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New Orleans Tours

Discover 1431 tours and activities in New Orleans
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The 10 Best New Orleans Tours

1

French Quarter of New Orleans Walking Tour

First up on your New Orleans itinerary should be a visit to the French Quarter. This is the oldest part of town and dates to 1718. It's an atmospheric district, with colonial architecture and bags of history to entice you in. 

During your excursion, you'll take in many of the city's famous landmarks. St. Louis Cathedral, Jackson Square and the Mississippi River are particular highlights. You'll learn about the heritage of the neighborhood and get insider tips about the best restaurants and bars. 

A guided trip to the St. Louis Cemetery is also included on many walking tours in New Orleans. This is one of the city's oldest cemeteries and home to several spooky secrets. It's also the final resting place of everyone from voodoo queens to pirates. 

These tours last around 2 hours, which is just the right amount of time to explore the sights without getting too tired. The pace is leisurely, and you'll be able to stop at key points during the walk for photos.  

2

New Orleans Ghosts, Crime and Voodoo Tour

Prepare for a scare as you plunge deep into the heart of the old town on a spine-tingling adventure. These New Orleans tours reveal the city's more mysterious side and focus on voodoo rituals and spooky underworld legends. Most excursions take place on foot to help you connect with the locations and folk tales.

This part of the United States is known for its voodoo religion, which is steeped in intrigue. You'll learn how voodoo practices are celebrations of life and death rather than something to fear. It's enthralling and creepy in equal measure. 

Your storyteller guide will also reveal the gory crimes that have been committed in these streets through the centuries. Some of the criminals were caught, but others got away. You'll even hear how paranormal activity has been observed in the city, so keep a wary eye out as you explore. 

Witches, ghosts and even vampires are said to roam the streets of New Orleans after dark. You'll stop at several haunted locations to see what, or who, you can spot!

3

New Orleans Garden District Guided Tour

The Garden District in New Orleans shows you a different side of the city, beyond the tourist bustle of the French Quarter. This is an area full of tree-lined avenues and antebellum manor houses, showing off the historic wealth of this attractive neighborhood.

Crypts and grave sites feature heavily on these excursions, with the famous Lafayette Cemetery being a hotly anticipated stop. Here, you'll see ancient tombs and learn about the unusual burial traditions that are unique to New Orleans.  

During these New Orleans tours, you'll discover the unique architectural style that has made the place so iconic. Hear the stories of the people who once lived here and admire the lush gardens that stretch out beside the elegant mansions.

New Orleans carriage rides are another way to explore and offer an authentic way to get around the city. The sound of the trotting horses makes you feel like you've traveled back in time – a thought that's emphasized by the distinctive New Orleans buildings. 

4

Steamboat Natchez Jazz Cruise

Looking for iconic activities to try in New Orleans? Step things up a notch in the city of jazz with a cruise on the Steamboat Natchez. Both day and evening trips are available, with buffet dinners and live music to set the scene. 

These unique jazz tours are a fun way to enjoy a jaunt on the mighty Mississippi River, taking in the sights as you float by. Listen to the sultry sounds of the saxophone floating out across the water, before taking your seat for a sumptuous feast in the salon. 

The food is Creole-inspired, with jambalaya, bayou seafood pasta and sausage gumbo all on the menu. Other Louisiana favorites include garlic fingerling potatoes and baked chicken. To polish things off, you can't go wrong with a portion of white chocolate bread pudding. 

VIP experiences add an extra layer of luxury, with Champagne cocktails and a guided boat tour with the captain. You'll have your own reserved table and front-row seats by the band before dinner. 

5

New Orleans Swamp and Bayou Trip

Boat tours around the swamps and bayous of New Orleans are a must if you fancy exploring the wilderness surrounding the city. Trips last around a couple of hours and run on a small group basis to keep things intimate. 

Most excursions use airboats, which skim over the water, taking you deep into the mysterious marshlands. Using these vessels, you can venture further than traditional boats, just like in the movies. 

One of the most popular destinations on these immersive New Orleans tours is the Honey Island Swamp. This wetlands preserve is known for its wildlife, with alligators, snakes and native birds often spotted. You might even see wild boar too if you're lucky. 

Up the adventure with a kayaking trip into the remote shallows of the Manchac and Maurepas Swamps. After a short briefing and practice session with your expert guide, you'll paddle into the bayous on a tandem kayak. Keep your eyes peeled for owls and turtles as you glide silently through the wild.

6

Oak Alley Plantation Tour from New Orleans

To understand the complex history of New Orleans, visiting a plantation is an insightful day out. The Oak Alley Plantation is one of the best-known in the region. It was built in the 19th century and is famed for its avenue of oak trees.

