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Fall in New Orleans: A Visitor’s Guide

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Fall in New Orleans: A Visitors Guide.

New Orleans is the ultimate year-round destination. No matter when you choose to visit one of our cozy vacation rentals, you can expect to stumble upon a parade, festival, or event happening in this vibrant city.

Just when the summer festival season ends, the party continues as Nola welcomes the fall. From fall events to Oktoberfest to Halloween, there’s a celebration on every weekend throughout the cool autumn months.

If you prefer a quieter getaway, this is also the best time to take advantage of the countless outdoor activities in the city. Stroll the city parks, wander around Magazine Street, and enjoy open-air markets as the summer heat lifts.

In this visitor’s guide, we’re sharing all of our must-know recommendations to enjoy your fall getaway to the Big Easy!

Fall Weather in New Orleans

The fall weather in New Orleans is as unpredictable as the city itself. September is still warm, with the highs in the upper 80s and lows in the 70s. However, the weather begins to shift in October when New Orleans has its first cool fronts of the season.

By mid-October, temperatures begin to drop into the 70’s during the day. The weather in October ranges from the 80s to the 60s, depending on the time of day, so bringing plenty of layers to stay comfortable as you explore the city is helpful.

By November, you can expect reliably mild weather, with highs in the low 70s and lows in the 50s. To many in New Orleans, this month is the official start of “sweater weather.”

No matter when you visit, we recommend packing comfortable walking shoes and layers for the many weather variations throughout the day. Fall is the driest season in New Orleans, so you might not get much rain, but we always recommend packing a rain jacket just in case!

Fall Festivals in New Orleans

Art for Art’s Sake

Photo Credit: Derek Bridges via Flickr CC 2.0

Art for Art’s Sake is an annual event that celebrates the arts experience in New Orleans. Located on Magazine Street, this festival starts the official New Orleans Arts season by inviting visitors to shop the open art galleries alongside fellow enthusiasts.

There are over 100 stores along Magazine Street, so it’s the perfect opportunity to experience the six-mile stretch of galleries, shops, food, and drinks. You’ll also get treated to complimentary free wine and live music playing throughout the event. No ticket is required.

Gentilly Fest

Photo Credit: William A. Morgan

Gentilly Fest is a free neighborhood festival that highlights the music and arts scene of the local community of Gentilly. The festival features diverse musical performances from local musicians throughout the three days. Celebrating “All Things Gentilly,” it also features delicious food from local restaurants and art from Nola-based vendors.

No tickets are required, so it’s the perfect festival to stop by during your fall stay in Nola.

Crescent City Blues & BBQ Festival

Photo Credit: robbiesaurus via Flickr CC 2.0

Located in Lafayette Square Park, Crescent City Blues & BBQ Festival celebrates two Southern traditions: blues and BBQ. Bringing together local musicians from Louisiana and Mississippi, this three-day festival captures the essence of blues through its live music performances. After being serenaded, you’ll have the chance to indulge in local BBQ fare and admire local hand-crafted art.

General admission is free and open to the public; VIP tickets are available for sale here.

Oktoberfest

Photo Credit: KarepaStock

New Orleans might not be the first place you think of for Oktoberfest, but just like any other celebration, they do it well. Oktoberfest is located at Deutsches Haus in Kenner and celebrates German culture through nightly music, food, and dancing!

Between the authentic German cuisine, delicious German beer, and lively music performances each night, you’ll be transported to Germany as soon as you enter.

Admissions is around $10, with children getting in for free.

Krewe of BOO!

Photo Credit: Heather Smith via Flickr CC 2.0

Krewe of BOO! is the official Halloween parade of New Orleans. This family-friendly parade begins at the Elysian Fields in the Marigny and ends at the Convention Center, making its way straight through the French Quarter.

Complete with lively floats carrying candy, beads, and children’s toys, this spooky parade celebrates the unique Voodoo culture of New Orleans and invites visitors in on the fun.

