New Orleans has become the place where cultures of different peoples met and blended. The heritage of the French and the Spanish can be traced in numerous stone buildings, cuisine and religion (Catholic). The French influence turned out so strong that it appears to dominate in the architecture of New Orleans. In the 19th century New Orleans was even called the Paris of the New World. Protestants and North American Indians have brought in their faith and the descendents of African slaves have added their cults, including voodoo. You can see all this if you book one of New Orleans tours. Here many generations of white people and people of African descent, such as French and Spanish creoles, American settlers from Virginia and Kentucky, lived and mixed. This explains why the problem of racial discrimination was extremely acute here for a long time.
The present day New Orleans is a friendly city with the population of over 300 thousand people. It is the cradle of jazz and the birthplace of Louis Armstrong, as well as the home to numerous jazz festivals. You can listen to live jazz music right on the streets of the city absolutely free or at some small cost you agree to pay. Music adds fun to your New Orleans tour, and both locals and tourists can relax in inexpensive bars. The city has long been known for its easy going and cheerful attitude to life. No wonder that it is nicknamed the Crescent City, Big Easy and City that Care Forgot. Non official motto of the city is Laissez les bons temps rouler.
The bigger part of the city is occupied by water canals and lakes, enormous dams, natural swamps and, of course, the Mississippi River. That is why New Orleans is a popular destination to fish and have tons of water fun. Swamp tours are also popular. People can see live alligators swimming past flooded houses and trees there. Swamp tour season lasts all summer long so summer is the best time to visit New Orleans.
Tourists can stay right on the river or lake bank in some specially equipped trailer campgrounds which are very popular among families. The choice of the lodging type depends on personal preferences and outdoor activities travelers are engaged in. Those who visit New Orleans on business or come to explore all the attractions the city has to offer can choose from a variety of affordable hotel options. So travelers have good chances to save a lot on their accommodation.
New Orleans boasts a great number of water attractions which can be found even in the zoos. Kids are thrilled about water fun. If you visit New Orleans in summer when the air temperature reaches 30-33°С make sure you go to one of such places with kids to cool down and experience unforgettable water fun. Probably no other place in the U.S. boasts such a great number of neighboring beaches where you can enjoy delicious food, pleasant music and a friendly atmosphere.
As we have mentioned above, the city architecture is more European style, not typical for the USA and this makes New Orleans a popular romantic getaway. Walking along the streets or getting around the city using public transport which, by the way, will help you save money, you can feel as if you were in Paris or Madrid without having to fly over the ocean.
New Orleans has its own distinctive style that impacts nearly all aspects of life. For example, supermarkets are not just located side by side with small stores, but form one big shopping center. Shopping there you not only experience excitement from new purchases but also enjoy communicating with other people. Make sure you visit one of New Orleans malls to experience this feeling long forgot.
New Orleans is home to great museums, including the National WW II Museum. The Audubon Aquarium of the Americas and Audubon Butterfly Garden and Insectarium in New Orleans deserve a special attention and probably a separate story.
Words fail to describe the unique atmosphere of this remarkable city so if you have a chance make sure you visit New Orleans in person to see all its attractions and enjoy its ambient and relaxed lifestyle.