Cabins with a view enable visitors to disconnect and get closer to nature
When we think of a cabin getaway, mountains and deep woods spring to mind. In Louisiana, visitors may find similar escapes — although actual mountains may be hard to find — but also the unique and unusual. We’ve compiled a few cabins with a view, and some of these may surprise you.
On the Water
Imagine checking into a cabin with all the usual amenities: bunkbeds, fireplace and screened-in porches. But how about a deck overlooking Bayou Segnette, where Louisiana’s wildlife and unique environment is right outside your door?
Waterfront cabins await visitors at Bayou Segnette State Park, literally minutes from downtown New Orleans. Here, visitors may enjoy boating of all kinds, fishing for redfish and trout in the swamps and marshlands or swimming in the wave pool.
“The cabin on the water at Bayou Segnette was wonderful,” said Karon Warren, who recently visited from Ellijay, Georgia. “With two bedrooms, a full bathroom, full kitchen and spacious dining and living areas, there was plenty of room.”
But the critters outside pleased Warren the most.
“The screened-in porch provided the best spot to enjoy the views of the water without dealing with the bugs,” she said. “Watching alligators float by, fishermen motor by and, of course, watching the sun set all added up to a relaxing afternoon. In the evening, you are surrounded by the sounds of nocturnal wildlife: frogs, insects, birds and others. I thought this nighttime symphony would keep me awake, but I was asleep within moments of closing my eyes.”
Poverty Pointe Reservoir State Park in northeast Louisiana has waterfront cabins on its 2,700-acre man-made lake, a popular spot for fishing and bird and bear watching. Fontainebleau State Park in Mandeville situated its cabins right on the lake. A short car ride but a world away from Interstate 10, Lake Fausse Point State Park has several two-bedroom abodes facing Bird Island Chute and visitors may sit on the screened-in porches and listen to songbirds singing.
Sun Outdoors New Orleans North Shore near Ponchatoula caters to RVs but built a row of adorable small cabins to the rear of the property, half of which face the resort’s lake. Like the RV visitors, cabin users may enjoy the resort’s lazy river, giant hot tub, pickleball courts, children’s activity center, dining options and more.
Into the Woods
It’s nothing but rolling hills and forest surrounding Lake Chicot at the center of Louisiana, so a cabin stay here means what most expect from a camping experience. There are more than 6,400 acres at the park, including 20 miles of hiking and mountain biking trails and an 8-mile canoe trail. For boaters, there’s access to the lake by three boat launches and the fishing means largemouth bass, bluegill and crappie, among other fish species.
Park accommodations include deluxe cabins that sleep up to eight sporting woodsy views or fronting Lake Chicot. For groups, lodges sleep up to 14 and a group camp for 52 is available.
If that’s not incentive enough, the Louisiana State Arboretum within the park offers more nature trails through its beech-magnolia forest.
On the Farm
Jennifer Gray rents out two accommodations on her Bonne Terre farm outside Breaux Bridge, the 100-year-old Main House that sleeps many and the quaint Studio for singles or couples. Both exist on a working farm so a stay here means turkeys, chickens, goats, Rio the horse, a miniature cow name Ethylene and Bobo the cat who Gray insists is “the king of Bonne Terre.”
The accommodations routinely popular with artists and musicians are accessible through Airbnb but recently Gray signed up with farmstaysus.com. People arrive to enjoy the animals, but they may also help out with chores such as gathering eggs, feeding Ethylene or picking vegetables in the growing seasons. But Gray insists the work’s optional.
“I don’t want people to come and think they have to work,” she said with a laugh.
Bonne Terre is more a place to slow down and commune with nature, Gray said. And even though visitors may view farm animals from their windows, “You’re close but it’s not smelly.”
NUNU Arts & Culture Collective, an art gallery and community space with monthly and weekly cultural events in Arnaudville, also opens its doors for visitors to its Shiny Tiny House. This one-bedroom, one-bath tiny house designed and built by local artists comes equipped with a loft queen bed, full kitchen and Wi-Fi access. It’s located next to the arts center so it’s a quick walk to NUNU’s art exhibits, live music, French tables and art workshops, among other events. However, for those craving peace and quiet in the countryside, the Shiny Tiny faces rows of sugar cane and a cow pasture.