Best Time To Visit New Orleans, Louisiana, USA

best time of year to visit new orleans

Near the Gulf of Mexico and on the Mississippi River, one will find New Orleans. It’s a fascinating city renowned for fusing together diverse cultures such as African, American, and French in its makeup. Moreover, it attracts tourists from the USA and from around the world who come here for its exciting festivals and parades. The Mardi Gras is the city’s major parade and a masquerade ball event, the Krewe of Boo Halloween Parade is one of the most unique events of its kind, and the New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival attracts music fans that love soulful music. Check out the best times to visit New Orleans, Louisiana, USA and plan your trip accordingly.

1. Cheap flights (July and September)

Airbus A380
Source: Photo by Wikimedia Commons user Dmitry A. Mottl used under PUBLIC DOMAIN

New Orleans is a popular tourist destination for both American and international travelers. If you’re heading to this vibrant city during its festival and peak seasons, then expect to pay more for flights and hotels. However, if you’re on a budget and looking for cheap flights then, we recommend that you plan your trip to New Orleans during July and September. The reason for this is that July is a relatively quiet and rainy period and September is the end period of the holiday and summer season.

2. Great weather (October to November and February to March)

New Orleans skyline-02
Source: Photo by Wikimedia Commons user thepipe26 used under CC BY 2.0

One of the best things about New Orleans is its great weather. It has long summers and short winters, with the hottest and rainy periods being between June and August. We understand that many travelers don’t enjoy high temperatures, and that’s why we’re recommending the cooler months. The highest temperatures during October and November reach 27°C (80.6°F) and 22°C (71.6°F) respectively. And the maximum temperatures during February and March reach 19°C (66.2°F) and 23°C (73.4°F) respectively with reduced rainfall.

3. Krewe of Boo Halloween Parade (October)

Posted by Christophe Tirodem Gérard on Saturday, 20 October 2018

Another good reason to visit New Orleans in October is for the Krewe of Boo Halloween Parade. This is the city’s official Halloween event since 2007, and one of the finest and most unique of its kind in the world. It brings together locals and tourists to enjoy a parade of papier mache and fiberglass floats and props making their way through a predetermined route. Young and old wear scary Halloween costumes to frighten the surrounding crowds. Make sure to bring along a creatively inspired costume of your own if you attend this amazing event!

4. Avoid crowds (June to September)

Bourbon Street, New Orleans from St Louis Street 2
Source: Photo by Wikimedia Commons user MusikAnimal used under CC BY-SA 4.0

Do you suffer from agoraphobia or can’t stand crowded places? Well, then you’re in luck as New Orleans has its quieter periods from June through to September. These are some of the hottest months, and many folks prefer to spend their summer vacations in cooler climes. However, visitors can take their time and appreciate the city’s unique architecture and landmarks. And it shouldn’t be a problem finding a table at New Orleans’ popular bars, cafes, and restaurants.

5. Seafood festival (September)

Seafood Festival New Orleans

Posted by Glen Mathieu on Sunday, 29 October 2017

If you’re a seafood lover, then you shouldn’t miss out on New Orleans’ fantastic Louisiana Seafood Festival. Widely considered one of the best festivals of its kind in the USA, it’s been going strong since 2006. It takes place every September and features a VIP tent, booths, and a pavilion housing a wide range of seafood vendors and local bands. Enjoy delicious fish dishes while listening to the sounds of talented musicians.

6. Allstate Sugar Bowl (January)

New Orleans 391 in the Superdome
Source: Photo by Wikimedia Commons user Coastie Wife 2008 used under CC BY 2.0

College football is one of the most important sporting traditions in the USA, and it’s a tradition that foreign tourists should experience at least once in their lives. If you’re heading to New Orleans in January, then you should definitely book a ticket to the Allstate Sugar Bowl that takes place at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome in the French Quarter. You’ll experience an electrifying atmosphere while in the stadium, and enjoy frenetic football games by America’s finest college teams.

7. New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival (end April to early May)

Acura, one of the main stage at the New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival - 2359
Source: Photo by Wikimedia Commons user Masahiro Sumori used under CC BY-SA 3.0

New Orleans is a very important city to music aficionados since it hosts the New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival every year. This festival was founded back in 1970 and regularly hosts local and international artists. The musical genres that one can expect to hear include Afro-Caribbean, blues, bluegrass, country, folk, gospel, Latin, rap, rock, and R&B. If these are your musical tastes, then make sure to be in New Orleans from the end of April through to early May.

8. Great hotel deals (July to August and December to January)

Le Pavillon New Orleans
Source: Photo by Wikimedia Commons user Gonk used under PUBLIC DOMAIN

With so much to see and do in New Orleans, you’ll want to have as much spending money as possible. It’s an achievable goal to set aside those funds by simply saving on hotel fees. Enjoy great hotel deals by booking your hotel room between July and August or from December to January. Hotels tend to have fewer bookings during the hottest and coldest months of the year and are willing to reduce their rates.

9. Great off-season hotel deals (June to August)

French Quarter03 New Orleans
Source: Photo by Wikimedia Commons user Sami99tr used under CC BY-SA 3.0

New Orleans is a top tourist destination and often gets crowded, especially when festivals and parades take place. It’s also harder to find rooms and at lower prices during these busy periods. But if you’re budget conscious and looking for great hotels deals, then we recommend you book a room anytime between June to August. There are no major events taking place then, and these also happen to be the hottest months in New Orleans making it easier to find rooms at lower rates.

10. Mardi Gras (January to March)

St. Anthony Parade at Mardi Gras Panorama Band 2010
Source: Photo by Wikimedia Commons user Brad Coy used under CC BY 2.0

The Mardi Gras is a holiday that’s celebrated throughout southern Louisiana and one of the main annual events in New Orleans. Mardi Gras season begins in January and ends in March, and is defined by the various parades and masquerade balls that take place throughout the city. Local clubs known as Krewes organize these parades that occur in the city’s major districts and streets, the most popular being Bourbon Street.

In conclusion

New Orleans is a good place to visit regardless of the time of year. But if you want to catch the Mardi Gras and the Allstate Sugar Bowl, then head over there in January. If music’s your thing, then don’t miss out on the New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival that takes places between the end of April to early May. And if you want to experience the Louisiana Seafood Festival and Krewe of Boo Halloween Parade then consider visiting in September and October. If you want to save on flights and hotel fees, then plan your trip for the off-season months.

Disclosure: Trip101 selects the listings in our articles independently. Some of the listings in this article contain affiliate links.

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