No city embodies vibrancy like New Orleans, a destination that feels like a year-round block-party everywhere you turn, full of jazz, colorful buildings (with their trademark, lantana-festooned balconies in the French Quarter), and wonderful Cajun food.
If you’re looking for a rowdy night on the tiles, head to iconic Bourbon Street – but if avoiding the, er, merrier tourists is more your speed, make a beeline to classy classic Arnaud’s French 75 for its eponymous cocktail.
For a faultless jazz fix, there’s no better place than the French Quarter’s Preservation Hall – the perfect stop after a delicious meal at Compère Lapin in the Warehouse Arts District, where chef Nina Compton serves up a feted twist on NOLA’s Creole culinary tradition.
If against all odds you’re looking for something apart from drinking, eating, or jazz, hit up the historic Lafayette Cemetery No. 1 or enjoy some Louisianan artwork at the Ogden Museum of Southern Art. Whatever your speed, this culturally rich, historic, and atmospheric city has no shortage of intrigue to offer.