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70 Best & Fun Things To Do In New Orleans (Louisiana)

New Orleans, Louisiana, known also as the Big Easy and one of the most beautiful places in the United States, is famed for its rich culture and history.

There are so many sites to check out that you’re spoiled for tourist attractions.

It’s easy to get a little overwhelmed as you figure out what to do, especially if you’re one of the city’s many first time visitors!

To help you out, we’ve put together a bit of a travel guide for things you should add to your bucket list.

Here are our picks for the top 70 best and fun things to do in New Orleans, Louisiana.

Table of Contents

1. Frenchmen Street

Frenchmen Street

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Frenchmen Street isn’t really just one street.

It’s a stretch of road spanning three blocks located in the famous Faubourg Marigny in New Orleans.

It has a reputation for being a must-do for music lovers thanks to its unofficial status as the greatest location in the city for live music.

As you stroll through the street, you’ll be treated to the sight of delightfully cultural shops, charming old-fashioned cottages of a Creole style, and all the fun of a standard tourist location without the crowded state of Bourbon Street.

Virtually all the live music locations on this New Orleans road have something good to offer.

Blues and jazz are standard, but there are even more genres to be found and heard.

There are few more authentic ways to get a taste of the city and its heritage than right here on Frenchman Street.

Address: Frenchmen Street, New Orleans, LA 70116, United States

2. New Orleans Museum of Art

New Orleans Museum of Art

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If you’ve got an eye for art, you simply have to check out the New Orleans Museum of Art, known simply as NOMA for short.

Located in City Park, this museum shows off some of the truly beautiful and historically rich art.

This Louisiana museum first began its journey in 1912, when Isaac Delgado, an art collector and sugar broker, left the city behind, also leaving a large financial grant to be used to establish the museum.

Now, NOMA boasts huge collections of art.

From the period of the Italian Renaissance all the way to present-day contemporary works, there are over 40,000 artworks on display.

A large chunk of them date back to the 19th or 20th century, made by French artists such as Monet, Braque, Rodin, and Renoir.

There is also an impressive collection of African American art from all sorts of different eras, an Americas collection, exhibits of ceramics from Japan, and more recent works displayed such as those by Bob Dylan, Carlos Rolón, and others.

All in all, if you appreciate art, you’ll have a lot of fun at NOMA, one of the best things to do in New Orleans!

Address: 1 Collins Diboll Cir, New Orleans, LA 70124, United States

3. New Orleans Historic Voodoo Museum

New Orleans Historic Voodoo Museum

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The New Orleans Historic Voodoo Museum is the perfect place to head to if you’re interested in the lengthy history and the intricacies of the mysterious, often misunderstood religious and cultural practice of voodoo.

It’s one of the most popular tourist attractions in this Louisiana city, and for good reason; few can separate the legacy that voodoo has left on New Orleans.

The museum was founded by a man named Charles Massicot Gandolfo in the year 1972.

He had a passion for the practice of voodoo and created the museum to share his love with visitors.

His museum focuses very heavily on local voodoo, brought via the slave trade in the 1700s.

Within the museum’s walls, fascinating items of all kinds are on display.

Antique dolls used in voodoo, a kneeling bench belonging to Maria Leaveau (the first Queen of Voodoo in the city), talismans, taxidermy, and more.

You can also purchase items at the museum, such as snake skins, candles, potions, books, and even potions.

There is also a room to go to for fortune tellings by voodoo practitioners!

Address: 724 Dumaine St, New Orleans, LA 70116, United States

4. French Quarter

French Quarter

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The French Quarter in downtown New Orleans is undoubtedly one of the most fun and enticing places to go if you’re a tourist to this Louisiana City.

Even if you elect to skip the crowd of Bourbon Street in favor of other spots close to it, the French Quarter is rich in history as the most famous neighborhood in the city – and the oldest!

Known also as Vieux Carré, the French Quarter is essentially the heart of the city, first built on the Mississippi River banks three centuries ago.

It now has a mix of just about everything – food, excitement, nightlife, shops, galleries, and many other fascinating locations.

Some of those places have even earned a separate spot on this list, and there are many activities to enjoy!

5. St. Louis Cathedral

St. Louis Cathedral

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The St. Louis Cathedral isn’t one of New Orleans’ most-flocked-to points of interest for nothing.

It has a special place in history as America’s longest-running, an active church of the Roman Catholic faith.

The cathedral’s history stretches back to 1789, which is when it was dedicated to France’s Louis IX, but as far back as 1718, there was already a church on the grounds.

Needless to say, there have been some reconstructions over the years, and the current appearance of the St. Louis Cathedral – with Spanish Colonial architecture – is from 1850.

Many enjoy the appearance of the St. Louis Cathedral because of its stunning symmetry.

Window pediments, spires, Doric columns, and scallop moldings are all perfectly constructed into a picturesque and magnificent structure.

When you enter the St. Louis Cathedral, you’ll want to check out the Rococo altar, which is gilded and embellished in finery, and the many stained glass windows crafted in astonishing detail.

Address: 615 Pere Antoine Alley, New Orleans, LA 70116, United States

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6. National WWII Museum

National WWII Museum

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The National WWII Museum is one of the most fascinating and potentially fun spots in New Orleans, Louisiana for history buffs who are fascinated by the battles of the past.

Once known as the National D-Day Museum, it’s easily among the top 10 places that tourists flock to in downtown New Orleans.

Originally, the museum focused only on the events of D-Day, including its lead-up and repercussions, with many exhibits dedicated to the Battle of Normandy.

But in 2009, it earned its new and current name in order to comply with Congress’ designation of the museum by its new title.

Though it still focuses mostly on D-Day, the National WWII Museum is recognized throughout the country and is a Smithsonian Institution affiliate.

While you’re visiting, don’t forget to head up to the observation deck to see an aircraft, hung delicately from the aviation exhibit’s ceiling, up-close.

You can also watch Beyond All Boundaries, a 4D film that won awards and was made just for the National WWII Museum itself!

Address: 945 Magazine St, New Orleans, LA 70130, United States

7. Garden District

Garden District

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The Garden District is essentially what you might consider the upper-class area of this Louisiana City.

It was originally built for richer individuals moving to the state who didn’t want to join the Creoles in the French Quarter.

This began sometime in the 1830s, and mansions of Greek Revival and Italianate mansions soon began to pop up all over, mostly decorated in white with huge gardens and lovely flowers outside.

If you take a trip here while you’re in Louisiana, you’ll be able to see some of the most stunning of the things to see in New Orleans: mansions of grandeur and wonder that still remain, standing proud.

Among them are the Colonel Short’s Villa, the Goldsmith-Godchaux House, the Commander’s Palace, and the Brevard-Rice House.

Despite its questionable history, there’s no denying that the Garden District has some of the most stunning houses and buildings in the city.

Address: St Charles Avenue, New Orleans, LA 70130, United States

8. Mardi Gras World

Mardi Gras World

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It’s easy to skip over Mardi Gras World, but then you’d be missing out on an insanely fun spot among the many New Orleans attractions in Louisiana.

Located around the port area of the city, the warehouse shows off tales and behind-the-scenes secrets relating to Mardi Gras – which is, essentially, America’s biggest party thrown completely for free.

Mardi Gras World has a fairly straightforward history.

It is owned by Kern Studios, which was founded in 1932 by Roy Kern.

It all started with Kern’s first-ever float and grew into a big company.

By 1984, Mardi Gras World was open and running, and there are over a hundred employed artists and workers who put a lot of time and effort into creating the perfect pieces for the party.

In Mardi Gras World, you’ll be able to see some of the floats being prepared for the next event.

Sculptures and painters work on these floats for months and months, and those prepared here make up a whopping 75% of the floats that will be paraded during the event itself.

