If I say, Mardi Gras, Bourbon Street, and jazz clubs you will probably automatically think of New Orleans! You are about to arrive in one of the most vibrant and colorful cities in the United States so get ready to have some fun in the Big Easy!
New Orleans is located in Louisiana and the largest city within the state. It is a city that offers a great live music scene, art galleries, fine restaurants, and upscale boutiques. So it won’t be difficult to find something that suits your taste in New Orleans.
Situated on both sides of the Mississippi River, you will enjoy walking aimlessly in New Orleans’s streets with beautiful architecture while hearing jazz tones in the background. I am sure you won’t have difficulty filling your day here so let’s find an answer to where to stay in New Orleans.
There are many nice accommodation options in New Orleans for all budgets and I went through all of them very carefully and hand-selected the best of the best ones to share with you. In this travel guide, I will talk about the 5 best neighborhoods to stay in with the highlights of the area and give hotel recommendations from luxury to budget plus Airbnbs in each neighborhood.
I highly recommend you to make a booking in advance for your hotel here as it will help you to get better deals and you would have not missed your favorite place. Most of the hotels have a free cancellation policy too, so do not worry if you change your mind!
Ready to walk along New Orleans Streets? Let’s go!
If you are in a hurry
Here are the best places to stay in New Orleans from luxury to budget. They all have great reviews and great locations!
Best Western Plus
Best luxury hotel
French Quarter Suite
An Airbnb with amazing reviews
WG Creole House
Best value for money
Wyndham Garden Baronne
Best affordable accommodation in the center
Here is a map of New Orleans with all the 5 areas I will be talking about in this travel guide, so you can easily visualize them:
1. French Quarter – where to stay in New Orleans for the first time
The French Quarter is the historic area and the most famous part of New Orleans. Here you will discover an amazing food scene, vibrant nightlife, all the main landmarks as well as great museums and art galleries. That’s why my pick for first-timers is definitely the French Quarter!
Bourbon Street is the home of Mardi Gras and where you will find strips of bars and clubs with crazy parties all year long. Whilst New Orleans is known for its great jazz music scene, in Bourbon Street, you will find places pumping out all genres.
FUN FACT: Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright Tennessee Williams lived in French Quarter for more than 40 years and wrote 2 of his major plays A Streetcar Named Desire and Vieux Carré here. There is also the Tennessee Williams/New Orleans Literary Festival dedicated to him.
Besides music, there is a tonne of things to see on Royal Street, enjoy Spanish Creole architecture, and countless amazing galleries and shops. Don’t forget to make a stop to have a great meal in one of the old creole restaurants!
In French Quarter there are many accommodation options for all budgets. Since it is the most popular area in New Orleans, I highly recommend you to make a booking in advance. If you’re already as excited as I am, let’s check out the best hotels in French Quarter.
This luxury hotel is located at the heart of the French District and within walking distance to the main attractions. Travelers can enjoy a nice garden area with a swimming pool, a great cocktail bar, and spacious rooms with a courtyard view. Premium rooms also have a spa bath!
Other accommodation options in French Quarter
This nice, centrally located hotel offers beautifully decorated rooms with free wifi, a bar, and a swimming pool
This hotel is within walking distance to main landmarks and features rooms with free wifi and a coffee machine
Nicely decorated home that has a great location in the French District and offers a spacious room
Things to do in French Quarter
- Check out the shops and cafes at the Old French Market
- Walk along Chartres Street and explore historic sites, Creole restaurants, and nice shops
- Visit The Historic New Orleans Collection
- Go for a walk to adorable Jean Lafitte National Historical Park or check out the info center right here in the French Quarter
- Step back in time at historic jazz venue Preservation Hall
- Experience the crazy night scene at Bourbon Street
- Have a nice wine and eat mouthwatering foods at Orleans Grapevine Wine Bar and Restaurant
2. Central Business District – best place to stay for sightseeing
The Central Business District is also the downtown area of New Orleans and this neighborhood is a great mixture of commercial offices, nice shops, upscale restaurants as well as museums and concert halls.
Just 15 minutes walk west from the French Quarter, the Central Business District is sandwiched in by the Warehouse / Arts District to the south. So by staying here you will still have great access to all the major attractions of New Orleans.
The Central Business District is a very colorful neighborhood that offers something for every taste whether you are a shopaholic, luxury traveler, or party animal.
