New Orleans is an intimate sensory experience. To really get to know New Orleans, you must see, smell, hear, taste, and touch her. Gaze up at her lace filigree ironwork balconies and savor yet another delight of America’s most visually intriguing city. The City offers a cornucopia of attractions and tours to enliven your spirit and unveil her mysterious nuances.
Audubon Aquarium of the Americas
Visit one of the nation's top aquariums! Located on the banks of the Mississippi River adjacent to the French Quarter, the Aquarium of the Americas will take you on a journey from the Caribbean Sea to the muddy Mississippi and the Gulf of Mexico. Also featuring the Amazon Rainforest, Changing Exhibits Gallery (with something new every year!), Seahorses Gallery and the country's largest collection of jellyfish. You'll delight at watching penguins and sea otters play, meet a shark up close, and explore the wonders of the sea! Or, reach out and feed an exotic bird at the Aquarium’s hands-on Parakeet Pointe!
At the corner of Canal Street and the River
Entergy Giant Screen Theatre
Entergy IMAX® Theatre is home to the "Largest IMAX® screen in the Gulf South." Located next door to the Aquarium, Entergy IMAX® Theatre combines the visual power of a five-and-a-half story screen with dynamic sound to put you in the middle of the action. Explore the wonders of nature through a variety of IMAX® features! One of the favorite films at this theater is Hurricane on the Bayou, Executive Produced by Audubon Nature Institute. This award-winning film weaves together rollicking local music, dramatic views of southeast Louisiana, and the stunning images of Hurricane Katrina’s effects into an uplifting story about steps underway to sustain Louisiana’s vanishing wetlands.
For tickets and show times call (504) 581-IMAX (4629)
At the corner of Canal Street and the River
(504) 581-IMAX (4629)
The Escape Game
The Escape Game is America’s top-rated escape room on TripAdvisor! You may be used to simple lock-and-key puzzles but escape rooms have evolved and these 60-minute adventures are unlike anything else. If you’re going to escape, your team will have to work together to search the room, uncover clues and overcome challenges. 233 North Peters Street, New Orleans, LA 70130
Located in historic Uptown New Orleans Audubon Zoo offers an exotic mix of animals from around the globe, engaging educational programs, hands-on animal encounters, and lush gardens. Unique natural habitat exhibits—such as the award-winning Louisiana Swamp and Jaguar Jungle—showcase the relationship between people and nature. Don't miss the sea lion and elephant presentations; highly endangered whooping cranes, Amur leopards and orangutans; white tigers Rex and Zulu; and mysterious white alligators. Audubon Zoo is often ranked among the country’s best for innovation and entertainment value!
6500 Magazine St.
Audubon Butterfly Garden and Insectarium
Audubon Insectarium is located in the U.S. Custom House on Canal Street on the edge of the French Quarter and one block from the Mississippi River and Aquarium of the Americas. Here you and your children will be delighted to use all five senses of your senses as you explore North America’s largest museum devoted to insects and their relatives. Join the active audience of an awards show for bugs, by bugs and be captivated by thousands of butterflies in an Asian garden!
423 Canal St.
Mardi Gras World
Mardi Gras World is literally the place where Mardi Gras magic is made. And here you will see the world-renowned masters of Carnival sculpture and float building at work in their shops and walk among towering figures of fantasy. Mardi Gras World is open 7 days a week from 9:30 AM to 4:30 PM with tours every 30 minutes. Located on the Mississippi River, just past the Convention Center.
1380 Port of New Orleans Place
The National WWII Museum
The National WWII Museum tells the story of the American Experience in the war that changed the world™, and there are hundreds of stories just waiting to be told. This must-see attraction transports you to a time when victory hung in the balance. Guaranteed to move and educate, The National WWII Museum features a 4D cinematic experience, interactive exhibits, soaring aircraft, personal histories and more. Guests can also enjoy on-site dining at The American Sector restaurant and take a step back in time in BB’s Stage Door Canteen, a 1940s-style entertainment venue that showcases the music and performers of the war years with weekly matinees and weekend shows.
945 Magazine St.
The Pitot House
Located directly on Bayou St. John in Mid-City, was built in 1799 and is the only example of a Creole Colonial-style country home open to the public in the city of New Orleans. The ground floor of the house features brick floors, white plaster walls, and an exposed wood beam ceiling. The upstairs portion of the house has wide wood plank flooring, colorful Creole/ Caribbean influenced paint colors and carved wood mantels. The second floor has been furnished with Louisiana and American antiques that date from the early 1800s through the mid-nineteenth century.