A 90-minute tour through the warehouse lets you in on the traditions of Mardi Gras as you try on costumes and view works in progress.

Address: 1380 Port of New Orleans Pl, New Orleans, LA 70130, United States

9. Audubon Nature Institute

Audubon Nature Institute

Audubon Nature Institute

Looking for cool things to do in New Orleans, Louisiana that you can bring kids to?

Consider the Audubon Nature Institute.

It dates back well over a century, hosting some old, still-alive oaks that date back to the times of plantations in New Orleans.

The Audubon Nature Institute is one of the best spots in the city simply because of how large it is.

It hosts the massive Entergy Giant Screen Theater, a large aquarium that holds a huge 400,000-gallon tank dedicated to the Gulf of Mexico, a butterfly garden, a zoo with an exciting Jaguar Jungle showcase, and an insectarium.

Events throughout the day or held that are meant just for kids, such as those that let them interact with animals.

Of course, most events are great for all ages, like environmental films and lectures, daily feedings, and lots of informative sessions.

You can also stop by Riverview Park here to have a picnic, play some sports or golf, or even bird-watch.

Address: 6500 Magazine St, New Orleans, LA 70118, United States

10. Jackson Square

Jackson Square

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Jackson Square is pretty famous in New Orleans, Louisiana, and tourists gravitate towards it like nobody’s business in their quest for what to do for fun while visiting.

Once upon a time, Jackson Square was a ground for military parades back in the 1720s, somewhat similar to Paris’ Place des Vosges.

In 1815, once the Battle of New Orleans drew to a close, the area was renamed to honor General Andrew Jackson.

The general would go on to become America’s 7th president.

Now, it houses formal gardens, a statue of the late president, and many galleries, shops, and eateries.

If you’re in the city this weekend, there’s no reason not to check it out!

Address: 701 Decatur St, New Orleans, LA 70116, United States

Looking for more thrills around Louisiana? Why not check out some of the things to do in Shreveport?

11. City Park

City Park

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City Park is located in downtown New Orleans and came to be as a result of drained swampland, as performed in the 19th century by colonists from France.

As one of the United States’ biggest parks – the sixth-largest of an urban variety – it’s a great place to go to unwind, go site seeing, and even have a little fun.

At first, City Park was a place where men would make appointments to meet and settle disagreements and similar disputes.

Back then, it was known by the apt name Dueling Oaks.

In the 1850s, the land received some care and proper scaping, and that paved the way for it to become the great Louisiana park we know!

City Park isn’t just good for strolling.

It has the biggest mature oak tree collection in the entire world, with some of those trees stretching back in time 600 years.

Each one is draped with stunning Spanish moss and serves as a natural canopy for picnickers, cyclers, and more.

Don’t forget to check out the many great places within the park grounds, like the Carousel Gardens Amusement Park and the 36-hole City Putt!

Address: 1 Palm Dr, New Orleans, LA 70124, United States

12. Ogden Museum of Southern Art

Ogden Museum of Southern Art

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The Ogden Museum of Southern Art hosts not just one of the largest collections of art in Louisiana, but in the entire south.

Built in 1999, the museum shows off works and pieces dating all the way back to 1733.

Since there isn’t one cohesive “Southern” art style, or even a “New Orleans” art style, you’ll get to see all kinds of different genres and influences, with landscapes, sculptures, abstract art, and more.

Some of the artists whose works are exhibited include Clementine Hunter (a folk artist), George Ohr (a ceramicist), Hunt Slonem (a neo-Expressionist), and Will Henry Stevens (a modernist painter).

It can be a lot of fun to take in the sheer diversity of art styles, techniques, and cultural history from each of the works at the Ogden Museum of Southern Art.

That’s why, whether you’re an aficionado of fine arts or not, visiting the museum is among the best things to do in New Orleans.

Address: 925 Camp St, New Orleans, LA 70130, United States

13. New Orleans Pharmacy Museum

The New Orleans Pharmacy Museum is one of the best of this Louisiana city’s tourist attractions.

It’s a fascinating and rather unusual sort of museum, which makes it all the more intriguing.

Located in the French Quarter and housed within an old two-story building, the museum exhibits a huge range of healthcare and pharmacy-related memorabilia.

Among the oddities, bits, and bobs, you’ll find optical prosthetic devices, old physician’s bags made of leather, surgical tools, wheelchairs, eyeglasses, medical instruments, and ingredients in original apothecary jars.

Voodoo potions also line the shelves, including Love Potion No 9, the very famous and often referenced potion of yore.

As you retreat to the rear of the shop area, you’ll find a recreation of a workspace of an old-time pharmacist.

Attention to detail is pretty impressive, with items like wooden blenders, mortar and pestles, and microscopes.

Don’t forget to go up to the second floor to check out the Dr. J. William Rosenthal’s Spectacles Collection exhibit!

Address: 514 Chartres St, New Orleans, LA 70130, United States

14. Preservation Hall

Preservation Hall

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Looking for things to do in downtown New Orleans pertaining to jazz and other musical wonders?

Preservation Hall is an amazing option!

As a traditional venue for jazz performances, it’s earned a reputation for being a favorite in New Orleans.

Better yet, it’s not an adults-only joint, so it’s suitable for families, for couples, and for just about anyone!

Preservation Hall’s life began in the 1950s.

Alan Jaffe became a manager in 1961 and shaped it into the place it is now.

He was dedicated to hiring musicians who were around during jazz’s first wave, thus reviving jazz music while giving infirm and elderly musicians a reason to return to their craft.

Over 100 different musicians perform at this New Orleans, Louisiana jazz bar, performing intimate live concerts for audience members for 350 nights every single year.

As the city’s – and even the world’s – most respected jazz venue, it’s not a place to miss!

Address: 726 St Peter, New Orleans, LA 70116, United States

15. Steamboat Natchez

Steamboat Natchez

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Looking for a convenient way to tour the hot spots of New Orleans, Louisiana?

Steamboat Natchez has you covered!

This tour company is pretty famous for offering harbor cruises, brunch cruises, and dinner cruises, each one bringing you through the Mississippi River to learn about New Orleans and all the fun places to see along the way.

The steamboat tour company launched its business in 1975 and makes use of sternwheel steamboats, which are traditional and allow guests to feel like they’re being transported to bygone eras.

Relaxing old-style music, a captain shouting through a megaphone, and historical fact narration all add to the atmosphere.

Each tour or cruise offers something a little different, so peruse your options before choosing between them!

Address: 400 Toulouse St, New Orleans, LA 70130, United States

16. New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival

New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival

New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival

No travel guide for Louisiana would be complete without recommending the New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival as one of the activities to participate in – if you’re in the city at the right time, that is!

The festival is an extravaganza spanning eight days, full of food, music, and art, held outdoors with a lively and exciting atmosphere.

Known simply as the Jazzfest by locals, this festival has taken place for more than 50 years and is set on the Fair Grounds Race Track.

Every genre of music under the sun is showcased during this exciting stretch of two weekends, usually taking place across the last weekend of April till the first one of May.

12 stages are set up, each one playing different genres, and stalls are set up to sell delicious festival food like gumbo, crab po’boys, beignets, and more.

People come dressed in costumes, waving flags and donning hats, coated in sunscreen.

You’ll be able to find crafts of all kinds sold, with handmade delights and demonstrations to keep you occupied.

After Jazzfest calms down from each day of its event, nightclubs around it have great parties so you can keep the energy going well into the night.

Address: 1751 Gentilly Blvd, New Orleans, LA 70119, United States

17. Audubon Zoo

Audubon Zoo

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For animal-lovers, families, and nature fans, Audubon Zoo is certainly one of the top among the places to visit in New Orleans.

Thanks to the climate of New Orleans, Audubon Zoo benefits from a surprisingly realistic array of exhibit spaces, with environments perfectly tailored to their residents.

