From Voodoo tours to Jazz festivals, New Orleans offers an eclectic mix of African and French cultures accompanied by vibrant foodie and music scenes that will assault your senses. With infamous festivals like Mardi Gras and the Jazz Fest, the Big Easy is always hopping — so when is the best time to take on Nola? Here’s a monthly breakdown to consider when choosing the best time to visit New Orleans, or as the locals say, “N’awlins.”
Cooler temperatures, low to average hotel and flight prices and the early beginnings of Mardi Gras season make January a great time to visit for families and football fans.
The annual Allstate Sugar Bowl takes over the Big Easy in the early days of January. Football fans come from far and wide to crowd into the Mercedes-Benz Superdome for one of the city’s most anticipated sports events which has been hitting Nola since 1935. Make sure to book your tickets in advance, especially if a local team is playing! If you miss your chance at tickets, you can still come to Nola for the football atmosphere and watch the game from any of the hundreds of sports bars that will be broadcasting the game. See the calendar and purchase your tickets here.
The King Cake Festival at the end of January is great for families. This free of charge event takes place in Champion Square at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome. Local bakeries from the Crescent City will be out in full force with sugary treats and the iconic King Cake, a French bread or brioche topped with sugar and frosting — a staple for Mardi Gras season. Make sure to enroll your family in the King Cake Gladiator Games which include a stroller run and a fitness challenge. Get the whole family sweatin’ before indulging in a day of cake! See the schedule here.
January is the coolest month for New Orleans with average highs around 62 degrees and lows around 42 degrees. So bring a jacket but don’t expect anything too extreme.
Flights in January are average compared to the rest of the year. According to the United States Department of Transportation (DOT), domestic airfare to Nola for the first quarter is about $343 (the second most expensive quarter of the year after Q2). Domestic flights to New Orleans for January 2015 came in at an average price of about **$382.
According to the trivago hotel price index (2015 data), January is a relatively good time to visit Nola in terms of hotel prices with the average price being $177. Lower than the popular Spring season but higher than the national average for January ($154) of the most popular cities in America.
Best time to go for: Families and/or Football Fans
With the Mardi Gras festivities just starting to sprout, your family can enjoy the festive feel to the city without the crazy crowds or party shenanigans.
trivago Hotel Pick | Homewood Suites by Hilton
Photos taken from trivago.
Located just four blocks away from the French Quarter in one direction and the Superdome in the other, you will be in a prime location to take the kids to either area of the city without resulting in tired little legs. The Homewood Suites offers active families an indoor pool and a kids’ playground.
Mardi Gras in New Orleans takes place 47 days before Easter. Therefore it usually falls sometime between February 3rd and March 9th on a Tuesday (Feb 28th for 2017). Mardi Gras is a celebration filled with colorful floats, marching bands, dancing squads, flying beads and general ‘festive’ behavior. Each ‘krewe’ has their own colorfully decorated floats according to a theme which can be anything from mythology to satire. Masquerades take place around the city, sweets and spirits are in a abundance and the streets of the French Quarter are packed with performers and spectators. See the schedule here.
The weather in February is still chilly with an average high of 65 F and low of 48 degrees and it also has a bit more rain compared to the other winter months, however it marks the beginning of Mardi Gras and the crowds start pouring in.
In the second most expensive quarter of the year for airfare, domestic flight prices remain in the same price range as January, with an average airfare of **$381.
According to trivago, hotel prices show a steep increase from Jan. to Feb. with the average hotel price per night coming in at $219, no doubt a correlation to the pick up in Mardi Gras activities.
Best time to go for: Mardi Gras Goers
trivago Hotel Pick | Royal Sonesta
If you are going to New Orleans for Mardi Gras and you want to get the full effect of the festivities, stay on Bourbon Street in the heart of the French Quarter. It will be loud, it will be crazy, but it will be fun. The Royal Sonesta is the perfect place to sit out on the balcony and watch the parades shuffle below as you catch and throw beads from your vantage point. The hotel fills up fast for Mardi Gras, so book well in advance.