On arrival, you'll enjoy a guided tour of the plantation house and grounds. Learn about life in the time of slavery and listen to tales about those who lived here at Oak Alley. It's a moving experience and an important part of the New Orleans story.

Before you return to the city, you'll be treated to a boat tour in the swamps. Wildlife watching will be top of the agenda. During the ride, your captain will regale you with a bit of Creole and Cajun history, including how people live here in the bayou. 

Another popular place to see is the Laura Plantation, which can be visited instead of Oak Alley. Again, you'll have a guided visit of the estate, including the slave quarters, museums and historic buildings. 

7

Whitney Plantation from New Orleans Trip

For a greater understanding of slavery and life on a Louisiana plantation, there's one attraction that makes for a perfect day trip from the city. The Whitney Plantation stands head and shoulders above the rest when it comes to educational experiences. 

This plantation was known for its indigo and sugar production, with operations carried out by the slaves who worked here. It was a tough life, but their stories have not been forgotten. This is the only plantation in the area that concentrates solely on slavery and its widespread impact. 

There's a museum on site that displays exhibits and artifacts from the slavery era. Recorded narratives shine a light on what life was like here back in the day, with real accounts from those who suffered. 

You'll also get to see the restored slave cabins and historical plantation buildings as you explore the grounds. A highlight of the trip will be the Big House, which boasts Spanish Creole architecture. Self-guided visits let you wander around at your own pace.

8

Creole Queen Paddlewheeler in New Orleans

Cruise back in time as you embark on a historic adventure on the Creole Queen Paddlewheeler. If you want to journey along the Mississippi River in style, this is the way to do it. Most sightseeing excursions last 2.5 hours, and some come with lunch on board too.

These narrated New Orleans tours take you on a quest through 300 years of city history, with a focus on battle sites and national parks. If you're interested in learning how the city came about all those years ago, a spin on the paddlewheeler is a good place to start.

After enjoying a drink at the bar, head out onto the open-air deck and watch the landscape drift by. This is a relaxing way to explore, and you'll get to see places that aren't accessible by land. 

You'll hear about the famous 1815 Battle of New Orleans, which took place in what is now the Jean Lafitte National Historical Park and Preserve. A guided tour of the Chalmette Battlefield is the highlight of the trip. 

9

New Orleans Funtastic Pub Crawl

Want to let your hair down and check out some of the city's best watering holes? Then join a pub crawl and see a different side of New Orleans. Many excursions are themed, with everything from cocktail tours to haunted inns on the agenda. 

You'll be delving deep into the lively nighttime scene of New Orleans with a local guide. They'll take you to some famous spots, as well as a few places off the beaten tourist trail. 

After learning about the city's history, it's time to get down to business. You'll visit several venues, with different drinks on offer in each. Feel free to party into the small hours with live music keeping energy levels high. 

Spooky pub crawls are a big hit with visitors to New Orleans. The city is synonymous with ghostly goings on, and tall tales go hand-in-hand with a pint of beer or two. Many tours focus on the French Quarter, as this is one of the oldest parts of town – and home to all the ghouls. 

10

Delicious New Orleans Street Food Tour

The tastiest New Orleans tours revolve around the city's vibrant street food scene. On these culinary adventures, you'll stroll around the French Quarter with a guide, stopping at key landmarks and popular eateries. It's a delightful combination of food and history. 

At different establishments across the district, you'll enjoy sampling some of the most famous local delicacies. Creole brisket, beignet and seafood gumbo all guarantee to hit the spot. In several restaurants, you'll be able to see behind the scenes with a peek into the kitchens – this is where the magic happens. 

On some food excursions you'll visit the French Market, which is one of the oldest in the United States. You'll taste morsels from the stalls as you wander around, learning about local produce and secret ingredients.

To immerse yourself even deeper in the city's food heritage, why not book a cooking class in New Orleans? You'll enjoy a chef demonstration before getting stuck into some hands-on cooking. Traditional Creole dishes like gumbo and jambalaya are often on the menu. 

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Guide

Planning your visit to New Orleans

Discover our complete guide to visiting New Orleans.

About New Orleans

The intoxicating city of New Orleans is famed for its unique soul. The food and music scenes here are unrivaled, and jazz often spills out into the streets on summer evenings. Come here for nightlife and entertainment but stay for the welcoming feeling that captivates even the most jaded of travelers.

Good to know before arriving

For those who like to explore on foot, New Orleans is an attractive prospect. The neighborhoods here are relatively small, making them perfect for walking excursions. It can get hot in the summer, so make sure you carry plenty of water with you. 

Places and experiences that cannot be missed

If it's your first visit to New Orleans, the French Quarter should be your immediate point of call. This is where you'll find famous colonial buildings, jazz bars and a buzzing evening scene. Next, book a ghost tour or take a boat ride into the swamps surrounding the city.

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