Travel to Monroe and West Monroe Louisiana
About Monroe and West Monroe Louisiana
Map showing location of Monroe and West Monroe in Louisiana (courtesy of Google Maps)
Monroe is the largest city in Northeast Louisiana, and is the home to the University of Louisiana at Monroe, and situated on Interstate Highway I-20.
To the west, across the Ouachita River, is the city of West Monroe.
Monroe has a population of about 48,000, while neighboring West Monroe across the river is home to about 13,000 residents.
Monroe traces its long and storied history to the Ouachita River, and the steamboat era.
Today, Monroe features many reminders of yesteryear, from retro motels on historic U.S. 80, to the classic architecture of its bank buildings downtown near the Ouachita River, to fine homes along Bayou Desiard, and a variety of museums and historical sites.
It is also the parish seat of Ouachita Parish, established on March 31, 1807 and later split into nine parishes. The parish is named after the local indian tribe.
Settlements in the area began when Don Juan Filhiol was sent to establish Spanish Fort Miro on the Ouachita River.
Fort Miro later became "Monroe" in May of 1819 to honor President James Monroe and the first steamboat to travel up the Ouachita to North Louisiana.
The Monroe-West Monroe area offers a variety of attractions, entertainment and things to do for residents and visitors.
- Museums & Galleries
- Louisiana Purchase Gardens and Zoo
- Biedenharn Museum & Gardens - features the family home built by Joe Biedenharn, the first bottler of Coca-Cola
- Masur Museum of Art - 1920s Tudor-style structure on Grand Street
- Northeast Louisiana Children's Museum - 323 Walnut Street in Monroe
- University of Louisiana-Monroe Museum of Natural History
Ouachita River at downtown Monroe, Louisiana
- Wildlife Areas
- Black Bayou Lake National Wildlife Refuge - is a 5,300-acre refuge providing habitat for waterfowl, endangered wildlife, neo-tropical migrants and resident wildlife. Located within the city limits of Monroe, the refuge provides easily accessible opportunities for local residents to spend time in nature as well as options for fishing and hunting.
- Ouachita State Wildlife Management Area - 6 miles southeast of Monroe
- Russell-Sage Wildlife Management Area - 7 miles east of Monroe
- D'Arbonne National Wildlife Refuge - 10 miles north of West Monroe
- Parks and Cruises
- Cheniere Lake Park in West Monroe
- Chennault Park - 500 acres park featuring golf, softball fields, jogging trails, soccer
- Ouachita River Cruises
- Market at 7th Square - West Monroe Farmers' Market, open year round
- River Market - Downtown Monroe on the river
- West Monroe's Antique Alley - offers more than 5 blocks with over 50 stores full of antiques, furniture, home decor, jewelry, clothing and much more
University of Louisiana at Monroe (ULM)
University of Louisiana at Monroe (ULM Photo)
ULM opened in 1931 as Ouachita Parish Junior College and in 1999 the name was changed to the University of Louisiana at Monroe (ULM).
Today, the enrollment approaches 9,000 undergraduate and graduate students on the campus of 238 acres. The university has awarded a combined total of over 72,000 academic degrees to more than 65,000 alumni.
ULM has been recognized for excellence by U.S. News and World Report, GetEducated.com, TheBestSchools.org, CollegeAtlas.org, the New York Times, Chronicle of Higher Education, Louisiana Public Broadcasting, and other entities.
Monroe Regional Airport
Monroe Regional Airport (MLU), the original home of Delta Airlines, is served by the following air carriers:
- Delta Airlines and Atlantic Southeast Airlines with flights to/from Atlanta
- American Airlines with flights to/from Dallas-Fort Worth DFW Airport
The airport provides commercial and cargo service for Ouachita parish, the surrounding 13-parish region, and extends service into Arkansas and Mississippi.
A new terminal at the Monroe Regional Airport was opened in late 2011. Construction on the $36 million three building terminal began in August 2009. Among the many features of the new airport are four loading bridges to protect passengers from the elements when boarding planes.
The airport is located four miles east of the City of Monroe, with easy access via Interstate 20 (Exit 120) and State Hwy 80 (Kansas Lane). The physical address of the airport is 400 Lea Joyner Expressway, Monroe, LA 71210, and at phone number (318) 329 2218.
During World War II, the Army Air Corps operated a navigation training school in Monroe at Selman Field. The field was named in honor of Lieutenant Augustus James Selman, a United States Navy Aviator, born in Monroe, who died in the line of duty in 1921.
|Downtown Monroe, Louisiana ... During high-water on the Ouachita River
Photo courtesy of the A&E Network
A&E Network launched in 2012 the hit TV show "Duck Dynasty" filmed at locations throughout West Monroe and Ouachita Parish. The show features the Robertsons, a close-knit, church-going Louisiana bayou family living the American dream as they operate a thriving business while maintaining their family values and lifestyle.
Season 11 of Duck Dynasty premiered in November of 2016 on A&E. This is the final season for Duck Dynasty, with the final episode airing on March 29, 2017.
The men on the show sport their signature "ZZ Top" beards, and are usually seen wearing camouflage outfits when shooting the scenes for the show.
A homegrown mom-and-pop operation, Duck Commander has become a sporting empire by manufacturing high quality duck calls and duck decoys out of salvaged swamp wood. The company dates back to the 1970s, and is located in West Monroe.
The company was organized in the 1970s by Phil Robertson, and is located at 117 Kings Lane, off Thomas Road in West Monroe. Phone 318.387.0588. It is about five blocks south of I-20.
Today, the Duck Commander offices and gift store have become a popular tourist attraction. Many people traveling on nearby Interstate highway I-20 stop at the store to shop for gifts and souvenirs, and to have their picture taken! The gift shop has a variety of items for sale, including T-shirts, caps, apparel, duck calls, posters, cook books, DVDs, and more.
Duck Commander and Buck Commander Offices and Store, West Monroe, Louisiana
Earlier Times in Monroe
Aerial View of Monroe and West Monroe, Louisiana
Bridge over Ouachita River on U.S. Highway 80, connecting Monroe and West Monroe, Louisiana
Neville High School
600 Forsythe Avenue
On the National Register of Historic Places
School Colors: Black & Gold
Northeast Junior College of Louisiana State University
Today known as the University of Louisiana at Monroe
More Monroe Area Information & Resources
|Popular Travel Destinations and Attractions in North & Central Louisiana|