“Summer in New Orleans is a terrific time to visit. The city is electric with a myriad of festivals, food and fun from May all the way through August. In fact, some of our biggest annual and uniquely cultural events take place during the summer. Likewise, the fall is a fantastic time to visit and offers its own certain allure. Many visitors are drawn to the ambiance of mystery and intrigue in the city, which is the perfect gear up for Halloween. From ghost tours in the French Quarter to our ornate cemeteries, there’s a certain magic in the air. No matter when you decide to visit the Crescent City, there is a special and unforgettable bond you’ll create here.” – Al Groos, Royal Sonesta New Orleans General Manager
The average flight and hotel prices for March are a bit higher than most of the other months. The warmer weather, Spring holidays and Nola festivals draw in crowds of tourists.
The Spring Fiesta takes place in the first two weeks of March. It highlights the cultural heritage and history of the city. Historical, private homes will open their doors to the public for walking tours to get a glimpse into the opulent abodes of Nola’s past. The Spring Fiesta includes a horse drawn carriage parade through the French Quarter and presentations about the city’s history and culture. See more information here.
At the end of March, the Tennessee Williams Literary Festival plays homage to the American poet who made New Orleans his home during some of his greatest writing periods. The festival features literature readings, actors, playwrights and poets that submit pieces of original work for the Festival. The best part of this festival culminates in Jackson Square with the ‘Stella’ shouting contest. Sign up for the ‘Stella’ contest or submit a writing or poetry piece here.
The Congo Square Rhythms Festival celebrates the African music that sparked a genre that would forever influence the New Orleans music scene — jazz. In the years before slavery was abolished, African slaves had one free day a week where they would meet at Congo Square to play music and dance. The Rhythms festival is held in that very same square to this day. Enter free of charge and witness the tantalizing beats from Africa, the Caribbean and beyond. See here for updates.
March marks the arrival of spring in New Orleans with temperatures rising to a comfortable high of 72 and a low of 54 degrees. If you are not one for extreme temperatures, March is a great time to see Nola.
The pleasurable weather and spring holidays raise the average airfare to New Orleans by around $10 from the previous month — not bad!
According to the trivago Hotel Price Index, March is one of the most expensive months for hotels in New Orleans, with the average price being $231 per night (2015 data). Carnival in February and the spring months that follow are the most expensive times to visit in terms of hotel prices per night.
Best time to go for: History & Literature Buffs
New Orleans is thriving with history and culture making March the perfect time to explore its past and current literary influences, the African heritage that molded the culture and the colonial homes with French and Spanish influences.
trivago Hotel Pick | Hotel Monteleone
Grab a taste of opulence on Royal Street, just one block a way from Bourbon street at the Hotel Monteleone. The Hotel has served as a staple of elegance in the French Quarter since 1886. Each of the 570 guest rooms is dripping with luxury, with period furnishings and high ceilings with crown moldings; the Monteleone transports guests back to an era of Southern affluence. Stay in one of the Literary Suites like the William Faulkner Suite or the Tennessee Williams Suite, both famous authors who made Monteleone a home away from home at one point.
April is a lively time to visit New Orleans. The weather is in full spring mode, and the music festivities pop up at every corner. The annual French Quarter Festival alone welcomed more than 760,000 attendees to the 2016 festival, the highest attendance in the event’s history. Add the Jazz & Heritage Festival to that and the other smaller events and April is already jam-packed.
The French Quarter Festival is an event you are not going to want to miss if you are visiting Nola in April. This three day festival at the beginning of April (April 7-10, 2017) is the largest free festival in the state of Louisiana. It features everything from parades to free dance lessons to a massive jazz brunch! Learn how to dance Cajun style from professional instructors at no cost and then head over to the Woldenberg Riverfront Park for some juicy crawfish étouffée. See more information here.
Running annually since the seventies, the New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival makes a point to outdo any other jazz event you may have seen. As the birthplace of jazz, Nola feels especially protective of their legacy and the need to convey it righteously to the public. That means for the last week of April until the first week of May you can expect a total blowout of festivities with an astonishing array of jazz performances, marching bands, craft corners, and delectable New Orleans style cookin’ available at every turn. Make sure to stop at the Cajun Cabin for a Louisiana Seafood Boil and then head over to the Native American Village for a taste of this often overlooked heritage of the the area. See more information and the lineup here.
Continuing with the festive music theme of the month, April also welcomes the start of Jazz in the Park. On Thursday evenings in mid-April head over to Louis Armstrong Park for a free live concert from local jazz musicians. Thursday jazz sessions will continue until the start of the summer season, so make sure to attend at least one! See more information here.
The comfortable spring weather in New Orleans from March continues into April with temperatures rising slightly with a high of 78 and low of 60 degrees.
