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This Louisiana Travel Edition Posted on 02/05/10   |   Next Edition »

Visiting Greater New Orleans

New Orleans, the center of the robust New Orleans Metropolitan Area, covers the southwest corner of Louisiana - straddling the Mississippi River. We all know New Orleans as the city of the nation's most famous Mardi Gras celebration. But it's also host to the renowned New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival - one of the country's largest, along with many popular jazz and Cajun food festivals throughout the summer. It's here that you'll find the Louisiana Superdome, home to the NFL's New Orleans Saints, as well as top Universities; Tulane, Loyola, and the University of New Orleans – attracting educators and students from around the globe.

The 2010 Mardi Gras Season, through mid February, kicks off a season of authentic jazz and local food events all across the greater New Orleans area. Visitors in early March may want to check out JAMFEST10, this year combined with the Loyola University Jazz Department's Jazz Ensemble Festival. This duo should make for an outstanding educational and performance event.

St Bernard Parish, just five miles from downtown New Orleans, hosts the Crawfish and Redfish Cup Festival at the end of March. The parish offers a beautiful and rich historic venue to enjoy authentic Cajun cuisine - along with a weekend of local music, arts and crafts.

Look out for the 27th Annual French Quarter Festival held in April. Here, the world's largest Jazz Brunch tops off a weekend jammed with over 150 concerts across 15 stages. The area's best local restaurants provide the sumptuous food and drink. Or check out the New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival, held over 10 days at the end of April and into May, drawing some of the world's most talented musicians and their legions of fans. Based at the Fair Grounds Race Course, with festivities throughout the City, the Festival brings focus to the indigenous music and culture of New Orleans and Louisiana - considered the birthplace of Jazz.

Visitors' Tip: Simon and Garfunkel will make their first appearance at this year's festival - joining world famous artists like Aretha Franklin, Anita Baker and Lionel Richie.

For Saints football fans in New Orleans, the 2009/2010 season has been the best on record for the team. But this time of year the Saints aren't the only game in town for athletes and spectators. The NBA's New Orleans Hornets are mid-season with the home games played at the New Orleans Arena. The Hornets' regular-season games continue into April. Looking for something different? How about the New Orleans Blaze, beginning their 2010 season in April. This is Women's Football and the Blaze are one of the first established teams. Check them out!

Over Easter weekend, the Crescent City Classic has become the tradition in New Orleans. This year marks the 32nd annual 10K run. The flat course is perfect for serious runners looking to set a faster pace, yet it's also a fun event for others to get active. Be sure to stick around after the race because true to New Orleans, the Classic is a great excuse to throw a party.

Golf fans; don't miss the PGA's annual stop in New Orleans for the Zurich Classic golf tournament. In typical New Orleans style, the biggest names in golf - join the best musicians (along with great food) on the links for a world-class golf event and, surprise - a party! The Classic, sponsored by the Fore!Kids Foundation, is not just for fun. It's an important fundraiser for children's services organizations in the Greater New Orleans area.

And for the more genteel traveler, take in the Tennessee Williams / New Orleans Literary Festival – now in its 24th year. Held in the French Quarter for five days the end of March, the 2010 Festival highlights include conversations with Edward Albee - the author of Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf, and ABC News commentator Cokie Roberts. The schedule includes an opening night Gala, master classes, theater, and food events. This festival is a great tribute to the New Orleans culture and heritage much loved by Tennessee Williams.

With locations convenient to the New Orleans locale, we hope you choose Best Western when staying in the area.

Best Western Rewards

9 Best Western Hotels
in Greater New Orleans

  • Best Western Plus Chalmette Hotel

    Chalmette

  • Best Western Northpark Inn

    Covington

  • Best Western Plus Westbank

    Harvey

  • Best Western Plus Landmark Hotel & Suites

    Metairie

  • Best Western Plus French Quarter Landmark Hotel

    New Orleans

  • Best Western Plus St. Charles Inn

    New Orleans

  • Best Western Plus St. Christopher Hotel

    New Orleans

  • Best Western Plus Slidell Inn

    Slidell

  • Best Western Bayou Inn

    Westwego

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