Audubon Zoo has many different animals, including lions, gorillas, Asian elephants, Malayan tigers, rhinos, and orangutans, but the biggest draws of the location are its special environments.

There’s Jaguar Jungle, Gator Run, the Cool Zoo splash park, and, of course, Louisiana Swamp, which houses alligators and is award-winning.

Explore the zoo on the Swamp Train and check out all it has to offer!

Address: 6500 Magazine St, New Orleans, LA 70118, United States

18. Louisiana Children’s Museum

Louisiana Children's Museum

Louisiana Children’s Museum

If you’re heading to New Orleans with kids in tow, you can’t overlook the Louisiana Children’s Museum.

It’s one of the most fun spots in the city for younger members of the family and is one of the best family-friendly places of New Orleans attractions.

The museum spans two stories and showcases plenty of interactive and hands-on exhibits for kids to enjoy and learn through.

8.5 acres of ground offer areas such as an edible garden, a “wetland” habitat, a lagoon bank, a bubble studio, a mock-grocery store, a Mighty Mississippi exhibit that reaches 30 meters, and more!

Address: 15 Henry Thomas Dr, New Orleans, LA 70124, United States

19. The Cabildo

The Cabildo

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Looking for where to go in the great city of New Orleans that’s central, historical, and cultural all in one?

The Cabildo may provide you with what you seek.

Its life dates back hundreds of years, with its reconstruction in the 1790s following the Great New Orleans Fire breathing some new life into it.

Spanish Colonial architecture, mixed with some other influences such as a French Mansard roof, make the Cabildo a beauty to behold.

Until the year 1908, it was a government and judicial building, but it was passed to the Louisiana State Museum after and now houses over 500 items that exhibit the history and culture of the city.

Among the museum’s most interesting showcases are We Love You, New Orleans!, the Battle of New Orleans exhibit, the collection of Native American items, a room that was the location of the finalization of the Louisiana Purchase, and a Hurricane Katrina room.

Address: 701 Chartres St, New Orleans, LA 70130, United States

20. Jean Lafitte National Historical Park and Preserve

Jean Lafitte National Historical Park and Preserve

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If nature and sightseeing are up your alley, you’ll want to check out the Jean Lafitte National Historical Park and Preserve, which spans 22,241 acres and covers six different spots in New Orleans.

Among the interesting spots within the Jean Lafitte National Historical Park and Preserve are the different biomes, such as swamps, prairies, and bayous.

There is also the Battle of New Orleans site within park grounds.

There are a good number of activities to take part in here, including guided walks, multiple different historical areas to observe, and beautiful flowers to appreciate. 

Address: 419 Decatur St, New Orleans, LA 70130, United States

21. Studio Be

Studio Be

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Studio Be, located in Bywater of New Orleans, Louisiana, is a huge warehouse that showcases eye-catching, vibrant, fun, and delightful public art.

It was created by Brandan “BMike” Odums, who worked together with over 40 talented artists to make all sorts of exhibits and murals relating to resistance, revolution, activism, and the history of African Americans.

The studio expanse covers 35,000 square feet, with five stories of space across four buildings.

It’s southern America’s biggest public art exhibition on a single site, which is why it’s popular not just with locals of New Orleans, but with people all over the world.

It apparently took 6 months to complete Studio Be, and most of the art today is painted with graffiti and spray styles.

For fans of modern art with powerful messages, visiting Studio Be is a must-do.

Address: 2941 Royal St, New Orleans, LA 70117, United States

22. Longue Vue House and Gardens

Longue Vue House and Gardens

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Visiting the Longue Vue House and Gardens is among the top things to do in New Orleans for fans of the genteel and elegant old New Orleans architecture.

It is a mansion set on stunning 8-acre gardens, designed in the Classical-Revival style.

It dates back to the 1930s and was home to a philanthropist and businessman named Edgar B. Stern and his family.

The Longue Vue House and Gardens was one of the very last estates of the Country Place Era, so it has a special slice of Louisiana with it.

Walk through the 20 different rooms, examine gorgeous preserved costumes, and take a look at items from across the world – like the best ceramics from China or the finest carpets from Europe.

There’s also a gift shop for you to buy some interesting trinkets if you’re keen!

Address: 7 Bamboo Rd, New Orleans, LA 70124, United States

23. Café du Monde

Café du Monde

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Café du Monde isn’t one of the standard, touristy points of interest, but a trip to New Orleans, Louisiana wouldn’t be complete without doing something that the locals do!

Café du Monde is open 24/7 and serves New Orleans famous chicory, coffee, and beignets that you shouldn’t miss out on.

Originally, Café du Monde was but a humble coffee stand.

Since its life began in 1862, it has grown to encompass eight locations in total across the city.

Stop by for a quick bite; you’ll be surprised how fun it can be!

Address: 800 Decatur St, New Orleans, LA 70116, United States

24. Music Box Village

The Music Box Village

The Music Box Village

Music Box Village is a picturesque haven for music lovers – and if you’re visiting New Orleans at all, there’s a good chance that you are, indeed, someone who appreciates good music!

This whimsical sculpture garden was designed by a mix of builders and artists and is known to delight its guests with interactive activities.

The Music Box Village can be found in Bywater and is full of pleasant and whimsical surprises that will ensure you have the best time.

Though it exists in a forest, treehouses allow for exploration and hands-on excitement.

Each house is designed in a Creole cottage style and plays lovely melodies for passers-by.

If you come at the right time, you might be lucky enough to catch a live concert!

Address: 4557 N Rampart St, New Orleans, LA 70117, United States

25. Tipitina’s

For music clubs and fun, one of the best of the things to see in New Orleans is Tipitina’s, the most famous club for music in the city.

It first swung open its doors in 1977 on a venue dating back to 1912, and it has only grown more and more loved since.

Tipitina’s is known as the hotspot that every aspiring local musician or performer would love to book a gig in.

Genres of all kinds are played well into the early morning hours throughout the standing-only club.

It’s easy to just walk by and ignore Tipitina’s due to its rather uninspiring appearance from the outside, but it’s almost an institution all on its own and is well worth the visit.

Enjoy live music, local talent, and good company.

Address: 501 Napoleon Ave, New Orleans, LA 70115, United States

26. Historic New Orleans Collection

Historic New Orleans Collection

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The whole state of Louisiana is overflowing with culture – and the Historic New Orleans Collection paints a wide-reaching picture of its titular city’s.

The “Collection” is a museum, first opened in 1966, that is dedicated to collecting a wide range of exhibits showcasing the culture, history, and artistic tastes of the region.

The museum’s collected pieces were first owned by General Lewis Kemper Williams and Leila Hardy Moore Williams, who purchased the Merieult House that the Collection now lives in back in 1938.

The married couple’s stash grew and grew over time and now is as versatile as can be imagined.

The museum houses four different exhibition areas.

A mix of rotating and permanent showcases are on display in each of them, totaling more than a million individual items in all, dated across three centuries and beyond.

There’s the Louisiana History Galleries, the Laura Simon Nelson Galleries for Louisiana Art, the Williams Gallery, and the Boyd Cruise Gallery.

As far as New Orleans attractions go, few museums offer the expansive range that this one does – and there are even fun guided tours through which you can learn even more.

Address: 520 Royal St, New Orleans, LA 70130, United States

27. New Orleans Jazz Museum

There is little more quintessential in New Orleans than jazz music.

So if you’re looking for stuff to do that is thematically appropriate for this culturally rich Louisiana city this weekend, you needn’t look much farther than the New Orleans Jazz Museum.

This museum is housed within the lovely Neoclassical Old U.S. Mint building and features an incredible collection of jazz-related items, exhibits, and memorabilia.

