24 hours in New Orleans is not nearly enough, but if you're here for a layover or just passing through, a day is plenty to see, eat, and dance your way through New Orleans. Here is Astrid Solo Travel Advisor's guide for a quick trip to the Crescent City:
Take A Stroll
New Orleans, especially the French Quarter, is a walking city (and a walking-with-cocktails city). From the beautiful architecture, to the lush hanging gardens, take a stroll and see the beauty of the city's oldest neighborhood. You can see a lot walking around for an hour: the mighty Mississippi River, the iconic St. Louis Cathedral and Jackson Square, unique street performers and art vendors, centuries old mansions, the posh art galleries and antique shops on Royal Street, and more. Some of the most photographed architecture, which dates back to the 18th and 19th centuries, can be found Royal Street.
To quench your thirst, grab a cocktail to go to sip during your stroll. Enjoy a refreshing Pimm's Cup from Napoleon House or a classic French 75 from Hotel Monteleone's Carousel Bar. Hop on the street car and take a ride Uptown to the Garden District. The gorgeous mansions and stately oaks are a delight. Take a break and enjoy a snack and drink on the front porch of The Columns.
Eat and Indulge
Take a cheat day and eat all you can during your time in New Orleans! Start with brunch - if you're in the French Quarter, try Cafe Amelie, a peaceful spot with a dreamy courtyard named for Amelie Miltonberger, the mother of Princess Alice, the first American Princess of Monaco, who lived in an accompanying townhouse in the mid-1800s. Or try Brennan's, a true New Orleans tradition. It boasts eight glamorous dining rooms, each steeped in New Orleans architecture and ambiance.
There are plenty of world-class restaurants located in the French Quarter. Dress up and treat your self at Sylvain, Mr. B's Bistro, or Restaurant R'evolution. At any restaurant in the Quarter, you will be treated like royalty and enjoy some of most delicious and innovative food in the world. If you're looking for something more casual, try Killer Poboys or Port of Call. Come hungry and allow yourself to enjoy those few extra calories - when in New Orleans!
You're sure to find magic on Royal Street. Shop until you drop at the street's galleries, antique shops, estate stores and boutiques. Head to the edge of the French Quarter to Canal Place to get some high-end shopping in at Saks, Mignon Faget, and Tiffany's.
If you are in New Orleans and can't imagine not taking in some live music but something a little more elegant than the “standing room only blues” bars, head to the Davenport Lounge at the Ritz Carlton. Featuring live entertainment from renowned musician Jeremy Davenport Wednesdays and Thursdays 5:30 p.m. to 9 p.m. and Fridays and Saturdays 9 p.m. to 1 a.m., the lounge offers a menu of classic New Orleans cocktails, wine, champagne and light fare.