Po’ Boy sandwiches, gumbo, bayous, alligators, and riverboats. That’s just the beginning of what Shreveport Louisiana has to offer on your next great family vacation.
Wear some loose pants, pack the sunscreen, and get ready to have some Southern style family fun with our suggestions of things to do in Shreveport.
Family-Friendly Activities in Shreveport
Surround your family with over 300 species of wildlife and creatures of the ocean. Turtles, ducks, shrimp, stingrays, jellyfish, and the kid-favorite, sharks. We are partial to the sea horses because the males carry the babies. Wash up and get ready for the touch pool. Check the schedule for tons of animal feedings throughout the day. Possibly even more feedings than your snack-demanding kids.
For an extra price, there are behind the scenes tours available as well. Monday – Friday 10 a.m. – 5 p.m., Saturday 9 a.m.- 5 p.m., Sunday noon – 5 p.m. Admission: adults (ages 13+) $13, children (ages 3-12) $ 9, ages 0-2, free. *The aquarium uses a timed entry system so they advise you to buy your tickets in advance. Read some reviews.
Actually step back into history at this museum housed inside an old bank built in the 1860s. It’s one of the oldest remaining buildings in downtown Shreveport. Inside, the original bank vault and door can be seen on the ground floor.
In addition to the coolness of an old bank, the museum’s large collection of artifacts include antique toys, plantation records, and vintage clothing dating back to 1835. See how Shreveport families spent their days before Starbucks and devices filled our hands. Also, we’ve heard rumors of a haunted basement there as well. Open 10 a.m. – 4 p.m. Tuesday to Saturday. Closed Sundays, Mondays, & major holidays. Admission if free for all, but donations are accepted. Reviews of the museum.
Located on the downtown Shreveport Riverfront, this new Discovery Center is a 92,000 square-foot science and entertainment center in Shreveport-Bossier. With over 290 interactive science, math and space exhibits, daily changing programs, and an IMAX Dome Theatre & Planetarium, this is a great educational- and air conditioned- family attraction in Shreveport. General admission is $12 for ages 12 months and up. Hours: Wednesday – Saturday, 9 a.m. – 5 p.m.; Sunday, noon – 5 p.m. Read some reviews here
Fun activities for the whole family- even competitive older kids and adults. Start with the go-carts, play some mini golf with varied levels of difficulty to keep everyone’s frustration levels down. Batting cages, and bumper boats, rock climbing, and even a trampoline area when you just can’t contain how much fun this attraction is for the whole family. Plenty of concession food choices so no need to leave when the family needs to refuel. There are per attraction pricing options as well as package prices. Check that out here. Hours: Monday through Thursday, 10 a.m.-9 p.m.; Friday and Saturday, 10 a.m.-10 p.m.; Sunday- 11 a.m.-9 p.m. Read reviews of this family-friendly attraction.
All families enjoy adorable animals. Especially if we’re not cleaning the cages. Brush and feed those goats until the zen sets in. Then lets the kids have a turn at this sweet petting zoo. There’s also exotic animals to see and other fun activities that the kids can enjoy! Get that photo op on a pony ride and then watch them bounce off some energy in the bounce houses here.
Give their little legs a rest with the awesome Safari Hay Ride around this 20-acre farm. Bring a bathing suit and change of clothes. Depending on the weather, there may even be a splash pad to cool down. Admission: $12 for six and up; children: $8 (ages two to five). Pony and hay rides are additional. Check their website or call (318) 929 7387 for hours as they may change. Read reviews of this family attraction.
If your family is in Shreveport during September and October, DixieMaze Farms in Louisiana is a must-visit place. Of course there are pumpkin patches and corn mazes, but there’s lots more at the family-friendly attraction. Bounce in what is aptly named “The Jumpy Thing.” Ride some hay rides, or test your strength by launching a pumpkin hundreds of feet across a field. The stress relieving family activity is called “Pumpkin’ Chuckin” and operates every Friday to Sunday at 2 p.m. during the fun Fall months.
There are barnyard activities, pony rides, and even duck and pig races. There’s Zombie Paintball, and the Pumpkin Express and Cow Train will give the little kids fun rides across the farm. Spooky activities begin to appear as Halloween approaches so check their website. Hours: Sunday to Thursday, 10 a.m. – 7 p.m.; Friday and Saturday, 10 a.m. – midnight. Admission price is $12 each for all ages. Call if weather is questionable. It is a farm after all.
More Things To Do With Kids in Shreveport
Watch as giant alligators feed, wrestle and swim! These remarkable creatures will awe and scare you as you view them in their natural habitat. If alligators freak you out, don’t worry. This popular family attraction has an incredible petting zoo where your human tribe can walk among tame and cuddly animals (and pet and feed them!) including miniature horses, kangaroos, ring-tailed lemurs, deer, coatimundis, goats, llamas, a camel, a capybara (the largest rodent in the world), and even a Scottish cow.
If you just want to scream with excitement from meeting all these amazing animals, do it from the zipline experience also available here. Read reviews of this family attraction. Hours: 10am – 6pmOpen daily from May 1 to August 14, then Wednesday to Sunday the rest of year. Admission: adults (13 yrs +) – $9.50; children (3-12 yrs) – $6.95. Some activities are available at an additional cost.
There’s been decades of family-friendly fun in this classic landmark bowling alley since 1960. With all that delicious bowling alley food, endless squirt bottle of ketchup, and an arcade, a day or night of bowling is one of our favorite family activities in any state. Reviews of Holiday Lanes. Hours: Monday, 11 a.m. – 11 p.m.; Tuesday-Thursday, 9 a.m. – 11 p.m.; Friday and Saturday, 9 a.m. – 2 a.m.; Sunday, 11 a.m. – 11 p.m.
