Lake Charles Louisiana
The Lake Charles lakefront, a popular place for boating and festivals
Two baby alligators in a swamp on the Creole Nature Trail
Catching fresh Louisiana blue crabs
Historic City Hall, open as a public art gallery and cultural facility
Classic festival attire on display at the Mardi Gras Museum of Imperial Calcasieu
L'Auberge Casino Resort pool and lounge area
Children playing at a lakefront beach
A boardwalk cuts through the Creole Nature Trail
The festive décor of Steamboat Bill’s
Dive into Cajun culture and bask in the great outdoors
Get Back to Nature
Just a few kilometers south of Lake Charles's 42 kilometers of natural Gulf beaches, outdoor lovers will find the 290-kilometer Creole Nature Trail All-American Road, featuring walking trails into the marsh and recreation areas perfect for crabbing and fishing. Experience the serenity of nature in its purest form, smell the salty air, bask in the glow of the sun and spot an alligator or two. Fishing is also a year round affair in southwest Louisiana, and professional fishing guides are eager to help visitors catch their limit of redfish, speckled trout, flounder, black drum and many other varieties. Bank fishing and crabbing are also excellent recreation which reward visitors with fresh Louisiana Blue Crabs and fish ⎯ yum!
Roll the Dice & Get Cultured
Southwest Louisiana is a major casino/gaming resort destination with Delta Downs Racetrack Casino & Hotel, Golden Nugget Lake Charles, the Isle of Capri Casino Hotel and L’Auberge Casino Resort. In addition to horseracing, slots and table games, these casinos bring in top name entertainment and have world-class amenities such as dining, shopping, and poolside areas as well as spas and championship golf courses. For the history enthusiast, Calcasieu Parish boasts seven museums, one being the USS Orleck Naval Museum. Another is the Mardi Gras Museum, housing the largest display of Mardi Gras costumes in the world.
There’s no pomp and circumstance when eating in the Lake Charles area. There can’t be when there’s a plate of steaming crawfish pistolets, mounds of fried boudin balls and a tray of boiled crawfish and fresh blue crabs in front of you. Southwest Louisiana is well known for fresh off-the-dock seafood, like blue crabs, shrimp, fish, oysters and crawfish, delivered straight to the local eateries. Another adventure and popular culinary treat is found along the Southwest Louisiana Boudin Trail, where you can taste one of the most delicious finger foods in southern Louisiana. So, in addition to savoring the flavor of fresh seafood, you can experience boudin and visit with shop owners, or in some cases, even see boudin made before your eyes.
Every year, more than 200,000 people attend the Contraband Days Festival, a celebration of Lake Charles’ pirate past.