When planning a trip to New Orleans, Bourbon Street and Magazine Street are the usual recommendations. If you are looking for an authentic New Orleans, experience removed from the typical tourist areas, there’s one street that you shouldn’t miss. Known for its live music, local art and good eats, Frenchmen Street should be a must on every solo traveler’s list!
Located in the Marigny neighborhood, this five block strip is walking distance from the French Quarter. During the day, a solo traveler should have no trouble making the short walk. After sundown, it is best to play it safe and take an Uber or take a pedicab (very abundant in the Quarter and all take cash or credit card). With buzzing crowds and a bustling atmosphere, walking up and down Frenchmen at night as a solo traveler is safe, however, do not wander more than one block off of the street in either direction. At the foot of Frenchmen Street (Decatur Street), however, be vigilant, as it is known to attract a rougher transient crowd.
The epicenter of New Orleans live music, Frenchmen Street has plentiful vibrant music venues. One spot not to miss is The Spotted Cat Music Club, an intimate, standing room only jazz venue. This joint is a local favorite for live music ranging from jazz to blues to funk and more! The Three Muses is another snug, jazz venue which also serves up globally inspired small plates and house made cocktails. The Maison is a local spot known for a swingin’ jazz brunch. Another Frenchmen bar that hosts local music every night of the week is The Blue Nile, with an outdoor balcony great for catching some air between sets! Café Negril hosts funky international acts and serves up some great Latin eats.
Not only is Frenchmen known for its music, it also is home to some of the city’s best restaurants. Praline Connection offers traditional Southern cooking in an intimate space. With recipes from three generations of family chefs, this is the spot to get that famous New Orleans jambalaya, gumbo, red beans and fried chicken. Located upstairs of the Apple Barrel is the famous Adolfo’s, which serves Italian fare with Cajun-Creole flair. It is cash only, but there is an ATM located on site. Snug Harbor Jazz Bistro offers upscale Creole in an historic space that dates back to the 1800’s. Snug Harbor offers live jazz every night of the week. One thing not to miss is their hamburger served alongside a baked potato…one secret, it’s the same recipe as the one sold at the famed Port of Call, so skip the lines and head to Frenchmen! For a quick bite to eat, head to Dat Dog.