1440 Moss Street
A visit to New Orleans’ historic French Quarter would not be complete without a stop at Jackson Square, which is where you will find the Cabildo. This elegant Spanish colonial building neighbors St. Louis Cathedral and houses many rare artifacts of America’s history.
Among them is Napoleon’s death mask, one of only four in existence. It was made from a mold crafted by Dr. Francesco Antommarchi, who was one of Napoleon Bonaparte’s physicians at the time of his death.
Using a variety of artifacts, images and documents, the exihibition From "Dirty Shirts" to Buccaneers: The Battle of New Orleans in American Culture opens with an exploration of the battle’s history, emphasizing the diversity of its participants, and closes with an investigation of how the battle has been remembered, commemorated and represented.
An 1839 self-portrait by Julien Hudson, is also on display. A free man of color, he was one of many during the antebellum period who worked as professional artists, writers and musicians in New Orleans.
701 Chartres Street | New Orleans, 70116
Ogden Mueum of Southrn Art
Located in the vibrant Warehouse Arts District of downtown New Orleans, Louisiana, the Ogden Museum of Southern Art holds the largest and most comprehensive collection of Southern art and is recognized for its original exhibitions, public events, and educational programs which examine the development of visual art alongside Southern traditions of music, literature, and culinary heritage to provide a comprehensive story of the South. Established in 1999, the Museum welcomes close to 100,000 visitors annually, and attracts diverse audiences through its broad range of programming including exhibitions, lectures, film screenings, and concerts which are all part of its mission to broaden the knowledge, understanding, interpretation, and appreciation of the visual arts and culture of the American South. It is the first museum in Louisiana to be designated an Affiliate of the Smithsonian Institution.
925 Camp Street
Southern Food & Beverage Museum
Located in a 19th century market just 3 blocks off the St. Charles streetcar line, the Southern Food & Beverage Museum (SoFAB) is a fun introduction to the serious business of eating in New Orleans and the food of the American south in general. With a visit to SoFAB the visitor will see La Galerie de l'Absinthe, the Museum of the American Cocktail and can visit the Gumbo Garden. This is a unique experience not available anywhere else.
Taking a cooking class at the Southern Food & Beverage Museum and have lunch and a tour. The classes not only cover the basics of familiar Louisiana dishes, but also are steeped in the history and culture of this place. Check the website for details and schedule.
New Orleans Museum of Art and Sculpture Garden:
One Collins C. Diboll Circle, City Park
The New Orleans Museum of Art is an exquisite pearl wrapped inside City Park’s gorgeous natural landscape. The city’s oldest fine arts institution contains a permanent collection with more than 40,000 objects and is noted for its extraordinary strengths in French and American art, as well as photography, glass, and Japanese works.
There is a gift shop and Cafe NOMA in the museum. You can enter the museum from the side entrance if you'd like to only have lunch and not tour the museum. See www.CafeNOMA.com for restaurant details.
Outside NOMA, the five-acre Sydney and Walda Besthoff Sculpture Garden holds more than 60 sculptures collectively valued at $25 million. These incredible works of art are nestled along meandering footpaths, reflecting lagoons, and 200-year-old live oaks inside the garden.
751 Chartres Street | New Orleans, 70116
(504) 568-6968 | (800) 568-6968
The Presbytère was designed in 1791 to match the Cabildo, alongside St. Louis Cathedral in the French Quarter. It stands today as a beautiful reminder of both Louisiana’s singular past and its vibrant present.
The Presbytère, originally called Casa Curial or “Ecclesiastical House,” was built on the site of the residence, or presbytère, of the Capuchin monks. The building was used for commercial purposes until 1834 when it became a courthouse. In 1911, it became part of the Louisiana State Museum.
The Presbytère’s two permanent exhibits tell two sides of the ongoing Louisiana story—one of celebration and one of resilience.
Enjoy tree-lined Esplanade Avenue and discover the story of the French Creoles, including Edgar Degas and his maternal family. Hosted by the Great-Grand nieces of the artist himself, this is considered by many to be the most historically accurate tour in New Orleans. The Tour includes exploring both houses and viewing the award winning film "Degas in New Orleans, a Creole Sojourn".
Also included is the Creole Neighborhood of Edgar Degas Walking Tour which explores references to the neighborhood included in Degas' New Orleans letters. The price of the tour is $29 per person. Total time for the tour is 2 hours and 15 minutes. Tour times are 10:30 and 1:45.
2306 Esplanade Avenue | New Orleans, LA 70119