Airfare to New Orleans climbs slightly in April, but stays in the same range as the other spring months. Average airfare is around **$394. According to DOT, the second quarter of the year shows the most expensive domestic airfare for New Orleans (although not much higher than the first three months of the year).
The trivago Hotel Price Index shows that in 2015 average hotel prices for New Orleans rested at $218 compared but has already seen an increase this year with $248 for April 2016.
Best time to go for: Music Lovers
With the giant festivals accompanied by the smaller intimate jazz sessions in the park, April is a great time to visit for music lovers.
trivago Hotel Pick | Windsor Court Hotel
Other than its gorgeous, oversized 316 luxury guest rooms, the Windsor Court Hotel is a great place to stay for music lovers thanks to its jazzy Polo Club Lounge. The intimate lighting, specialized cocktails, overstuffed leather chairs and an order of their scrumptious crab cakes with truffle fries make for the perfect setting to listen to local jazz bands playing five nights a week! Get your dapper shoes on and head down to the Lounge for a jazzy soiree.
May in New Orleans boasts some of the most spectacular weather. It is a great time to relax in the Deep South and explore Nola with a glass of fine wine in hand.
Kick back on the bayou at the Bayou Boogaloo Festival along Bayou Saint John at Orleans Ave. and the Jefferson Davis Parkway. This annual fest features open air music, yummy treats at nearby booths and crafts for sale — all on the serene Bayou (just don’t swim, alligators present). The fest lasts three days and is free to enter. The calming setting and almost-summer vibes makes this event quite the chill fest, especially with beats from bands like the Creole String Beans or the Lost Bayou Ramblers taking you to a happy place. The event usually takes place on one of the last weekends in May, but check back here for dates of the upcoming fest.
The New Orleans Wine & Food Experience is the perfect time to leave the kids at home and kick back with a glass of wine as you dine on dishes from some of the best chefs in New Orleans. Visitors can opt to buy a single ticket to the activity of their choice or opt for one of the package tickets that groups together a few of the offerings. Some highlights include the Grand Tasting, educational food seminars, or the saucy Gateaux Show where burlesque entertainers accompany a cocktail and pastry competition. The three day weekend splurge takes place on the last weekend of May, but check here for exact dates of the next event.
A huge incentive to visit New Orleans in May is the perfect weather. With high average temperatures of 85 degrees and lows of 68 degrees — you will be able to pack all your summer clothes, but not feel the need to slather deodorant on every inch of your body.
There may be a very slight dip in flight prices for May in comparison to previous spring months due to the fact that school and Easter holidays have ended and the large festivals of April are coming to an end. However, prices are still higher than for both summer months and early fall.
According to trivago data from 2015, May shows a tiny increase (lower than $5) in hotel prices in comparison to April with average hotel prices coming in at $222.
Best time to go for: Good Weather & Chill Vacation
With perfect weather and laid back events on the waterfront, May is the perfect time to visit New Orleans if you’re seeking out a weekend of fun and relaxation — perhaps take Mom for Mother’s Day!
trivago Hotel Pick | Maison Dupuy
A combination of history and luxury, the Maison Dupuy is located in the heart of the French Quarter, just two blocks away from lively Bourbon Street. The guest rooms of this boutique hotel are spacious and simply refined with deluxe pillow top mattresses, marble bathrooms and the iconic, New Orleans style wrought iron balconies (request a room with balcony).
If you want a taste of the Deep South, head to New Orleans in June — the temperatures rise, but flights and hotel prices are on the decline!
Taking place on the first week of June, the New Orleans Oyster Festival is a perfect time to become an oyster lover if you’re not already a fan. With an endless array of oysters served in every form from raw oysters, po-boys, oyster jambalaya and many more. Make sure to enter the oyster shucking and eating contests for some healthy competition that will leave you satisfied. The fest takes place Downtown at Woldenberg Park and is free to enter. If you’re not a huge oyster fan, it’s still a fun time with local musicians and the breeze from the Mississippi River there to cool you off. See here for more details.
On the second weekend in June comes another amazing food festival that you find only in the South — the Creole Tomato Festival. Taking place at the historic French Market which dates back to 1791, the Creole Tomato Festival pays homage to the vegetable that graces so many dishes in Louisiana’s scrumptious cuisine. Be ready to be delighted by cooking contests, a tomato parade, local musicians and a farmer’s market. The best part? All of the decadent dishes served up with juicy Creole tomatoes like fried green tomatoes, Creole tomato crawfish pies and even Creole tomato gelato! This event is free to enter. See festival times here.
