Find things to do in Alexandria, La! Alexandria, Louisiana, is an under-appreciated tourist destination.
It is known for its stunning landscapes and rich cultural heritage.
It’s home to remarkable art centers, outstanding museums, and zoos with a broad array of exotic animals—as well as enchanting lakes and rivers. It is also home to historic sites, dense forests, and vibrant festivals.
Alexandria offers a variety of cultural, entertainment, and recreational activities during all four seasons.
The lakes, rivers and sprawling greenery make hiking, camping, biking, and boating accessible to everyone.
We’ll help you make all the arrangements for your next trip.
Here are some of the best and fun things to do in Alexandria, Louisiana:
Things to do in Alexandria la
1- Louisiana history museum
The Rapides Parish Museum, located downtown in Alexandria, offers an overview of Louisiana’s history with a particular focus on Central Louisiana and the parish.
The building, built in 1907 and added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1989, stands as a testament to Alexandria’s past.
The Alexandria Museum of History has one of the largest historical collections in Virginia, growing from several display cases upstairs at the Alexandria Genealogical library to more than 50 exhibits on its main floor.
The exhibit is packed with artifacts that shed light on the history of Native Americans in Louisiana, Louisiana’s Spanish and French colonial past—plus important politicians from Central Louisiana.
2- Alexandria zoological park
Founded in 1926 by a man who had emigrated from South Africa, this zoo is one of Alexandria’s prime tourist attractions.
There are more than 500 exotic animals living on its walls.
You can see African lions, black howler monkeys, tortoises from Chile, and flamingos in their native environment—along with other animals like Australian tree frogs, jaguars, and squirrel monkeys.
You can observe a wide variety of aquatic life, including fish, otters, and alligators from the underwater window exhibit.
Take the miniature train ride to see spectacular views of towering trees and dense foliage.
The zoo is a popular venue for hosting various events throughout the year.
This place is a visit not to be missed in this city.
3- T.R.E.E. House Children’s Museum
This is the perfect and great place to visit if you are traveling with kids.
The museum’s exhibits are designed to teach children about the world around them.
The museum has a playground, dress-up room, kids’ TV studio, and animal exhibits; it also houses a clinic and model railroad with trains.
Dioramas depicting western life line the walls of this free library while little ones check out books in their pajamas at night under dinosaur lamps The museum is filled with hands-on exhibits that are fun for the whole family.
There are also many special events going on at the museum, like children’s theater and art classes.
This is a great and perfect place for children to play.
If you want to enjoy a fun-filled day and spend quality time with your loved ones, come here.
House Children’s Museum
Traveling with children? This is a great and perfect place to see.
The museum’s exhibits are designed to teach children about a variety of topics in an interactive way and also interactive exhibits.
The museum features a playground, dress-up room, TV studio for kids’ shows (and also hosts live broadcasts), exhibits of animals and other living things from around the world—a clinic where you can meet health professionals who will answer your questions about staying healthy; a model railroad with trains that run on the real track to travel through different terrain all over America; dioramas featuring scenes from American history or life in rural countryside townships; and banks where you can practice handling money.
You’ll also find stores selling groceries & gifts as well as sheriff cars to climb onto and pretend!
The children of this town love and like the park.
Come and enjoy an entertaining day with your family and your loved ones!
4- Kent plantation house
At the preserved Kent Plantation House, visitors can get a snapshot of life in Central Louisiana during the pre-Civil War era.
Built-in the late 1796s by slaves owned by Pierre Baillio II, who was a Creole settler at the time, this is one of the oldest buildings in Louisiana.
The house is an example of French Colonial architecture and was on the original land grant from the King of Spain to its owner. It had a number of uses throughout its history—until being restored in 1976 and opened as a museum.
Artifacts are a window into the lives of enslaved Africans and their masters, revealing both cultures.
On a tour, you’ll see that much of the construction is made from local materials—for example, clay bricks in the piers and beams; cypress wood for interior walls.