Many priceless instruments used by prominent figures in jazz history are showcased here as part of the world’s biggest collection of this sort, featuring ones played by George Lewis, Sidney Bechet, and Dizzy Gillespie.

Certain particularly meaningful exhibits include the first coronet of Louis Armstrong (complete with hand-carved notches by the man himself) and the world’s first jazz music recording, which dates back to 1917.

There are also thousands of photographs featuring early day memories of the jazz scene and countless records featuring these smooth tunes.

You can also occasionally catch live shows!

Address: 400 Esplanade Ave, New Orleans, LA 70116, United States

28. Jean Lafitte’s Old Absinthe House

Jean Lafitte's Old Absinthe House

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Jean Lafitte was a pirate and an outlaw – so how is it that such a man came to have a New Orleans treasure named after him?

Just before the War of 1812, Lafitte met here at The Old Absinthe House – which, at the time, served as a firm for imports – to meet with the great General Andrew Jackson.

The General sought the aid of Lafitte to ship men to fight the steadily approaching British forces.

Lafitte agreed, on the condition that he and his men would be granted full pardons for their past crimes and dubious activities.

This turned out to be a rousing success as British ships were repelled and Americans reigned victorious.

Through the next two centuries, the building of this historic meeting largely remained the same.

The Old Absinthe House gained autographs, photos, and other memorabilia of famous celebrities who stopped by, and its bar was so iconic that it was nearly demolished in 1920 – but its contents were carted off and hidden, then revived once again in 2004.

It’s among the most interesting and fun options for what to see in Louisiana!

Address: 240 Bourbon St, New Orleans, LA 70112, United States

29. Backstreet Cultural Museum

The Backstreet Cultural Museum is a must-see, partially hidden gem that houses the world’s top largest and most detailed collection of African American traditions and history, as seen throughout New Orleans, Louisiana.

More than 500 events are recorded on film in the Backstreet Cultural Museum, archiving traditions both thriving and lost of the black community of New Orleans.

This includes cultural traditions, jazz funerals, masking traditions, pleasure clubs, Skull and Bone gangs, social aid, Baby Dolls, and much more.

Address: 1116 Henriette Delille St, New Orleans, LA 70116, United States

30. The Presbytère

We’ve already mentioned visiting the Cabildo as one of the best things to do in New Orleans – but what about its twin, The Presbytère?

It faces Jackson Square and dates back to 1791, and like its “sibling”, it boasts amazing architecture that makes it a true masterpiece.

Built in a colonial Spanish style, The Presbytère was once used as its name suggests – as domestic quarters for the Capuchin monks of the Cabildo.

Before it became a magnet for tourists, it also served as a courthouse (and earned a mansard roof of French influence during that time).

Now, The Presbytère is a Louisiana State Museum flagship location, with two permanent exhibits.

These exhibits are the thematic Mardi Gras exhibit, which showcases New Orleans and the rest of the state with its old European heritage.

As well as the Living with Hurricanes: Katrina and Beyond exhibit, which educates visitors on the effects of Hurricane Katrina and the continued efforts to heal the damage done.

Address: 751 Chartres St, New Orleans, LA 70116, United States

31. Louis Armstrong Park

Louis Armstrong Park

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New Orleans, Louisiana, isn’t particularly known for being lush with greenery.

That’s probably why Louis Armstrong Park is one of the top green tourist attractions that New Orleans has to offer.

It’s close to the teeming French Quarter so isn’t far displaced from the cultural aspects of the city, and with a huge 32-acre space, it’s often become the home of events and festivals.

The Louis Armstrong Park is beautifully landscaped.

It first began its life in the 1960s in Tremé, which was a huge player in the world of the African American music scene.

In the very center, Congo Square – which was once used for slaves and since been reclaimed by African Americans to have fun, sing and dance, and celebrate their heritage – remains, the shining beacon and favorite spot of the park.

Address: 701 N Rampart St, New Orleans, LA 70116, United States

32. Sydney and Walda Besthoff Sculpture Garden

The Sydney and Walda Besthoff Sculpture Garden is technically a part of the New Orleans Museum of Art, but it’s one of those places to visit that deserves its very own part of this listing since many come by just to visit the garden on its own.

Right near the main NOMA building, an 11-acre expanse of garden stretches out, decorated with over 90 different sculptures.

The gardens first opened in 2003 and have grown in size ever since it made its home in the rear of the Louisiana museum.

Walkthrough through it can be a lot of fun, as you’ll get to see all sorts of flora – such as oaks, pines, camellias, and magnolias – and view many different pieces of art.

Most of these sculptures are by modern artists, including Henry Moore, Pierre Auguste Renoir, Katharina Fritsch, and many, many more!

Address: 1 Collins Diboll Cir, New Orleans, LA 70124, United States

33. Marie Laveau’s House of Voodoo

Few can think of New Orleans without thinking of the sacred practice of voodoo, so it’s only natural that there are some tourist spots catered to this religion.

Marie Laveau’s House of Voodoo is arguably the best among them in the Louisiana city.

But really, is that any surprise, considering who it’s named after?

Marie Laveau II was the queen of voodoo in New Orleans, taking up the “throne” from her mother, until her passing in 1895.

There are many confusing and conflicting accounts of her death, but most believe she still resides in the House of Voodoo, haunting it as she goes.

Many have reported feeling an icy grip on their arms or shoulders, and some have even seen her ghost in full form in a back room.

The House of Voodoo now is a museum showcasing multiple exhibits of a Voodoo-related variety.

This includes a Voodoo Altar, books, and spiritual products.

There is also a store that people can purchase Voodoo items from and a back room that hosts Tarot readings, spell castings, and other forms of divination.

Address: 739 Bourbon St, New Orleans, LA 70116, United States

34. Metairie Cemetery

The Metairie Cemetery in New Orleans has the Louisiana city’s largest marble tomb and funeral statue collection, drawing visitors of all sorts to its grounds.

Founded in 1872, visiting Metairie Cemetery is one of the activities commonly underwent by spook-loving tourists – and if that description fits you, you’ll probably like it here!

Once upon a time, the cemetery was the Maitire Race Course, but it now mixes artwork with beautiful stories.

Among the most interesting and fun spots to visit in the cemetery is Josie Arlington’s original final resting place, which takes the shape of a tomb with a woman’s statue knocking on doors.

There is also the David Hennessy memorial, the 18-meter Moriarty tomb, the beautiful Laure Beuaregard Landon tomb made with stained glass and Moorish design, and the pyramid-and-sphinx that make up the Brunswig mausoleum.

Address: 5100 Pontchartrain Blvd, New Orleans, LA 70124, United States

35. Magazine Street

Magazine Street

William A. Morgan / Shutterstock

If you’re seeking one of the most iconic places to visit in New Orleans, Magazine Street holds a pretty good candle up to the rest of the Louisiana city.

Why is it named Magazine Street?

There isn’t any conclusive evidence that dictates where this stretch of New Orleans got its name, but it is likely that it is named after ammunition.

Magazine Street stretches over 6 miles and there is a bus and a streetcar that allows for quicker journeys to and from locations in the area.

It’s a paradise for shoppers and offers all sorts of galleries, boutiques, costume stores, spas, and more.

There are plenty of great places to eat, too.

While you’re here, you can also check out cottages built along the road and lots of twisted oaks providing shade over pedestrians.

Address: Magazine Street, New Orleans, LA, United States

36. Museum of Death

Museum of Death

Museum of Death

For fans of the macabre who find fun in the fascination of the strange and gory, the Museum of Death is one of the most exciting New Orleans attractions.

It originally opened in 1995 in California when Catherine Shultz and J. D. Healy began to collect and display their bizarre collection of items related to death.

Twenty years later, the whole collection was taken to New Orleans, and the rest, as they say, is history.

