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Book yourself into the Renaissance New Orleans Arts Hotel for an upmarket hotel experience in a central location; head to the Hilton New Orleans Riverside for a historic setting overlooking the Mississippi River; go easy on the wallet with a budget stay at Best Western Bayou Inn; or get some much-needed peace and quiet from your stay at the Hotel Indigo New Orleans Garden District, just a short walk from some of the best food and historic parts of the city.
Thanks to New Orleans' humid summer months and abundance of spring and fall festivals, you'll be able to pick up a fantastic bargain on a hotel room if you visit between June and September. Due to the humidity, the likelihood of hurricanes, and the lack of crowd-drawing festivals, hotels drop their rates to almost half to attract the summer vacationers. While the weather is occasionally uncomfortable, everywhere has air conditioning, so you'll always be able to take a break from the heat within minutes.
Alternatively, for more enjoyable weather but still affordable choices, take a look at visiting between December and January. Excluding Christmas and New Years, this is a quiet time of year to visit New Orleans, and you'll able to find lots of cheap hotels.
In general, the farther away from the French Quarter you stay, the cheaper your accommodation will be. A possible neighborhood option for your stay could be the Central Business District, next to the French Quarter. Also known as the arts district, this region has lots of museums, restaurants, and art galleries for you to explore.
For something a little more musical, opt to stay in the area known as "downriver" for your time in New Orleans. The famous Frenchman Street in Faubourg Marigny is the main attraction in this part of town, which is home to blues bars, jazz lounges, rockabilly clubs, and more. This neighborhood is predominantly a residential area, and there are plenty of cheap hotels available.
Uptown is known for its architecture and shopping and is an excellent area to experience the famous Southern hospitality. Look to stay in the Garden District, a surprisingly affordable area considering the large mansions you can find there. Transportation to the French Quarter is easily accessible if you feel like doing some exploring, too. Take the 24-hour streetcar or one of the local buses, and you'll find yourself on Bourbon Street in less than half an hour.
If you're traveling on a budget, New Orleans is the perfect city to visit—there are so many free events and activities to take part in. Stroll through Jackson Square and take part in some people watching. Visit the French Quarter in April to enjoy the French Quarter Festival—the largest free music festival in the South. Sample some delicious free oysters every Friday at Le Bon Temps Roule music club, or visit the New Orleans Museum of Art for free every Wednesday.
The most popular thing to do in New Orleans, however, is to take part in a festival. Mardi Gras is the most famous of these celebrations in New Orleans. Although it's free to watch and take part in, it does cause accommodation prices in the city to more than double. Fortunately, there are plenty of other options if Mardi Gras isn't your thing. The French Quarter Festival is a free four-day party that features live music, and delicious Cajun and Creole foods. If you're a fan of jazz music, the Jazz Festival is a wonderful event to check out.
There are over a thousand options for Airbnb apartments in New Orleans, so don't forget to check out the options before booking your accommodation. Within the French Quarter, there are just under 20 apartments for rent for under $100 a night, with half of these being entire apartments, not a shared living situation. As well as being great value for the money, Airbnb allows you to experience levels of home comforts you wouldn't ordinarily experience in a hotel. You'll likely have a kitchen, fast wireless Internet connection, a private bathroom, and you'll also be able to pick up travel tips from the owner of the apartment—who will likely a New Orleans local.
Staying in a hostel in New Orleans is a sensible choice if you're traveling on a tight budget—it's more affordable than most of the cheap hotels in the city. There are several hostels worth checking out during your stay.
Atlas House is an extremely highly rated hostel within walking distance of the French Quarter. The hostel provides both dorm rooms and private rooms for their guests. One of the highlights of Atlas House is the hot tub on the courtyard, as well as a large outdoor kitchen. Included in the price is free Wi-Fi, breakfast, and street parking. Make friends from all over the world during the hostel's organized activities—from games night to pub crawls, free dinners to music quizzes.
Alternatively, Creole Inn is a new hostel in the city that has plenty of amenities. Stay connected with the fast, free Wi-Fi in your room, sink into the memory foam mattresses and enjoy a comfortable night's sleep. You can also travel to and from the airport with ease thanks to the airport transfer service, cool off under the complimentary air conditioning, or simply relax with new friends on the outdoor terrace. Creole Inn is a few blocks away from the French Quarter and has dozens of restaurants and bars within a few minutes' walk.
Traveling between the city and New Orleans' main airport is simple. From Louis Armstrong International Airport, you can rent a car at the airport when you arrive, or take a taxi, which is the most expensive transportation option. Expect a taxi ride to take roughly 20 minutes and cost just over $30. You can also share a shuttle van for $20 per person.
The cheapest way of accessing downtown from the airport is via the Jefferson Transit E2 - Airport Downtown Express, which costs just $2. Expect this option to take around twice as long as a taxi.
There are many high-quality airport hotels in New Orleans, with most of them offering a free airport shuttle service for their guests. The area around the airport has lots to keep you entertained if you're in New Orleans for a quick layover. Head to Kenner's Historic Rivertown for dining and restaurants only two miles from the airport. Try your luck at the Treasure Chest Casino, or delve into New Orleans' history with a visit to Destrehan Plantation.
For further information on New Orleans and events taking place during your stay, take a look at New Orleans Online, the official tourism board website for the city. The website provides information on the best places to stay, where to find delicious food and drinks, guides to the neighborhoods, an events calendar, and coupons for activities in the city.
© 2016 Hipmunk, Inc. Hipmunk is a trademark of Hipmunk, Inc.
© 2016 Hipmunk, Inc. Hipmunk is a trademark of Hipmunk, Inc.