The first week of July, the city throws off its sedate, summer pace and starts to move to the beat of Essence Fest and beyond. Spend Independence Day with good food, history, live music and more with our recommendations below.
New Orleans parks are the perfect spot for barbeques and picnics with friends and family. For larger groups, pavilion rentals are available with water and electricity for cooking at City Park and Audubon Park. Enjoy your meal on the banks of the Mississippi River at The Fly, Crescent Park or Woldenberg Park. If you would rather not cook, stop by a restaurant and pick up anything from barbeque to po-boys, and throw the perfect picnic to commemorate the day. Some good spots to pick up good include Picnic Provisions and Whiskey, Parkway Tavern, Blue Oak BBQ, Central City BBQ and Dat Dog.
The National WWII Museum is the perfect stop to celebrate American history. Explore the exhibits, see a show, and learn about the significance of New Orleans in the war. Venture outside the city to a plantation such as Houmas House or Whitney Plantation. Others historic sites to check out include the Louisiana National Guard Museum at Jackson Barracks and Fort Pike.
Take a dip and soak up some sun swimming with friends. The Country Club offers a day pass for guests to use their pool and cabana. Otherwise, check out our Hotel Pool Roundup to find which spot speaks to you. See our list of Refreshing Summer Cocktails and enjoy a flavorful drink.
The holiday’s biggest celebration is on the banks of the Mississippi at the annual Go Fourth on the River extravaganza. “Dueling Barges” put on an exciting fireworks show to the tune of patriotic music. There are a lot of different locations to catch the excitement along the river, from Woldenberg Park to Crescent Park or across the river on the West Bank.
Steamboats offer fireworks cruises for the evening, so you can get up close and personal with the amazing show. All in all, it’s a celebratory time. Mandeville Wharf at Crescent Park has live music leading up to the show. Coolers and chairs are welcome!