I’ll be going down there in March and im looking for things to do while my rents are out doing whatever.
Any Clubs, attractions, anything for the under 18 crowd
Things a teenager can do in New Orleans:
Mardi Gras and the Jazz Festival are world famous events, but New Orleans hosts many festivals and celebrations throughout the year: www.nola.com/festivals
The Saint Charles Streetcar is the oldest continuously operating street railway in the world and is a "tourist attraction" in its own right. It is part of the public transit system, as are the Canal Street and Riverfront streetcar lines: www.norta.com
Wander around the French Quarter, enjoy the architecture, watch the street entertainers (do tip), and visit some of the historic buildings that have been turned into museums (go to www.frenchquarter.com and click on Historic Attractions).
Assuming the weather is good, you can collect a sandwich lunch and eat in the riverfront park (watch the shipping) or in Jackson Square (a very nice park).
The Riverwalk shopping center has an air-conditioned food court with dining overlooking the river (www.riverwalkmarketplace.com). The Canal Place shopping center is in the French Quarter and has a cinema and higher-end shopping (Saks 5th Avenue, Brooks Brothers, etc.). Magazine Street is a miles-long shopping district: www.magazinestreet.com
The lobby for the Westin Canal Place Hotel is on the 11th floor and overlooks the French Quarter. It is a great place for an afternoon drink/snack:(www.westin.com).
Cafe du Monde is in the French Quarter and you shouldn’t miss having cafe au lait & beignets (www.cafedumonde.com). Another great coffee shop is the Croissant d’Or (at 615 Ursulines Street), which is open from 7:00am to 2:00pm and has food in addition to pastry.
The Palm Court restaurant is very nice, has moderate prices, and offers traditional live jazz starting at 8:00pm: 1204 Decatur Street, tel 504-525-0200 (reservations are important and they are not open every day). The Palm Court is closed from about July 25th to about September 25th each year.
Maximo’s Italian Grill has great food and atmosphere: 1117 Decatur Street in the French Quarter, (504) 586-8883.
All of the famous restaurants (Antoine’s, Arnaud’s, Brennan’s, Commander’s Palace, etc.) have reopened. The Pelican Club (on Exchange Alley in the FQ) is not as well known but is the same type experience. Reservations are a good idea, and probably essential on weekends. Tujaques Restaurant (823 Decatur Street) is very traditional and has moderate prices: www.tujaguesrestaurant.com
Cafe Degas is a very French restaurant near City Park at 3127 Esplanade – which is not within walking distance of downtown (5 to 10 minutes by taxi). They are closed on Mondays & Tuesdays (504-945-5635).
The Napoleon House restaurant is at 500 Chartres Street in the FQ, and has a menu of great local dishes: www.napoleonhouse.com
Preservation Hall has traditional live Jazz, and doesn’t serve alcohol so all ages are welcome: www.preservationhall.com
New Orleans has ballet, opera, a symphony orchestra, and theatre:
There is a free ferry across the Mississippi at the "foot" of Canal Street. It is a short trip but like a harbor cruise w/o a guide: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/canal_street_ferry
The Aquarium, Audubon Zoo, and the new Insectarium are world-class attractions (www.auduboninstitute.org) and you should see them if you can. The Zoo is several miles from downtown. You can drive to the Zoo (which has free parking) or take public transit from the French Quarter.
The Louisiana State Museum is in the French Quarter: http://lsm.crt.state.la.us/ New Orleans is also home to a number of other museums, such as the National World War II Museum (www.ddaymuseum.org) and the New Orleans Museum of Art (www.noma.org). Both can be reached by public transit: The WWII museum is in the central business district but a long walk from the French Quarter. NOMA is not within walking distance of downtown but has free parking. Go to www.neworleansmuseums.com for info on more museums.
New Orleans City Park has a variety of attractions + free parking. (www.neworleanscitypark.com).
Check www.frenchquarter.com and http://www.nola.com/visitor/ for ideas about other things to do.
Hope you have a great time!
When you think of Mardi Gras people usually think of New Orleans Louisiana. This was not always true. So how did New Orleans become the home of the Greatest Free Show On Earth? Well let’s go way back to the beginning of Mardi Gras.
The Origins Of Mardi Gras
Even though Mardi Gras is perceived to have its roots in the Roman Catholic religion, it actually dates back to the days of ancient Rome. In the middle of the month of February, the Romans celebrated a holiday they called Lupercalia. The god Lupercus was the god of fertility, agriculture and pastoral shepherds and the festival was in his honor. Carnival which is considered synonymous with Mardi Gras is derived from the Latin expression meaning “farewell to the flesh”. This holiday was very similar to the Mardi Gras we know today. It had a festival almost circus atmosphere. There was also the festival of Saturnalia that seemed to have some effect on the origins of Mardi Gras. This holiday was also a time of jubilation that occurred around the end of December. The king was burned in effigy and was made to look ugly in appearance. This is where some of the traditions of masking seem to have been derived. Some of the colors of Mardi Gras, purple, green and gold may have come from this festival.
When Rome converted to Christianity, a common practice was to take pagan holidays and incorporate them into church holidays. Lupercalia was an example of that approach. So Lupercalia became Mardi Gras. This period was designed to be a last fling of partying, merriment and good times that came before the period of fasting, prayer and penance called Lent. During the Lenten period the faithful say good bye to the pleasures and indulgences of the flesh. This period lasts from Ash Wednesday until Easter Sunday or 40 days.
