Top Things To Do And See In New Orleans

Kate Harrington

New Orleans, is the birthplace of jazz and with its distinct New Orleans cuisine, this Louisiana city is a rare and unique gem in the South. Here are the best places to visit in the city.

New Orleans Panorama

1. House of Dance and Feathers

House of Dance and Feathers

Located in the Lower Ninth Ward, House of Dance and Feathers is a museum dedicated to emulating and preserving New Orleans street culture. It has a specific focus on the Mardi Gras Indians, but it also includes other forms of essential New Orleans street culture. Ronald L. Lewis – curator and homeowner – is the leader behind this project along with being a zealous supporter of New Orleans pride. Free of charge.

House of Dance and Feathers, 1317 Tupelo St, New Orleans, LA, USA, +1 504-957-2678

House of Dance & Feathers | © Tulane Public Relations/FlickrHouse of Dance & Feathers | © Tulane Public Relations/Flickr

2. New Orleans Museum of Art


The city’s largest – and oldest – collection of art is the NOMA. The NOMA was originally established in 1911, emphasizing and preserving a vast collection of fine art. The collection ranges from French and American works to African and Japanese works, with a strong collection of photography. And a big plus, NOMA offers free admission on Wednesdays. New Orleans Museum of Art | © Frank Kovalchek/Flickr

3. Parkway Bakery & Tavern

Bakery, American, Pastries, Vegetarian, Dessert

Around since 1911, Parkway Bakery has served the acclaimed best po’ boys in New Orleans. Do try the city’s staple piece, and rest assured Parkway’s po’ boys have never failed, since 1911.

4. Jackson Square – French Quarter


Jackson Square and St. Louis Cathedral in New Orleans, LA
© Susanne Pommer / Alamy Stock Photo
Arguably the most famous area in New Orleans, the French Quarter is home to a number of street performers, bars, shops and restaurants. All in one historic location. However, the Jackson Square is the Quarter’s park that has been a national historic landmark since 1960. It has beautiful free views. St Louis Cathedral – New Orleans | © Jason Mrachina/Flickr

5. Café Du Monde


Café Du Monde

A little bit of a tourist inclination, but the Café Du Monde has been serving New Orleans’s best beignets since 1862. Over a century and a half. Enjoy the town’s own beignets while being surrounded by some of the city’s best views and sites courtesy of Café Du Monde’s location.

Café Du Monde, 800 Decatur St, New Orleans, LA, USA, +1 504-525-4544

Beignets at Café du Monde | © pravin.premkumar/FlickrBeignets at Café du Monde | © pravin.premkumar/Flickr

6. Snake and Jake's Christmas Club Lounge


Snake and Jake’s Christmas Club Lounge

Snake and Jake’s Christmas Club Lounge is a shack, basically. But it’s the best dive bar in New Orleans, and you must go there. Smoking indoors is allowed, and there’s a surplus of cheap drinks and live entertainment. Snake and Jake’s is simply the essential dive bar.

Snake and Jake’s Christmas Club Lounge, 7612 Oak St, New Orleans, LA, USA, +1 504-861-2802

Snake and Jake's Christmas Club Lounge | © Will Gurley/FlickrSnake and Jake’s Christmas Club Lounge | © Will Gurley/Flickr

7. St. Louis Cemetery No. 1


St. Louis Cemetery No. 1
© Joe Eldridge / Alamy Stock Photo
St. Louis is a historical cemetery, with burial sites in the shape of 18th century above-ground tombs. Several famous persons have been buried here, but the most important – to the town – is the voodoo queen Marie Laveau. With over two centuries of history, St Louis Cemetery is one way to spend a lively afternoon or evening.

8. Lafitte National Park and Preserve


Lafitte National Park and Preserve
© melanie innis/Flickr
Located twenty-miles or so outside of New Orleans downtown, Lafitte National Park is a swampy park filled with old trees and stunning views. Named after the explorer Jean Lafitte, this national park is historical and beautiful – the full package. Fitting the ‘bayou’ theme of New Orleans, this historic park is ideal for an active afternoon.

9. Willie Mae's Scotch House

Restaurant, Cajun

It has been argued that Willie Mae’s Scotch House serves the best fried chicken in New Orleans. But it’s lunch-only, so there’s a timeline. Willie Mae’s has been around for half a century, serving fried chicken and soul food family-style. The red beans and rice are essential, too. Fried chicken at Willie Mae’s Scotch House | © T.Tseng/Flickr

10. Rebirth Brass Band – Maple Leaf


Rebirth Brass Band – Maple Leaf

Maple Leaf Bar hosts one of the best live bands every Tuesday night: Rebirth Brass Band. The Maple Leaf has a tin roof and a large dance floor, and Rebirth that plays New Orleans jazz. This is a no-frills spot to hear authentic New Orleans jazz, right in the thick of it. Every Tuesday.

Maple Leaf Bar, 8316 Oak St, New Orleans, LA, USA, +1 504-866-9359

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