Some buildings include outhouses that feature a milk house (where it was stored), a blacksmith shop (where an iron worker could pursue his trade) kitchen, and a slave cabin.
5- Get Artistic at QuirkyArtz
If you want to give your kids a fun and creative experience when visiting Alexandria, Louisiana, Quirky Artz is the place for them!
This art facility offers a variety of classes and art workshops to help kids make new friends in an engaging environment.
The teachers at this camp are friendly and helpful, so you can relax knowing that your children will get the attention they need.
They teach you the basic painting techniques that will help you create your very own masterpiece.
There is plenty of paint here for anyone who wants it.
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6- Rapides Parish Coliseum
Built-in 1965 and renovated in 2017, this 10,000-seat arena on Louisiana Highway 28 is west of Alexandria.
This renovation breathed new life into a facility that was starting to show its age, adding a spectacular new lobby and expanding seating capacity—while updating every aspect of the Coliseum’s amenities.
It is the most prominent place in Alexandria for holding sporting events, trade shows, and concerts.
The Rapides Parish Coliseum is capped with an impressive dome and hosts arena events, including WWE matches, circus shows, and concerts by famous recording artists.
The arena has hosted many famous performers and politicians, including Martin Luther King Jr., Elvis Presley, and Willie Nelson.
7- Alexandria Museum of Art
The LSUA Museum opened in 1977 and is affiliated with the Louisiana State University System.
The museum organizes and hosts numerous exhibitions every year, showcasing works from its permanent collection.
The museum celebrates the work of artists from many countries.
In addition to displaying visual arts, they host free yoga sessions and concerts. They also hold educational programs and fundraisers for the community.
Tour the museum, and look at works that are likely to make you think in new ways.
8- Alexandria riverfront amphitheater
This trail leads along the riverfront of downtown Alexandria and begins with a park near Rapides Regional Medical Center.
This is a pleasant spot to spend time by the Red River, with ample amenities including picnic tables and three lanes at which boat launches are stationed.
The Riverfront Amphitheater—home to many outdoor concerts and fireworks shows—is situated on the Alexandria levee.
The trail continues south, passing along the grassy wooded riverbank under Gillis William Long Bridge before cutting inland at Pineville.
9- River Oaks Square Arts Center
This center for the arts is a focal point for artistic talent from CENLA and will reinforce downtown Alexandria’s reputation as an art destination.
On 3rd St., the main modern building houses three galleries for exhibitions, along with an arts academy and 25 studios including a full-size ceramics studio with four kilns.
The James Wade Bolton House, a Victorian-style building dating to 1899, stands at the rear of 3rd Street. It contains more studios as well as The Clay Studio’s excellent gift shop.
10- Randolph riverfront center
The Convention and Visitors Bureau’s headquarters, located on the levee by the Gillis William Long Bridge, is Central Louisiana’s top convention and meeting facility—and an important asset for Alexandria.
The Main Exhibit Hall at the Randolph Riverfront Center is large enough to accommodate 2,600 people and has hosted events for a variety of organizations.
These might be trade shows, conventions, or concerts. Parking is free and easy to find despite the fact that you are in downtown Alexandria.
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11- Old Town Hall Museum
The museum was established in 1931 and commemorates the history of the local government.
It is housed in a building that previously served as the city’s fire station, jail, police department, and court.
In addition to its role as a courthouse, the structure was also used as a public library.
Tour the historic building and explore the exhibits to learn more about its history.
12- Forts Randolph & Buhlow State Historic Site
The two historic forts on the banks of the Red River date back to when North and South were at war with each other.
You’ll learn about Louisiana’s history, as well as experience its natural beauty.
The site is remarkable for its towering trees and dense foliage, spectacular river overlooks, ancient dams remain, a visitor center with historical artifacts and local memorabilia—and verdant walking trails.
