Hunting for Rubies

A Weekend Trip to New Orleans & French Quarter Festival

Preservation Hall New Orlean, French Quarter Festival. A great weekend trip to New Orleans.

Mardi Gras, Jazz Fest, any day on Bourbon Street, and you know New Orleans is hopping. I would love to experience Jazz Fest, but I feel like I have missed the boat on Mardi Gras. Maybe I am wrong? But, it doesn’t have the appeal to me that it once did, especially now that I have kids. But, I would return for any weekend trip to New Orleans, and one that falls on French Quarter Festival is perfect for a getaway with friends, family, solo, a little romance – it should not be missed.

My first visit to New Orleans was in 2010. I had moved back to the East Coast from the West and was settling into Portsmouth, New Hampshire. My best friend and old roommate, Sloane, had recently left Los Angeles too, and was subletting a studio apartment in the French Quarter. How convenient?

I had never been to New Orleans, and she invited me to fly down to meet her new boyfriend, now husband, and to see her new city that she was equally in love with

A Weekend Trip to New Orleans is not complete without a stop on Bourbon Street.

Bourbon Street. Photo by Taylor Davidson –

In typical Sloane fashion we were going to do and see it all – or at least try!

Sloane is absolutely one of my favorite exploration partners, and did I mention, one of my dearest friends. She is vivacious, fun, and brilliant. Oh, and I can guarantee there will always be a sweet treat, usually of the ice-y variety when you are with her. We have to try everything once, after all! (I will also mention there were frozen drinks and gourmet popsicles on this trip. Snoball were only the first stop!)

A Weekend Trip to New Orleans and the French Quarter Festival. Where to eat, drink, dance, and hear music.

Enjoying some Plum Street Snoball in New Orleans. Picture Courtesy of Taylor Davidson.

Where We Ate & Drank During Our Weekend Trip to New Orleans

So it was, Bourbon Street to Plum Street Snoballs, a walk around City Park, admiring the Southern Architecture throughout town, a visit to a cemetery that we almost got locked in, beignets at Cafe Du Monde, a visit to Central Grocery for muffalatas, Oysters and Sazeracs at Pascals Manales , dive bars on Frenchman Street, Vintage clothes shopping, and FREE Music, everywhere.

A Weekend Trip to New Orleans and the French Quarter Festival

Oysters & Sazeracs at Pascal Manales. Photo by Taylor Davidson –


Now, I know that it has been years since I have been to New Orleans and The French Quarter Festival, and from what I have heard there are even more stages, more music, and more of a crowd. It might not be as intimate as it was back in 2010, but it’s now the largest display of Louisiana Music and Food, anywhere. According to, this year’s French Quarter Festival has 23 stages and over 1700 Loouisina musicians that will be performing during this free four-day event.


Couples dancing at the French Quarter Festival. A yearly event that takes place in April in New Orleans.

Couples dancing at French Quarter Festival, 2010. Photo by Taylor Davidson –


Dancing in the street, French Quarter Festival, New Orleans.

Dancing. Photo by Taylor Davidson –


Musicians playing on a stage at French Quarter Festival in New Orleans.

Band at one of the outdoor stages at French Quarter Fest, 2010. Photo by Taylor Davidson –


Cheers to Good Friends and Live Music! A Weekend Getaway in New Orleans and the French Quarter Festival.

Cheers to Good Friends and Live Music! French Quarter Fest 2010. Photo by Taylor Davidson –


A Weekend Trip to New Orleans and the French Quarter Festival. Many of the hotel lobbies are a great place to stop in and cool off and listen to music.

Listening to music in the lounge of a hotel in the French Quarter. Photo by Taylor Davidson –


A Weekend Trip to New Orleans and the French Quarter Festival.

Musicians set up on a street in the French Quarter. Photo by Taylor Davidson –

What Kids Would Like About A Weekend Trip to New Orleans and the French Quarter Festival?

  • French Quarter Festival – There are two dedicated children’s areas on Saturday and Sunday of the Festival. The Chevron Children’s Headquarters and STEAM Zone at Natchez Wharf and Chevron Children’s Activities and Fun at the Hermann-Grima House Courtyard.
  • Audubon Park or any of the other City Parks in New Orleans.
  • Taking the Street Cars though town
  • Visit one of the unique above ground cemeteries.
  • Take a ride on the Steamboat Natchez
  • Check out this list of Free Things To Do in New Orleans by New Orleans Kids.


If you book a last-minute flight tonight, you can be in New Orleans for a quick weekend getaway with the added bonus of attending French Quarter Fest. Who is in?

What are your favorite things to do in New Orleans? Have you ever taken your kids? Let us know in a comment below! We love any tips we can to start planning our future trip.


All photos were taken by Taylor Davidson . Check out more of his work at

Thanks to Taylor and Sloane for hosting this wonderful weekend trip to New Orleans. I highly enjoyed the French Quarter Festival, and strongly recommend a trip to New Orleans during it. Also, a special thank you to Taylor Davidson for the use of all his lovely and candid photos.

19 CommentsLeave a comment

  • I’ve never been to NOLA with my kids but it was great to see that they have two different spaces dedicated to kids zones! It looked like a fantastic trip!

  • Dancing in the streets, free music all day, vintage clothes, food — I’m sold! Okay now it’s time to save for some travel money 😊

    • I am not sure where you live, but tickets within the United States to New Orleans are pretty affordable. I think everyone should go to New Orleans once. This particular weekend in April is top notch!

  • Haven’t been to New Orleans and don’t have kids! But we are thinking about a road trip to the US and NO is on our wishlist to visit, so your article is of great help!

    • I think it is one of the more interesting cities in the US. I have traveled to 47 of the 50 States, and have road-tripped a ton. Let me know if you need any advice regarding places to go.

    • Okay, don’t hate me. I don’t love beignets. LOL! I would love to go on a swamp tour in New Orleans. We live in South Florida, so I wonder if its similar to the Everglades.

  • Haven’t been to New Orleans yet, nor heard of the French Quarter Festival before. But it looked really lively and fun! Will think of adding it to my list of must sees, especially with the beignets and oysters with sazerac 😉

  • New Orleans is such a creative dream of a city, I can’t wait to visit it again and check out the fest. Lil bit intrigued by those above ground cemeteries I’ll tell ya that. Thanks for putting this together 🙂

  • I loved cafe du monde as well as learning about the history! I was only there when I was a kid, but I can’t wait to go back in the near future. 🙂

    • I can imagine loving cafe du monde as a kid. What kids doesn’t love sweet treats!

  • I’ve only been to New Orleans once and I feel like I missed so much of the historical tours. I was in Bourbon Street the entire time. I have to add that the beignets at Cafe Du Monde were delicious. I’d be down to ride on the Steamboat Natchez too!

    • I would love to go back and do a historical tour. I feel like we saw a lot in a weekends trip, but there is much more to see.

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