Whether you’re headed to the Big Easy for the thriving nightlife, rich musical history, or world-renowned cuisine, this vibrant city is one you’ll want to return to again and again. Get a feel for the round-the-clock party spirit of New Orleans with a stroll down Bourbon Street, a historic street in the French Quarter that serves as a main artery for New Orleans’ legendary entertainment scene. Bourbon Street is named after the French family that ruled the country and its colonies at the time of New Orleans’ founding in 1718. Today, from Canal Street all the way to Esplanade Avenue, visitors to Bourbon Street can experience the live music and bright neon lights of a 13-block-long street party that lasts into the wee hours of the morning.
If you’re looking for a quieter side of New Orleans, take refuge in the calm of one of the city’s many museums. Wander the galleries of the New Orleans Museum of Art to see the museum’s huge collection of painting, sculpture, decorative arts, and more that includes objects from antiquity to the present and spans all corners of the globe. For a glimpse at the local art scene, pay a visit to the Ogden Museum of Southern Art, which holds the largest collection of Southern art as well as the Center for Southern Art & Design. For those looking to learn more about early medicine, the New Orleans Pharmacy Museum is a must-visit. The museum itself is housed in a historic apothecary in the Vieux Carre District and offers exhibitions on medicine in the 19th century.
With long, hot summers and short, mild winters, spending time outdoors in New Orleans is possible no matter what time of year your visit falls. Grab some crawfish to go and have a picnic at City Park, a 1,300-acre green space which dates back to 1850. Want to see an alligator or two? Check out Barataria Preserve, a wetland area home to alligators, snakes, turtles, and more local wildlife. For a more manicured experience of nature, take the St. Charles Streetcar to the Garden District and wander amongst the neighborhood’s mansions and gardens, ending at the historic Lafayette Cemetery.