Now, the Museum of Death is a Louisiana hotspot for those looking to be just a little creeped out.

Skeletons, taxidermy pieces, letters and art from serial killers, body bags, and many more decorate the museum’s interior.

Particularly interesting exhibits are videos showcasing actual deaths, a suicide machine by Dr. Kevorkian, letters from the Unabomber, and Jeffrey Dahmer, a lock of hair used during the trial of O. J. Simpson, exhibits on embalming, cannibalism, and terrorism, and more.

Each exhibit is explicit and many can become quite graphic, and though there isn’t an age restriction on admission, expect to see some gory or shocking things that aren’t recommended for the weak of heart.

In fact, the Museum of Death has so many faintings that those who do faint on the premises receive a special free t-shirt!

Address: 227 Dauphine St, New Orleans, LA 70112, United States

37. The Superdome (and the New Orleans Saints)

The Superdome

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The imposing and majestic Superdome, home to the New Orleans Saints football team, is a much-loved structure and one of Louisiana’s best Modernist icons.

It first began construction in the early 1970s and, currently, it boasts a 210-meter diameter, making it the world’s absolute largest domed building.

The Superdome can seat 73,000 people, and if you’re seeking things locals do to replicate during your visit to the city, you may want to try and catch a game at the stadium.

The Saints play in spring and the Sugar Bowl (for college football) plays in January, and there are plenty of other events and pre-season games to consider.

Ultimately, you don’t have to be a football fanatic to enjoy a Superdome visit.

In July, the Essence Festival is put on here, and big-name artists have come to the stadium during tours, too.

Address: 1500 Sugar Bowl Dr, New Orleans, LA 70112, United States

38. Abandoned Jazzland

Abandoned Jazzland

Kristina Rogers / Shutterstock

Sightseeing doesn’t have to all be about pretty and aesthetically pleasing visuals.

If you’re looking for something a little more interesting, and perhaps a little eerie, look no further than one of your best options: the Abandoned Jazzland.

Abandoned Jazzland is a result of the deadly and monstrous sweep of Hurricane Katrina, which did a significant number on New Orleans and many other parts of Louisiana.

Part of what was destroyed was this Six Flags theme park.

It sank entirely before rising and its parts scattering, leaving behind bits and pieces that clutter its floors with a spooky and finite atmosphere.

Before you go, it’s very important that you know that technically, venturing into the amusement park’s grounds is considered trespassing, and it could be dangerous.

It is advisable that you look from outside only!

Still, even if you don’t go in, it’s oddly fun to take a look at the remnants left behind from bygone days.

Address: Six Flags Pkwy, New Orleans, LA 70129, United States

39. Faubourg Marigny

Faubourg Marigny

IrinaK / Shutterstock

If you were a local from New Orleans, you would have been familiar with Faubourg Marigny – a neighborhood best known for Frenchmen Street.

What’s so special about it, you ask?

As it turns out, visiting Frenchmen is a must-do if you’re someone who wants to enjoy the nightlife scene.

Bands play until 4 am in this part of New Orleans, providing top-notch live music in cafes like The Blue Nile, The Spotted Cat, Cafe Negril – all which line the street alongside various restaurants.

And many of these restaurants also serve late nights too!

Let’s not forget that Mardi Gras Day is often the biggest reason to visit this city in Louisiana – and as it turns out, Frenchmen Street sees plenty of that action!

So remember to bring along a costume, because you might just find yourself swept up into the amazing experience!

40. Ride A Streetcar


f11photo / Shutterstock

Looking for fun things to do in New Orleans?

This city of delights in Louisiana has you covered, and is full of all sorts of exciting activities to try out.

But what if you just want to relax and are looking for something more low-energy?

Enter the streetcars of New Orleans.

It probably seems odd to consider riding around on these streetcars as something to try out, until you realize that the streetcars and street railways themselves are historical fixtures in and of themselves.

The St Charles Avenue line is a great example of this, being the world’s oldest street railway system that has been continuously operational since its founding.

Built in the 1830s, these handsome streetcars take travelers to both modern and historical parts of the city – including some corners and neighborhoods you’re unlikely to stumble upon otherwise.

Why not take a gander and see where a casual ride through the city will take you?

41. Laura Plantation

Laura Plantation

NickBerryPhotography / Shutterstock

Considering the antebellum history Louisiana has, it makes sense that some of the best tourist attractions the state has are its plantation museums – and it just happens to be home to one of the few plantation museums in the state.

Located west of the city, the Laura Plantation was once one of the many sugarcane farms that covered the landscape of New Orleans that operated well into the 20th century.

It was originally founded by Guillaume Duparc, a Frenchman and naval veteran who had participated in this American Revolutionary War.

These days, its grounds, buildings, and main house have been dedicated to showcasing the history of the African American families that lived here, and the struggles they faced.

Visitors taking the tour will be guided through the gardens and original 1840s slave cabins, as well as the Creole-style house – the building a prime example of the style at its apex.

Address: 2247 LA-18, Vacherie, LA 70090, United States

42. Old New Orleans Rum Distillery

Old New Orleans Rum

Old New Orleans Rum

With just how incredible its history and culture is, it only makes sense that New Orleans is full of fun places to visit.

One of those many places happens to be the oldest premium rum distillery in the country!

Located in the middle of sugarcane country, the Old New Orleans Rum Distillery can be found in a 150-year-old cotton warehouse.

The establishment is still operational and uses local Louisiana sugarcane molasses to produce both rum and pre-mixed cocktails.

Itching to try one of those cocktails?

Luckily for visitors, you will be given a cocktail to enjoy at the start of your 45-minute tour through the facility.

There’s more to the tour than just a free drink, however – you’ll get to learn the fermenting, distilling, and the aging process involved in making rum, and get to finish the tour with an inclusive tasting session!

Address: 2815 Frenchmen St, New Orleans, LA 70122, United States

43. Whitney Plantation

Whitney Plantation

Alisa_Ch / Shutterstock

The antebellum demand for sugar and Louisiana’s climate made the state the perfect place to grow sugarcane in droves – and with it, the need for hundreds of slaves.

Originally founded in 1752 by German immigrants to grow indigo, the Whitney Plantation is one of the many preserved plantations in New Orleans that has since been converted into a museum.

These days, the plantation is dedicated wholly and completely to bringing the plight of New Orlean’s enslaved blacks to light.

Visitors to this preserved plantation will be taken on a 90-minute tour through the grounds and its various points of interest, such as the owner’s house, the slave cabins, and a church for freedmen.

While waiting out the hot afternoon sun before your tour, why not check out the rest of the exhibits?

You can find first-person accounts of the slaves that worked here, along with information boards and memorial artwork.

Address: 5099 Louisiana Hwy 18, Edgard, LA 70049, United States

44. Saenger Theatre

New Orleans is a tough city that has been through a lot – and Saenger Theatre is no stranger to those hardships.

Originally built in 1927 as an “atmospheric” movie theatre, it has gone through plenty of restorations and hard times before it was finally brought back to life.

Although the Saenger has cut its capacity from its original 4,000 seats to 2,600, the theatre is still a must-see locale while in New Orleans.

It’s not hard to see why, either – even if you’re not a fan of the opulence and beauty built into its performance halls, the historic venue still sees a steady stream of events and performances.

Broadway shows, Tony award-winning musicals, live comedy, children shows, concerts – it doesn’t matter if you’re looking for something for couples or for families.

This is a theatre that always promises to be one of the most fun things to do in New Orleans!

Address: 1111 Canal St, New Orleans, LA 70112, United States

45. Bayou St. John

Bayou St. John

Chuck Wagner / Shutterstock

It’s easy to think that there’s not a lot of fun to be found in Louisiana.

Contrary to that popular belief, however, there’s plenty of things to see in New Orleans – for example, Bayou St. John!