If you’re in Nola in June, you cannot miss the Cajun-Zydeco Festival on the third weekend in June. Cajun beats originated from early German and Polish settlers, while Zydeco is the authentic music of the Creole people creating a fantastic blend of blues, jazz, Cajun influence and Creole rhythms featuring accordions, fiddles and the iconic washboard. The event takes place in Louis Armstrong Park and is free to enter. Make sure to come hungry because the food vendors will be filling the air with Cajun specialties and spices that will repeatedly tempt you. See more details here.
New Orleans weather in June starts to get humid. As temperatures rise and precipitation increases — a general mugginess can occur — but that’s the South!
With the hot summer months rolling in, flight prices decline for New Orleans. With the average airfare around **$346.
The good news is that hotel prices take a dive in June. Data from the trivago Hotel Price Index shows that in 2015 the average price per night for a hotel in New Orleans was $180.
Best time to go for: Southern Culture
With hot and humid weather setting in and the Deep South style events taking place, June is a great time to go if you want to explore Southern culture.
trivago Hotel Pick | St.Pierre French Quarter
Located on the fringe of the French Quarter, just a two minute walk from heart of it, is the quaint Hotel St. Pierre. This unique hotel is made up of a bunch of original Creole cottages, listed on the National Register of Historic Places. Complete with period furnishings, traditional decor and the trademark French Quarter style balconies, the Hotel St. Pierre is like a modern glimpse into the city’s past. The rooms incorporate an acute attention to detail that only a boutique hotel like St. Pierre could maintain. If you want an authentic Southern-style abode in New Orleans, Hotel St. Pierre is where you should be.
July is hot and moderately inexpensive in New Orleans since the summer months are less popular than spring. The warm weather, affordable prices and specialized lady-friendly events make July a great time to gather the gang and host a girls’ getaway!
The second week in July (7 – 14, 2016) hosts the French Film Festival. As the most French city in the United States, New Orleans takes great pride in preserving and showcasing its French heritage and culture. The film festival at the Prytania Theater in Uptown screens up to twelve films of both contemporary and classic French films, mostly in French with English subtitles. Enjoy the genius of some of the most legendary French filmmakers like François Truffaut, Jean Cocteau and Jean Renoir. See here for more information.
Who doesn’t love cocktails? Especially on a hot summer day at the end of July in the Big Easy, a cocktail is needed — the Tales of Cocktails event is the perfect place to sample a multitude of cocktails and spirits and network with other spirit-enthusiasts. Tickets can be customized so that you pay only for the seminars and tasting rooms you wish to try. Try the ‘Spirited Diner’ ticket if you want to explore a famous mixologist’s concoctions paired perfectly with a top chef’s fixed menu at one of Nola’s gourmet restaurants. See here for tickets and event details.
You can also check out Festigals at the end of July (28-29, 2016), a women’s conference that hosts empowering personal and professional seminars, shopping sprees, a Bloody Mary Mixer and food galore. See more details here.
July and August are generally the warmest months in New Orleans with an average high of 95 and low of 75 degrees.
Flights to New Orleans are at some of their lowest during the month of July — a great time to go if you enjoy the heat. DOT calculated that quarter three is the time to catch the cheapest average domestic airfare to New Orleans, with the quarterly average price being $329.
The trivago Hotel Price Index reported another drop in hotel prices from June to July in 2015 with the average hotel price per night coming out at $174 per night.
Best time to go for: Bachelorette Parties or Girls’ Getaways
The events in July are especially interesting for women, and New Orleans is always a fun time for a bachelorette party.
trivago Hotel Pick | Fleur De Lis Mansion
The unique Fleur De Lis Mansion boutique hotel is the perfect place for a weekend getaway with the girls. The adult-only hotel features nine themed rooms, each one with a signature decor, like the Hollywood Bungalow — with completely mirrored walls and ceiling and an open shower. Put the crazy friend in that room and let your other pals enjoy cozy abodes like the classy Jazz Room or the pristine White Room — decked head-to-toe in white. The best part of this quaint hotel is not its amazing rooms, or its Downtown location, or its complimentary nightly wine hour, but rather it’s the extravagant, covered courtyard complete with transparent curtains, tropical plants and an oversized Jacuzzi, putting this hotel at the top of your ‘must-stay’ list.