The best way to discover this neighborhood is simply to head to Canal Street and check out the tons of shops, cafes, and museums there. You should also take the Canal Street Ferry to enjoy a trip along the Mississippi River!
Once you hit the road your wanderlust soul might want to continue to trip, so, if you are looking for other travel destinations around New Orleans I highly recommend you check out these Dallas and Houston travel guides!
An amazing luxury hotel in the city center that features a beautiful rooftop bar and a swimming pool. You can enjoy modern rooms with a nice bathtub and the historic sites of New Orleans are within walking distance of the hotel. Travelers can also rent a bike from NOPSI Hotel – such a fun way to get around!
Other accommodation in Central Business District
Right in the city center, this hotel offers a good fitness center and rooms with a coffee machine
Affordable hotel, located in the city center which features a fitness center, free wifi, and parking
Beautiful home with a charming decoration where travelers can enjoy the spacious living room with an open kitchen
Things to do in Central Business District
- Try and buy some fruit wines at NOLA Tropical Winery
- Go for a stroll at Lafayette Square
- Visit Immaculate Conception Jesuit Church
- Enjoy a tram ride on the historic St. Charles Streetcar line
- Enjoy a nice meal at Commerce Restaurant
- Check out the shops at Canal Street
3. Warehouse / Arts District – a neighborhood for art lovers
The Warehouse/Art District is located just next to the Central Business District and can be easily reached from French Quarter with a 20 minutes walk. It is a very elegant neighborhood with modern art galleries, fine dining restaurants, and great museums. Sounds so cool, doesn’t it?
The Warehouse District is also a great place to witness the incredible atmosphere of Mardi Gras! Mardi Gras, also called Fat Tuesday, is the day before Ash Wednesday.
Every year one week before the carnival starts, you can see many parades in New Orleans with beautiful colorful decorations and people with amazing costumes and masks. As a part of the fun each year there is a king and a queen whose identities are kept as a secret until the ball night of Mardi Gras.
In every corner of Warehouse District, you will encounter a nice art gallery, a cool cafe, or a building with an impressive mural. The best way to enjoy this artsy area is simply wandering randomly along the beautiful streets and checking out the nice venues. Your Instagram feed will be so colorful with the photos you will take here!
If you are interested in exploring local art galleries and want to stay in a modern neighborhood you should definitely stay in Warehouse District. Here you will be able to find great accommodations for all budgets and you will also be close to the city center!
This stunning hotel is located at the heart of the Arts District. The luxury hotel features beautiful rooms with a chic bathtub and free morning coffee service. Guests can enjoy a cocktail at the hotel’s bar and have a good meal at an on-site restaurant at this amazing place to stay in New Orleans.
Other accommodation in Warehouse/Arts District
This hotel offers a heated outdoor swimming pool and a nice bar. Great place to relax for travelers
Tucked away, historic hotel which features a swimming pool, a bar, and rooms with a coffee machine
This Airbnb home offers a fully equipped living room and a bedroom. The home can accommodate 4 guests
Things to do in Warehouse/Arts District
- Check out exhibitions at Ogden Museum of Southern Art
- Visit the Contemporary Art Center to see impressive artworks
- Learn about history at The National WWII Museum
- Have delicious snacks and a drink at Bakery Bar
- Dine at Tommy’s Cuisine with a nice atmosphere
- Visit magnificent Mardi Gras World to see amazing costumes and decorations
4. Faubourg Marigny – if you are looking for local experiences
In New Orleans, if you are looking for an area with a bohemian atmosphere, laid-back vibe, and local music venues, Faubourg Marigny is the perfect neighborhood for you!
Located just a 15 minutes walk northeast of the French Quarter, Faubourg Marigny will offer you nice local pubs, live music venues, trendy restaurants, and cool tattoo parlors. You will have difficulty choosing one among so many nice places!
Frenchmen Street is the main street of this area and where music lovers will go crazy. It is the heart of live music venues like jazz bars, music clubs, and walking marching bands. If this is what you are looking for in your New Orleans trip, you will have so much fun in Faubourg Marigny.
Let’s check out the best accommodations in this colorful neighborhood:
This luxury hotel has a very beautiful restaurant and a bar. The hotel rooms have beautiful decorations and great amenities. Guests can also borrow a bike from the hotel to discover surrounding areas like the French market and Bourbon Street.
