8 Best Beaches in Louisiana

From the sandy shores along the Gulf of Mexico to lakefront parks

Pier jutting out from a white-sand beach over the water
Photo: iStockphoto/Getty Images

Louisiana may be best-known for its marshlands, but don't let the murky waters fool you — this state is full of stunning beaches, too.

With white sand and warm, clear waters, Louisiana's beaches could rival any of the most luxurious shorelines on Earth. Only here, you're likely to find far fewer crowds. Most people don't think of the Pelican State when it comes to beautiful beaches, meaning you could score a slice of this dreamy shoreline all to yourself.

Ready to explore? Here are eight of the best beaches in Louisiana that will make your next visit to the coast unforgettable.

Grand Isle

Long boardwalk stretching out over grass to the water
Lonely Planet Images/Getty Images

Best known for its deep-sea fishing and birding habitat, Grand Isle is Louisiana's only inhabited barrier island. It offers stellar views of the Gulf of Mexico and a perfect getaway for camping, picnicking, and surfing. Louisiana's Pontcha Surf Club says it "has become one of the bigger hubs [for surfing] in the modern day," most definitely taking on the crowd that once frequented Port Fourchon, which is now accessible only by boat.

North Beach

Who says a beach has to be located on the ocean? There's really no need for traveling all the way to the coast for sandy shores, and Lake Charles' North Beach is a prime example. Resting on the northern edge of Lake Charles, North Beach is the only inland white sand beach between Texas and Florida. Although it's close enough to the I-10 to be easily accessed, this not-too-far-away beach still maintains natural beauty aplenty.

Holly Beach

Afternoon sun on the dunes at Holly Beach
Judy Darby/Getty Images

Holly Beach is the spot to be for a locals-only vibe. There are no built-up developments around, which means you will need to pack in all of your supplies, but this only adds to its charms. Come here to spend the day building sandcastles, swimming, or even surfing. Or just plant yourself among the dunes and nap to the sound of the waves lapping.

Jimmie Davis State Park

Jimmie Davis State Park sits on a peninsula on Caney Lake. Its waters are primed for fishing, swimming, and waterskiing, its sandy shores for sunbathing and birding. What's great about lounging lakeside at Jimmie Davis is that you're treated to forest views the Gulf simply can't give you. And when you tire of the beach, there are endless other things to get into at the park, from taking the kids to the playground to cycling to glamping.

Fontainebleau State Park

Perfect for a family getaway, Lake Pontchartrain at Fontainebleau State Park is the largest lake in Louisiana. This park's soft, sandy beach gives way to shallow waters, making it an ideal spot for younger children to swim and play. If you're looking for more adventure on your trip, bring a canoe or kayak and paddle around the lakefront for an impressive view.

White Sands Lake Day Beach

Beachgoers under colorful umbrellas lakeside
Courtesy of White Sands Lake Day Beach

Find another family-friendly beach at White Sands Lake. The recreational area at this spring-fed lake is filled with activities for all ages, including a full-fledged aqua park that includes an inflatable water slide, trampolines, an air-filled "blob bag" that catapults adrenaline seekers into the water, floating mats, and more. On the sand, visitors can also find volleyball nets, BBQ grills, and plenty of space to stretch out.

Rutherford Beach

Bright sunset over a beach
Mark Shain/Getty Images

At Rutherford Beach in Creole, guests can go canoeing or kayaking on both the river and the Gulf of Mexico. There are also miles upon miles of shoreline to choose from, where visitors can hunt for the perfect seashell, see how many different maritime birds they can spot, or spend a day lounging. It's also a popular spot for camping, so book a spot and pack a tent for an extra-memorable getaway.

Cypremort Point Beach

Trees and picnic area framing a sunset at the beach

P.J. Hahn via Lousiana State Parks

Cypremort Point is a manmade beach — stretching for about half a mile — that is a stellar spot for a day on the sand. Here, visitors can pack in a picnic or enjoy a few other popular aquatic activities like fishing, crabbing, and even windsurfing when the conditions are right. The beach is also connected to a larger 185-acre park for those who want to find more adventure off the sand, too.

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