Full of beautiful Creole mansions and centuries-old oaks, this elegant neighborhood is named after the bayou that forms its waterfront.

Consider spending a day here, where you can stroll through the gorgeous avenues to admire the historical buildings New Orleans is famous for.

Alternatively, you can rent a paddleboard or a kayak and take to the water to beat the heat!

If taking part in physical activities isn’t quite your thing, then try dropping by Bayou Beer Garden for a drink instead – and some boiled crawfish, if they’re in season.

Or try relaxing instead, and find yourself an intimate moment on the east bank as the sun sets for the night.

46. LaLaurie Mansion

LaLaurie Mansion

DMBrooks / Shutterstock

Louisiana is home to gorgeous examples of Southern antebellum construction – a fact that should prick the ears of both history buffs and architecture lovers alike.

It should come as no surprise, then, that the LaLaurie Mansion is among the best New Orleans attractions that any visitor can find.

Located in the French Quarter, the three-story mansion was built in 1832 by Marie Delphine Macarty Blanque LaLaurie.

It is undeniably a prime example of historical New Orleans grandeur, featuring wrought-iron balconies, a baroque façade, and impressive bulk.

This mansion’s beauty, however, belies its dark and strange history.

While her home quickly became well-known as one of the most impressive buildings in the French Quarter, Madame LaLaurie herself garnered a reputation for being cruel and abusive to her slaves.

Rumors abounded, with some claiming that the cook was shackled to the house’s kitchen stove, while others reported seeing a slave girl falling to her death when she had tried to escape her mistress’s whip.

After a fire broke out in the mansion, the tortured slaves were finally discovered and freed.

In the wake of the public uproar, Madame LaLaurie herself was forced to flee to Paris.

Since then, it has become a source of ghost stories, and is often the highlight of most ghost tours in the city!

Address: 1138 Royal St, New Orleans, LA 70116, United States

47. Lafayette Cemetery

Lafayette Cemetery

travelview / Shutterstock

You may be asking – what fun is there to be had in a cemetery?

More than you’d expect, actually, if you’re a fan of The Originals.

Established in 1833 near the old city of Lafayette, it was later taken up by New Orleans when Lafayette itself was incorporated into the new city.

Now, Lafayette Cemetery is the oldest city-owned cemetery still in operation.

The trip is a worthwhile visit – the cemetery is full of unique and historical monuments that cemeteries in New Orleans are famous for.

Fans of The Originals in particular, however, should not miss this tourist attraction.

After all, all the cemetery scenes from the show were filmed here!

Address: 1427 Washington Ave, New Orleans, LA 70130, United States

48. Travel Through The 9th Ward

9th Ward

Patricia Marroquin / Shutterstock

After Hurricane Katrina swept through Louisiana, much of New Orleans was flooded as the levees broke and the sea rushed in.

The 9th Ward in particular was one of the hurricane’s biggest victims, suffering losses in both lives and properties when the Industrial Canal levee broke.

This corner of the city has since remained largely empty, with many of its original residents simply choosing to not return.

As a result, most of the 9th Ward still remains hauntingly empty, littered with dilapidated houses and trees nature springing forth to reclaim the aftermath that devastated New Orleans.

While it isn’t exactly a top sightseeing destination, it’s one still worth taking to fully appreciate the weight of what may happen if nothing is done to stop and reverse the effects of global warming.

49. Ashley Longshore Studio Gallery

Ashley Longshore Studio Gallery

Ashley Longshore Studio Gallery

If your idea of having some fun this weekend is checking out art galleries, then the Ashley Longshore Studio Gallery is a must-see.

Located in New Orleans, Louisiana, this is a small gallery that will take you off-guard with a personality as loud and as boisterous as its owner.

Walking into this space on Magazine Street is akin to stepping into the pages of a comic book.

The room is a blank white backdrop for the artwork – all made by the owner herself.

Colorful, political, and heavily steeped in pop-culture, each artwork utilizes imagery from TV, advertising, and movies and renders them all in bright colors with thought-provoking text.

Many of them also feature portraits of famous and familiar faces, bedazzled, and questioning.

If you do want to take a moment to appreciate all of the art in this small space in New Orleans, there’s plenty of kitschy retro furniture to rest and take a breather with.

Address: 4537 Magazine St, New Orleans, LA 70115, United States

50. New Orleans Glassworks & Printmaking Studio

New Orleans Glassworks & Printmaking Studio

jurra8 / Shutterstock

The best kind of gift is usually one that is made with love – and this extends to both gifts to others and to yourself.

And what is a souvenir but a gift of love from your travels?

So if you’re in Louisiana, consider heading on down to the New Orleans Glassworks & Printmaking Studio to personally craft a souvenir of your own!

To find this unique gallery and studio, head on down to the American Sector of New Orleans until you find Magazine Street.

There, you’ll find the gallery.

You can simply enjoy the exhibition of glassworks and prints, or take a peek at the open working studios.

There, artists from across both the nation and the world work and offer daily hands-on demonstrations for free.

If you want to get your hands dirty yourself, the studio also offers various courses, workshops, classes, and instructions on how to make prints and blow glass.

You can also try learning glass torchworking, stained glass work, and even copper enameling!

Address: 727 Magazine St, New Orleans, LA 70130, United States

51. The Haunted Mortuary

The Mortuary Haunted House- New Orleans

The Mortuary Haunted House- New Orleans

In search of the best horror stories in Louisiana?

Then look no further than The Haunted Mortuary.

Located in a 100-year-old mortuary, the house previously was home to the PJ McMahon and Sons Undertaking company, which served the city of New Orleans from the 1830s until its eventual closure in 1985.

Throughout its century-long service, the property oversaw the procedures over 20,000 funerals.

It should come as no surprise, therefore, that many people rumor the house and the mortuary to be full of dead souls that refused to pass on.

Whether that’s true or not is something you’ll have to see for yourself!

Address: 4800 Canal St, New Orleans, LA 70119, United States

52. Museum of the American Cocktail

Museum of the American Cocktail

Museum of the American Cocktail

Where did cocktails come from? Who invented them?

If the locals are to be believed, New Orleans is apparently the progenitor of the famous style of alcoholic drink.

If the story is to be believed, The Sazerac – the official cocktail of the city – was created in an apothecary in New Orleans’s French Quarter by a man named Antoine Peychaud.

The Museum of the American Cocktail, however, seems to disagree – and they may be the best authority on the subject.

Dedicated to the history and evolution of the humble cocktail, the museum was originally a traveling exhibit that found its permanent home in the Southern Food and Beverage Museum.

Visitors to this museum will find an exhibition full of cocktail and bar equipment as they developed throughout the years and both prohibition propaganda from both the pro- and anti- sides of the argument.

There are also other unique things to do here, like checking out the informational events and mixology seminars available here as well!

Address: 1504 Oretha Castle Haley Blvd, New Orleans, LA 70113, United States

53. Napoleon House

Napoleon House

Napoleon House

Looking for some fun vacation ideas?

Why not visit this unique bar in the French Quarter of New Orleans?

Built in 1797, this building was originally the home of Nicholas Giround – the mayor of the city, and an admirer of Napoleon Bonaparte.

The house would gain its name in the 1820s when a plan was hatched to free Napoleon from his exile in Saint Helena and brought over to Louisiana.

The first floor of the house was set aside to be the deposed emperor’s new home, and the infamous Louisiana pirate Jean Lafitte was roped in to help.

Naturally, the plan didn’t pan out the way the conspirators had hoped for.

These days, the Napoleon House is both a bar and a restaurant that retains an 18th-century sense of charm and faded grandeur unique to New Orleans.