August is pretty warm, but prices are rather low and the quirky festivals will delight antique and art lovers.
The warehouse district in New Orleans takes the spotlight at the end of the summer with its annual Nola Downtown Music and Arts Festival. Expect a plethora of live musicians, pop-up shops, food trucks, art displays and some good old fashion bowling! Dates have yet to be announced so check back here for details.
Experience a throwback to simpler times of summer block parties at the Whitney White Linen Night in the Downtown Warehouse District of Nola. The first Saturday night in August is reserved for a pedestrian-only street party featuring more than 20 local art galleries hosting cocktail strolls through their exhibitions plus live entertainment and food catered by top local restaurants. The event is free to enter but check here for exact dates and schedules.
In a satirical jab at the White Linen Night, it’s naughty sister, Dirty Linen Night delights visitors with its display of art galleries, antique shops, and jewelry stores along five or six blocks of the infamous Royal Street in the French Quarter. Visitors are encouraged to wear dirty clothes and peruse antique shops with a dirty martini in hand. Many vendors opt to serve ‘dirty’ rice (Cajun style) with the dirty martinis. Music, food, specialty shops and hidden clowns await you at the Dirty Linen Night — just one week after White Linen Night. See details here.
August is one of the warmest months for New Orleans with the average high at 91 degrees and the average low at 75 degrees. For some this might be scorching, for others, it’s the perfect temperature to be outdoors!
The average flight price for New Orleans is August drops slightly from the previous summer months with the average airfare at **$353. If you’re looking to save some bucks, August is not a bad time to go.
The trivago Hotel Price Index reports that the average hotel price per night for New Orleans in August of 2015 was $156 — the lowest price for the year.
Best time to go for: Art & Antique Lovers
From the artsy showcase in Downtown to the quirky antique and art galleries in the French Quarter, August’s festivities highlight the artsy side of Nola.
trivago Hotel Pick | Inn on Ursulines
The Inn on Ursulines is an artistic display of New Orleans history, with 15 guest rooms immaculately decorated with period furnishings and modern touches honoring its 1700s heritage, but still boasting a refined contemporary array of amenities. The Inn originally served as Creole cottages, including a resting house for infamous voodoo queen Marie Laveau’s traveling guests. The Inn is sandwiched between Bourbon and Royal streets, so art and antique aficionados are close to all their favorite shops.
September weather is hot, but cooler and more pleasant than in the summer months. Children are back in school and the streets are not nearly as crowded as the high spring season. September is a great time to enjoy all the food, music and culture of Nola without the high prices.
The Seafood Festival is a great opportunity for visitors to try an array of seafood specialties at lower prices. Rather than breaking the bank at some of the fine dining establishments in Nola, kick off the start of the fall season with a festival that will let you try a bit of everything without spending all your money on one lobster dish! The festival includes three days of live music and all the crawfish, crab, shrimp, oysters and more you can eat, plucked fresh from the Gulf of Mexico and served up in decadent dishes splashed with southern spices. The fest is free to enter. See details and schedules here.
Another chance to live out your foodie dreams without succumbing to gourmet prices come way of the We Live To Eat Restaurant Week, allowing visitors to sample signature dishes from top chefs and top restaurants in New Orleans at discounted prices (25 percent off)! Participating establishments have included big guns like Antoine’s and Arnaud’s in the past, so be on the lookout for participating restaurants in the next Live to Eat Week.
The weather in September starts to cool slightly in September with sunny days and less humidity. High temperatures drop down to 88 degrees and lows to 72 degrees. Chance of rain is less than all the summer months.
Airfare in September to New Orleans stays about the same as August — one of the cheapest months to travel to Nola. Average airfare is in the **$350 range and is still part of the cheapest quarter of the year for airfare to Nola.
The trivago Hotel Price Index calculated that average September hotel prices for New Orleans in 2015 were about $171 a night. A slight increase from August, but still one of the more budget-friendly months to go with the national average of hotels in popular US cities having an average of $191 a night.
Best time to go for: Budget Travelers
September boasts incredible weather, lesser crowds, lower travel costs and budget-friendly festivals in Nola.
trivago Hotel Pick | St. James Hotel
An amazing homage to the West Indies history of the eighteenth century building which houses the St James Hotel, the 84 refurbished guest rooms boast both Caribbean charm and iconic New Orleans-style balconies that overlook the street or a private courtyard. St. James is the perfect place to get a taste of Nola’s history as well as its modern personality due to the hotel’s location in the hip Downtown District. This budget-friendly hotel is value for your money with gorgeous, spacious rooms, modern amenities and impeccable service.
