A New Orleans Family Vacation.
Published: May 31, 2017
By: Carol Muse Evans
It’s not often thought of as the most family friendly destination in the southeast, but there’s a lot of great fun to be had in New Orleans with kids of all ages. You just have to do a little research in advance.
When you think of the French Quarter, one of the most famous parts of New Orleans, you don’t necessarily think “kids.” However, The French Quarter has great architecture, interesting shopping, horse-drawn carriages for a fun ride through the area, music galore, art, open air markets, great food and more. There’s even a tour of the area for kids called the French QuarTour Kids (www.frenchquarterkidstours.com), great for kids 7 and up, and even tweens and teens.
Don’t miss the great Audubon Aquarium of the Americas (http://audubonnatureinstitute.org/aquarium). This popular attraction is right in the middle of everything and indoors, so perfect if you have a rainy or super-hot day. Also, the Audubon Zoo is a fun trek, whether it’s for a few hours or the day. It recently installed a new elephant sculpture (http://audubonnatureinstitute.org/zoo). The Audubon Insectarium, right by the Aquarium, is a fascinating look at the world of insects and the largest museum dedicated to insects in the country (http://audubonnatureinstitute.org/aquarium).
A MUST if you are traveling with older children, say age 12 and older, depending on their penchant for the spooky, is a Haunted French Quarter Ghost tour. Ours was Historic New Orleans Tours, and it’s not only a spooky view of the French Quarter, but often a magnificent history lesson brought to life, intertwined with some of the current rich and famous. If you love this, consider a French Quarter Walking Tour too (www.tourneworleans.com/).
NOLA is famous for Mardi Gras, and you can still experience the fun of Mardi Gras any time at Blaine Kern’s Mardi Gras World, an attraction great for kids of all ages (www.mardigrasworld.com). Larger-than-life floats and so much color, fun and history are found here. Maybe you can even get some beads.
Carol Muse Evans is publisher and editor of Birmingham Parent and last went to New Orleans in September 2016.
WHERE TO STAY:
Maison DePuy Hotel
Right in the middle of the French Quarter and within walking distance to everything (or a short taxi or Uber, if needed for the young ones), this historic hotel probably has many tales to tell.
UPCOMING GREAT EVENTS:
- June 3-4 – Oysterfest, http://nolaoysterfest.org
- 4th of July Fireworks – crowds gather in Spanish Plaza to enjoy local food vendors and a firework show
- Even more at www.neworleansonline.com/calendar
MORE TO SEE:
- Carousel Gardens, a small amusement park in New Orleans City Park
- Entergy INMAX Theatre
- Garden District
- Jackson Square
- Louisiana Children’s Museum
- St. Louis Cathedral
- New Orleans Swamp Tours
For more information visit www.neworleansonline.com