Do something different this holiday season and take a road trip! It doesn’t matter who you bring along. You can gather your extended family, rally together your coworkers or round up your old friends from school, when you visit one or more of the cities that make up the Louisiana Holiday Trail of Lights you are bound to have a great time! But remember, the more the merrier, so grab as many people as you can and let’s head down the Trail.
The Louisiana Holiday Trail of Lights is made up of eight of the most popular cities in north Louisiana: Shreveport-Bossier, Minden, Monroe-West Monroe, Natchitoches and Alexandria/Pineville. Each city is within an hour’s drive of the next when traveling I-20 and I-49. If traveling from east to west, start your trip in Monroe-West Monroe, the city that has been made famous by A&E ‘s hit TV series Duck Dynasty. In downtown West Monroe you will find Antique Alley, a street lined with antique shops and boutiques that offer souvenirs and collectables. In the middle of Antique Alley is Miss Kay’s Sweets & Eats, founded by Miss Kay Robertson of Duck Dynasty.
After leaving Monroe-West Monroe travel to Minden. Main Street, located in downtown, is lined with a variety of shops and restaurants. It’s worth your time to visit the Dorcheat Museum, which has exhibits that celebrate this community’s German heritage and relaxed way of living.
Just a short 20 minute drive west of Minden is Shreveport-Bossier. The sister cities, connected by the Red River, offer six riverboat casinos, Louisiana Boardwalk Outlets, and more than two dozen Christmas related events. The Louisiana Boardwalk is a great one-stop-shop for shopping, dining, and overnighting with two hotels on the property. The Boardwalk overlooks the Red River and is a local backdrop for pictures because of its beauty and the neon glow of nearby casinos. During the holiday season, this beauty is decorated with lights, a 40-foot-tall Christmas tree, and “snow” to set the holiday mood.
After leaving Shreveport-Bossier, head south on I-49. Next stop: Natchitoches! Named by USA Today’s Readers’ Choice “Best Southern Small Town” in 2016. This city is known for its’ holiday spirit. It will be celebrating its’ 91st Christmas Celebration this year, and has just been named by Southern Living to be one of the “Best Small Towns for Christmas in the South.” I can truly say, they deserve this title. Natchitoches has it all: parades, lights, shopping, dining, history, fireworks, and culture.
Your final destination on the Louisiana Holiday Trail of Lights is Alexandria/Pineville, and it is a stop you don’t want to miss. Experience the Alexandria Zoo like you have never seen it before. Thousands of glistening Christmas lights turn this jungle into a Holiday Light Safari! Enjoy train rides, animal themed light displays, entertainment, photo ops and so much more.
To plan your road trip along the Louisiana Holiday Trail of Lights, visit www.holidaytrailoflights.com.