We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.
We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.
Want the lowest hotel prices? You're in the right place. We check 200+ sites for you.
Map updates are paused. Zoom in to see updated info.
Reset zoom
Updating Map...
Get directions
Address: Natchitoches, LA 71458
Phone Number:
+1 318-356-5555

Cane River National Heritage Area in northwestern Louisiana is a largely...

Cane River National Heritage Area in northwestern Louisiana is a largely rural, agricultural landscape known for its historic plantations, its distinctive Creole architecture, and its multi-cultural legacy. Historically this region lay at the intersection of French and Spanish realms in the New World. Today it is home to a unique blend of cultures, including American Indian, French, Spanish, African, and Creole. The central corridor of the heritage area begins just south of Natchitoches, the oldest permanent settlement in the Louisiana Purchase, and extends along both sides of Cane River Lake for approximately 35 miles. The heritage area includes Cane River Creole National Historical Park, seven National Historic Landmarks, three State Historic Sites, and many other historic plantations, homes, and churches. What is a National Heritage Area? A National Heritage Area is a place recognized by the United States Congress for its unique contribution to the American experience. In a national heritage area, natural, cultural, historical, and recreational resources combine to form a cohesive, nationally distinctive landscape arising from patterns of human activity shaped by geography. These patterns make national heritage areas representative of the national experience through the physical features that remain and the traditions that have evolved in the areas. Continued use of the national heritage areas by people whose traditions helped to shape the landscapes enhances their significance. The Cane River National Heritage Area is one of forty-nine National Heritage Areas recognized by Congress for their significant contributions to the American experience. In partnership with the National Park Service, CRNHA, Inc. celebrates the nationally significant history of the Cane River region, preserving it for the benefit of current and future generations.

read more

TripAdvisor Reviewer Highlights

Read all 97 reviews
Visitor rating
  • 69
  • 24
    Very good
  • 2
  • 1
  • 0
Beautiful Drive

Excellent drive through history and a bit off the beaten path. Drove the entire length Natchitoches on down, including Oakland plantation. Very interesting and enjoyable

4 of 5 bubblesReviewed 1 week ago
New Braunfels
Add Photo Write a Review

97 Reviews from our TripAdvisor Community

Traveller rating
Traveller type
Time of year
Showing 96: English reviews
Kalispell, Montana
Level Contributor
470 reviews
185 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 710 helpful votes
2 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 1 week ago

This over-hyped trail is actually quite a fairly short drive along a long skinny lake with a small dam at one end. The river banks are now lined with modern houses and myriad fishing cabins...the housing developments nearest the town are encroaching on the area. The Plantations have switched from their historic cotton fields to soy beans and corn and... More 

1 Thank MaryEllenM27
New Braunfels
Level Contributor
77 reviews
35 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 1 week ago

Excellent drive through history and a bit off the beaten path. Drove the entire length Natchitoches on down, including Oakland plantation. Very interesting and enjoyable

Thank TravelingBubba
Level Contributor
5 reviews
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 23 November 2016 via mobile

This is a beautiful drive in the fall. I live here in Natchitoches and took visiting family and friends on a drive. It is beautiful and there are some incredible homes along this drive.

Thank Mara B
Magnolia, Texas
Level Contributor
10 reviews
5 attraction reviews
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 11 November 2016

The drive was relaxing and interesting. So much to see and do along the way. Great tour of Oakland Plantation which gave you a real view of plantation life. Little Eva Plantation pecans amazing and store offers a variety of local crafts.

Thank nannettecoons
Elkton, Maryland
Level Contributor
29 reviews
7 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 24 October 2016

Be sure and drive this and stop at the churches and plantation, especially the Oakland plantation. the tour was great and the original family lived there until 1998 when they turned it over to the National Park service.

Thank RoniLea
Garland, Texas
Level Contributor
155 reviews
65 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 93 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 24 October 2016

We spent a pleasant morning driving the Cane River National Heritage Trail and visiting Oakland Plantation. We seemed to have the road all to ourselves and it was nice to take our time and enjoy the path to the past.

1 Thank TrailingR0se
2 reviews
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 25 September 2016

not really the pacific coast highway, for Louisiana would be considered great drive i suppose. plantations are not the impressive really

Thank Mark W
Saint Louis, Missouri
Level Contributor
12 reviews
6 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 31 July 2016

Had a wonderful afternoon at Oakland. Our tour guide, Barbara, was very interesting and well informed. It is fascinating to see these old homes and hear the history behind them. It was very warm-- thank goodness the main house had AC. Loved it!

1 Thank JimN1130
San Bruno
Level Contributor
80 reviews
28 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 32 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 19 July 2016

This area is so beautiful - I wanna live here along the river. Nice little houses, restuarants and b&b's along the river as well. Green,clean and peaceful. Very nicely kept up. We visiting several of the plantations along the river and ate at the Cane River BBQ. Loved Natchitoches - it's like a smaller,cleaner New Orleans but not seedy. Hope... More 

4 Thank TruGrits1
Reddick, Florida
Level Contributor
28 reviews
8 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 5 July 2016 via mobile

We had a great time on the Cane River. Beautiful Wildlife. True Louisiana.So much history to learn and explore.

1 Thank MerriMK

Travellers who viewed Cane River National Heritage Trail also viewed


Been to Cane River National Heritage Trail? Share your experiences!

Write a Review Add Photos & Videos

Questions & Answers

Questions? Get answers from Cane River National Heritage Trail staff and past visitors.
Posting guidelines
Typical questions asked:
  • Will you pick up and drop off at my hotel?
  • I have a family of 7. Can your tour accommodate all of us together?
  • How should I dress for this tour?