The heat is on high, decorative beads hang from the trees, and the smell of fresh bread is in the air while the sun rises to the sound of jazz music. This is New Orleans in the summertime. No matter the temperature, locals and tourists ride on bikes or catch the streetcar to local eateries and the French Quarter.
New Orleans is not only the place to be for the Mardi Gras in mid-February, but the perfect city to take the entire family on a summer road trip. While entering The Big Easy you can’t help but notice the historical homes and mom-and-pop shops that have continued to thrive over the centuries. The city has gained the nickname The Big Easy from the laidback but fast-paced lifestyle.
New Orleans gives the choice of relaxation by the river or a stroll in City Park, along with activities for a journey through history. During the day you can enjoy the lake at City Park or take the kids on an adventure. For younger children, Storyland is the perfect outdoor playground that features larger-than-life sculptures of your favorite storybook characters. Kids can follow “The Three Little Pigs,” “Cinderella,” and many more stories as they play. For older kids, the historical Carousel Gardens Amusement Park is the best feature with a rollercoaster and Ferris wheel.
New Orleans is most known for its historical landscapes. The French Quarter allows the whole family to gain a history lesson as it is the oldest section of the city. It represents the heavy influence the French culture still has on the New Orleans community. While roaming the Quarter you can enjoy live music, antique shops, and of course stop at Café Du Monde for fluffy beignets and coffee before heading back to the heat. If you’re lucky you may catch a second line parade coming down the street. If so, don’t hesitate to jump in and get to dancing.
Do not let the heat deteriorate any of your plans. The whole family will love a flavorful shaved ice snowball at the local snowball shops located on almost every corner. The kids will enjoy the endless toppings from gummy bears to sour pickles while adults experiment with countless flavors like wild cherry, orchid cream vanilla and butter beer. If you’re near City Park, try Ike’s Snowballs where you can even get a snowball stuffed with ice cream. Here is a list of the “Must-Try Sno-Ball Stands in New Orleans”.
As the sun sets New Orleans does not rest. The music continues to flow through the night air and the creole food continues to be served. Adults can always enjoy the famous Bourbon Street that features multiple bars and pizzerias that do not close till the last person has eaten.
As a family road trip destination, New Orleans has much to offer and will likely leave the entire family more than satisfied. For travel tips and more road trip ideas, take a look at our collection of articles here.
– Traci Morgan