his Dave Robicheaux novels. Take your family to observe history in action at Conrad Rice Mill, the oldest working rice mill in the United States. If golf gives you joy, sharpen your long game on the 18-hole course at Squirrel Run Golf Club, the city’s premier golf facility. At Duffy’s Diner, chow down on fried chicken, catfish sandwiches, or shrimp and corn chowder in 1950s-style surroundings. If you prefer, get your food to go and savor it in the comfort of your New Iberia vacation rental.

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