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State Park

The cool, crystal-clear waters of the Tchefuncte River yield bass, bluegill, white perch, and bream near the park area, and channel catfish, speckled trout and redfish where the river meets the lake.

The Otis House
Photo credit - The Louisiana Office of State Parks

Once you've strolled under the moss-draped oaks, water skied on the smooth, clear Tchefuncte River, or wet a line in the waters of nearby Lake Pontchartrain, you've begun to sample the many outdoor opportunities offered by Fairview-Riverside State Park.

Scattered throughout the park beneath a canopy of huge oak trees, you will find numerous picnic tables, as well as nearby group shelters, a playground, and comfort stations. Spend a relaxing afternoon on the river or venture out into the water for lively outdoor recreation.

The cool, crystal-clear waters of the Tchefuncte River yield bass, bluegill, white perch, and bream near the park area, and channel catfish, speckled trout and redfish where the river meets the lake. Fishing from the river bank or a boat offers unmatched delights for even the most casual fisherman. Crabbing in the lake and the river is also popular.

Near the park and upstream, the river is remarkably clear of obstacles, which means that water skiers find their sport enjoyable on this wide waterway.

Just two miles away by road and a few minutes by water is the Madisonville public boat launch. Many visitors use the launch for access to the calm waters of the Tchefuncte River or the exhilarating expanse of Lake Pontchartrain.

Spend the Night
For the overnight visitor, Fairview-Riverside offers 81 camping sites, all with electricity and water hookups. A nearby comfort station and dump station are provided. The park also provides a tent camping area with comfort station access. This camping area is a favorite of groups who want to camp together under the stars. Fairview-Riverside State Park offers numerous opportunities for family relaxation, nature study, water recreation, or whatever the beautiful setting may aspire.

Otis House
When you enter the park, you will notice a large home facing the water. This is Otis House, originally built in the 1880s as the family home for sawmill owner William Theodore Jay. It was later purchased and renovated in the 1930s by Frank Otis, serving as his summer home until his death in 1962. Mr. Otis left the property to the State of Louisiana to be developed into a recreational site for visitors. The house was placed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1999.

It was Mr. Otis's desire that the name for his home, Fairview-Riverside, be retained as the name of the park. The name is indeed an appropriate one, for throughout the 99-acre park surrounding the home, outdoors enthusiasts will find bountiful opportunities to appreciate nature along the river's edge.

The Otis House Museum is open for tours between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m., Wednesday through Sunday, except Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Year's Day. Museum admission is $2 per adult. Children (12 and under) and seniors (62 and over) are admitted free. Call 985-792-4652 for group tour information.

Nearby Attractions:
Fontainebleau State Park-- (South of I-12 and southeast of Mandeville on US 190)--Located on 2,800 acres on the north shore of Lake Pontchartrain, the park offers 130 improved campsites, 180 unimproved campsites, nature trails, 3 group camps, a lodge, a swimming pool and beach, a playground, and the ruins of a plantation brickyard and sugar mill situated among an alley of towering oaks.

Fort Pike State Historic Site-- (Adjacent to "Old Spanish Trail" US 90 approximately 23 miles east of downtown New Orleans)--This historic masonry fort was completed in 1827 to defend New Orleans. Stroll through arched casemates and stand overlooking the Rigolets as sentries once did, enjoy living history programs, visit the museum, or picnic at the pavilion.

Tammany Trace-- (Koop Drive, Mandeville)--Eighteen miles of Louisiana's only "rails-to-trails" site is open from Mandeville to Abita Springs. It is a popular spot for bicycles, horses, runners, skaters, and walkers.

New Orleans and the Historic French Quarter-- Visit downtown New Orleans, museums, casinos, Aquarium of the Americas, the Riverwalk, or take a cruise on the Mississippi River.

Louisiana State Museum-- (French Quarter, New Orleans)--One of New Orleans' top ten attractions, the State Museum is comprised of the Cabildo, Presbytere, 1850 House, and the Old U. S. Mint.

Tickfaw State Park-- (27225 Patterson Road, Springield)--Located 32 miles east of Baton Rouge off I-12 on 1,200 acres along three miles of the Tickfaw River, the park offers 14 vacation cabins, 30 campsites, 20 tent campsites, a group camp, a nature center and gift shop, picnic tables, pavilions and a canoe launch.

Bayou Segnette State Park-- (7777 Westbank Expressway, Westwego)--Minutes from New Orleans and situated where woodlands meet marsh, the park offers 20 waterfront cabins, 98 improved campsites, a group camp, wave pool, conference center, playgrounds, picnic tables and pavilions, a large boat launch, and abundant wildlife.

Antique Shopping in Ponchatoula-- "America's Antique City."

Pearl River Wildlife Management Area-- (2 miles east of Slidell in St. Tammany Parish)--This 34,896-acre area is managed for wildlife and includes a cypress-tupelo swamp and hardwoods. Visitors may enjoy fishing, canoeing, boating, birding, crawfishing, hunting, a nature walk, and a rifle range.

Louisiana Scenic Bayou Byway-- Winding through a 13-parish area north of Lake Pontchartrain, this route takes the visitor to many unique and popular attractions including Fontainebleau and Fairview-Riverside State Parks.

Bogue Chitto National Wildlife Refuge-- (Off LA 41, north of I-49)--Boat launches and a canoe trail are avail- able for access to the refuge. Fishing, hunting, and camp- ing are allowed.

Swamp Tours-- Contact local guides for tours of Honey Island Swamp.

Joyce Wildlife Management Area-- (2 miles south of Ponchatoula off I-55)--This area is primarily a cypress- tupelo swamp with a small tract of fresh marsh. Hunting, birding, and wildlife observation are popular activities and a boardwalk offers excellent viewing opportunities.


Fairview-Riverside State Park (P.O. Box 856, Madisonville, LA 70447; 985-845-3318 or 1-888-677-3247) is located two miles east of Madisonville in St. Tammany Parish on LA 22.

The park includes picturesque moss-draped oaks and woodlands on the bank of the Tchefuncte River. Camping, canoeing, fishing, picnicking and relaxing are some of the favorite activities at Fairview-Riverside State Park. To reserve a campsite or the picnic pavilion, call 1-877-CAMP-N-LA toll free (877-226-7652).

Email: fairview@crt.state.la.us

Next Park > Fontainebleau State Park

Information & photos provided by The Louisiana Office of State Parks