If you’re planning a couples’ trip to New Orleans and wonder about fun things to do, you’ve come to the right place!
New Orleans is a city where old-world charm meets modern innovation and undoubtedly has so much to offer to locals and tourists alike.
World-class dining, entertainment, and sights await the average tourist and provide an excellent backdrop to a romantic getaway.
In fact, New Orleans is a popular place to elope, with many venues, hotels, and companies offering elopement packages starting from a few hundred dollars.
In today’s article, I list down some of the fun things to do in New Orleans for couples, including the most romantic restaurants and accommodations.
12 Fun Things To Do In New Orleans For Couples
Visiting a city for the first time is an unforgettable experience, and sharing that with your loved one makes it even more special.
1. Cruise the Mississippi River on a riverboat.
A century ago, steamboats were at the heart of economic development along the Mississippi River, transporting passengers and freight all along the river.
Steamboat Natchez promises to take you back to that time on board the last authentic steamboat and give you a fun culinary and musical experience.
You can also visit the engine room to see how a 100-year-old steam engine works.
They’ve since added a sister vessel, the Riverboat City of New Orleans.
Corporate Address: 600 Decatur St, Suite 308, New Orleans, LA | 504-569-1401
Departure Address: 400 Toulouse St, New Orleans, LA
Hours: Daytime Jazz Cruise: Mon–Sat 11:30am; Sunday Jazz Brunch Cruise: Sun 11:30am; Evening Jazz Cruise: Mon–Sun 7pm
Cost: Daytime Jazz Sightseeing Cruise: $39; Daytime Jazz Cruise with Lunch: $52; Sunday Jazz Sightseeing Cruise: $39; Sunday Jazz Cruise with Brunch: $60; Evening Jazz Sightseeing Cruise: $50; Evening Jazz Cruise With Dinner: $89; all prices are per head for adults
Website: Steamboat Natchez
2. Take a helicopter tour over the city.
Street-level New Orleans is way different from aerial New Orleans, and Heli Co. gives you the chance to experience this unique perspective.
Choose between a 15-mile tour, a 30-mile tour, and a 60-mile tour, each offering different views of the city. Add a romance package so you can get champagne and chocolate for a flight to remember. A photo package add-on gives you a souvenir photo to remember your experience by.
If you’re a more adventurous couple, you might want to opt for the adrenaline tours where you fly with the doors off with 30-degree banked turns.
Address: 8221 Lloyd Stearman Dr., New Orleans, LA | 504-291-8999
Hours: Mon–Thu 10am–8pm; Fri–Sun 10am–9pm
Cost: 15-mile tour: $99; 30-mile tour: $198; 60-mile tour: $349; City Lights Night Tour, 15-mile: $125; City Lights Night Tour, 30-mile: $249; Weekday Date Night, 15-mile: $149; Adrenaline 10-mile tour: $99; Adrenaline 15-mile tour: $149; Adrenaline 30-mile tour: $249; Adrenaline 60-mile tour: $389; all prices are per head for adults
Website: Heli Co. New Orleans
3. Tour the French Quarter in a carriage.
Take a historic tour around the French Quarter in a mule-drawn carriage for authenticity and ambiance.
Royal Carriages has been giving these tours since the 1940s and has since switched from horse-drawn carriages to mule-drawn carriages. Mules work harder, eat less, and more importantly, tolerate heat better.
The tour company offers different types of tours to experience the French Quarter in different ways.
The French Quarter & Marigny Carriage Tour takes through the French Quarter and the Faubourg Marigny Neighborhood for an hour, all the while learning about New Orleans history, architecture, food, cocktails, jazz, and many more.
In case you didn’t know, New Orleans is one of the most haunted places in the country. The New Orleans History & Haunts Carriage Tour is a night tour that plays this up, featuring the most haunted places in the French Quarter. Expect to hear about hauntings, pirates, and voodoo. Plus, find out if the hotel you’re staying at is haunted (if you dare).
Want a more customized experience? Book a Ride Royal Private Carriage Tour and enjoy undivided attention from your dedicated tour guide.
Address: 700 Decatur St, New Orleans, LA | 504-943-8820
Cost: French Quarter & Marigny Carriage Tour: $60; New Orleans History & Haunts Tour: $60; all prices are per head for adults. Ride Royal Private Tour: $300 per hour per carriage, 1 carriage fits 2 to 4 passengers
Website: Royal Carriages
Jackson Square is a National Historic Landmark nestled in the center of the French Quarter named after the bronze statue of Andrew Jackson at the center of the square.
It doesn’t look very romantic at first, but Jackson Square is one of the places in New Orleans that has plenty of fun things to do for couples.
4. Get some coffee and beignets at the Café du Monde.
Café du Monde is the oldest and most iconic beignet shop in the city. Grab a couple of cups of café au lait, a couple of orders of beignets, and do some good old people-watching.
5. Have your portraits drawn by an artist in the square.
Jackson Square is home to an open-air artist colony, where artists display their work outside the iron fence.
You can commission one of them to draw your individual portraits as well as a couple’s portrait for a unique souvenir of your New Orleans trip.
