BAYOU TECHE NATIONAL PADDLE TRAIL
Iberia Parish, Louisiana
This 135 miles trail, which is part of the National Park Service’s National Water Trails System, offers multiple access points from Port Barre to Calumet. The Iberia parish portion starts in Loreauville through New Iberia (9.5 miles) and ends in Jeanerette (11 miles) with five boat docks located along the way. The TECHE Project and the City of New Iberia recently installed a floating kayak dock and park off Duperier Avenue in New Iberia (pictured).
Bayou Teche is a slow-moving waterway near the Atchafalaya Basin that is great for paddling. Oak, cypress, magnolia and redbud trees line the banks, and you may spot bald eagles, turtles, snakes, alligators, egrets and nutria. The bayou winds through history, snaking around the original grounds of the native Chitimacha people, and the New Iberia National Register Historic District, home to the Conrad Rice Mill (America’s oldest operating rice mill), antebellum plantation Shadows-on-the-Teche, and the Bayou Teche and Jeanerette museums.