There is so much to see and do in New Orleans, it’s hard to fit everything in one weekend, but we did our best to hit the most popular NOLA attractions! Need help figuring out what to do for a weekend in New Orleans? This 48-Hour New Orleans Itinerary will give you some great ideas on what not to miss!
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48-Hour New Orleans Itinerary: DAY 1
Oak Alley + Evergreen Plantations
We loved seeing them, but if you are only visiting New Orleans for a weekend, just note that booking a tour out to see these will eat up a very large chuck of your time… had it not been on our way, we probably wouldn’t have done it.
That being said, the plantations were absolutely beautiful to see and worth it if you have time!
If you are interested in seeing them, there are several tours available that provide transportation from NOLA. I can’t speak on them since we drove ourselves, but the reviews look good!
Stumble Upon a Street Jazz Band
You can’t walk one block without stumbling upon an incredible Jazz musician or band playing on the street! It’s part of what I loved about New Orleans!
Oysters at Felix's
Next up: Oysters at Felix’s Restaurant and Oyster Bar. ACME was more recommended to me, but when we got there, the line was way out the door so we decided to try our luck at Felix’s across the street. We were NOT disappointed! Got to sit right at the bar and had some of the best Oysters ever.
We then headed back to the hotel to freshen up before heading out for the night!
A Night Out on Bourbon Street
Bourbon Street is probably the most well know New Orleans attraction! Pro tip: If you want to experience a night out on Bourbon but don’t necessarily want to deal with trashy, sloppy drunks, go out earlier. We went around 9 or 10 pm and only stayed for a couple hours but still had a blast!
48-Hour New Orleans Itinerary: DAY 2
Explore the French Quarter
No 48-hour New Orleans Itinerary would be complete without The French Quarter! Walking around the streets of the french quarter in the morning was a great way to start out! We grabbed some coffee and just strolled around taking in all the historic buildings.
Jackson Square is a must see! Street vendors line the entire outside of this little park. It’s really interesting to see all the different artists displaying their work.
The Voodoo Museum
The New Orleans Voodoo museum is very small, but we learned SO much about the history of Voodoo in NOLA. It was only $7 to enter, plan to spend maybe 20-30 minutes here.
In the museum you can make a voodoo offering for good luck! I’m still waiting to see if mine comes true 😉
Take A Streetcar to The Garden District
These cute streetcars run all up and down Canal Street. The St. Charles Avenue streetcar takes you right to the garden district!
You can buy an all day pass for $3 at many of the different shops up and down the street. We got ours at Walgreens.
Lunch at The Commander's Palace
We didn’t actually get to do this because Commander’s Palace was unfortunately closed by the time we got there, but it was highly recommended! Just note that is closes at 1 pm on Saturday.
Walk Through The Garden District
If you’re an American Horror Story fan, definitely check out the house (The Buckner Mansion) they filmed in during Season 3!
Lafayette Cemetery No. 1
I thought it was strange when many people messaged me saying we had to visit the cemeteries, but after seeing them in person, I can understand why!
New Orleans’s cemeteries are unique in that many are above ground.
These cemeteries date back to the 1700’s and are hauntingly beautiful to explore. Many offer guided tours if you’re interested in leaning more about the history!
Grab a Drink at the Hot Tin Rooftop Bar
Located in the Pontchartrain Hotel, The Hot Tin Rooftop Bar is a great place to grab an afternoon drink and admire the New Orleans Skyline!
Late Night Snack at Cafe Du Monde
You can’t go to New Orleans and not visit Cafe Du Monde. So despite me hating to wait in line, we waited 40 minutes for the iconic beignets. I was told the lines are much shorter at night, hence why I added it as a late night snack option instead!
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Had to #wheninnola. . If you know me, you know I hate waiting in lines. I’m literally the most impatient person. When I saw the line for @cafedumonde my gut reaction was “yeah no.” But I felt obligated to wait for this classic NOLA treat... and I don’t even like sweets all that much! The beignets were really good, don’t get me wrong, but was it worth the wait when I could’ve been doing other things? Maybe. . Do you ever do things while traveling because you feel like you just HAVE to? I know I’m so guilty of it🙋🏼♀️
48-Hour New Orleans Itinerary: DAY 3
Walk Along the Riverfront
If it’s a nice morning, I’d definitely recommend grabbing a coffee to go and walking along the river front.
Along the river you’ll ultimately come across The Steamboat Natchez, a historic steamboat that offers a variety of cruises! Had we had more time (and had Grace not been prone to seasickness haha) we would’ve loved to have done a dinner cruise or something!
Shopping in the French Quarter
There are so many cute boutiques in the French Quarter! You can find some really nice, non-cheesy NOLA souvenirs in these. I loved this watercolor painting we found in a boutique and they just happen to have an Etsy store as well!
Other Notable Things To Do in 48 Hours in New Orleans
It’s hard to fit everything in one weekend, there was so much more we were hoping to do! If you’ve got more time, these are some other things that came highly suggested:
- Art Galleries on Royal Street
- Audubon Park
- Art Warehouse
- Audubon Butterfly Garden and Insectarium
- Audubon Aquarium of the Americas
- Museum of Death
- Pharmacy Museum
- Mardi Gras World
- City Park
- New Orleans Museum of Art (NOMA)
- Muffuletta from Central Grocery
- Brunch at Ruby Slipper (prepare for long lines)