Winter Wonderland: New Orleans
No other city does the holiday season quite like New Orleans does. Whether that be the delectable Réveillon dinners, plentiful shopping, holiday lights, or the Christmas Eve bonfires on the levee, there’s plenty to do for everyone. Local hotels transform into opulent winter wonderlands that provide the perfect backdrop for your holiday memories, such as the Roosevelt’s lobby display of over 60,000 sparkling lights and Windsor Court’s breathtaking 19.5-foot Christmas tree. Once the sun goes down between December 15-18, 2022, there’s no better place to be than LUNA Fête at the Ernest N. Morial Convention Center Pedestrian Park, where a colorful, interactive light show is projected onto the surrounding buildings while you enjoy local food, drinks, and crafts. And of course, there’s local favorite Running of the Santas (December 10, 2022), a part-marathon, part-bar crawl festivity that sees hundreds of people dressing as their own interpretation of Santa Claus–jolly, naughty, nice, and everything in between.
Expressions of America: November 2022 onwards
The newest attraction at The National WWII Museum brings history to life like never before. Opening November 2022, Expressions of America is an immersive, outdoor sound and light show that combines cutting-edge technology and special effects with the real words and stories of everyday people who made a tremendous impact during a time of monumental conflict. Held as a nighttime experience, enjoy an unforgettable evening of music, stunning imagery, vintage cocktails, festive food options, and entertainment as 90-foot tall projections transport you back in time. The museum itself is ranked the #1 Attraction in New Orleans by TripAdvisor, so it’s definitely a must-see when visiting the city. Purchase Tickets here
Notre-Dame de Paris: The Augmented Exhibition: November 15, 2022 - March 1, 2023
The Historic New Orleans Collection brings world heritage to life with a 360-degree augmented reality journey into the 850-year history of Notre-Dame Cathedral. This visually stunning experience joins other interactive technology on display at the state-of-the-art exhibition center. Visitors will navigate the experience using an AR touch-screen tablet developed by Histovery and will witness the incredible history of the Notre-Dame de Paris, spanning from its initial construction in the Middle Ages to the 2019 fire and subsequent restoration efforts. This exhibit runs from November 15, 2022–March 1, 2023, and timed admission is free.
Mardi Gras: January 6, 2023 - February 21, 2023
Each year, right after we ring in the new year, the city of New Orleans plunges right into Mardi Gras season with parades like Krewe de Jeanne d”aarc in the French Quarter and Phunny Phorty Phellows along the St. Charles Avenue streetcar route on January 6. For the next seven weeks, the city is an extra magical place filled with excitement, music, and revelry. Over the course of the season, there are countless parades and even LGBTQ specific Mardi Gras balls, for which you can buy tickets, such as Krewe of Stars and Krewe of Armenius. In 2023, the annual celebration culminates with Mardi Gras Day on February 21, and LGBTQ revelers won’t want to miss the Bourbon Street Awards costume contest, which starts at Oz New Orleans at noon on the intersection of Bourbon and St. Ann streets. Categories include Best Drag, Best Leather, Best Group, and Best Overall Costume.