There’s no better place to spend the spookiest month of the year that one of America’s most haunted cities. New Orleans has a long time reputation as a paranormal hub. Take advantage of the good weather and the creepy factor that Nola has to offer for the Halloween season.
For three days over Halloween weekend New Orleans’ City Park will be taken over by multiple stages for Voodoo Music & Arts Experience open air concert, of which icons like The Cure, Marilyn Manson and A Perfect Circle have graced in the past. Keep Room5g here for when the next lineup will be posted!
Halloween in New Orleans wouldn’t be complete without an enormous parade; enter the Krewe of Boo Halloween Parade. Floats, costumes, music and throwing candy are just the beginning of this epic parade that takes place the Saturday before Halloween. The Krewe Boo illuminates the French Quarter with festive displays of everything spooky and tasty. See more event details here.
Cemetery tours of New Orleans are available year round but there’s no better time to take a spooky tour around Nola than Halloween season. Just a 10 minute walk (0.5 miles) from the French Quarter, head over to St. Louis Cemetery number one for an eerie peek at the ‘city of the dead,’ a nickname granted to the cemetery by Mark Twain himself in reference to the above ground graves representing a maze-like metropolis. The tombs were built above ground in part due to the French and Spanish influences of the time of its inauguration (1789) as well as partly to avoid the watery graves that resulted in ground burials in swampland, and to prevent diseases from spreading– and lastly in the attempt to save space as the cemetery expanded. Notable graves include that of Voodoo Priestess Marie Laveau (which still receives tributaries from loyal followers to this day) and Homer Plessy, the man who defied segregation laws by purchasing a first-class ticket in the ‘whites only’ train car in 1892. Plessy’s act of defiance led to the ‘Separate but Equal’ doctrine which still allotted for complete segregation of whites and blacks, but stated that both groups must be provided with equal service and facilities. The tour lasts about 1-1.5 hours and costs $20 for anyone over 12 years old. See cemetery hours and directions. You can purchase tickets online here.
October in New Orleans boasts warm weather with cool breezes. The average high temperature is about 80 degrees and the average low is 63 degrees.
Flights to New Orleans continue their low streak of the fall with average airfare being around **$333. DOT cites the last quarter of the year as equal in airfare to the low prices of the previous quarter — October, November and December boast an average quarterly airfare price of $329.
The average hotel price per night in Nola for October was $222 in 2015, a large jump up from September.
Best time to go for: Paranormal Enthusiasts
It’s a no brainer that an extremely haunted city is one of the best places to spend the Halloween season. Paranormal investigators have checked out numerous hotels, restaurants and homes in Nola with lots of orbs, noises and unexplained moving objects listed in the research reports. Enjoy!
trivago Hotel Pick | Dauphine Orleans
Made up of three historical homes, the Dauphine Orleans, named after the street in the French Quarter on which it sits, is the perfect place to get a taste of Nola’s haunted past. The Main House guest rooms are elegantly decorated in a cream and pearl tones with many rooms featuring iconic New Orleans-style balconies overlooking Dauphine Street. The 14 rooms in the Hermann House overlook a private courtyard, reportedly haunted by a roaming Creole soldier and feature the same refined room decor of soft hues. The Carriage House rooms are located in an authentic carriage house from the eighteenth century, with each room overlooking either the pool or private courtyard. The Hotel’s May Bailey’s Place bar offers guests a complimentary welcome drink upon arrival in the bar that once served as a Victorian era bordello. Patrons of May Bailey’s have reported ghostly figures and inexplicable noises at the bar. Sweet dreams!
November marks a drop in temperatures that makes it seem like fall has finally arrived in New Orleans. Relatively low travel costs and food-focused events make this a great time for foodies to take a trip to the Big Easy.
Paying homage to the submarine sandwich loved-by the south, the Oak Street Po-Boy Festival takes place on Oak Street in the city’s Carrollton neighborhood mid-November. The festival is supposed to evoke the warmth of the small town ambiance, and of course, the warm, juicy sandwich that will be dripping down your arm. Try every kind of po-boy there is, from shrimp or catfish, to a bacon-fried hot dog po-boy — top those off with a side of crawfish nachos and you know you’ve made it to the South! The event is free to the public. See event details here.
