Spring is here! Which means beautiful days when the sun shines bright, the temperature is just right and there is no better place to be than outside. And there are some great places where you and your family can spend a perfect spring day in Acadiana.
Here are some of our favorites:
“A World-Class Central Park for Acadiana.” That is the Community Vision for Moncus Park. The park is approximately 100 acres of green space with hills, meadows, and ravines for a family to run, walk, hike and bike through. There are flowers and trees aplenty, offering a year-round colorful oasis of plant life. Every Saturday, from 8 a.m. – 12 p.m., there is a Farmers and Artisans Market at the park with a host of local vendors offering “seasonal, farm-based products and artisanal creations offered by local producers.”
Located on Avery Island, Jungle Gardens is a 170-acre semi-tropical garden with attractions beyond plant life to include a centuries-old statue of Buddha, bamboo groves, Bird City, alligators and other wildlife. Visitors interested in bird watching can make reservations for Bird Tours any day of the week. Families can enjoy walking down pathways through tree canopies and over bridges, keeping an eye out to spot wildlife and the perfect photo opportunity.
Vermilionville is a living history and folk life park in Lafayette that celebrates the Acadian history and culture of our area. Along with a walking tour through a traditional Acadian village and seeing artisans’ demonstrations, visitors can also take boat tours on the Bayou Vermilion in a traditionally-built bateau. There is a beautiful Healer’s Garden full of plants used for medicinal purposes. If your family likes to listen to live music, Vermilionville is the perfect spot to dance an afternoon away when local musicians play.
The Acadiana Park Nature Station is a 150-acre facility in a wooded section of Acadiana Park that features a six mile trail system. The nature trails are open to the public every day, with guided weekend trail tours on the second and fourth Saturday and Sunday of each month. A naturalist will guide your family on a hike, pointing out the various plants and animals along the way. There is also a kayak launch for families interested in kayaking along the Bayou Vermilion Paddle Trail.
Jefferson Island in New Iberia is home to the semi-tropical Rip Van Winkle Gardens. There are some very intriguing sights to see during a tour of the gardens, including the tree where Jean Lafitte buried his treasure, a tree that President Grover Cleveland would nap under, and a tour of the Joseph Jefferson House. If your family enjoys bird watching, be sure to visit Rip’s Rookery, which is home to over 260 species of birds.
The zoo is a great place to take the family on a beautiful spring day. Zoosiana is a 45-acre park that is home to more than 750 animals from over 130 different species. There are walking paths covered with natural shade to keep the sun away, including centuries-old live oak trees. Attractions include a Safari Train Ride, Giraffe Feeding Station, Parakeet Feeding, Petting Zoo, Jungle Room and more.
With so much to do outdoors in Acadiana, there is no excuse for staying inside on a beautiful spring day!