Bicycle through the heart of Cajun Country and partake of all the food, music, and culture that Acadiana has to offer. On this relaxed tour you can enjoy Jambalaya, crawfish pie, and gumbo, and you’ll find that the spicy cuisine of southern Louisiana is complemented by its mellow terrain as you make your way past fields of rice and sugarcane, skirt swamplands, and cross bayous.
The tour will take you through historic Acadian settlements where you can sample a wide range of culinary delights, historic sites, and local music. Our final overnight will be in Breaux Bridge, the “Crawfish Capital of the World,” where we’ll be poised to enjoy the last evening of the community’s annual Crawfish Festival. Don’t miss this chance pedal through the Deep South!
|Start Date:||May 02, 2015||End Date:||May 08, 2015|
|Start Location:||Lafayette, LA||End Location:||Lafayette, LA|
|Total Days:||7||Riding Days:||6|
|Average Daily Mileage:||35.2||Surface:||Paved|
|Riders:||100||Airport:||Lafayette Regional (LFT), Baton Rouge Met (BTR)|
|Tour Leader:||Greg Edwards||Meals:||Catered meals|
|Accommodations:||Camping, Motel Options||Type:||Supported|
|Physical Difficulty:||Beginner+||Level of Support:||Fully Supported|
Meet your touring companions in Breaux Bridge at Pioneer Campground for introductions, an orientation, and our first overnight. We’ll enjoy a hearty dinner and conduct our inaugural map meeting. Our on-tour mechanic can help you make sure your bicycle is ready for the Acadian roads and you’ll start getting to know your fellow participants. The famous Breaux Bridge Crawfish Festival will be well under way with live music and delicious food for you to enjoy before registration or after dinner. Then it’s time to crawl into the tent and get some shut-eye to dream of the cypress swamps and lazy bayous in your future.
Pioneer Campground to Bayou Wilderness RV Park (Carencro), 29 miles. After breakfast, we’ll depart Pioneer Campground and pedal through historic Breaux Bridge where you can visit Café Des Amis, home of the world famous Zydeco Breakfast. Next we’ll visit Cypress Island Preserve, the largest preserve in Louisiana. From there we will make our way toward Lafayette to visit the Jean Lafitte Museum and the Vermilionville Acadian Culture Center. After a day filled with the nature and culture of the area, we will spend a peaceful night at Bayou Wilderness RV Park.
Bayou Wilderness RV Park to Frenchman’s Wilderness (Butte Larose) 38 or 53 miles. Today we will pedal into rural suburbs and then past fields of sugarcane and rice before entering the town of St. Martinville. The third oldest town in Louisiana, St. Martinville contains many marvelous examples of southern architecture, such as the historic St. Martin de Tours Catholic Church and La Manson Duchamp on Main Street. Departing St. Martinville, we’ll ride through increasingly rural country until gaining the levee road on the west edge of the Atchafalaya Basin. The campground in Butte Larose lies along the levee, offering a peaceful place to pitch a tent.
Butte Larose to Bayou Wilderness RV Park (Carencro), 38 miles. Departing Frenchman’s Wilderness, we’ll make our way up the levee road past McGee’s Landing, then we’ll pedal to Lake Martin for a relaxing tour on the swamp where we’ll search for alligators, rare birds, and flowers. After the fascinating sight-seeing, it’s back to pedaling as we make our way to camp at Bayou Wilderness RV Park again.
Bayou Wilderness RV Park (Carencro) to Chicot State Park, 44 or 63 miles. A ride up the scenic North Wilderness Trail Road that runs along the east side of the Fuselier will start the tour’s longest riding day. The route continues up the Bayou Teche, through the town of Arnaudville and to the bayou’s origin in Port Barre. At Port Barre the Teche draws water from Bayou Courtableau, then flows southward to meet the Lower Atchafalaya River at Berwick. During the time of the Acadian migration to what was then known as the Attakapas region, in the mid- to late 1700s, boating on the Teche was the primary means of transportation. From Port Barre, we’ll follow the Bayou Courtableau northwest and then ride along the southern edge of the Thistlethwaite State Wildlife Management Area before entering the town of Washington. Today we’ll also reach the highest elevation on our route — a jaw-dropping 81 feet above sea level! After a long day of pedaling, we will relax along the lake at Chicot State Park.
Chicot State Park to Lakeview Park (Eunice), 41 miles. We’ll begin the day with a visit to the Louisiana Arboretum, then continue on the peaceful roads of Chicot State Park as we make our way to Ville LaPlatte. Later, we’ll pedal through Mamou, located in the heart of Louisiana's Cajun country and the self-proclaimed "Cajun Music Capital of the World." Arguably, the most famous bar in all of Louisiana is Fred’s Lounge in Mamou, where KVPI radio out of Ville Platte has been broadcasting its Saturday morning live Cajun-music show for more than 50 years. Arriving at Lakeview RV Park, you can pitch your tent, enjoy the lake, and tap your feet to live music in the barn.
Lakeview Park (Eunice) to Breaux Bridge, 46 or 62 miles. We’ll pedal through heavily wooded lowlands and across the Bayou Mallet today, before winding through Acadian farmland eastward to Grand Coteau. You’ll cross the bayous Plaquemine, Wicoff, and Bourbeux, before following the Bayou Fuselier. True, the tour may be over—but son of a gun, we had big fun on the bayou!
"Greg was GREAT! A super leader. Hotel options were excellent and transportation to and from was well done. Water breaks were well spaced but often restrooms were not available - I guess finding a restroom became part of the creative adventure"
2014 Tour Participant
"You guys did the best job that could be done! from organization, to cultural events , to the food 1st class A1 Job!! Kudos!!"
2014 Tour Participant
"We could not have asked for a better ride leader and organizer. Greg seemed to have thought of everything. His leadership style was easygoing and supportive, and he had a "can do" attitude that facilitated things in a large group. The staff were also outstanding. Their variety and expertise were invaluable throughout the trip."
2014 Tour Participant