9. Chimp Haven
Our next suggestion is not open to the public very often. But if your family loves chimps and supporting animal sanctuaries, you may want to schedule your visit to Shreveport around their Chimpanzee Discovery Days. Chimp Haven provides and promotes personalized care for chimpanzees (most of whom were retired from biomedical research) by helping them, for their remaining years, live a good life. A peaceful chimp life.
Four times each year, Chimp Haven opens its doors for a morning full of chimpanzee discovery.
Your family will observe the chimps in their natural habitats, learn from their expert staff about chimp behaviors, veterinary care, and more. Take the behind-the-scenes “hay ride” style tour to really immerse your family in life at this sanctuary. Admission is only $10 per adult and $5 per child. Please consider emptying out some piggie bank donations as well to this wonderful sanctuary. Events run from 9 a.m. – noon on the following dates only: Saturday, March 16, Saturday April 27, Saturday, October 19, and Saturday, November 16. Read reviews of a visit to Chimp Haven.
Sometimes you just need some air conditioning and shopping for stuff you don’t need. Do that on your next family vacation to Shreveport. There’s also a shiny Regal Cinema with IMAX and lots of family restaurants to choose from. Hours: Monday -Thursday, 10 a.m.-9 p.m.; Friday -Sat 10 a.m.-10 p.m.; Sunday 11 a.m.-7 p.m. Reviews of the Outlets here.
Culture time. With over 400 paintings by more than 100 artists, the Norton’s permanent collection is top notch. From Old Masters of the Renaissance, to modern and contemporary Realists, this is a peaceful and family friendly activity. Family movie nights are held once a month July through October in the beautiful botanical gardens behind the gallery. Tuesday-Friday 10 a.m.-5 p.m.; weekends from 1 p.m. to 5 p.m. Reviews of the museum and gardens.
There’s 160 acres of pine-oak-hickory forest waiting for your active family with 5 miles of hiking trails for you to explore. Live animal exhibits include a Bird of Prey aviary and deer enclosure. The park features a visitor center with hands-on exhibits, more live animals, a children’s play area, classroom, and restrooms. Park staff are very helpful with information and education for all ages. This park is free to attend. Read some reviews.
Take a backstage tour of Shreveport’s most iconic performing arts venue, the Shreveport Municipal Auditorium. Learn the stories and hear the songs of the many stars that have graced the stage.
Walk in the footsteps of music legends and make your own debut when you get the chance to stand on the stage where idols like Elvis Presley, Jimi Hendrix, Huddie “Leadbelly” Ledbetter and James Burton have performed. Their backstage tour is $20 per person and last about an hour. Unless you refuse to leave the stage once you stand where Elvis stood. Then it will take a bit longer for security to arrive. Check their calendar for a show to catch when your family is in town. Read reviews of this exciting music loving family activity.
Best Restaurants For Families in Shreveport
One of Shreveport’s longest-running restaurants, Herby-K’s is a seafood and sandwich joint that exudes Louisiana charm. Fresh Gulf oysters (in season), gumbo, crab claws and the famous Shrimp Buster sandwich are all local favorites. For fans of big, refreshing cocktails, the house specialty cocktail – the Pink Flamingo – is fantastic. Herby-K’s was established in 1936 and is still run by members of the same family who originally opened the restaurant. In 2015, the restaurant was featured on the hit television show American Pickers. Hours: Monday – Thursday, 11 a.m. – 9 p.m.; Friday and Saturday, 11 a.m.-10 p.m.
Sunday: Closed. Reviews of Herby-K’s.
Have lunch at the only Louisiana riverfront restaurant. Committed to only serving Louisiana seafood, purchase directly from Harlon’s Seafood. In addition to the delicious food, Salt is proud to support the local fishermen. SPRING/SUMMER CAFE HOURS: Mon – Sun 11 AM – 5 PM. Salt Cafe is open every Thursday from 5:30pm – 9 p.m. Bring the family for free outdoor music concerts on the river. Reviews of Salt Cafe
Go South. Waaaaay south to the Brotherly Love Restaurant. Fresh fried shrimp and catfish amongst other seafood favorites. Famous tartar sauce, oysters, gumbo, mashed potatoes, fries. Basically heaven with a southern accent. Family-friendly service and atmosphere. Hours: 11 a.m.- 9 p.m. Brotherly Love reviews.
Named for his mother, Chef owner, Robert Baucomm created a unique New Orleans style restaurant for all of Shreveport to call home. Marilynn’s Place is inside an old Texaco gas station building. How cool is that? With live music, events, and great food, this is more than just a family friendly place to eat. Reviews of Marilynn’s. Open: 9 a.m. – 9 p.m., Monday – Thursday; 9 a.m. – 10 p.m. Friday – Saturday; and 10 a.m. – 2 p.m. Sunday for brunch.
Best Hotels for Family in Shreveport
Space for everyone to stretch out in your rooms, free breakfast and Wi-Fi, outdoor pool, and a very southern free evening social Monday -Thursday. Read the reviews.
Indoor swimming pool and whirlpool and the no-brainer free hot breakfast make this a great place to stay with kids on your trip to Shreveport. Reviews of the hotel.
Fitness center, outdoor pool, putting green and barbeque area. Get a cooked-to-order breakfast at a reasonable price daily at The Garden Grille and Bar, which is also open Monday-Friday for lunch and daily for dinner. If your family is just kinda done for the day, grab a microwavable meal from 24-hour Pavilion Pantry or order room service. Melt downs are always better in the comfort and privacy of your room. Read reviews.
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