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Mardi Gras 2024: The Best Places To Visit In New Orleans 

Published on February 9th, 2024 by Emily Lawrence

Mardi Gras is always one of the most colorful and bizarre spectacles in the country. It’s the perfect place to cut loose and participate in the revelry and excitement. This is an annual event and it always draws crowds from all across the country. If you plan to visit New Orleans this February, you might want to join in the festivities of Mardi Gras 2024.

Masked jesters on a park bench during a Mardi Gras parade.

Of course, the main parades and Mardi Gras events are always a major attraction. But while you’re in the area, there are a few other things you might want to do. New Orleans is a bustling city and it’s packed with interesting attractions, fun events, and fascinating local traditions. There’s no way to see everything all at once, so you might want to come back for Mardi Gras every year.

If you’ve never gone before, this is definitely an event that belongs on your bucket list. There are countless parties, parades, contests, and gifts so there’s bound to be something for everyone. So bring your most flamboyant costume and get ready for the party of the year. We’ll walk you through all the most important information for Mardi Gras 2024.

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Overview of Mardi Gras 2024

The official date of Mardi Gras 2024 is Tuesday, February 13. Although this is the main day, lots of people celebrate for an entire week beforehand because there’s no way to do everything you want to within a single day. Mardi Gras always falls on the Tuesday before Ash Wednesday (the first day of Lent).

Parades and “throws” are some of the trademarks of this event. Most businesses along the parade routes shut down so guests can more fully enjoy the holiday. You can find Mardi Gras celebrations all throughout Louisiana, but the French Quarter of New Orleans is the main hotspot.

Multiple events take place on Mardi Gras itself, but the entire month of February is littered with local events, parades, and krewe displays. Even if you can’t be there on February 13, you’ll certainly be able to see some of the trademarks of this holiday. Check out mardigrasneworleans.com for a full schedule of events and parades.

Things To Do During Mardi Gras 2024

Explore the French Quarter

The French Quarter is the oldest neighborhood in New Orleans, so it’s absolutely packed with history and culture! This is the hotspot for most Mardi Gras celebrations, but this area has a lot more than parades to offer. Some buildings are up to 300 years old and each one has a rich tapestry of stories, legends, and folklore. In fact, there’s so much historical significance here that this entire district has been claimed as a National historic landmark.

French Quarter wrought iron balconies decorated in yellow, purple, and aqua for Mardi Gras.

Stop by Jackson Square

Within the French Quarter, there are a few areas of special significance. One of these locations is Jackson Square. This is a lovely public park that’s gated off from the rest of the area. It’s located right in front of the Saint Louis Cathedral and it’s surrounded by other noteworthy businesses like the Jaw Brewery Shopping Center and the French Market.

Jackson Square is a frequent haunt for local artists, so you’ll always find beautiful displays of paintings, pottery, woodwork, and more. It’s also just a beautifully manicured park so it’s a great place to stretch your legs and enjoy some fresh air.

Scope out Bourbon Street

Pubs and bars with neon lights in the French Quarter, New Orleans USA.

A lot of the Mardi Gras festivities take place on Bourbon street (Rue Bourbon), which is one of the drinking hotspots in New Orleans. True to its name, this street is packed with breweries, bars, taverns, and any other establishment that sells alcohol. Some are new, while others date back many many years.

Mardi Gras parades often pass by this street, so you’re guaranteed to spot some interesting sights if you frequent this area. In addition, jazz bands and musicians often perform around here, so get ready to tip them if you enjoy the music!

Take a ghost tour

New Orleans is also one of the most haunted cities in the world! There are countless ghost stories, urban legends, and haunted hotspots around the city. In fact, there are even some taxi drivers who won’t pick up passengers from certain places because they have found that their guests are ghosts who would vanish halfway through the ride.

Although you can explore this fascinating city by yourself, it’s even better if you can get the full history and spooky stories from a professional guide. If you keep your eyes open, maybe you’ll walk away with a ghost story of your own!

Tour the National WWII Museum

If you love to learn about history, you’ll definitely want to add the National WWII museum to your New Orleans bucket list. There are lots of different exhibits and tours you can take around the museum. General admission is between $25–$35 (free for WWII veterans).

You can easily spend an entire day here, learning about the all the facets of WWII. Special events and exhibits come and go from this museum, so make sure you look it up before you come by. You might see something unique each time you return!

Visit the local cuisine hotspots

New Orleans is especially exciting around Mardi Gras, but it’s always a lively and vibrant destination. The local cuisine is mouth-watering and showcases some of the best Southern/Creole/Cajun/French food in the world. Fresh seafood is always on the menu, but there’s a huge mix of options that will suit everyone’s tastes. It’s a paradise for foodies.

Girls eating snacks at Mardi Gras.

Some of the best restaurants in New Orleans include:

Attend the Endymion Extravaganza

Finally, you can wrap up the revelry by visiting the ultimate Mardi Gras afterparty: The Endymion Extravaganza. This takes place at the Ernest N. Morial convention center which can easily host 20,000+ guests. Mardi Gras parades are one thing, but this is the party of the year! Performers for February 10, 2024 include Sting, Flo Rida, and teh Mixed Nuts.

The celebration lasts until 3:00 in the morning and there are technicolor lights, exhilarating music, and all the food and drinks you could ask for. If you want to end the night with a bang, this is the place to be. This party has been hosted annually since 1967 and it’s only getting better each year! A lot of Mardi Gras parties and events are invite-only, but the Endymion Extravaganza is open to anyone who wants to buy a ticket.

Best RV Parks in the Area

French Quarter RV Park. Photo courtesy RV LIFE Campgrounds.

Many tourists visit New Orleans each year to participate in Mardi Gras. The hotels fill up quickly, so RV parks are a great alternative for many people. Check out some of the resorts below and book your reservation ahead of time!

French Quarter RV Resort: 8.6/10

This is a fantastic place to stay if you want to be within walking distance of the French Quarter. It’s a secure little park that is well-maintained. Enjoy a soak in the pool or hot tub after a long day of partying!

New Orleans KOA Holiday: 8.5/10

This cozy park is a nice place to set up camp if you want to enjoy a slightly more natural setting. There are lots of shade trees here and it’s across the street from a levy of the Mississippi river. Lots of people stay here during Mardi Gras, but they almost always report that they had a good experience.

New Orleans RV Resort & Marina: 8.0/10

If you’re a fan of waterfront camping, this is a great spot for you! It’s located right next to a scenic harbor and it’s also quite close to the French Quarter. It’s well-designed and well-maintained so you can count on having a nice visit when you stay here.

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