Louisiana Roadtrip Part 5: Steel Magnolias In Natchitoches

I was excited to visit Natchitoches for two reasons: firstly it has a cool name that you actually pronounce as ‘nack-a-tish’ and secondly, it was where they filmed Steel Magnolias.

Historic Natchitoches

It took us about two and a half hours to drive North from Lake Charles to Natchitoches.  Natchitoches is the oldest city in Louisiana, founded in 1714.  The historic district is absolutely stunning, located on the banks of the Cane River.  


If I had been without Jetlag & Mayhem (my 6 and 3 year old daughters), I would have booked us into one of the many charming B&Bs that dot the area.  Perhaps even The Steel Magnolias House.  Unfortunately (and I can’t blame them), guests under the age of 12 aren’t welcome at most of these abodes.

Where did we stay?

At the polar opposite of a cute B&B, the Hampton Inn on the edge of town.  However, this hotel was absolutely perfect.  Super clean, large room, helpful staff,and a fresh complimentary breakfast.

What did we do?

  • The Cane River National Heritage Trail is a Louisiana Scenic Byway.  This is a beautiful drive and you can stop off at a number of creole plantations, historic sites and colonial forts on route.
  • Strolled around the Oakland Plantation which has 17 of its original outbuildings still remaining.  I would have loved to attend one of the daily guided walks but my kids were just not that into it.
    Oakland Plantation
  • Visited Fort St. Jean Baptiste State Historic Site.  A costumed interpreter took us on a tour of the 18th century fort and due to its relatively small size, was the perfect amount of time for our two kids.
    Fort St Jean Baptiste
  • Had a browse around Kaffie Frederick General Mercantile, the oldest general store in the state.
  • Ate ice creams and played in the Beau Jardin Garden on the downtown riverbank.
    Beau Jardin

Where did we eat?

  • Suffering from US roadtrip food overkill we sought out some sushi at the Hana Japanese Bar & Grill which was pretty good
  • My husband felt it only right to try the famous Burger King ‘chicken fries’ from the BK next to our hotel.  I’m not going to lie, they were awesome. I need BK to roll them out worldwide!
  • Meat pie from the famous Lasyone’s!
    Lasyone's Meat Pie

For more information on what to do in Natchitoches, visit the official tourist website

Follow our adventures through Louisiana: 

Part 1: Family Fun in New Orleans

Part 2: Gators In Swamp Country

Part 3: Rajin Cajun in Lafayette

Part 4: Dancing in Lake Charles




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  1. Sally@Toddlers on Tour

    I love that movie Steele Magnolias. How cool to visit the town it was filmed in.

  2. Trish @ Mum's Gone To

    Now I’ve read this post, I need to go back and find out more about your road trip.Have you recovered from the food overkill or are you still there!?

  3. afamilydayout

    I’ve just enjoyed reading your series of Louisiana toad trip posts. It’s never a place that I’ve thought about visiting so it was fascinating to find out so much about the area. Sounds like you’ve had an incredible holiday.

  4. Packing my Suitcase

    Beautiful little town!! 😀

    Thank you for joining #MondayEscapes

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