The Tremé Creole Gumbo Festival takes place on the second weekend in November. Set up in the iconic Congo Square, the Festival features numerous variations of this classic Louisiana dish, but most gumbos contain okra, sausage, chicken, crab, crawfish, shrimp and/or other types of seafood and are served with rice and plenty of spices! The Festival also features live music by local jazz musicians. See here for more information.
New Orleans weather in November is still mild for the fall season, but temperatures begin to dip into the 50s at night, while daytime temps stay in the mid-70s.
November flights drop down to the low **$300 range.
According to trivago data from 2015, average hotel prices per night for November in New Orleans were averaged at $187 — quite a dip from October.
Best time to go for: Foodies
New Orleans is always a good time for Foodies, but sometimes the spring festivities of Mardi Gras or the Halloween parties distract from the pure “foodiness” of city, November gives food the attention it so deserves with Southern-style food festivals that will delight foodies from far and wide.
trivago Hotel Pick | Hotel Mazarin
A luxury boutique hotel in the heart of the French Quarter, Hotel Mazarin is refined and cozy with plush bedding, black porcelain and granite tile flooring, rich color hues and sparkling chandeliers. The 102 guest rooms share street or courtyard views and offer a quiet retreat away from the noisy streets of the Quarter. Guests rave about the Deluxe Breakfast served in the European-style courtyard, breakfast being every foodie’s favorite meal, making the Hotel Mazarin the perfect way to open the stomach for a day of food excursions through the Quarter.
Christmastime in New Orleans is filled with festivities: caroling in the square, public bonfires and extravagant twinkling lights. December is a very romantic time to visit Nola!
Each Christmas season, carolers meet in the center of the French Quarter at Jackson Square to partake in a Christmas tradition that warms even the coldest hearts — so light a candle, put on a Santa hat and join the annual Caroling in Jackson Square.
Come down to the water’s edge at sunset to see massive bonfires lit on top of the Mississippi River levees. The annual Christmas Eve Bonfires on the Levee is a gorgeous display of cozy firelight that fills the air with toasty scents. The bonfire structures are built high enough to have flames that reach up to 30 feet high, making it easy for passersby to see and they stroll along the river — and to light the way for Santa to make it safely into town of course!
The Reveillon Dinner originated within the 1800s Creole lifestyle — when families would return from midnight mass on Christmas Eve, everyone was hungry and ready for a festive feast that would sometimes last until the early hours of the morning. Restaurants in New Orleans decided to revive this family dinner tradition by offering specialized, fixed four- and five-course holiday menus on Christmas Eve at dozens of festively-decorated locales. The experience turns up the romantic dial for couples or makes for fun for the whole family.
December marks the official start of the winter season in New Orleans with temperatures dropping to an average high of 64 degrees and low of 47 degrees.
Flights in December go up slightly from the previous months with the average airfare to Nola being about **$380, but still rest in the lower end of the year for airfare — and in the cheapest quarter of the year for airline prices.
According to the trivago Hotel Price Index, hotels in New Orleans for December are only $173, a perfect time to splurge on a romantic hotel stay for two!
Best time to go for: Romance
The twinkling lights of the city, the sound of carolers in the streets and the colder weather will have you cozying up with your favorite person in December in New Orleans.
trivago Hotel Pick | The Roosevelt
The Roosevelt at Christmastime oozes romance. The scent of dozens of fresh pine trees twinkling in the lobby mixing with fresh hot cocoa topped by melting marshmallows is just the beginning of the amorous affair. Children carolers delight guests in the sparkling gold-colored lobby as guests make their way up to the luxurious guest rooms. Each of the hotel’s overly spacious guest rooms feature Old World grandeur reminiscent of the building’s beginnings in 1893 but with a refined contemporary restoration. The champagne tones accompanied by deep jewel hues, formal sitting areas and Ferragamo toiletries make the Roosevelt one of the most opulent hotels in New Orleans. Opt for a romantic suite to take advantage of the claw foot tubs or stroll down to the Waldorf Astoria Spa to see what they have in the Couples’ Therapy Suite.
**Flight prices from Hipmunk’s average 2015 domestic flight data.
There you have it, the best time to go to New Orleans for every kind of traveler. No matter what you’re searching for, Nola has an abundance of great food, rich history, extraordinary music and warm weather!
What is your favorite time to visit New Orleans? Tell us in the comments!