23 Best & Fun Things to Do in Lake Charles (LA)

Lake Charles city is located on the Southwestern side of Louisiana State, United States, and it is remarkable for its industries and rich culture.

With a population of approximately seventy-seven thousand, eight hundred and thirty-two (2020), Lake Charles is popularly referred to as the “Lake Area” due to its collection of lakes and water bodies.

Lake Charles boasts several entertainment and cultural centers, including festivals, concerts, dramas, and more.

There are many places to visit here, such as Mardi Gras Museum, Sam Houston Jones State Park, 1911 Historic City Hall Arts & Cultural Center, Veterans Memorial Park, White Oak Park, Waffle House, and more.

Lake Charles offers a wide range of delicious traditional meals which will surely make you stay longer than intended.

Are you planning a trip to Lake Charles? Here is a list of top things to do in Lake Charles.

Things to Do in Lake Charles

1. 1911 Historic City Hall Arts & Cultural Center

1911 Historic City Hall Arts & Cultural Center
Credits: Historic City Hall Arts and Cultural Center / Facebook
1911 Historic City Hall Arts & Cultural Center

1911 Historic City Hall Arts & Cultural Center is a famous center for all art related activities in Lake Charles and a favorite place for art fans.

This is a combination of an art gallery and cultural center, showcasing art through several exhibitions.

The center displays ancient artifacts, including Pablo Picasso paintings, Titanic art pieces, and stylish artworks made by emerging local artists.

 1911 Historic City Hall Arts & Cultural Center occupies more than three floors in a building with lots of architectural uniqueness.

The building itself is considered an artwork that features a courtyard built with brick and a large clock tower.

The center is a must-visit for everyone in Lake Charles, and it is open to everyone free of charge.

Address: 1001 Ryan Street, Lake Charles, LA 70601, United States

2. Prien Lake Park

Prien Lake Park
Credits: ilouque / Flickr
Prien Lake Park

There is no better way to begin your excursion in Lake Charles than a visit to Prien Lake Park, a beautiful park of thirty acres.

Prien Lake Park is a place for everyone, regardless of their age; visiting this place is a perfect gateway from all the noise and buzz in the world.

You can take a peaceful walk following the trails scattered throughout the park, which offers you an opportunity to get a closer view of the plants and animals.

Children also get to explore the playgrounds available and run around with other kids to their hearts’ content.

Prien Lake Park is also a fantastic place to cool off on a hot summer day since it features a luring water park. You can also set out for boating or canoeing on the park’s lake.

There are designated picnic areas with spots where you can stay and have a snack while enjoying the beautiful environment.

Address: 3700 West Prien Lake Road, Lake Charles, LA 70601 United States

3. Sam Houston Jones State Park

Sam Houston Jones State Park
Credits: Michael Crisp [CC BY-SA 2.0], Wikimedia Commons
Sam Houston Jones State Park
Do you have some time to spear? And you’re looking for a nice place to chill, add a visit to Sam Houston Jones State Park to your bucket list of fun things to do in Lake Charles.

Sam Houston Jones State Park is named in honor of Sam Houston Jones, a former governor of Louisiana who pioneered its establishment.

The park sits on a sacred-like site which is slated to retain its authenticity and remain as natural as possible irrespective of the era.

This means that efforts have been put in, to adequately maintain the undying beauty and glamour of the park.

Sam Houston Jones State Park features three trails perfect for visitors to take a quiet walk as a great way to loosen up and hike if you’re in a mood for an adventure.

This state park is home to nearly two hundred bird species, making it an excellent place for bird watching; there are ponds great for fishing.

Address: 107 Sutherland Road, Lake Charles, LA 70611, 337-855-2665 United States

4. Bord Du Lac Park (Millennium Park)

Bord Du Lac Park (Millennium Park)
Credits: siam.pukkato / Shutterstock

Millennium Park is a place every child would adore and love to visit often in Lake Charles due to the exciting amenities available.

The park features a play area coated with rubber open for only children to enjoy and have a good time while also being safe.

You will find well-paved trails scattered throughout the park, which offers visitors an opportunity to truly explore the environment.

