By Expedia, on February 4, 2019

How to spend a weekend in New Orleans

The city motto of New Orleans is “Laissez les bon temps rouler,” which translates to “let the good times roll.” If you only have one weekend in New Orleans, this guide will show you what to do, where to stay and what to see for a magical weekend.

Friday evening

It’s Friday in New Orleans, and your 72 hours in New Orleans have begun. Start by checking into the Hotel Mazarin, a French-inspired luxury hotel that boasts an elegant courtyard and European foundation. You could also try the Catahoula Hotel, an award-winning boutique hotel with patio and rooftop bars to start your night off right.

hotel mazarin new orleans
Hotel Mazarin, New Orleans, Trover Photo by Bob Friedilieb

For dinner, stop by the Café Degas for some French classics, such as mussels and frites, escargot, and soft-shell crab. With a pecan tree growing through the center of the restaurant, this café is a little slice of classic New Orleans atmosphere.

After dinner, enjoy an electrifying Friday night in New Orleans at the Blue Nile, the city’s premier live music venue. This intimate location is located in the heart of historic Frenchmen Street and has hosted some of the best funk, blues, soul, and brass shows from local, national, and international artists.

Saturday morning

Saturday morning in New Orleans means you still have an exhilarating 48 hours in New Orleans ahead of you. Begin your morning with Mammoth Espresso, an independent coffee shop with delicious, mouth-watering pastries, gourmet coffee, and an authentic New Orleans ambiance.

After enjoying your breakfast, take a stroll through New Orleans’ picturesque French Quarter. This vibrant location is the city’s historic heart, famous for its colorful buildings with cast-iron balconies that give you a glimpse of the past. You’ll also find boutiques and cafés along the way, so be sure to stop in.

french quarter new orleans
French Quarter, New Orleans, Trover Photo by Barb

The French Market is a quieter part of the French Quarter. This European-style flea market is sure to provide you with some unique finds to remember your trip, especially if you visit Keil’s Antiques Inc. for New Orleans’ best selection of antiques.

Top off your morning in New Orleans at Marjie’s Grill and enjoy delectable Mississippi-delta fare seafood with an Asian twist. A Southern feast inspired by the Gulf and Southeast Asia, you’ll never experience anything quite like this.

Saturday evening

Saturday night in New Orleans is when things really heat up. After lunch, take a leisurely ride down the Mississippi River on the Natchez, New Orleans’ only authentic steamboat. Take in all the sights of the historic city while experiencing America’s great steamboat tradition.

Natchez Steamboat
Natchez Steamboat, New Orleans, Trover Photo by Sarah

When it’s time for dinner, head to Adolfo’s to enjoy a throwback to classic Creole cuisine. After all, no trip to New Orleans would be complete without its signature fare, enjoyed in an intimate setting above the hustle and bustle of Frenchmen Street.

Finish the night out with an energetic jazz show at the Davenport Lounge. Named for headliner Jeremy Davenport, one of the city’s most renowned musicians, this restaurant and lounge is a jazz institution of the city. Kick back, sip on some hand-crafted cocktails, and enjoy the music that put New Orleans on the map.

Sunday morning

With only 24 hours in New Orleans left, expect to have a busy morning in New Orleans. Start your day a little late with brunch at Satsuma, a classic brunch café that offers some of the most delicious sandwiches in town.

After brunch, take a stroll through New Orleans’ world-famous cemeteries and mausoleums to take in a little history. With the need to put loved ones to rest in above-ground chambers, the cemeteries in New Orleans boast both historic significance and haunting beauty. Check out the “Cities of the Dead,” the final resting place of voodoo queen Marie Laveau, musician Al Hirt, and Civil War general P.G.T. Beauregard.

new orleans cemeteries
New Orleans Cemetery, Trover Photo by Patricia Knorr

When it’s time for lunch, finish off your morning in New Orleans at the Parkway Bakery and Tavern. Established in 1911, Parkway boasts a 100-year tradition of comfort and hospitality, as well as being known for the best classic-style po’boys in the city.

Parkway Bakery and Tavern
Parkway Bakery and Tavern, New Orleans, Trover Photo by Dian Brannen

Sunday evening

As the day winds down, get ready for your Sunday night in New Orleans. Finish out the day – and the weekend – at Preservation Hall, one of New Orleans’ musical icons, before catching a flight out of the city.

Founded in 1961, Preservation Hall was designed to honor one of America’s truest art forms – Traditional New Orleans Jazz. It operates as a music venue, a touring band, and a non-profit organization, forming a cornerstone of New Orleans music and culture in the heart of the French Quarter.

Preservation Hall
Preservation Hall, New Orleans, Trover Photo by Karenza Thomas

Whether you came to New Orleans to soak up the history, indulge in some traditional cuisine, or kick back to some jazz, this fun-filled itinerary gives you a little bit of everything. Experience it for yourself by booking a hotel in New Orleans, and get ready for a weekend to remember.

Experience it yourself by booking a hotel in New Orleans, and get ready for a weekend to remember.

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