The parade is free for all to enjoy.

Be sure to check out a few other local favorite fall festivals, including Beignet Fest, Treme Fall Fest, New Orleans Film Festival, and Top Taco Fest. We weren’t lying when we said there’s one every weekend!

Fall Activities in New Orleans

Stroll Around City Park

Photo Credit: Wikimedia Commons via Google Images CCL
  • Address: 1 Palm Dr., New Orleans, LA

City Park is the largest outdoor space in New Orleans. Located in the Mid-City neighborhood, this 1,300-acre park is home to walking trails, botanical gardens, an amusement park, and the largest collection of live oak trees.

While there, visitors can explore the Botanical Gardens and Sculpture Garden, home to various plants, flowers, and unique art. Plenty of kid activities, such as the Storybook playground and amusement park, make it the ideal family-friendly day activity.

There’s also a golf course, a 50-acre sports field, biking paths, and even a fishing lake in the middle of the park.

When you get hungry, you can even stop in the City Park Cafe du Monde location for warm beignets and cafe au lait on a crisp fall day!

Attend a Saints Game

Photo Credit: Asim Bharwani via Flickr CC 2.0
  • Address: 1500 Sugar Bowl Dr, New Orleans, LA

New Orleans is passionate about a lot of things, and that includes our sports teams. If you’re from Nola, you’re a Saints fan. Simple as that.

There are plenty of opportunities to attend a Saints game at Caesars Superdome from September to December. You’ll want to make a whole day out of it, complete with pre-game drinks and tailgating in Champions Square.

The Saint’s schedule and ticket information can be found here.

Explore the French Quarter

Photo Credit: f11photo

The French Quarter is known as the hub of New Orleans for a reason. Every street is lined with historic architecture, local restaurants, iconic bars, and plenty of entertainment options.

Fall is the perfect time to spend an entire day wandering the streets of the French Quarter. Start in Jackson Square and enjoy the talent of local artists and street musicians. Head to the open-air arts market next, where you can shop for hand-crafted souvenirs to bring home with you.

And don’t miss out on the infamous Bourbon Street, where you can bar hop from one iconic spot to the next.

There are plenty of guided walking tours, from ghosts to history and art, if you prefer a tour guide to take you through the French Quarter.

Enjoy Classic Creole Dishes

Photo Credit: Fanfo

New Orleans in the fall is a foodie’s paradise.

In all honesty, you can find Nola’s most popular dishes on the menu at any time of the year. But there’s something special about welcoming the fall season with a warm cup of gumbo.

The Cajun/Creole dishes that the city is known for are perfect on a crisp Autumn day. Stop in any of our favorite restaurants and order jambalaya or crawfish etouffe, and you won’t be disappointed. We’ve also rounded up the best places to try gumbo, and, spoiler alert, they’re all amazing! Don’t forget to end your meal with a round of warm beignets and chicory coffee.

Get in Touch with Your Spooky Side

Photo Credit: Chris and Hans

New Orleans is full of spooky spots, and there’s no better time to explore them than the Halloween season.

Steeped in Voodoo culture, New Orleans is home to countless haunted tours that highlight the mystery of this ancient city. Visitors can choose to tour century-old cemeteries, search for ghosts on walking tours, or visit a haunted house in the French Quarter. There are also many opportunities to learn about the haunted history of the city, including Voodoo Fest, which highlights voodoo music and culture on Halloween weekend.

Fall in New Orleans

Fall in New Orleans is a special time. The city eagerly welcomes its first cold front of the season, and visitors and locals alike take full advantage of the outdoor activities that greet them.

Between the fall festivals, delicious Creole dishes, and endless outdoor options that Nola provides, the fall season shows off the diversity of this vibrant city. From a family-friendly getaway to a jam-packed festival weekend, come stay at one of our vacation rentals and experience the magic that is New Orleans in the fall.


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