Other accommodation options in Faubourg Marigny
This mansion-style hotel offers a nice bar and beautifully decorated rooms. Guests can enjoy a good breakfast
Centrally located Airbnb which can accommodate up to 4 travelers. Plus free bikes are available in the home
An Airbnb that has a great location and stylish rooms. Many shops and restaurants are within walking distance
Things to do in Faubourg Marigny
- Drink different kinds of beers at Parleaux Beer Lab
- Enjoy live music at Hi Ho Lounge
- Try to catch the monthly flea market at Piety Street Market
- Listen to smooth jazz at The Spotted Cat Music Club
- Eat snacks at the St. Rock Market
- Walk along Frenchmen Street and check out nice bars, clubs, and restaurants
5. Garden District – the coolest neighborhood in New Orleans
The Garden District is located on the south side of New Orleans downtown (just a 10 minutes drive). It is a very cool area famous for its historic mansions, elegant boutiques, and nice cafes. The best way to enjoy the Garden District is simply by having a stroll along beautiful streets, spotting colorful mansions, and enjoying chic cafes in between.
If you are a person like me who loves to be surprised by streets that come up with new things around every corner, you will enjoy this stroll for sure!
If you head uptown you will reach the Lower Garden District. It is not as fancy as the garden district but here you will find many pubs and budget-friendly restaurants. Another great way to wander around this neighborhood is by renting a bike. By bike, you can easily reach other neighborhoods and also enjoy some time in the parks.
Of course, the laid-back, elegant neighborhood of the Garden District offers many nice accommodation options too. Here are some of my favorite places I chose for you:
Located in the Garden District, Hotel Indigo offers a nice bar, a good fitness center, and modern rooms. You can enjoy the hotel’s beautifully decorated lounge area whilst sipping on some drinks and the main attractions like the Central City Historic District and Ogden Museum of Southern Art, are 15 minutes walk.
Other accommodation options in Garden District
This hotel has an impressive interior design with many nice paintings and offers a bar and a restaurant
Centrally located hostel which offers free events in their garden area. Free wifi and lockers are also available
This beautiful mansion-style home that has amazing decoration and fully furnished rooms. Cafes and shops are around the corner
Things to do in Garden District
- Join a walking tour and explore the beautiful mansions and learn about their history
- Visit Lafayette Cemetery No. 1
- Take a look at the beautiful turquoise building – Commander’s Palace and have an elegant dining experience in the famous restaurant
- Have a stroll at nearby Audubon Park
- Watch a performance at Ashe Powerhouse Theater
- Visit New Orleans’s most famous bookstore, Garden District Bookshop
|👑 Luxury price:||$240|
|💵 Mid-range hotel:||$150|
|💰 Accommodation prices:||Medium|
|📍 Best Area:||French Quarter|
|🛎️ Best luxury hotel:||Best Western Plus|
|👛 Best budget hotel:||Wyndham Garden Baronne|
Frequently asked questions about New Orleans
⏱️ How many days should you spend in New Orleans?
You should stay a minimum of 2 days in New Orleans to discover main landmarks, music venues, and museums.
📷 What should I not miss in New Orleans?
You should definitely visit French Quarter and Bourbon Street and check out the museums and restaurants in these areas.
🤔 Is New Orleans dangerous for tourists?
If you avoid deserted areas and stick to touristy neighborhoods New Orleans is not a dangerous city for tourists.
☀️ What is the best month to visit New Orleans?
The best time to visit New Orleans is between February and May when the weather is warm.
🗺️ What is the best area to stay in New Orleans?
We’ve arrived at the end of our journey in Big Easy streets. I hope that this travel guide helped you to find your ideal place to stay in New Orleans and you are already looking forward to your trip. In this travel guide, I talked about the nicest areas to stay in New Orleans, with the best hotels as well as Airbnbs in each neighborhood.
To wrap up, here are the best 2 hotels to stay in New Orleans where I would definitely recommend you to choose. They both have good locations and great reviews too!
- Maison de la Luz – A beautiful luxury hotel located in the downtown New Orleans
- Omni Royal Orleans – Centrally located hotel with a great location in the French District
New Orleans is the most popular city in Louisiana, so, in order not to miss your perfect hotel don’t forget to make a reservation now!
If you have any other suggestions or questions about New Orleans, please leave a comment below. I’ll be happy to leave a reply to them!
Enjoy your time in New Orleans,