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    What to see in New Orleans: guide to attractions to visit

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    Martí Micolau

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    In the state of Louisiana, in the deep south of the United States, there is one of the most particular and fascinating American cities, New Orleans, a tourist destination particularly famous for its characteristic French quarter and for jazz; yet in the city there are many other things to visit. Here is a list to orient yourself on what to see in New Orleans.


    • 1. The French Quarter
    • 2. The cemeteries of New Orleans
    • 3. City Park a New Orleans
    • 4. Audubon Parks Institut and surrounding attractions
    • 5. Shrove Tuesday
    • 6. New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival
    • 7. The Garden District
    • 8. The Warehouse / Arts District
    • 9. Magazine Street
    • 10. Where to eat in New Orleans?
    • 11. L’Audubon Zoo
    • 12. The Cool Water Park Zoo
    • 13. Louisiana Children's Museum
    • 14. Excursion between marshes and plantations
    • 15. New Orleans Pass: how to see everything for less
    • 16. Advice on where to sleep in New Orleans

    1. The French Quarter

    The French Quarter is the oldest part of the city and one of its symbols is certainly Bourbon Street, historic street full of bars and strip clubs. The street is very characteristic, but don't limit your visit to this street: going further you will find shops, lots of live music, restaurants (excellent ones based on Cajun and Creole cuisine), galleries and hotels. The French Quarter is in fact a very lively area, where you can admire the typical buildings with wooden shutters, decorated wrought iron balconies and very elegant courtyards.

    Tours and Activities in the French Quarter

    2. The cemeteries of New Orleans

    I cemeteries above ground in New Orleans have always been visited by many tourists. Called the "cities of the dead", they are particularly impressive for their beautiful tree-lined streets and interesting architecture. The oldest and most easily accessible is the St. Louis Cemetery.

    New Orleans Cemeteries Tour

    3. City Park a New Orleans

    Il City Park is a park of 1300 hectares, located right in the heart of the city. A natural bayou flows through it and to its edge. With a vintage carousel and miniature trains, it's a great place to take the kids. The City Park also includes the New Orleans Museum of Art, Bestoff Sculpture Garden, Botanical Garden and one of the largest stands in living oaks in the world. In short, an attraction to consider for those who want to visit New Orleans.

    Not all seasons are suitable for visiting this city: read our article when to go to New Orleans to find out what is the best time.

    4. Audubon Parks Institut and surrounding attractions

    THEAudubon Institute operates various world-class family destinations in New Orleans, including Audubon Park and the Zoo, and is located in the Uptown area, accessible from the St. Charles Avenue Streetcar. With its lagoons, its living oaks and a world-class golf course, it presents itself as a real oasis in the middle of a densely populated area of ​​the city. The insectarium Audubon Insectarium and the main road Canal Street they are located right in the suburbs, near the aforementioned French Quarter and the Aquarium of the Americas, located at the foot of the Mississippi River.

    Tours and activities in Audubon Park

    5. Shrove Tuesday

    Mardi Gras is America's largest free party. This is the traditional feast for the Shrove Tuesday, which however in New Orleans lasts almost a month, with endless parades and processions full of original and extravagant colors and masks.

    Any good reveler will tell you that this is an event that everyone should attend at least once in their lifetime. If you have only seen it on television and you think you know it, you are wrong. As often happens, witnessing an event in person is very different from observing it from afar and in a detached way and for this reason we have published a guide dedicated to the topic: the New Orleans Carnival.

    6. New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival

    Now that you have been to Mardi Gras, since you are there, why not miss a trip to the New Orleans Jazz Fest, the other major event that celebrates the city's musical and cultural roots? The New Orleans Jazz and the Heritage Festival (this is the full name) takes place on the last weekend of April and the first weekend of May and attracts artists and visitors from all over the world.

