[Updated May 2017]
I was there during Collision and Jazz Fest, so it was a nightmare to find accommodation. Everything was sold out or really expensive, so I posted in the Couchsurfing New Orleans Facebook group asking if anyone had a spare room for rent, et viola. It was in my shortlisted neighbourhood of Marigny, too! Marigny and Bywater were recommended to me, and I’d recommend them as well. The French Quarter is really touristy. Marigny is a really cool area conveniently located right by the French Quarter (Treme is as well), and Bywater is a little further.
I loved getting around by bicycle, and took the occasional Uber or bus. Many (both locals and past-visitors) cautioned me to watch out in Nola, so I definitely felt safer on a bike than on foot, especially come dark, in less crowded places. Also be sure to lock your bike indoors overnight.
I was in New Orleans for 2 weeks. I arrived a week ahead of the Collision conference and worked out of The Warehouse in Bywater. Conveniently, they had a 5-day trial membership for $50. There was also a Freelance Friday event (free monthly coworking meetup) which I joined for post-coworking drinks.
- Cafe Du Monde for the most amazing beignets. I had these icing sugar-coated “donuts” every other day 😬 And even ran into Reddit’s Alexis Ohanian there one time!
- Loretta’s Authentic Pralines is an institution but I found them waay too sweet on their own.
- Seafood! I had oysters and alligator bites at Felix’s. Acme is another popular spot.
- Po’boy, a Louisiana sandwich
- Cajun-Creole food e.g. catfish
- Bars (read: jazz!) on Bourbon St and Frenchmen St. Check WWOZ to find out who’s playing where.
- A swamp tour! Unfortunately, mine was canceled because of a storm.
- Jazz in The Park, Thursdays @ Louis Armstrong Park. On Sundays they have an African drum circle
- Wednesday at The Square @ Lafayette Square
- Garden District tour. I did mine self-guided following this map.
- Jazz, jazz, jazz! There are excellent acts everywhere – from on the street to cafes in the day to bars at night.