Whether you know New Orleans as the ‘Big Easy’ or the ‘City that Care Forgot’, it is an American city like no other with a thrilling multicultural heritage that manifests itself in its vibrant Creole culture.

New Orleans is the quintessential cultural melting pot with its French and Spanish roots giving many of its streets a positively colonial feel with African, Caribbean and, of course, Creole all part of the compelling cocktail. The city of Mardi Gras may have been battered by Hurricane Katrina in 2005, but it has made an impressive recovery and it is back to its best.

Things to know before you go

  • An atmospheric way to see New Orleans is on one of the historic city streetcars, with three lines to choose from - St. Charles, Canal Street and the Riverfront.
  • A car is a useful way to explore most areas of New Orleans, but parking can be a real – and an expensive – problem in the French Quarter with garages often the only option.
  • There is good wifi coverage throughout the city center, with most cafes and restaurants offering free access to customers.

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About the author

Robin McKelvie

Edinburgh, Scotland

Robin McKelvie is a travel writer, blogger and broadcaster. He has written 100s of articles for publications across the world, plus over 30 guidebooks and makes 20-30 trips a year.