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New Orleans - Things to See and Do

The Big Easy... NOLA…The Deep South; with a profound history of influences from Europe, the Caribbean, Latin America and Africa, New Orleans is a vibrant fusion of culture, food and music.

Famed for its French Creole architecture, gumbo, jazz clubs and annual Mardi Gras celebrations, the city is one of America's most culturally and historically rich destinations.

Despite Hurricane Katarina’s deadly impact on the city in 2005, attractions like Bourbon Street, the French Quarter and good ol’ southern hospitality still lure millions of visitors to New Orleans every year. As tourism is the city's lifeblood, New Orleans always puts on a great show.

New Orleans Information

Population: Approx. 485,000
Time Zone: GMT -6
Languages: English (official), Spanish, Native American
Currency: American Dollar (USD)
Currency Exchange: Purchase your USD cash and travellers cheques before you leave Australia.

New Orleans Climate

New Orleans has a humid subtropical climate, with short, mild winters and hot, humid summers. Winter temperatures sit between 6°C and 17°C; while summer experiences temperatures between 23°C and 33°C.

Summer is the city’s wettest season. Snowfall is rare. Hurricanes pose a severe threat to the area, as it is reported to be the nation's most vulnerable city.

New Orleans Airport

Name: Louis Armstrong New Orleans International Airport (MSY)
Car Rental: Great choice of hire cars at Mates’ Rates from our car suppliers
Transfers: Shuttle service is available from the airport to the hotels in the CBD. Ticket booths are located on the lower level in the baggage claim area. Airport Shuttle New Orleans.
Taxi: Pick-up is on the lower level, outside the baggage claim area.



Unique local delicacies, southern hospitality and a love for all things fried place New Orleans at the top of most foodies’ lists.

Surrounded by big and bountiful bodies of water, New Orleans is famous for its tasty seafood. Crawfish season starts in December and lasts through to May. Cajun Claws is a local’s favourite, serving up quality, sizable crustaceans. The fried soft-shell bugs at K-Paul's are renowned throughout Louisiana. Experience crawfish like a local, stage a crawfish boil – Big Fisherman is the go to for bugs on the go.

Fished from the Gulf of Mexico, just kilometres away, Oysters are also a much-loved local delicacy. Swing by Uglesich for the briniest and sweetest oysters on the half shell. Call into family-owned institution Casamento's for stewed and fried oysters. Or check out the master shuckers at Pascal's Manale for fresh, unadulterated molluscs.

A trip to the south isn’t complete without a feast of soul food. For decades, Dooky Chase's has been the place to go for authentic black Creole dishes. Praline Connection offers straight-from-mum’s-kitchen type food, served by waiters dressed like the Blues’ Brothers. While Cochon on Tchoupitoulas Street captures the true essence of southern cooking with simple meals made from local produce.

Representing soul food at its finest, gumbo is a New Orleans time-honoured tradition. Galatoire’s in The French Quarter serves traditional and tasteful seafood gumbo. Royal House Oyster Bar does a flavoursome chicken and sausage gumbo. Whilst Dooky Chase’s is legendary for its classic gumbo –which brims with crab, shrimp, chicken, sausage, ham and veal brisket.

Like the city’s architecture, New Orleans food is also heavily influenced by the French. For desert, breakfast, afternoon tea, or just a snack, swing by Cafe du Monde’s, where the second’s old, piping hot beignets are world famous.


New Orleans’ status as a major American tourism hub has seen the city attract first-rate retailers and world-class shopping opportunities.

A Mecca for the thrifty and affluent alike, Magazine Street is a six-mile-long thoroughfare, featuring some of the best antique stores, art galleries, craft shops and boutiques in the city. Antiques and artwork are the street’s biggest drawcards, alluring pickers and fans from around the world.

For the real New Orleans experience Royal Street is a must visit. Located in French Quarter, Royal Street is a polished and stylish epicentre of local artistic culture. Royal Street comes alive with a mix of antique shops and boutiques, fine jewellery stores, art galleries and world-class restaurants and hotels.

Jax Brewery, a converted brewery, is a French Quarter landmark. Located over several floors, dozens of shops – including ladies ready-to-wear, New Orleans art and apparel, team sports wear and jewellery stores – highlight distinct New Orleans flavours as well as national retailers.

To experience the upscale side of New Orleans, head along to The Shops at Canal Place. Canal Place is home to many exclusive stores, featuring ritzy clothing and home items.

New Orleanians are very proud and devoted to their city and its varied ethnic and cultural facets. This love can be seen reflected in the city’s retail scene – where local jewellery and clothing display city icons (such as the fleur-de-lis), Mardi Gras and Hurricane Katrina references, in tribute to New Orleans’ world-class food, culture and history.