Endless history, alluring landmarks, friendly people, amazing music, great food, and some of the biggest parties on the planet. Yes — we’re talking about New Orleans.
The Big Easy, as it’s often called, is a place where time stands still and music and art are everywhere. To experience it in all its glory, without the unbearable heat, consider booking your trip for this winter.
Whether you want to experience the week-long party of Mardi Gras or find the hidden charms of the city’s lesser visited areas, you’ll find New Orleans is the perfect winter getaway this year.
Below are 5 reasons why New Orleans is the place to be this winter:
Experience Mardi Gras
Mardi Gras is a special celebration for the Fat Tuesday holiday. Although some historians say it actually started in nearby Mobile, Alabama, nowhere else celebrates it quite like New Orleans.
This five-day festival begins well before the official start date. Yet when it ends on Tuesday, the city goes quiet. Experiencing the incredible energy and celebrations the night before and waking up to calmness on the streets is one of the most unique travel experiences you can have.
If you come to New Orleans during Mardi Gras, you’ll experience endless live music, parades, late-night parties, and calmer family-friendly events outside of Bourbon Street’s famous debauchery.
The entire city sports the traditional green, purple, and gold colors, creating an unforgettable sea of color, especially while decorating the city’s incredible architecture.
Green symbolizes faith, gold for power, and purple for justice. Together, they symbolize a very good time.
In 2024, the party will start on Friday, February 9 and run until Tuesday, February 13. Don’t forget to book your accommodation early and expect crowds during your stay.
Its Unique Architecture, Food, And Culture Is Like Nowhere Else
New Orleans was first inhabited by indigenous tribes, then the French, then the Spanish, and eventually the United States. It’s been shaped by colonialism, the evil legacy of slavery, and the industries of the United States.
These historical events and diverse cultures shaped the city into what it is today. The city will transport you back in time while you walk around admiring its architecture.
What’s sometimes more impressive than its architecture? It’s food, of course. The city’s dishes evolved from a mixture of Indigenous, African, and European cooking traditions and ingredients to make something unique and famously delicious.
Non-stop Music And Nightlife
Music flows through the streets in New Orleans. It’s the birthplace of American jazz and has live music venues around almost every corner.
You’ll find parades of marching bands during funeral processions, street performers performing every style of music imaginable, and packed bars and speakeasies filled with people letting loose.
For any newbie to the city, a visit to the famous French Quarter is a must. Establishments such as Preservation Hall, Toulouse Theatre, and the House of Blues are all places where you can party all night and see the best live music of your life.
This year, the city’s popular Jewel of the South bar was added to The World’s 50 Best Bars list. From the famous Sazerac cocktails that blend French Absinthe with bourbon to the striking interior, this New Orleans watering hole is something special.
You’re Connected To Anywhere In The USA and Canada
There are great deals and plenty of flights that connect New Orleans with other cities in North America. Breeze Airways just added over a dozen new direct routes between cities such as Los Angeles and Tampa this year, and the prices are still low.
However, the city is not just connected by air. You can always make a memorable road trip out of your trip to the Big Easy. Several freeways, including I-10 and I-55, connect the city to other major cities around the country.
If you’re traveling to a city known for its unique charm, why not take a train? Several cities, including Chicago, LA, New York, and soon Mobile, will be connected to New Orleans by rail.
Let’s face it: New Orleans can be hot and uncomfortable. The high humidity and scorching heat of summer and much of fall and spring make most people’s itineraries include time inside under the air conditioner.
However, in winter, you’ll be able to wander the streets throughout the day with pleasant temperatures, often between 50° and 65° Fahrenheit. You may even see snowfall in the city, although it’s rare.
Winter is also the time when the North Atlantic calms down, and the threat from tropical storms goes away. New Orleans has been hit by destructive hurricanes throughout its history, the last major hurricane being 2005’s devastating Hurricane Katrina.
Besides the slight chance of brief snowfalls and morning frost, winter is the perfect time to experience the city without getting exhausted by the heat. You’ll be able to party longer, see more sights, and spend more time talking to locals and other travelers.
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This article originally appeared on TravelOffPath.com