A Visitor’s Guide to New Orleans Neighborhoods

French Quarter – be sure to pay a visit to the oldest and most famous part of New Orleans, but don’t limit yourself to just this area. The raucous Bourbon Street, with its drunken revelry and debauchery, is the center of the tourist action. Toward the river is Jackson Square, the St. Louis Cathedral, and Cafe du Monde. Expolre the streets and you will also find an abundance of restaurants, bars, music venues, museums and antique shops.

Central Business District – “Downtown” in New Orleans once meant the area of town downstream from the French Quarter instead of the Central Business District. Today, New Orlean’s Central Business District is home to skyscrapers, large hotels, and the Superdome. The Warehouse District, also known as the Arts District, lies between the Superdome and the River and is centered along Julia and Camp Streets. There are many museums and art galleries here, including the the National World War II Museum. Some good restaurants and bars are also in the area.

Faubourg Marigny – located just downriver from the French Quarter, the area, along with the even funkier Bywater neighborhood farther downriver, are hip and bohemian while not forgetting their New Orleans heritage – they are kind of like the French Quarter before it became touristy and alcohol-fueled. There’s great live music along Frenchmen Street, as well coffee shops, cafes, and Creole cottages turned into bed and breakfasts.

Garden District – this elegant historical district features a well-preserved collection of antebellum mansions, lush gardens, and wide streets shaded by canopies of live oaks. The main thoroughfare, St. Charles Avenue, boasts its famous streetcar line, and Magazine Street offers antiques, art galleries, clothing boutiques, and quaint cafes and cozy restaurants. The historic Lafayette Cemetery #1 and the Commander’s Palace restaurant can be found near the intersection of Washington Avenue and Prytania Street. A few celebrities, including Anne Rice, Nicholas Cage, and Sandra Bullock, live in the Garden District. On the far side of the Garden District lies New Orleans’ famous Audubon Park and the University District, which includes Tulane University and Loyola University New Orleans.

Treme – despite its rich Créole and African American history, this neighborhood that begins across Rampart Street from the French Quarter is often overlooked by tourists. It’s one of the oldest neighborhoods in the city, and it’s got much to offer. The 32-acre Armstrong Park includes the legendary Congo Square, where slaves and free people of color used to gather on Sundays to drum, dance and trade. Historic St. Louis Cemetery #1, created in 1789, is located at Basin Street and St. Louis Street. North of Treme toward Lake Pontchartrain are the New Orleans Museum of Art and City Park, and every April, the New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival is held at the Fair Grounds Race Course.

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