Calling all families! We’ve rounded up a list of attractions that are great for the whole fam. Keep the kids entertained with a visit to one of the museums, parks, or attractions listed below.
When it comes to kid-friendly activities in New Orleans, Audubon Aquarium and Audubon Zoo are two of the best. The new, totally reimagined and redesigned Audubon Aquarium opens June 8 and is an immersive experience featuring the beauty and diversity of wildlife from around the world. Adventures include special animal encounters with penguins, a 60-foot-long hands-on touch pool with sharks and stingrays, and behind-the-scenes access to the 450,000-gallon Gulf of Mexico exhibit. The Aquarium’s Amazon Gallery houses 60 free-flying colorful birds, and the Amazon Encounter is home to 20 animals, including an armadillo and a Linnaeus’ two-toed sloth. Audubon Zoo is an enchanting experience, featuring a pride of lions, elephants, the mysterious white alligators, and endangered wildlife such as orangutans, Amur leopards, and whooping cranes. Must-see exhibits include Jaguar Jungle, Wings of the World, and the award-winning Louisiana Swamp, all free with zoo admission. USA Today Reader’s Choice Award named it the #7 most popular zoo in the US. Purchase tickets at AudubonNatureInstitute.org/tickets.
Let the little ones burn off some energy at Storyland in City Park. Children will delight in exploring the playground filled with miniature houses, life-sized animals, and storybook characters. Or ride the rides at Carousel Gardens, located directly next to Storyland. This small-but-mighty amusement park is open seasonally and features traditional carnival rides, a train that weaves its way through the entirety of City Park, a historic carousel, and a ladybug-themed rollercoaster. Afterwards, cool off with a sno-ball flight on the Great Lawn or treat your kiddos to beignets at Café du Monde. Older children will enjoy renting a bike to ride around the park or exploring Big Lake via boat. It’s never a dull day at City Park.
Also located in the lush greenspace of City Park, the Louisiana Children’s Museum is a treat for children of all ages. Kids will love learning about the Mighty Mississippi through the river exhibit and exploring the great outdoors on the museum grounds. Book your tickets online in advance. You can also grab lunch at Acorn Cafe, the super kid-friendly restaurant located on-site.
Children will love this colorful, Instagram-friendly attraction. Step into a world designed by local artists focused on representing the music, art and culture of New Orleans. Mardi Gras Indians, jazz musicians, seafood and alligators all serve as inspiration for the exhibits at JAMNOLA. Wind through a variety of colorful rooms as you make your way through the experience. Pose in a crawfish boil pot, next to a po-boy wall, or by any of the exhibits for the perfect photo opp.
Go behind the scene of the greatest free show on Earth at Mardi Gras World. Take a tour of the warehouse where many floats are designed and decorated and learn the history of Mardi Gras in New Orleans. Kids will love getting up close to the magic.
The New Orleans Boulder Lounge is a rock climbing space in the Bywater open to both children and adults. For a challenging and rewarding activity, take the kiddos to the boulder lounge for a couple hours.
Frequently honored as a top museum in the country, the National WWII Museum is a must on any traveler’s list. Telling the story of the American experience during the war, the museum is home to both special and traveling exhibits, a variety of events, and a 4D theater experience. A history lesson for children, the interactive elements make learning fun. The expansive campus includes a hotel and multiple restaurants.
Children will delight in the potions and legends of the Pharmacy Museum. Housed in the apothecary of America’s first licensed pharmacist, the museum’s collection documents and illustrates the history of medicine during the 19th century. It’s one of the most interesting and unique museums New Orleans offers.
Located in historically Black Tremé, the New Orleans African American Museum is dedicated to protecting, preserving, and promoting the history, art, contributions, and culture of African Americans in New Orleans and the African diaspora. The museum features exhibits from Black artists and showcases Black-owned businesses at a monthly market.