Sunday, July 10, 2011

Day Trip

Iberville Visitors Center - Main Building

We decided to do some rambling today, so we took care of the barn chores early this morning. We packed our camera equipment and set out for Breaux Bridge.

On the way we stopped at the Iberville Visitors Center, located near I-10 in Gross Tete.  It opened a little over a year ago, and today was our first visit.  We drank complimentary coffee and chatted with the two friendly ladies who work there.  The inside is as beautiful as the outside.   Cypress floors, doors, and paneling make it a reflection of the nearby Atchafalaya Swamp.

Iberville Visitors Center - Grounds
We traveled on to Breaux Bridge and decided to make the short trip out to Lake Martin.  We drove along the gravel road that runs along the swampy edge of the lake.  I was hoping to see an alligator, so we stopped when we came to a break in the foliage where we had a good view of the swamp. 

I saw bubbles in the water and remembered that Willie, on Swamp People, is always talking about where you see bubbles, there is usually an alligator.  But I'll swear, I couldn't see anything but a couple of old knarly pieces of wood in the water.  Just as I was complaining that we weren't going to see any gators, I realized that the knarly pieces of wood were two alligators - one of them looking me in the eye from just a few feet away.  He was nice enough to sit still so I could get his picture.
Alligator Disguised as Driftwood!
We went farther down the road and discovered that there is a new Lake Martin Visitors Center, complete with a picnic pavilion and state of the art rest rooms.  Now if you've ever been to Lake Martin, you will appreciate what a great thing this is!  We used to have to drive back into Breaux Bridge to find a public rest room which meant we couldn't stay out at the lake for hours on end.  Now we will be able to pack a picnic lunch and spend the day at the lake, watching the wildlife and taking pictures.  I think we'll wait for cooler weather though.
Boardwalk through the Swamp

We walked the quarter mile boardwalk through the swamp, but didn't see anything as exciting as our two gator friends up the road.
Swamp as Seen from the Boardwalk
We had some good Cajun food for lunch at Poche's, a Breaux Bridge meat market and restaurant which was recently featured in Garden & Gun magazine.  After lunch we did some looking around in one of the antique shops in the historic district of Breaux Bridge.  I like to check these places out for old post cards, stationery, and desk paraphernalia.  But I didn't have any luck today.

When we took the Gross Tete exit to head home, we decided to make one last stop at a new gift shop called The Swamp Shop, right across the road from the Iberville Visitors Center.  In fact, the ladies at the Visitors Center had told us about this new gift shop when we made our first stop there this morning.

Jean Crites, the proprietor of The Swamp Shop is very friendly and welcoming.  And her shop is something to see!  Since it's in a house, I assumed the owners probably lived there and had a one room gift shop.  But no, the shop takes up the entire house.  All the merchandise has a Louisiana theme.  Each room is artfully arranged and decorated, and it's a pleasure to stroll around and look.  I stocked up on post cards to send to my pen pals.  Jerry found two books he wanted, and I couldn't resist a beautiful glass fleur de lis necklace.  I'm already thinking that this might be a good place to do some Christmas shopping.

1 comment:

Renee said...

My aunt and uncle live in Breaux Bridge.My aunt was even the crawfish queen one year before I was born.We never really explored the area when I went with my parents,we just went straight to their house,so I'm sure there are some great places to see there.I haven't been there in so long I almost forgot what it looked like,so it is so strange to see someone that wrote us a letter actually go around the same places I did as a kid. :)

Renee ( from 2011 letters)

by the way,love how you fixed up your new writing is amazing!