    In short, if you don't want to miss all the big events in New Orleans, the period February-April could be the right one to visit this city. If, on the other hand, you are in the city in another period, a good place to listen to jazz can be Snug Harbor Bistro, where they play practically every night.

    7. The Garden District

    Stroll through the Garden District with its beautiful palaces and magnolia trees it is a great way to spend a spring day. Built by the Anglo-Americans who moved to New Orleans after the purchase of the Louisiana, this neighborhood is only 10 minutes from the French Quarter, yet they seem like two worlds apart.

    8. The Warehouse / Arts District

    The Warehouse / Arts District it is also located a few steps from the French Quarter, and is the ideal place for those who love art. It is in fact home to many galleries and museums, but also not a few trendy restaurants. The largest number of galleries can be found on Julia Street (from 300 to 700).

    9. Magazine Street

    Il Magazine Street it is located in the Uptown location and is ideal for those who love shopping. It stretches for six kilometers of road, passing through all its wares. Here you will find popular clothing boutiques, furniture, affordable antiques, and of course restaurants. Interesting and pleasant area even beyond the shopping.

    10. Where to eat in New Orleans?

    See, explore and visit, but when do you eat? Leave your diet at home. Here you are in New Orleans, where the Creole and Cajun cuisine depopulate. A unique blend that brings together European (especially French) and African influences with Native American traditions. The topic is challenging and will soon be addressed in a dedicated post, I anticipate only 2 places where you can fully enjoy this type of cuisine: Jacques Imos Café (8234 Oak Street) and the Pig (930 Tchoupitoulas Street).

    11. L’Audubon Zoo

    And between the things to see in New Orleans let's not forget the space dedicated to children. Take a note and drop by zoo di Audubon, a world-class facility which, as already mentioned, you can find in Audubon Park; among other things, it is easily accessible by tram, bus or boat.

    The Zoo inside houses the Louisiana Swamp, a very popular attraction with locals, who flock to see the alligators up close. If you are curious, you can also see the Werewolf ("Loo garoo" or rugaru), a legendary figure of the swamp, a kind of horrifying werewolf of the Cajun tradition.

    12. The Cool Water Park Zoo

    Cool Water Park Zoo is an animal themed water park, another nice attraction for families, where you can have fun with your children. Located in the Audubon Zoo, the Cool Zoo has three main areas. There are various water slides and one is in the shape of a large alligator. There is also one giant spider monkey that dumps water, not to mention snakes spitting water and much more. Do you have unleashed children? Don't worry, there are shady benches for mum and dad.

    13. Louisiana Children's Museum

    among the places of interest in New Orleans, the attractions for the little ones cannot be neglected. The Children's Museum of Louisiana is located in the Art District on the Julia Street. Here the little ones can shop at a bespoke grocery store or serve lunch in the café. Those a little larger can fly a full-size tugboat on the Mighty Mississippi and see New Orleans from a very special point of view.

    14. Excursion between marshes and plantations

    Oak Valley Plantation

    New Orleans is not only the most fascinating city in the deep South of the States but also one of the best bases for visiting the typical landscapes of Louisiana, characterized by salt marshes and period plantations. There is a tour that allows you to explore the Cajun Country and fully enjoy these suggestive attractions. Find all the information by clicking on the button below:

    Tour information

    15. New Orleans Pass: how to see everything for less

    Given the many attractions, tours and activities available in the city it is advisable to purchase the New Orleans Power Pass, which allows you to access the main places of interest at a discounted price. The pass also allows you to skip the lines at various entrances and also to take advantage of discounts at well-known restaurants in the city.

    Info sul New Orleans Power Pass

    16. Advice on where to sleep in New Orleans

    Here is a question not to be taken lightly: where to choose your accommodation to visit New Orleans? To get an idea of ​​the prices and availability of the facilities, you can take a look at this list of hotels in the city, or read our in-depth analysis on where to sleep in New Orleans, a guide that we have created to help you choose the best and most suitable area for your needs.

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