Our favorite time to go to New Orleans may shock you... August! Yes, the hot, muggy off season. But those of you who have been to Mardi Gras or Jazz Fest know how those crowds can be. Not all of us love the crowds!
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And New Orleans is by no means deserted in the off season. There are always people like me and my fiancee, who are suckers for the bargain airfare and hotel rates of off seasons. People who are willing to suffer a little heat... grab an Abita beer at an outside pub... or suck up some AC if you're desperate.
Best eating venues in the French Quarter in the off season:
The Royal Cafe (on Rue Royale, duh) - sit on the balcony and drink, drink, drink
The Gumbo Shop (St. Peter, I believe) - Crawfish ettoufe to die for
Gumbolaya (down near Jackson Square) - Get the heads-on steamed shrimp (DROOL)
Best hotel in the French Quarter in the off season:
Definitely the best is Maison Dupuy. Well-located, great rooms, nice pool and hot tub, good off season rates.