Welcome to the birthplace of jazz, enjoy a cocktail, world-class Creole cuisine and music on every street corner.
You'll find bowls filled to the rim with gumbo, late nights in dark jazz clubs, strolls through historic neighbourhoods, and tantalizing festivals throughout the year.
Top destinations for tourists include St. Louis CathedralOpens external site in a new window as well as the French Quarter’sOpens external site in a new window heart and soul of the city, Jackson Square. Head to the Ogden Museum of Southern ArtOpens external site in a new window for a real look at local culture and when you need refreshment you’re in the right town.
New Orleans gave the world cocktails such as the Sazerac, Obituary, and the Ramos Gin Fizz. It’s only good manners to return the generosity by visiting any of the city’s myriad of drinking establishments.
Need some inspiration on what to do? Here are some of our favourite attractions in and around New Orleans.
- Just one block from the ever energetic Bourbon Street lays some of the world’s best antique shops
- Hop on the St. Charles AvenueOpens external site in a new window Streetcar for a tour of the historic Garden District. Ride past ornate mansions with pristinely manicured gardens and yards
- Follow the locals and enjoy the endless local clubs and bars along Frenchmen StreetOpens external site in a new window and beyond
- Visit Barataria PreserveOpens external site in a new window for more than 23,000 acres of swamps, marshes and forests that are perfect for hiking and kayaking.
New Orleans neighbourhoods are where the culture and creativity of the 'crescent city' come to life. From the historic French Quarter to the elegant Garden District to the music filled Faubourg Marigny, there is great food, music and more to be found all across the city.
The original settlement of New Orleans, called Vieux Carré, French Quarter or simply The Quarter, is the oldest neighbourhood in the city.
Established by the French in 1718, the location was and is still, a valuable site for trade due to its strategic position along the Mississippi River.
Stroll through the vibrant district and experience all the hallmarks of Louisiana culture, from soulful jazz performances to mouth watering Creole cuisine.
Well known for its cocktails, New Orleans’ open container law allows you to carry your drink with you on the street, just be sure to order a plastic 'go-cup.'
Downtown and Warehouse district
Home to some of New Orleans favourite cocktail bars and many fabulous restaurants.
The Warehouse districtOpens external site in a new window is now a bustling arts and culture corridor. Enjoy art galleries, museums, bars and restaurants, free outdoor concerts in Lafayette Square and performances in small theatres and cabarets. Try your luck at Harrah’s CasinoOpens external site in a new window, grab a bite on Fulton Alley, experience the Ogden Museum of Southern ArtOpens external site in a new window or the National WWII MuseumOpens external site in a new window.
Faubourg Marigny and Bywater
Nestled just down river (east) from the French Quarter are two of New Orleans' most distinct and well kept secrets; the Faubourg Marigny and Bywater neighbourhoods.
Both neighbourhoods are only minutes away from the French Quarter, yet are tucked back into their own diverse communities, combining old-time New Orleans culture with a hip, contemporary bohemianism. Enjoy a scrumptious brunch at The Ruby SlipperOpens external site in a new window Café or listen to live tunes on Frenchmen StreetOpens external site in a new window.
Many consider the Tremé to be the cultural heart of New Orleans, it's contributions to the American arts can be witnessed in disciplines from dance to music to architectural design.
Learn about the Haitian influence on New Orleans, free people of colour and the dynamics of slavery on the New Orleans African American Museum’sOpens external site in a new window walking tour.
Once considered the 'back of town', this neighbourhood is now in the heart of New Orleans and is one of the city’s largest historic districts. It’s a fun loving area with picturesque oak lined avenues and major attractions. Wander through the antiques and gardens at Longue Vue House and GardensOpens external site in a new window. Visit North America’s third oldest thoroughbred racing facility, Fairgrounds Racecourse, or rent kayaks and glide through century-old homes on Bayou St. John.
Tradition, opulence and beauty can all be used to describe New Orleans' historic Garden District. With its well preserved collection of antebellum mansions, pristine gardens and southern charm. The Garden District certainly stands out as one of the country's most lovely neighbourhoods, and a popular destination for visitors. Hop on the streetcar to view the mansions along the oak lined St. Charles AvenueOpens external site in a new window. Dine on award winning food at Commander’s PalaceOpens external site in a new window. Or, enjoy a Sazerac or Pimm’s cup on the open porch of the Columns HotelOpens external site in a new window.
Uptown and Riverbend
Further upriver, St. Charles Avenue leads to the gates of Audubon Park, where bike trails, golfing and pastoral beauty awaits you. Named after the artist and naturalist, John James Audubon, the park is also home to the celebrated Audubon ZooOpens external site in a new window, exhibiting a wide range of exotic wildlife such as their rare white tigers. St. Charles Avenue continues on until it merges into Carrollton Avenue, where there are even more shops and restaurants to discover. For example, the streetcar stops at Oak Street, a throwback to a 1950s main street with a funky New Orleans twist. Explore cafés, thrift stores, snowball stands and more.
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New Orleans’ sub-tropical weather lends itself to warm summers and mild winters. Average winter (December to February) temperatures hover between 7-18°C with crisp, clear days. Summers (May to August) average 31°C with occasional warm fronts bringing toasty 38°C days.
From the airport
The Louis Armstrong International Airport is a short 20 minute ride from downtown New Orleans.
From the airport you can catch a taxi or an airport shuttle service to your hotel. You can also pre-book a private arrival transferOpens external site in a new window.
In and around the city
New Orleans’ small downtown footprint makes it a perfectly walkable city. Hundreds of restaurants, bars and attractions are within a one kilometre radius.
Visitors can travel on the historic streetcar. There are currently three lines active with plans to expand the routes.
Interested in New Orleans or want to see other destinations in the USA? Find out more about flights to USA.
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