A Guide to New Orleans for Families

A Guide to New Orleans for Families

A child tries on a Mardi Gras mask in New Orleans. (photo by Chris Granger via New Orleans & Company)

While New Orleans has a reputation for its incredible nightlife and adult-specific offerings, it’s also a great destination for families with children of all ages.

From taking a swamp tour to connect with local Louisiana nature to picnicking at The Fly or Audubon Park and trying your first beignets with your children at Cafe du Monde, New Orleans is just as exciting for children and families!

Tours and Attractions

There are so many different kid-friendly tours to help experience the city. Families can take a leisurely tour through the historic French Quarter with a horse-drawn carriage ride, or enjoy a walking tour designed and led by teachers for children and their families with French QuarTour Kids.

For outdoor-loving families, kids who love animals or travelers wanting a day away from the city, a day trip to the Bayou Sauvage National Wildlife Refuge is a great choice! It’s one of the last marshlands of its kind and offers incredible opportunities for wildlife viewing, with plenty of alligators and about 340 different bird species.

A Guide to New Orleans for Families

A family enjoys City Park in New Orleans. (photo by Zach Smith via New Orleans & Company)

Closer to the city, outdoor-loving families can enjoy renting bikes or paddle boats within New Orleans City Park, which is also home to 1,300 acres of fun space for activities, including the City Putt, Carousel Gardens, New Orleans Botanical Garden, Couturie Forest and Arboretum and more.

Museums

If the rain gets you and your family down for a day or two, head over to one of New Orleans’ kid-friendly museums. The Louisiana Children’s Museum, the New Orleans Museum of Art, the National World War II Museum and the Audubon Aquarium of the Americas are great options for indoor explorations.

A Guide to New Orleans for Families

A child enjoys looking at the fish in an exhibit at the Audubon Aquarium. (photo by Zach Smith via New Orleans & Company)

Outdoors, kids and families can enjoy visiting the Audubon Zoo, the Besthoff Sculpture Garden and City Park, which offers a massive playground right near Cafe du Monde, where families can eat beignets after a fun afternoon playing.

Music

Music is a big part of New Orleans, and it isn’t only found in adults-only bars or clubs. Kids and families can find brass bands at Preservation Hall, Spotted Cat and even in parks and squares across the city.

Jackson Square and Royal Street are great places to visit for listening to music, and during different seasons, free, family-friendly concerts are available in Lafayette Square and in Armstrong Park.

Festivals for Families

Depending on when you and your family visit New Orleans, you can take advantage of several different family-friendly festivals.

The French Quarter Festival celebrates the historic quarter with a smorgasbord of local food vendors and over 2,000 musicians. It’s a perfect way to experience the French Quarter in all the excitement and color without worrying about whether or not it’s a child-friendly experience. It’s free to attend and is typically held in April each year.

A Guide to New Orleans for Families

A family enjoys freshly made beignets outside in New Orleans. (photo by Zach Smith via New Orleans & Company)

Other great options for festivals include the Fried Chicken Festival and Beignet Fest, both celebrating two very important foods to New Orleans and offering incredible opportunities to taste and experience New Orleans cuisine and lifestyle. The Fried Chicken Festival will be held this year on October 1-2. Beignet Fest will be held on September 24, with proceeds going to fund programs for children on the Autism Spectrum.

Ready to enjoy New Orleans’ history, food and fun with your family? Contact a travel advisor or check out New Orleans’ official tourism website for easy guides on everything from outdoor fun to accommodations and more!

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