Millennium Park has a splash area with lots of water equipment, making it a great place for adults and children to chill.

The park features mazes, tunnels, bridges, mazes, and several elements of the playground. Millennium Park is a place you should stop by when you get to Lake Charles.

Address: 1100 Lakeshore Drive, Lake Charles, LA 70601, United States

5. The Burton Coliseum

Burton Coliseum
Credits: CTtcg [CC BY-SA 3.0], Wikimedia Commons
Burton Coliseum
 Are you in for an amazing entertainment experience? Then, don’t forget to add a visit to the Burton Coliseum to your list of fun things to do in Lake Charles.

The Burton Coliseum was established in 1976, featuring a Spheroidal roof which is 105 feet farther from the floor; the property contains other buildings used for different purposes.

This is a multipurpose venue is used for different functions such as gymnastics, rodeos, basketball games, dancing competitions, volleyball games, martial art contests, and wrestling competitions.

The arena can conveniently accommodate more than eight thousand persons with three thousand, five hundred acres of parking spaces available.

There is a livestock and Exhibit facility of 168, 000 square foot with permanent troughs and booths. The Burton Coliseum will surely exceed your expectations with its hugeness and the kind of entertainment offered.

Address: 7001 Gulf Hwy, Lake Charles, LA 70607, United States

6. USS Orleck Naval Museum

USS Orleck Naval Museum
Credits: Unknown author / Wiki(Public Domain)
USS Orleck Naval Museum

For the curious at heart, add a visit to USS Orleck Naval Museum to your list of fun things to do in Lake Charles, especially if you’re curious about US naval history.

USS Orleck Naval Museum is committed to preserving and promoting significant naval memorabilia.

Visitors can hop into the relic ship used several times, such as in World War II, Vietnam, and Korea, before it was finally packed.

The facility has a USS Radford Museum showcasing timeless relics and artifacts, including a gallery packed with scale models.

USS Orleck Naval Museum hosts several public events all year round as a fundraiser for the management and efficiency of the museum

Address: 604 N Enterprise Boulevrd, Lake Charles, LA 70601, 337-214-7447 United States

7. Waffle House

Waffle House
Credits: Waffle House / Facebook
Waffle House

Waffle House is a wonderful restaurant founded in 1955 and has continuously served the public with good meals.

The restaurant has grown widely in America and currently manages more than one thousand, eight hundred restaurants in about twenty-five states.

They are known for serving the best waffles in the world, which is the main reason behind its name, the waffles are a must try whenever you visit the city.

Waffle House offers a wide variety of breakfast and authentic American meals, including pork chops, hash browns, T-bone, cheese & eggs, steaks, and more.

Address: 804 N Lakeshore Dr, Lake Charles, LA 70601, United States

8. Drew Park

Drew Park
Credits: Mostovyi Sergii Igorevich / Shutterstock

Drew Park is a great destination for recreational activities in Lake Charles, and it houses a wide variety of exciting amenities.

The park features several green lushes and beautiful flowers, offering some of the best spots to take memorable pictures with family and friends.

You will find a large play area for your little ones to have fun with; they would adore and appreciate the play equipment.

Drew Park provides a good number of picnic tables and a walking trail ideal for a brief and peaceful walk around.

There are pool tables, a gym area, TVs, snack machines, table or video games, and more. You can also camp here if you would love some adventure.

This is another must-visit attraction in Lake Charles and a great place to spend time on a summer day.

Address: Drew Park Dr, Lake Charles, LA 70601, United States

9. Children’s Museum

Children’s Museum
Credits: Iwaew / Shutterstock

Exclusively for families traveling with kids, add a visit to the children’s museum to your list of best things to do in Lake Charles.

The children’s museum has been an essential section of the Community, Lake Charles, right from the 1980s after its establishment.

The museum’s main objective is to arouse the curiosity of the little ones and develop their passion for learning.

Currently, occupying three large floors for the children to have enough room to browse through the permanent displays relating to music, stories, art, and more.

Children’s Museum hosts several private events and workshops throughout the year, including art programs for emerging artists.