Address: 500 Chartres St, New Orleans, LA 70130, United States

54. F. Scott Fitzgerald’s Boarding House

F. Scott Fitzgerald's Boarding House

F. Scott Fitzgerald’s Boarding House

F. Scott Fitzgerald is a name that most people will recognize.

Hailed as one of the best American writers of the 20th century, Fitzgerald is best known for his magnum opus “The Great Gatsby” – a widely-praised book that has seen hundreds of adaptations since.

What must be mentioned, however, was that The Great Gatsby was his third novel.

His real breakout novel was This Side of Paradise – a work he had edited in a cheap boarding house in New Orleans.

Sadly, fans of the author’s work making a pilgrimage to Louisiana can’t really enter his exact room personally- the boarding house is now a private home in the Garden District.

You can, however, gaze up at the windows of his old quarters.

All you’ll have to do is just go up to Lafayette Cemetery #1!

Just make sure to check the cemetery’s opening times before paying this iconic spot a visit.

Address: 2900 Prytania Street & 6th Street, New Orleans, LA 70115, United States

55. Kayak-iti-Yat


Andriy Blokhin / Shutterstock

What to see in New Orleans, you ask?

There is plenty – and those sights are ideally seen from the beautiful bayous and historic waterways Louisiana is famous for.

So why not give yourself a fun experience of a lifetime and join a Kayak-iti-Yat tour?

These tours will allow participants to see New Orleans from a completely different point of view as they travel through the water.

You will be able to see the incredible sights and sounds of both the city and its surrounding natural scenery, and potentially meet one of the many native wildlife along the way!

There are three different types of tours available, so participants can choose them based on both their fitness level and kayaking experience.

Two of them are urban-based, while the third one is better suited for adventure-seekers.

These tours are available all year round and must be booked in advance.

Address: 3494 Esplanade Ave, New Orleans, LA 70119, United States

56. Fort Macomb Ruins

Once a part of the planned “Third System” defense, Fort Macomb is now a historic ruin that sits at the Chef Menteur Pass into Lake Pontchartrain.

Originally built in 1822, it was one of the 42 forts that were meant to guard the seacoast of Louisiana after the War of 1812.

During the Civil War, it became one of the many places occupied by the Confederate forces while fighting in New Orleans.

Four years after being razed by a fire in 1867, it was decommissioned and abandoned.

Unfortunately, that would not be the end of its misfortunes – its ruins were one of the many casualties of Hurricane Katrina when it ravaged the city of New Orleans.

Today, it is one of the many unexpected historic vacation spots you can find close to the city.

While you can’t exactly enter the building due to its unsafe and deteriorating state, you can easily check out another nearby identical fort to see what the building was like during its heyday.

Address: New Orleans, LA 70129, United States

57. Fort Pike

Fort Pike

EchoFree / Shutterstock

Are you a history buff traveling through New Orleans?

If so, visiting Fort Pike really ought to be on top of your to do list.

Part of the “Third System” defense plan, Fort Pike was the third completed building out of 42 forts dotting the coastline.

Its sea-facing cannons never saw battle, and it was eventually abandoned in 1890.

This impressive building managed to survive the might of Hurricane Katrina when it raged across New Orleans, although not without suffering serious damage.

So when it was damaged again by Tropical Storm Isaac in 2012, it had to be closed to the public.

Even then, visiting this location still promises to be a fun trip for any fan of history.

After all, what better to appreciate the history of a place than to visit it yourself?

Address: 27100 Chef Menteur Hwy., New Orleans, LA 70129, United States

58. Woldenberg Park

Louisiana is a state that is famous for its waterways and bayous, and New Orleans is no exception to the rule.

Fronting the French Quarter is one of the best riverside parks in the city – Woldenberg Park.

Originally the location of warehouses and wharves on the east bank of the Mississippi, the site was retooled in the 1980s and 1990s into a park.

It’s a beautiful place for anyone to enjoy nature while in the middle of New Orleans, and art lovers will surely enjoy the various public artworks scattered throughout the space.

If you prefer a little more liveliness to your visits, however, the park still has you covered.

There is always some kind of live music here, either from strolling bands or the like.

It is also the host venue of the French Quarter Festival in the early weeks of April – a fantastic event that you should not miss!

Address: 1 Canal St, New Orleans, LA 70130, United States

59. Luling Mansion

Quietly sitting, hidden, in New Orleans’ Esplanade Ridge, the Luling Mansion crumbles away each day, neglected.

Looking at it now, you wouldn’t believe that it was once the most opulent and stunning buildings in a city full of luxury.

Luling Mansion was built in 1865 for Florence Luling, a wealthy cotton merchant from Germany.

Its architecture was lush, with an Italianate design, crafted and planned by James Gallier Jr., an extremely famous architect.

It took two years for construction to be completed, and when it was done, its grounds stretched 30 acres and a little island on a lake, and the interior had 22 rooms.

A blend of tragedies struck shortly after the Luling family moved in, however.

His two sons passed away after drowning in Bayou St. John and the Civil War ran Luling’s business into the ground, so he abandoned his home and sailed back to Europe, never to return.

The home was sold to the Louisiana Jockey Club and became a part of the Fairgrounds Racetrack when it opened in 1872.

The club, too, vacated the building eventually.

By 1905, the mansion was used for apartments, the gardens broken up to create homes.

The new construction caused the mansion to eventually become hidden among the streets of New Orleans, a hidden gem.

For history buffs, architect lovers, and those who enjoy a little glimpse into the past, visiting the Luling Mansion is one of the rarer must-do activities!

Address: 1436 Leda Ct, New Orleans, LA 70119, United States

60. Try Some Local Cuisine


Aimee Lee Studios / Shutterstock

New Orleans has plenty of delicious food that tourists love to try.

With all the options, whether you’re looking for something to do for a whole family, for couples, or even alone, there will be something that tickles your fancy.

The standard must-try in this city is gumbo, which is virtually Louisiana’s official cuisine.

A stew made from a mix of meat, vegetables, and dark roux, served with rice, it has a thick, earthy, and rich flavor.

Another popular dish in the state is jambalaya, which is a rice dish with sausage and a mix of vegetables, seafood, and other meats.

Other dishes you can try during a food adventure, which is one of the most fun things to do in New Orleans, is try local staples like shrimp and grits, a breakfast (and sometimes dinner) dish, or red beans and rice, commonly a Monday lunch special.

From December to June, you can also try some fresh crawfish at a crawfish boil.

Don’t forget to also stop by a local store to purchase a pecan praline!

61. Oak Alley Plantation

Oak Alley Plantation

f11photo / Shutterstock

New Orleans has many plantations which, while they all have a past fraught with slavery and horror, offer a slice of Louisiana that make them among the best ways to look into New Orleans’ past.

Oak Alley Plantation sits along the Mississippi’s western bank.

An alley flanked by oak trees, all planted in the 1700s, runs up from the bank to the home.

The home itself would be built a century later in 1837, and it now lives as a tourist site.

The home has impressive and opulent architecture, with a colonnade fixed with Doric columns totaling 28 – the same number of oaks that fringe the alley.

Tours of the home will give you insight into the lives of the slaves who were kept here, including one known only as Antoine who was the first person on the planet to manage to individually propagate pecan trees.

There is also a spot on the grounds called the Sugarcane Exhibit, which details the estate’s owners’ vast sugarcane business.

Address: 3645 LA-18, Vacherie, LA 70090, United States

62. New Orleans School of Cooking

New Orleans School of Cooking

New Orleans School of Cooking

Looking for more non-touristy things to do in New Orleans?

The New Orleans School of Cooking is one of your top bets.

It offers an educational and enriching look into the world of diverse cuisine culture in Louisiana, providing multiple cooking lessons using locally sourced products.

The school is housed in an interesting location in the French Quarter: a warehouse dating back to the 1800s, once used for molasses.

