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Romantic New Orleans Itinerary

Heralded as one of the most romantic cities in the world by CNN and other travel publications, New Orleans is the perfect place to spend some quality time with the one you love. You may be celebrating Valentine’s Day or an anniversary, but romance in New Orleans doesn’t need a special occasion. Come any time of year and experience misty mornings on the Mississippi, dimly lit craft cocktail bars, historic neighborhoods, and some of the world’s finest cuisine.

Below, we have offered some suggestions for a romantic itinerary, by New Orleans neighborhood. But remember that the beauty of this city sometimes reveals itself most when you least expect it. Start with our suggestions, and then explore the city together!

The French Quarter

The French Quarter, or Vieux Carré, is the oldest and perhaps the best-known neighborhood in New Orleans. Romantic strolls and bistros abound.

  1. Horse and Carriage Ride
    Cafe Du Monde
    Breakfast - Try Café Amelie, where the 150-year-old courtyard and carriage house create an atmosphere sure to spark conversation.
  2. Royal Street gallery hop - Dotted with art galleries, antique stores and street musicians, Royal Street is ideal for window-shopping.
  3. Carriage rides - Take a carriage ride through the French Quarter. Evening or nighttime carriage rides are often the most romantic.
  4. Cocktails - Try Arnaud’s French 75 Bar for classic New Orleans cocktails in an intimate setting, or check out Cane & Table for a modern twist in a historic building.
  5. Dinner - The French Quarter is filled with great options for romantic dining. Some top choices include Bayona and Irene’s Cuisine.
  6. Jazz - The Jazz Playhouse is a romantic spot to settle back into a comfortable seat, sip an after-dinner drink and savor the music.
  7. Late-night dessert - Nothing beats a late-night trip to Café du Monde for traditional beignets and café au lait.

Faubourg Marigny and Bywater

Feelings Café
Bywater Architecture

The Faubourg Marigny and Bywater will bring out your colorful side. Live like a local and enjoy some of the city’s up-and-coming restaurants.

  1. Stroll in Crescent Park - Located right along the Mississippi River, Crescent Park is a secluded green space perfect for a private walk or picnic.
  2. Explore by bike - Rent bikes and check out the neighborhood’s colorful architecture.
  3. Dinner and drinks - Marigny and Bywater restaurants are full of patios and dimly lit lounges. Try The Franklin, N7, Feelings Café, or Mariza
  4. Music and wine - Try Bacchanal, where you can sip wine while listening to live music in the courtyard.
  5. Dancing - Challenge yourself to learn some new moves with some of the free swing dance lessons offered in the neighborhood.

Mid City and Esplanade Ridge

Mid City and Esplanade Ridge provide an escape from the bustle of the city, with plenty of green space and opportunities to explore the outdoors.

  1. Lola's on Esplanade Ave.
    Sculpture Gardens in City Park
    Picnic in City Park - Grab a po-boy from nearby Parkway Bakery and find a secluded spot in the oak trees of City Park for a midday picnic.
  2. Get out on the Bayou - Rent a kayak or paddleboard and explore Bayou St. John, an “urban bayou” in the midst of New Orleans, or try a romantic gondola ride in City Park.
  3. The Sculpture Garden - Part of the New Orleans Museum of Art, the Sculpture Garden is free, open to the public, and ripe for exploring.
  4. Wine - Swirl Wine Bar is a great option for a glass of wine before dinner!
  5. Dinner - Tucked away along Esplanade Avenue, Café Degas offers authentic French cuisine and is one of the most romantic restaurants in the city. If you’re in the mood for Spanish food, try Lola’s just across the street. If you want to stay closer to City Park, try Ralph’s on the Park.

The Garden District and Uptown

Take in the stately mansions along St. Charles Avenue and discover romantic neighborhood restaurants.

  1. St. Charles Streetcar
    St. Charles Streetcar
    La Crepe Nanou
    Ride the St. Charles Streetcar - The St. Charles Streetcar is an iconic New Orleans experience. Share a seat with your partner as you look out the window to enjoy the beautiful homes and gardens along St. Charles Avenue.
  2. Explore the Garden District - Take a closer look at the Garden District with a stroll through the neighborhood, a walking tour or a carriage tour.
  3. Cocktails and wine - Try Bouligny Tavern, The Delachaise or Cure for a relaxed, romantic ambiance.
  4. Dinner - Uptown and The Garden District are full of neighborhood restaurants tucked away on quiet streets. Restaurants like Lilette, Upperline, La Crepe Nanou, La Petite Grocery and Coquette are romantic favorites.
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