During these events, many distinguished persons, well known from different careers, such as musicians, chefs, and more.

Address: 327 Broad Street, Downtown Lake Charles, LA 70601, 337-433-9420 United States

10. Veterans Memorial Park

Veterans Memorial Park
Credits: Mary McKinney / Facebook
Veterans Memorial Park

One fun thing to do in Lake Charles is visiting Veterans Memorial Park, a place that helps you to reflect and meditate on the past.

Veterans Memorial Park is a more unique park that features inscribed bricks symbolizing the patrons who have been serving the city right from WWI.

There are essential memorabilia on display, such as the Vietnam Huey Helicopter from the War era, Howitzer M115 cannon of 8 inches, and a popular Patton tank of World War II.

In the middle of the park, you will sight the statue of a native of Lake Charles and a receiver of the Medal of Honor, First Lt. Douglas Fournet.

Veterans Memorial Park features a fountain showcasing plaques made of bronze of all the Medal of Honor recipients in Louisiana.

Address: W. Pryce St. Lake Charles, LA 70601 United States

11. Imperial Calcasieu Museum

Imperial Calcasieu Museum
Credits: Forest Runner / Flickr
Imperial Calcasieu Museum

If you have always nurtured a burning desire to learn about the Lake Charles history, visiting Imperial Calcasieu Museum is one of the best things to do in Lake Charles.

Imperial Calcasieu Museum is concerned about educating the public on the region’s history, and it has consistently done this for about fifty years.

The Museum features separate areas open for visitors to explore, guiding them through an exceptional tour of the artifacts from the ancient days to the current date.

Imperial Calcasieu Museum showcases temporary exhibitions all year round featuring contemporary visual arts. The Museum also offers art workshops and film nights which are family-friendly.

Address: 204 West Sallier Street, Lake Charles, LA 70601, United States

12. Mardi Gras Museum

Mardi Gras Museum
Credits: Carnaval.com Studios / Flickr
Mardi Gras Museum

Have you ever heard of Mardi Gras? Then, add a visit to Mardi Gras Museum if you want to learn more about Mardi Gras.

Mardi Gras Museum is a museum that enlightens the public about the history and the importance of the festival to the culture.

An annual festival is held at Mardi Gras, which usually draws the attention of hundreds of residents and visitors from different parts of the country.

Guests are provided with the materials needed during their self-guided tours throughout the six rooms, which let them dive into the culture of Mardi Gas.

Mardi Gras Museum takes you through a large collection of costumes and a separate area that sheds more light on the heritage and the process of making King cake, a delicious snack from Mardi Gras.

Address: Central School Arts & Humanities Center, 809 Kirby Street, Lake Charles, LA 70601, United States

13. Lake Charles Visitor Center

Visiting Lake Charles Visitor Center is undoubtedly one of the best things to do in Lake Charles; it houses materials that will help you find your way around the city.

Lake Charles Visitor Center is a visitor resource center that enlightens them about the Southwestern Louisiana Boudin route and the Creole Nature Trail.

They offer you guidance about what they do for fun around the area, which includes exploring their historical sites, traditional meals, entertainment & music, festivals, and more.

The center will also offer you options about where to dine, play games, perform recreational activities, shop, and so on.

Lake Charles Visitor Center is worth a stop; you get to meet their friendly staff and enjoy a complimentary cup of coffee.

Address: 1205 N Lakeshore Dr, Lake Charles, LA 70601, United States

14. White Oak Park

White Oak Park
Credits: Pavel1964 / Shutterstock

Are you looking for a beautiful place to spend the day with your loved ones? Then, do well to add a visit to White Oak Park to your list of top things to do in Lake Charles.

White Oak Park is blessed with several oak trees, which is the mean reason for its name. The park is a land space extending for eight hundred and ten acres.

Recognized as one of the Allegheny County Parks, White Oak Park is a gorgeous photographic location that every photographer would love.

White Oak Park consists of several athletic fields used for practices for any kind of athletic sport or event.

There is a large colorful playground with many features that keeps makes children excited and exhilarated all through.

