Bayou Teche National Paddle Trail (Loreauville to Jeanerette)
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 four boat docks located along the way.
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, touching the original grounds of the Chitimacha people, the earliest residents.
- Port Barre (Mile 0): Official trailhead dock located at city boat launch at 245 Bayou Road. Note that the dock is located on Bayou Courtableau and you will need to paddle 0.3 miles to the left of the access point to access the beginning of Bayou Teche.
- Leonville (Mile 11.3): Launch with a wharf at 129 Mistric St. at the water tower and boat launch.
- Arnaudville (Mile 19.0): Official dock site at 1023 Neblet St., next to Myran’s Maison de Manger restaurant; will eventually be a full trailhead with pavilion and restroom.
- Arnaudville (Mile 19.4): Unofficial Bayou Teche Brewing Company dock located at the end of Noth Road. Follow the signs from LA Hwy. 734 at the brewery.
- Poche’s Market (Mile 29.5): Unofficial dock located behind the market at 3015 Main Hwy. in Breaux Bridge.
- Breaux Bridge (Mile 34.1): Full-service trailhead with dock and restroom facilities in Parc des Ponts at 120 St. Bernard St.
- Parks (Mile 42.2): Official dock site in Cecil Poche Memorial Park at 1019 Periou St.
- St. Martinville (Mile 49.2): Official dock at Old Market Street adjacent to the Evangeline Oak and Acadian Memorial. Note that you will need to portage to the left at mile 52.6.
- Loreauville (Mile 61.4): Official dock at 119 Bridge St.
- New Iberia (Mile 70.9): Future dock will be installed when new park is implemented at 108 Duperier Bridge St.; in the meantime, access the bayou at the City Park (300 Parkview Dr.) boat ramp (mile 71).
- Jeanerette (Mile 82.0): Official dock located at T.J. Viator City Park off Tarleton Street.
- Charenton (Mile 91.0): Official dock at 3726 Chitimacha Trail.
- Baldwin (Mile 96.0): Official dock located at Charenton Road Park and Recreational Complex.
- Franklin (Mile 108.1): Official dock at 700 Teche Dr. coming week of Sept. 21, 2020.
- Centerville (Mile 114.0): Future dock at Schawn Park at 514 Parish Road 131; in the meantime, use the boat launch at that site.
- Patterson (Mile 126.2): Official dock at 1116 Main St. in Morey Park. Note that paddling in this reach is constricted by the Atchafalaya Levee structure at Mile 119 and the Berwick Lock at Mile 133. Clearance must be obtained by the Corps of Engineers to portage these structures. No problem paddling to each structure as the current runs in both directions in this reach, so you can go right or left from the dock depending on how you find the current flowing.
Along the way, paddle up to one of the trail's kiosks to few a map and additional features, or visit the St. Landry, St. Martin, Iberia or St. Mary visitors centers for a printed map.
For more information, visit The Teche Project.