Camping along the Louisiana bayou!
Fairview-Riverside State Park located just North of New Orleans, LA and Lake Pontchartrain is one of my favorite places to camp when I'm headed to the East Coast. Most of the time I'm just here for the evening only to hit the road early the following day but one day I hope to stay a couple of days in order to check out all of the cool things to do in the area.
One thing to mention is that all of the RV sized sites are Back In only, there are no pull throughs. With that being said the roads are pretty wide and the sites aren't at a drastic angle so backing in even the largest trailer can be done pretty easily. The site pads aren't surrounded by trees and deep ditches which makes life much easier for those large coaches. The RV sites are Water/Electric only. There are no Grey/Black Water hookups at the site pads although the park does have a central Dumping Station so you can unload on your way out.
The one thing I wish every park had are these illuminated electrical hook up boxes. I arrived late at night and having all of these electrical boxes lit up made it so much easier to get settled in and hooked up.
In addition to having Water/Electric hookups each site also includes a picnic table and either a BBQ pit or Fire Pit. Most State Parks offer a Park Store where you can purchase supplies and fire wood etc but here there is no such luck. So if you're planning a stay here and want a campfire be sure to bring in your own wood.
There's one full service Bath House for the entire park. Definitely one of the nicest I've seen at any State Park.
A snack machine would be nice... For those of us that didn't stop and fill the van fridge up with food on the way here. DOH! Hehee.
I've been to a bunch of State Parks throughout the country and this is the first one I've stayed at that had a full laundry room. Many times when I'm on the road in my van I'll stay at a more expensive KOA Campground in order to have access to a laundry room. Its nice to see that Fairview-Riverside State Park includes one and the price of a night's stay here is about half that of most KOA's.
There are 6 Shower Rooms in the Main Bath House. Each room is very spacious and pretty clean. Individual Shower Rooms are something that you usually don't find at State Parks so this is definitely a change of pace for me. It's nice to have your own private room to shave and shower without worrying about someone walking off with your valuables. Major plus!
The only thing that would make these Shower Rooms better is the addition of some wall mounted hooks for towels and clothes. This is a very inexpensive addition yet would make life so much easier for the campers staying here at the park.
A nice sized playground for the kiddos to stay busy with.
While walking around the park I noticed a creepy old graveyard on the east side of the park. It's pretty grown over and kinda hidden but as one that enjoys ghost stories I thought it was a cool little quirk.
The Otis House is on the southwest corner of the park and is definitely worth a visit. The house was built in the 1880's and the last owner named Frank Otis died in 1962. Frank Otis left the house and the surrounding land to the state of Louisiana in order to be developed as a recreational area which is now this State Park. The entire area around the house is covered in HUGE moss covered oak trees. Absolutely stunning. Tours of the house are available.
A little hike further from the Otis House is the Tchefuncte River. If you can handle the mosquitos this is definitely a good place to catch the evening sunset. The trees are just... WOW.
A few picnic tables scattered throughout in order to lounge on and enjoy the view.
Yes... Definitely worth the wait.
The park is a pretty good size. I didn't even get up to the North West side of the park where I'm told there are more sites as well as a nice scenic boardwalk along the river front. I'll have to make my way there the next time I'm in town for a night's stay. It's also worth noting that the park also has Tent Sites available which are more primitive. There is no water and electric hookups but the nightly rate is much cheaper. With the tent sites you still have access to all of the Park's amenities such as the Bath House and Laundry Room. Park Map located HERE.
As I mentioned earlier, the Fairview-Riverside State Park is my go to stop for my road trips that head East from Texas. I always stop in for the night...