There are many cultural offerings and attractions to visit in New Orleans. From delicious food and drinks to museums and historic collections to cemeteries, there’s something for everyone who visits New Orleans. Listed below are a handful of places you might enjoy visiting. Also, before you go, check the location’s current masking and vaccination policies for visitors. All distances provided are from Ernest N. Morial Convention Center, Hall E.
If you aren’t attending MLA in New Orleans in person, many of these places have virtual collections available, so check them out just in case!
National WWII Museum (0.5 miles) is the official WWII museum of the United States. The six-acre campus houses historical exhibits and restaurants and conducts onsite restoration work. The museum is rated the top tourist attraction in New Orleans and is consistently rated one of the top ten museums in the world (Tripadvisor). The 4-D film Beyond All Boundaries is a wonderful addition to general admission tickets (additional $7.00). General admission is $29.50 for adults, $25.50 for seniors, and $18.00 for military, college students, and children. Open daily 9:00 am – 5:00 pm. 945 Magazine Street. https://www.nationalww2museum.org/
Audubon Aquarium of the Americas (0.8 miles) boasts more than 3,600 animals from more than 250 species, caring for creatures from the Caribbean to the Amazon Rainforest to closer locales, the Mississippi River and Gulf of Mexico. When is the last time you saw a white alligator? Check admission rates online. Thursday – Monday, 10:00 am – 5:00 pm. 1 Canal Street. https://audubonnatureinstitute.org/aquarium
The Historic New Orleans Collection has multiple locations. The location at 533 Royal features interpretative courtyard displays and houses the Louisiana History Galleries. Currently, in addition to interpretative courtyard displays, the French Quarter Galleries, The Shop at The Collection, and Café Cour, the 520 Royal Street location has the Backstage at “A Streetcar Named Desire”, French Quarter Life: People and Places in the Vieux Carré, and Making Mardi Gras exhibitions. Admission is free. Please note that while exhibitions require tickets for admission, they are free. Tuesday – Saturday, 9:30 am – 4:30 pm and Sunday 10:30 am – 4:30 pm. https://www.hnoc.org/
New Orleans Pharmacy Museum (1.2 miles) is located in the Vieux Carré Historic District and “showcases its extensive collection and provides interpretive educational programs to present and preserve the rich history of pharmacy and healthcare in Louisiana.” Admission is $10.00 for adults and $7.00 for seniors, students, and military. Wednesday – Saturday, 12:00 pm – 5:00 pm. 514 Chartres Street. https://www.pharmacymuseum.org/
St. Louis Cathedral (1.3 miles) is one New Orleans’ most notable landmarks and the oldest Catholic cathedral in continual use in the United States. Suggested $1.00 donation. Open Daily 9:00 am – 4:00. Daily Mass 12:05 pm. 615 Pere Antoine Alley. https://www.stlouiscathedral.org/
Preservation Hall (1.5 miles) dates back to the 1950s and announces that “After nearly 15 months of silence, we are elated to announce the return of music, joy, and life to Preservation Hall.” The venue brings audiences New Orleans Jazz from ensembles of more than 50 local master practitioners. They are open daily for multiple 45-minute performances. Check their calendar for bands, times, and tickets. 726 Saint Peter Street. https://www.preservationhall.com/
St. Louis Cemetery No. 1 (1.6 miles) was established in 1789 and is the oldest extant cemetery in the City of New Orleans. At the instruction of New Orleans Catholic Cemeteries, please schedule a tour when visiting this cemetery, resting place of “the city’s most famous and infamous historical figures.” 501 Basin Street. https://cemeterytourneworleans.com/ , https://nolacatholiccemeteries.org/st-louis-cemetery-1
New Orleans Jazz Museum (1.8 Miles) is a Louisiana State Museum housed at the old U.S. Mint. Current exhibits include: Drumsville: Evolution of the New Orleans Beat, The Wildest! Louis Prima Comes Home, Exit Stage Right: Zack Smith’s Festival Portraits, Lightning and Thunder: Big Chief Monk Boudreaux and the Golden Eagles, and From the Fat Man to Mahalia: James Michalopoulos’ Music Paintings. Admission is $8.00 for adults and $6.00 for students, senior citizens, and active military. Hours are Tuesday – Sunday 9:00 am – 4:00 pm. 400 Esplanade Avenue. https://nolajazzmuseum.org/
(Photo courtesy of Jennifer K. Lloyd, copyright 2022)