This tradition became a major holiday in the city of Paris during the Middle Ages when it spread across the continent of Europe. During medieval times lords held huge carnivals prior to Lent to honor the enrollment of new knights into the service of the local lord or baron. In France, this was a particularly raucous time.
Next how Mardi Gras made it to America.
The term “Fat Tuesday” or Mardi Gras referred to the indulgence that occurred.
I want to visit Nola in a month for a anniversery and I want to make sure it’s up and running so it would be worth my time. Also, any attractions/restaurants that I should experience? Thanks
I was there in November and yes, it is up and running! The people is warm and nice, and the food is wonderful. I was there on a convention, so I did not have too much time to tour around, but the French Quarter is beautiful and it was not affected by the hurricane. Have fun and support Nola!
I really liked NOLA when I visited in 2004 an am coming again for my 25th birthday (2/5) and Mardi Gras this year and have been interested in moving there for a few years now. I currently live in San Diego and grew up in the SF Bay Area and I feel I need to live outside of CA b/c I’ve been here my whole life and want to experiance something new and far different from here, even though i do love this place. I have a degree in Urban Studies and Planning and currently have only worked in transportation planning the past 3 years. I really would like to do urban planning and development and thought NOLA would be a good place for that because of the redevelopment there. Does anyone know if there are a lot of good urban planning jobs? Is the pace of recovery starting to pick up or is it kind of piecemeal still? I really would love to help this city recover but I’m not sure where to start? Would like to get an urban planning job and maybe do grad school or something.
Also does anyone know what professional jobs pay there? I currently make $45k a year and would like a similar salary b/c rent in the good parts of NOLA don’t seem that much cheaper than what I pay now in SD. The problem is I have no working experiance in land use planning or development but just transportation planning.
There are intense labor shortages in the medical, legal, & retail fields, most trades, and in the service industry.
However, you should line up a job BEFORE you move here.
The City of New Orleans appears to have several “city planning” positions vacant: http://www.cityofno.com/portal.aspx?portal=1&tabid=121 but I can’t tell if they are current vacancies.
You should contact the City Planning Commission and ask – hey also may know of positions with other government agencies: http://www.cityofno.com/Portals/Portal52/portal.aspx
The agency that is recruiting most heavily in New Orleans is the police department: https://secure.cityofno.com/portal.aspx?portal=50&tabid=44
A beautiful driving tour down Royal Street through the French Quarter in New Orleans, Louisiana. (while poorly whistling the saints song.)
Duration : 0:1:55
How is post-katrina new orleans? Can anyone tell me about the damage there? My husband and I want to come for mardi gras.Is the whole city under the curfew or just badly damaged parts?the media hasn’t really talked about. What tourism attractions are closed/open and which ones are good to see?
New Orleans is healing, some parts quicker than others. By Mardi-Gras, most of the tourist-y type places should be operational. (The zoo is open, the acquarium won’t be for quite a while, the D-day museum is trying to re-open ASAP, the cable cars are operational.)
The curfew was lifted last month, but there is still a very visual National Guard presence. I actually feel safer in NO than I have in years. The streets are less crowded now than they were last year at this time.
The biggest problem most neighborhoods in NO is having is lack of employees. Most grocery stores are closing around 7 or 8 because they just don’t have anyone to work the late shift. Of course, the french quarter and Bourbon Street are mostly open, and don’t close early. (There are a few bars, restaurants, and shops that haven’t re-opened – maybe 1/4 of them total.)
As far as the heavily damaged areas, they weren’t tourist attractions. They were residential areas, ones that the general public doesn’t have full access to yet.
So come to New Orleans! Our financial success is largely dependent on tourism. Oh, and definately make reservations today. A lot of the hotel/motels are housing insurance adjustors and construction crews. Availability is limited.
Regarding the guy who suggested you go to Opelousas: he’s right in that the Opelousas, Chataignier, Ville Platte Mardi Gras celebrations are more true to the original intent of the holiday. They’re more country, less tourist-y, just as much alcohol, fewer breasts. If that’s what you’re looking for, go on over there. Just don’t expect New Orleans style Mardi Gras. And realize that it’s a 2.5 – 3 hour drive from NO.
Can you get on Bourbon Street during Mardi Gras if you are 18? Not to drink. But just to go out with friends?
My friends are 21+ and I am going as the designated driver. But do the police baracade the streets like they do on Beale Street in Memphis?
you can walk around basically if you are any age…some bars might not let you in, but they usually let girls in anywhere.
We’re on a budget of $1200 all together.
Ages: 19,18,17,15. All girls.
A hotel for a week
Lots of tourist attractions
Lots and Lots of food!!!!!
We don’t want to leave anyone out.
We need a hotel that allows 18 year olds to check in alone.
Any and all ideas are appreciated.
The Royal Street Courtyard hotel is a boutique hotel with hot-tub and beautiful gardens, authentic french quarter style rooms and really friendly. It’s run by a guy called Phil who is fantastic. I live in London but have been there three times in the last four years. There is a big suite at the top that would sleep you all for much less than $1200.
New Orleans is one of my favourite cities. I can recommend hanging out on Frenchman’s Street – it’s where the best real bars and clubs are – forget Bourbon street.
There’s also an African restaurant on Royal Street, near the hotel just into the French quarter that does the best food I’ve ever tasted.
Have fun. I wish I was back there now!
I went there for the 1st time this weekend and I had a handgranade.
Every year for the past 10 years for Mardi Gras!!!