New Orleans Recommendations

Advisor - Samantha Vanderhorst
Curated By

Samantha Vanderhorst

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  • New Orleans

  • Arts & Culture

  • Food & Wine

  • City Travel

  • Outdoors

  • Shopping

  • Entertainment

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Curator’s statement

Between the food, vibrant music scene, architecture, energy and inspiring art scene, it’s easy to fall in love with the charms of New Orleans. One of my best friends grew up New Orleans and I’ve had the privilege of spending some time with her learning the ins and outs of New Orleans.

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Insider knowledge

Expert advice from people who’ve actually been there

Where to stay in New Orleans

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Hotel Monteleone

Experience a timeless gem in the heart of New Orleans, where Southern charm, literary history, and elegant hospitality come together in perfect harmony.

Fora Perks
  • $100 hotel credit.

  • Welcome amenity.

  • Breakfast daily.

  • Upgrade & extended check-in/out whenever possible.

Virgin Hotels New Orleans

Chic property nearby Bourbon Street with upmarket rooms.

Fora Perks
  • $100 hotel / resort credit.

  • Welcome amenities.

  • Breakfast daily.

  • Upgrade & extended check-in/out whenever possible.

The Eliza Jane - The Unbound Collection by Hyatt

Elegant property in a converted newspaper office from the 19th-century with art deco-inspired rooms.

Fora Perks
  • Hotel / resort credit.

  • Welcome amenity.

  • Breakfast daily.

  • Upgrade & extended check-in/out, whenever possible.

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Advisor - Samantha Vanderhorst

Unlock perks by contacting Samantha to book your trip.

Things to do in New Orleans

Decorated balconies of a three-story building

Explore the French Quarter: Grab a beignet or drink and stroll along the waterfront and take a look at the unique architecture and stop in the shops and restaurants.

Wander along Magazine Street, a bustling stretch filled with stores, cafes, bars and museums. Close to Tulane University and the route of the Mardi Gras Parade, this is a must-visit area.

Sign up for a walking food tour to discover rich cultural heritage and to learn more about the food.

Watch live jazz music. There are endless spots around Bourbon Street to stop in and watch some Jazz. You can also find here are jazz bands playing in the quarter. Grab a drink, walk around and listen. Check out these jazz spots: The Spotted Cat, Sweet Lorraines or Blue Nile.

Exploring one of America's most haunted cities by joining a ghost or voodoo tour.

Places to eat & drink in New Orleans

A photo of a courtyard taken from an above balcony


  • Bar Marilou: Nestled in a former library next to Maison de la Luz hotel, this bar exudes dark romantic vibes and serves up incredible cocktails.

  • The Carousel Bar & Lounge: A quintessential New Orleans experience, where you can sip drinks while seated on a rotating carousel. It's located inside the historic Hotel Monteleone, so arrive early to avoid the crowds.

  • Cane and Table: Indulge in tropical and rum-based drinks.

  • Pat O'Brien's Bar: Established in 1933, Pat O'Brien's is a beloved Quarter institution. Don't miss their signature Hurricane cocktail, a New Orleans favorite.


  • Miss Shirleys: Eat amazing Chinese food - dumplings, fried rice, noodles, you name it, they’ve got it. They also make a great Shirley cocktail with cherry juice.

  • Mister Bs Bistro: A classic for New Orleans fare, especially renowned for its Saturday brunch and the must-try Sunday Jazz brunch. Sample their eggplant sticks and galette de rois (French Style King cake).

  • Brennan’s: Fine dining Creole food. I highly recommend Brunch here and the World’ Famous Bananas Foster. Amazing spot for brunch or dinner and it’s located right in the French quarters.

  • Antoine's Restaurant: One of the oldest restaurants in New Orleans, this is the perfect spot to get French Creole food and to explore the history of the city.

  • Commanders Palace: Brunch and jazz spot opened since the 1880s.

  • Dickie Brennan Tableau: Another gem for brunch or dinner, with fantastic drinks and cuisine.

  • La Boulangerie: Pastries and coffee galore. Adorable cafe with one of the best ham and cheese croissants I’ve had (for reference, I’ve tried a lot of ham and cheese croissants all over the world. Breakfast sandwiches and anything you could ever want from a bakery.

  • French Coffee Truck: Savor some of the best New Orleans coffee, especially the iced Nola.

  • Shaya: A James Beard Award-winning spot offering mouthwatering Israeli cuisine. Don't skip the fried chicken hummus—it's delicious.

  • Felix Restaurant and Oyster Bar: Grab a drink and sample their fresh oysters while exploring the lively French Quarter.

  • Cafe Du Monde New Orleans: The best beignets in New Orleans. Sit in the cute cafe outside and watch people walk by.

  • The Vintage: A relaxed spot for casual lunch or dinner, offering a variety of food and drink options. Perfect for enjoying the outdoors and hanging out on a beautiful day.

Need to Know

In need of further inspiration? Check out my guide, 3 Days in New York City.

This guide is part of our ongoing series on travel to New Orleans.

Advisor - Samantha Vanderhorst

Travel Advisor

Samantha Vanderhorst

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