Classes are taught by Creole and Cajun chefs, cooks, and experts who have plenty to teach their students about culinary history, the secret to delicious local foods, and fascinating trivia and facts.

Address: 524 St Louis St, New Orleans, LA 70130, United States

63. Where Y’Art Gallery

Where Y'Art

Where Y’Art

With a fun, punny name and a unique concept, the Where Y’Art Gallery shows off some of the best art from New Orleans, Louisiana, situated in galleries scattered throughout the city.

As a satellite and online gallery, it showcases works from over a hundred different local artists from many backgrounds and trades.

The Where Y’Art Gallery has jewelry, paintings, crafts, sculptures, and more.

You can check out one of these points of interest in person or simply head online to gain a ton of information about each individual work of art and its artist.

If you’re interested in purchasing a piece, you’ll be able to connect with artists part of the gallery project!

Address: 1901 Royal St, New Orleans, LA 70117, United States

64. New Orleans Train Garden

New Orleans Train Garden

Page Light Studios / Shutterstock

For train aficionados, visiting the New Orleans Train Garden is one of the best activities to while away your time in Louisiana.

Right in the center of City Park, the garden is as whimsical and charming as it is evocative of history.

It is a historic location, with track running nearly a quarter of a mile as a group of scaled-down freight trains and streetcars runs through it, reminiscent of the very same they did indeed run a hundred or so years ago.

The trains ride over an expansive landscape created specially by a brilliant artist named Paul Busse, a man whose portfolio is filled with stunning garden scenes filled with enticing miniatures and magical touches, each one made only with natural materials.

As you walk around the gardens, you’ll get to read little snippets of information about certain places and locations, each one a stop for the miniature train.

Address: 5 Victory Ave, New Orleans, LA 70119, United States

65. Fort Proctor

Fort Proctor

EchoFree / Shutterstock

A visit to Fort Proctor in Louisiana’s Bernard Parish feels like a trip to a long-lost kingdom.

The fort was built before the Civil War in order to protect the waters around New Orleans, a crucial and strategic defensive decision.

Despite its promising purpose, Fort Proctor wound up never seeing a day of use, as a hurricane damaged it.

Repairs were needed, but at this time, the Civil War dropped in full force, meaning no one had the time to give the base any effort or attention.

When resources could finally be given to Fort Proctor, it was no longer needed and was thus abandoned.

Originally, the fort stood strong on a bit of land near Chalmette, but that has now changed, as the coast erodes further and further.

Now, Fort Proctor rises out of Lake Borgne and can only be accessed by boat or kayak.

Though not a stereotypically “fun” spot, Fort Proctor is still one of the coolest places to visit in New Orleans – or, rather, near it.

You’ll be able to view the foundation of the base below the water, iron beams collapsed, and a sort of poetic wonder from marine life slowly claiming the fort’s remnants.

Address: Mouth of Bayou Yscloskey, St Bernard, LA 70085, United States

66. House of Broel

House of Broel

House of Broel

The House of Broel resembles a dollhouse in many ways.

A Victorian-style mansion with old south design and distinct luxurious charm, it is now used for weddings, as a museum, and also to host frog farm exhibits.

With so many things under its belt, it’s hard to imagine that the House of Broel isn’t among the main attractions of New Orleans.

The house is named after Bonnie Broel, an ordained minister, a Polish Countess, and the Dollhouse Museum curator.

The first floor of the mansion is often used for weddings and similar types of events.

The second floor holds a private collection of dollhouses, each one built to scale and detailed impressively.

There are over 60 of them, some spanning 10 feet tall!

This is known as the Dollhouse Museum and it’s one of the best places in all of New Orleans to go to for this type of exhibit.

This same floor also has a frog farming exhibit.

This seems out of place until you realize Broel is the daughter of the Louisiana Frog Farm founder.

Here, you can view various frog-themed things as well as frog leg cans dating back to older times.

Address: 2220 St Charles Ave, New Orleans, LA 70130, United States

67. The Running of the Bulls

Have you ever heard of Encierro?

It’s basically known as The Running of the Bulls and is local to Pamplona.

San Fermin hosts what is essentially New Orleans’ – or Nueva Orleans’ – take on this event, as a sort of fun and humorous homage paid right here in Louisiana.

The Running of the Bulls in New Orleans involves thousands of runners, registered and dressed in red scarves and white shirts.

Meanwhile, skaters from the local women’s roller-derby team act as “bulls”, dressed with bull horn headwear as they attempt to whack the runners with plastic bats.

After this event, which a top proceeding that is something you shouldn’t miss if you’re in town at the right time, there is a big party thrown on the streets called La Fiesta de Pantalones, where you wear white pants and have a great time.

68. Doullut Steamboat Houses

Doullut Steamboat Houses

Elliott Cowand Jr / Shutterstock

Plenty of areas in New Orleans, Louisiana, have unique and interesting types of architecture.

If you’re just wandering around New Orleans for the purpose of sightseeing and you’re a fan of building design, then some of the coolest houses to walk by are the Doullut Steamboat Houses.

These homes were all built between the years 1905 and 1913 by – you guessed it – a steamboat captain, with the help of his son.

That’s probably why they were all built to resemble steamboats, with chimneys in the form of smoke snakes.

Thanks to their ceramic make, these houses completely survived Hurricane Katrina, though most of their neighborhood was sadly destroyed.

Address: 400 Egania St, New Orleans, LA 70117, United States

69. Musical Legends Park

Musical Legends Park

Andriy Blokhin / Shutterstock

Bourbon Street is a little overdone as a New Orleans tourist go-to, but some must-see gems that are worth visiting remain.

One of them is the Musical Legends Park, which is a small park showcasing the musical and cultural background of New Orleans, Louisiana, teeming with a rich heritage.

Throughout the park, there are life-sized, intricately made statues in bronze of many famous local musicians.

This includes greats like Chris Ownes, Louis Prima, Irma Thomas, Al Hirt, Fats Domino. Ronnie Cole, Pete Fountain, Allen Toussaint, and more.

The center of the park houses Pete’s Wishing Well Fountain, which collects money to be donated to a school for band equipment funds.

For something a little more fun, you can also tune in to the Live Jazz Music events, which play from 10 in the morning all the way till the park closes.

Chairs with umbrellas and tables are available for you if you’d like to listen in, and there’s a cafe that serves snacks, drinks, and other similar consumables.

Address: 311 Bourbon St, New Orleans, LA 70130, United States

70. General Laundry Building

If you’re looking for what to do in New Orleans, Louisiana, that’s a bit unusual but still fun and interesting, you’ll want to head to the General Laundry Building.

It’s largely abandoned, but vivid remnants of colors that once coated the now decrepit, vine-tangled, graffiti-covered exterior are more than enough to tell a tale of the intricate Art Deco design that once made the General Laundry Building beautiful.

The building was completed in the 1930s and was not used just as a laundromat, but also for monthly fashion shows of an opulent variety.

Clothes, homespun and exotic, would be paraded by models while audience members sipped champagne.

Sadly, when the modern washing machine was invented, the building fell out of business and was sold in 1945.

The building has survived many demolition plans that luckily fell apart, and it is now one of the few New Orleans spots on the National Register of Historic Places.

Sadly, it doesn’t seem like the building will remain up for long, so visit it while you have the chance!

Address: 2544 St Peter St, New Orleans, LA 70119, United States

Start Planning Your Trip To New Orleans

New Orleans is absolutely packed with fun and exciting sites and places to see, especially for first-time visitors.

Hopefully, our little vacation guide has given you some great ideas for what to see in this exciting city-parish of Louisiana, whether you’re heading over today, this weekend, or sometime further into the future.

Before you plan a trip, check out our travel hacks, enjoy your visit to New Orleans, and check out the top spots for a fun time!