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New Orleans is a city like no other where you can transport yourself to a place rich in history, culture and arts. And what better time to visit than now? 2018 marks the 300th Anniversary of the city. Packed with events, programs and celebrations, the Tricentennial is the ideal year to discover this eclectic gem. Whether you go with the family or take a weekend trip with your hubby, New Orleans sets a magical scene for memories you’ll never forget! Want to know more? Here’s a brief background and tips on what to do and when to visit The Big Easy.
Jean-Baptiste Le Moyne, Sieur de Bienville founded New Orleans in the mouth of the Mississippi River in 1718. The French ruled the city until 1763, when it was taken over by the Spanish. The French regained control in 1803, before selling it to the United States in the Louisiana Purchase. These influences play a role in the city’s architecture that is still very present in the city today. The architecture is a unique blend of Spanish, Creole and American styles together for an enchanting setting. The walled courtyards set the scene for French Quarter parties, rooted from the Spanish influence. From the elaborate ironwork to dreamy balconies and creole cottages, the French Quarter’s architecture is as rich in history as it is iconic.
The French Quarter sits on the highest grounds of New Orleans and serves as the city’s cultural hub. In addition to the eclectic architecture, the French Quarter is home to several historic houses and small museums. Take a stroll or carriage ride through Jackson Square, an area where artists go to display and share their work featured in numerous movies and on television. Whether you prefer fine dining or casual local eats, the French Quarter offers something for every taste, rich in Creole and Cajun cuisine.
February is a popular time of year to visit New Orleans since the streets are packed for the Mardi Gras Celebration! Mardi Gras spans from King’s Day on January 6th, until Fat Tuesday on February 13, 2018. Parades take on the streets, gleaming the carnival colors - gold, green and purple - with decorations hanging high and low. Track the parades in real time with the Parade Tracker, so you’ll never miss a beat! It’s a busy time of year, so if you’re interested in checking out the NOLA hot spots, be sure to book now.
Tips for Travel: bring comfortable walking shoes, as you will be walking non-stop in NOLA. Give yourself the opportunity to sit down whenever you can - you’ll need the rest!
If you plan to spend most of your time in the French Quarter, book a hotel as close to the neighborhood as possible. This will save your tired feet blocks of unnecessary walking. Check out offers available to AARP members before booking to see if your stay can qualify for any deals or discounts, here. Plan your travel ahead for the best rates, and if you are planning on booking a flight or renting a car, check out the travel discounts page on aarpadvantages.com to find out where you can save!
As the locals like to say, “Laissez les bon temps rouler!” or “Let the good times roll.”
These articles present general information and are for informational purposes only. They are not a substitute for legal, financial, medical, or other professional advice.