For your lovely furry friend, there is an off-leash park for dogs and a chain of biking trails that leads to the mountains.

White Oak Park consists of a pavilion in an Acadian style with electricity available for use by everyone, both locals and visitors.

Address: 5584 River Rd, Lake Charles, LA 70615, United States

15. Gray Plantation Golf Club

Gray Plantation Golf Club
Credits: Gualberto Becerra / Shutterstock

Gray Plantation Golf Club was rated by Golf Digest as one of the 100 best Golf Courses in 2000, offering players an incredible Tee time in Lake Charles.

The golf course is beautifully designed with exciting challenges ideal for beginners and professional players.

Gray Plantation Golf Club is a great place to hang out with friends, and you can also engage in a friendly golf competition.

The onsite gift store is packed with all the necessary equipment and clothing every golf player requires.

Address: 6150 Graywood Parkway, Lake Charles, LA 70605, United States

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16. L’Auberge Casino Resort

L’Auberge Casino Resort
Credits: L’Auberge Casino Resort Lake Charles / Facebook
L’Auberge Casino Resort

An essential item that ought to be on your list of fun things to do in Lake Charles is visiting L’Auberge Casino Resort.

L’Auberge Casino Resort offers you an opportunity to win eye-popping prizes at the “claim to fame” in the casino, which is elegantly designed with a huge glass dome and a high ceiling made of glass.

The casino features several slot machines and gaming tables where you can try out your lucky charm and get to make big wins.

You can book a tee time at the Contraband Bayou Golf Club, designed by Tom Fazio, a renowned architect perfect for all skill levels.

L’Auberge Casino Resort features a full-service bar that offers a variety of cocktails and drinks you could enjoy before or after your game.

This exceptional location offers you a wide range of spa, shopping, and dining options to pick from, guaranteeing a great experience.

Address: 777 Avenue L’Auberge, Lake Charles, LA 70601, United States

17. Charpentier Historic District

The Charpentier Historic District is an exceptional attraction popular for its unique architectural design in Lake Charles.

The region was named “Charpentier” in remembrance of the carpenters who constructed the buildings, and the name translates for “Carpenter.”

The property is open to those who would like to embark on a self-guided tour throughout the entire property, which spreads over forty blocks.

The Charpentier Historic District is characterized by houses built in unique styles from several decades ago.

The houses are built with touches of ornaments, spires, lead glass, and towers which contribute to the elegance and loveliness of the district.

Address: 1205 North Lakeshore Drive, Lake Charles, LA 70601, United States

18. Louisiana Pirate Festival

Louisiana Pirate Festival
Credits: Peter O’Carroll / Public Domain
Louisiana Pirate Festival

The Louisiana Pirate Festival is an event that will be one of the most memorable experiences in Lake Charles.

It was initially known as the Contraband days and is held on the Lake Charles shores for the first twelve days of May.

The festival is one of the most recognized in the city’s cultural calendar, with an outstanding estimation of more than two hundred thousand visitors yearly.

The Louisiana Pirate Festival first gagan in 1957 basically to proclaim and honor the city’s maritime traditions.

During these twelve days, the entire community is only concerned about the festival and how to make it extraordinarily fabulous.

The festival features music presentations by numerous band artists and musicians, dancers, and more as a way to showcase their talents.

The Louisiana Pirate Festival features carnival rides, craft works, bike or motor shows, games, souvenirs, contests for the custome, and more.

Address: 900 N Lakeshore Dr, Lake Charles, LA 70601, United States

19. Rikenjaks Brewing Company

Rikenjaks Brewing Company
Credits: tb-photography / Shutterstock

Rikenjaks Brewing Company is the best place for group outings in Lake Charles, offering a lively and energetic atmosphere.

The brewery company was established in 1992 and is housed in a beautifully refurbished bungalow of over seventy years.

This is a perfect place for lunch and dinner with a loved one or some group of friends and family, as you also get to enjoy fresh brews.

Rikenjaks Brewing Company offers a cozy outdoor patio for dining and a scenic large beer garden where you can enjoy a chilled bottle of beer.

