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Lake Pontchartrain, New Orleans

#5 of 36 in Nature in Louisiana
Water Body · Hidden Gem · Nature / Park
Lake Pontchartrain ( PAHN-chə-trayn; French: Lac Pontchartrain, French: [lak pɔ̃ʃaʁtʁɛ̃] (listen); Spanish: Lago Pontchartrain) is a brackish estuary located in southeastern Louisiana in the United States. It covers an area of 630 square miles (1,600 km2) with an average depth of 12 to 14 feet (3.7 to 4.3 m). Some shipping channels are kept deeper through dredging. It is roughly oval in shape, about 40 miles (64 km) from west to east and 24 miles (39 km) from south to north.

In descending order of area, the lake is located in parts of six Louisiana parishes: St. Tammany, Orleans, Jefferson, St. John the Baptist, St. Charles, and Tangipahoa. The water boundaries were defined in 1979 (see list of parishes in Louisiana).

The lake is crossed by the Lake Pontchartrain Causeway, the longest continuous bridge over water in the world.
Use our New Orleans attractions app to visit Lake Pontchartrain on your trip to New Orleans, and learn what else travelers and our writers recommend seeing nearby.
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Lake Pontchartrain reviews

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TripAdvisor traveler rating 4.0
302 reviews
  • My guidebook says the causeway is so long that in the middle you won't be able to see either shore. I figured we had to experience that. Well, the guidebook lied, but it's still an impressive...  more »
  • We did the long drive across the bridge that spans this very large lake. Lots of history here and an important part of the protection from floods not always successful. On the other side are big...  more »
  • Come down to Lake Pontchartrain, rest your soul and feed your brain. That's where you will get to see everything the water can be.
  • Love this place

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