At the heart of Ark-La-Tex, along both banks of the Red River twinkle the night lights of Bossier City and sister city, Shreveport. With a combined metropolitan population of 375,000 and counting, it should come as no surprise that this riverside region (also known as Shreveport-Bossier) in the northwest corner of Louisiana, is an important cultural center. Three major interstates intersect locally, making this a major stop on routes linking destinations in neighboring states, Texas and Arkansas.
Since lakes and bayous lie within boating distance, there's no shortage of things to do out of doors during the day. Casinos sparkle up next to the shore as the sun slides away and along with the local thoroughbred racetrack (Harrah's Louisiana Downs), contribute to Shreveport-Bossier's reputation as a popular gaming spot.
In city, the list of things to do is comprehensive in scope, whether you're looking to keep children entertained or enjoy local art and architecture. Learn more about the region on an informative tour of the Heritage Village or Pioneer Heritage Center, snap a photo or two of picturesque churches like Holy Trinity Catholic Church or Antioch Baptist Church, then hurry on to see the Sci-Port Discovery Center, with interactive science exhibits for all ages. Art-lovers will be pleased with the pleasant range of galleries and museums showcasing both local artists and international works (the R.W. Norton Art Gallery, for example), and but rush through the city too quickly and you'll miss the blooms scenting the breezes around the world's largest rose garden (American Rose Center).
If you want to escape to the river and failed to tow along a boat, don't despair: rentals are available at local marinas, and some operators even offer guided canoe trips running half-day and longer. If you're seeking to stay closer to the city, try a cruise to see historic sites and wildlife on the Red River and in Cross Bayou aboard boats leaving from the Sci-Port Discovery Center.
Fun for all ages, Shreveport-Bossier is only 125 miles northwest of Alexandria and 188 miles east of Dallas, Texas.