They offer a wide variety of delicious and well-brewed drinks for visitors to enjoy, plus a large menu of quality meals offered.

Rikenjaks Brewing Company is open from Sunday to Thursday from 11am-10pm and Friday & Saturday from 11am-12am.

Address: 3716 Ryan St, Lake Charles, LA 70605, United States

20. Golden Nugget Lake Charles

Golden Nugget Lake Charles
Credits: CTtcg [CC BY-SA 4.0], Wikimedia Commons
Golden Nugget Lake Charles
Are you a creative gamer or golf player? Then, add a visit to Golden Nugget Lake Charles to your list of fun things to do in Lake Charles.

Golden Nugget Lake Charles consists of the Golden Nugget Casino in the gaming institution featuring about eighty game tables.

For those who are more of outdoor enthusiasts, Golden Nugget County Club is an amazing place for you, where you get to play golf in an amazing environment.

The golf course features dramatic landscapes and native plants and trees popular in Louisiana with the gracious greens.

The golf course features a country club overlooking the course offering breathtaking views of the environment.

The country club serves delicious meals and snacks prepared by professional chefs as well as signature cocktails and other beverages.

Address: 2550 Golden Nugget Boulevard, Lake Charles, LA 70601, United States

21. Crying Eagle Brewing Company

Crying Eagle Brewing Company
Credits: id-art / Shutterstock

Are you a lover of good beers? Then, add a visit to Crying Eagle Brewing Company to your list of things to do in Lake Charles.

Crying Eagle Brewing Company has one aim: to bring people from different parts of the country to meet and chat over good beers.

The owners and workers at the brewery are very committed to what they do, and they recognize the power of delicious beers that unite people.

Crying Eagle Brewing Company was named Crying Eagle, which invariably means Quelqueshue, a name of a prominent chief known for his distinct battle cry.

The brewery offers a wide variety of beers on taps, such as the chuck, Louisiana lagar, raspberry passion fruit berliner weisse, honey wheat, milk stout, Acadian summer, and more.

They are open from Tuesday to Thursday from 11am-10m, Friday & Saturday from 11am-11pm, and Sunday 2-10pm.

Address: 1165 E McNeese St, Lake Charles, LA 70607, United States

22. Cedar Chest Antiques

Cedar Chest Antiques
Credits: Aris-Tect Group / Shutterstock

If, by chance, you’re looking for where to shop for unique gifts for your family and friends in Lake Charles, Cedar Chest Antiques is the best place for you.

Cedar Chest Antiques is different from the usual antique stores you might have visited. Instead, this store is filled with rare treasures from several decades ago.

This family-owned antique store boasts of having the most unique and rare treasures you can’t get anywhere else.

They offer different kinds of furniture, glassware, cameras, crafts, art, collectibles, vintage phones, jewelry, gifts, and many more.

Cedar Chest Antiques is also known for offering the best services with a staff that is friendly and helpful towards customers.

Address: 210 Division St, Lake Charles, LA 70601, United States

23. Isle of Capri Casino Hotel Lake Charles

Isle of Capri Casino Hotel Lake Charles offers a whole new experience in Lake Charles, featuring several facilities and amenities.

The casino consists of over one thousand slot machines, and forty table games such as blackjack, roulette, poker, and craps.

There are two hotel towers that offer luxurious accommodations with full provision of all you require to live comfortably.

The rooms feature coffeemakers, mini-fridges, flat-screen TVs, and a free wifi network, while the VIP Suites feature a living room.

Isle of Capri Casino Hotel Lake Charles features a hot tub, an exercise room, an Olympic outdoor pool, and a sauna.

The lovely grill restaurant and laid-back bar offer delicious steaming meals and delightful drinks coupled with live music.

Address: 100 Westlake Ave Hotel Lake Charles, Lake Charles, LA 70669-5716 United States

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Plan a Trip to Lake Charles

The beauty and magnificence of the city of Lake Charles speak louder than words; it is wonderfully made with a lot of natural gifts.

Lake Charles is a city for everyone, you and your family members are going to fall in love with the kind of environment and atmosphere it offers.