We’ve already rounded up some of our favorite summer activities in the French Quarter, but the city of New Orleans offers plenty of opportunities for summer fun all over town. Whether you’re planning a summer vacation for the family or a last minute couple’s retreat, the Crescent City offers an endless bounty of things to do this summer. Here are a few of our favorites.
Try a New Orleans classic: the snowball.
A favorite summertime treat among New Orleans residents is the snowball. The frozen concoction known as a “snow cone” in other parts of the country bears no resemblance to the iconic New Orleans dessert, which features delicate shaved ice rather than crushed or ground-up ice. When paired with syrup flavors like cream of nectar, bananas foster, or wedding cake, you can’t go wrong.
Head to Hansen’s Sno-Bliz (4801 Tchoupitoulas St.) or Plum Street Snoball (1300 Burdette Street at Plum St.) to discover why this frozen treat is a New Orleans tradition. Both shops have been family-owned and open in the same locations since the 1940s.
Cool off at Audubon Nature Institute’s Cool Zoo.
Audubon Nature Institute features a range of delightful attractions that are ideal for visiting any time of year, but their latest, the Cool Zoo splash park, is perfect for summer fun.
Located inside of Audubon Zoo, one of the highlights of Cool Zoo is the “lazy river” known as Gator Run. Visitors can float down 750 feet of flowing water surrounded by two sand beaches. Gator Run comes complete with lounge chairs for sunbathing or relaxing and water cannons and jumping jets to entertain the young at heart. Admission to Cool Zoo requires an additional ticket to your Zoo ticket, but combo tickets are available.
Explore all 1,300 acres of City Park.
Okay, so exploring each and every corner of City Park may be a stretch, given the vast expanse of this urban oasis. But as one of the nation’s oldest urban parks, you can bet there are plenty of things to keep you entertained here.
If it’s arts and culture you seek, check out the New Orleans Museum of Art and get some fresh air while strolling through the Besthoff Sculpture Garden.
Traveling with the whole family? Head to the Carousel Gardens Amusement Park or the nearby City Putt, a a 36-hole mini golf complex with two courses. The littlest members of your group will love Storyland, which features 20 larger-than-life sculptures of classic fairy tale characters.
For outdoorsy and athletic types, City Park offers lots of options, including boating, biking, golf, a free disc golf course and a 60-acre forest that is home to New Orleans’ highest point of elevation.
Go paddle-boarding on Bayou St. John.
The picturesque waterway of Bayou St. John runs just outside of City Park and is a favorite destination among locals. While relaxing along the banks of the bayou is always a great way to spend an afternoon (perhaps while enjoying a po-boy from Parkway Bakery & Tavern?), one of the best ways to experience this area is by taking a paddle-boarding excursion.
NOLA Paddleboards offers stand-up paddleboard sessions that launch from a location conveniently located less than two miles from our French Quarter hotel and accessible by streetcar.
Experience history at The National WWII Museum.
An expansive complex of three buildings in downtown New Orleans, The National WWII Museum features exhibits on all aspects of the war that changed the world. The museum uses its extensive collection of personal narratives to tell stories from the European theatre of war and the Pacific front.
The newly opened Arsenal of Democracy exhibit tells the story of the road to war and the Home Front, including a re-created factory floor and a peek inside the top-secret Manhattan Project, which led to the creation of the atomic bomb. The Stage Door Canteen theatre features shows inspired by the music of the 1940s.
Book your summer getaway today!
Enjoy French Quarter luxury at a fraction of the usual price when you take advantage of our special summer room rates. Rooms start as low as low as $129.00* per night, Sunday through Thursday.
*Based upon availability. Stay dates May 29, 2017 – September 8, 2017. Promotional rates vary and are higher on Friday and Saturday nights.