Visit the visitor’s center to watch a short film reenactment of the battle, check out exhibits about Civil War history, and view stunning river views. Hike any number of trails through historic sites on the battlefields.
Home to a diverse variety of birds, this site is also popular among birdwatchers.
13- Coughlin-Saunders Performing Arts Center
The state-of-the-art Landmark Theater is located in downtown Alexandria.
It is the setting for a variety of theatrical performances including ballet, music concerts, plays, and musicals.
The Coughlin-Saunders Performing Arts Center, a theater operated by the Arts Council of Central Louisiana, can seat over 600 people.
In addition to hosting live performances, they also organize weddings, art shows, and other events in their lobby and terrace.
This is an excellent place for enjoying a top-notch show.
14- Fort Buhlow Recreation Area
Recreational opportunities abound in this area.
The park, which is located between Buhlow Lake and the Red River, provides playgrounds for children as well as hiking trails and disc golf courses. It also has picnic areas with grills that are great for family picnics.
Nature lovers can enjoy access to a peaceful river, sprawling greenery, and the lake.
Explore the countryside, play a game of baseball or soccer, fish for bass in the lake, and make delicious burgers onsite. Enjoy boating and appreciate nature’s astounding beauty with this offer: Hike scenic trails, then head over to the disc golf course—it’s all yours to enjoy!
This is the perfect place for a day trip or weekend getaway.
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Other Things to do Nearby
15- See the animals of the Kisatchie National Forest by hiking through it
This site is located about 30 miles from Alexandria and features dense verdant forests, swamps, prairies, and serene lakes among rolling hills and springs diversifying wildlife.
Hike through the heavily forested region and see the outrageously colored wildflowers that spread throughout.
You can see deer, turkeys, bears, woodpeckers, and snakes all along the trail.
Camp here at night to explore the wilderness and gaze at the stars.
The Kisatchie Bayou provides access to fishing, as well as boating trips that offer stunning backdrops against which you can enjoy a lovely picnic.
When it comes to nature’s beauty in Louisiana, Kisatchie National Forest is second-to-none with over 600,000 acres encompassing this forest where an abundance of wildlife thrives along with plants such as dogwood trees whose white flowers provide shade under their crowns throughout most summers.
The region is also a popular destination for mountain biking and horseback riding. Visiting the place will give you an opportunity to experience its breathtaking natural beauty.
16- Experience the Gone Wild Safari
Just 11 miles from Alexandria, the Gone Wild Safari offers a unique wildlife experience.
Visitors to this wildlife preserve are treated to magnificent views of exotic animals.
The park is home to kangaroos, camels, and ostriches among other animals.
You can both feed and pet the animals here.
The park features a playground, a mining company exhibit, and the Toucan Pavilion.
It is enjoyable for people of all ages.
See the world through new eyes and discover a deeper appreciation for nature.
This venue is also a popular choice for social gatherings and events.
17- Tour Frogmore Cotton Plantation & Gins
This historic cotton plantation dates back to the 19th century and encompasses over 1,800 acres.
It features an 18th-century mansion, slave quarters from the 1700s, and Native American mounds.
The farm continues to thrive and produces 900 bales of cotton daily.
Visit the plantation, view and learn about cotton farming methods, explore historic buildings and gins—and stroll through ancient mounds.
The site is 60 miles from Alexandria.
What is Alexandria LA known for?
It is famous for its abundant landscapes and rich cultural heritage. It has renowned art museums, zoos with diverse exotic animals, beautiful lakes with captivating streams, historical sites, dense forests, and vibrant celebrations.
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The city of Alexandria is a lesser-known tourist destination known for its abundant natural beauty, remarkable dining, and nightlife—as well as vibrant festivals and a rich history.
It’s never boring here—not with this list of the top things to do in Alexandria, Louisiana!
No matter how long you spend here, whether on vacation or as a resident, there is always something delightful to do.
Enjoy your exploration! Enjoy the adventure of discovery!