6. Shop at the French Market.
The French Market has been around for a few hundred years and is home to a variety of unique goods, such as local produce, crafts, art, street food, handmade products, and a flea market.
Afterward, enjoy the view and take some photos at nearby Crescent Park.
New Orleans City Park
New Orleans’ largest outdoor attraction since 1854, City Park is a 1,500-acre green space featuring beautiful trails, scenery, and activities.
If you and your date are the outdoor types, you’ll find plenty of fun things to do in New Orleans City Park for couples.
Fun fact: This picturesque park is popular for proposals, so if you’re planning one, you couldn’t be in a more beautiful setting.
Address: 1 Palm Dr, New Orleans, LA | 504-482-4888
Hours: Mon-Sun, 30 minutes before sunrise to 30 minutes after sunset
Website: New Orleans City Park
7. Take a stroll through the New Orleans Botanical Garden
Holding hands while walking through a garden blooming with flowers has got to be one of the more fun things to do in New Orleans for couples.
The New Orleans Botanical Garden covers ten acres of gardens and art, containing more than 2,000 varieties of plants from all over the world and surrounded by the largest stand of mature live oaks in the country.
Stroll through and explore the different Instagram-worthy gardens, such as the Yakumo Nihon Teien Japanese Garden, Lord & Taylor Rose Garden, Historic New Orleans Train Garden, and the Enrique Alférez Sculpture Garden.
Address: 5 Victory Ave, New Orleans, LA | 504-483-9402
Hours: Wed 10am–8pm; Thu–Sun 10am–4:30pm
Cost: $10 per head for adults
Website: New Orleans Botanical Garden
8. Enjoy rides at the Carousel Gardens Amusement Park.
Amusement parks are a great place to spend time together as a couple and unlock each other’s inner child.
If you manage to be in New Orleans in the summer or early fall, don’t miss this amusement park, especially the Carousel, which is only one of 100 such carousels and is listed on the National Register of Historic Places.
Visit in the winter and you can join their Celebration in the Oaks in the evening, with unlimited rides, hot chocolate, and light shows.
Address: 7 Victory Ave, New Orleans, LA | 504-483-9402
Hours: Vary depending on the season; check their website or call beforehand to confirm schedule
Cost: $25 per head for unlimited rides
Carousel Gardens Amusement Park
Celebration in the Oaks
9. Ride the Bella Mae.
The Bella Mae is an authentic, handcrafted Venetian gondola that you can ride for 50 minutes to take a scenic tour of City Park’s rustic lagoons.
The gondola is named after Robert Dula, the gondolier and founder of NOLA Gondola.
Tours include ice in an ice bucket and champagne or wine glasses. Bring your own beverage for sipping, though.
Address: Big Lake Trail, New Orleans, LA | 504-450-4400
Hours: Mon–Sun 1pm–7pm; advanced ticket purchase required
Cost: $100 for 2 adults; extra charge for additional passengers
Website: NOLA Gondola
Learning a new skill or creating something together relies on your teamwork to bring you closer. Here are some fun New Orleans classes for couples.
10. Take a cooking class at the New Orleans School of Cooking.
Guided by a local professional chef, you and your date will prepare and share a spectacular meal using fresh ingredients.
The cooking classes are taught by well-known local chefs who are experts in Cajun and Creole cuisine. Visitors will be treated to a wide range of local classics such as jambalaya, gumbo, red beans & rice, pralines, and bananas Foster.
They hold open hands-on classes, which are small intimate classes with a maximum of 10 people utilizing 5 cooktops. The cost of classes include complimentary drinks, recipe cards, and a New Orleans School of Cooking apron.
Private hands-on classes are also available but may cost more.
Address: 524 St. Louis Street, New Orleans, LA | 504-620-9456
Hours: Mon–Sun Lunch (10am); Mon–Fri Dinner (6pm); Sat Dinner (5pm); Sun Dinner (4pm)
Cost: $145 per head for group hands-on classes
Website: New Orleans School of Cooking
11. Learn how to make New Orleans cocktails at the Drink Lab.
The Drink Lab offers different mixology classes to adults willing to learn. With the Classic New Orleans Cocktails class, you’ll learn the history, tradition, and culture of classic New Orleans cocktails, then get behind the bar to make them yourselves.
They also hold classes on wine tasting and bourbon whiskey tasting, as well as the basics of mixology, but these are temporarily unavailable.
After you take classes here, try checking out nearby New Orleans distilleries, another fun thing to do for couples.
Address: 343 Baronne St., New Orleans, LA | 504-522-8664
Hours: Fri–Sat 6pm
Duration: 2 hours
Cost: $80 per head for Classic New Orleans Cocktails class
Website: New Orleans Drink Lab
12. Make glittering art.
Turning something broken into something beautiful? What could be more romantic than that?
The Shard Shop specializes in a unique glass-on-canvas art that they call ShardWorx. They host classes for children and adults so they can make their own glass art.
The daily classes teach the basics, while the Oyster and Glass Cascade workshop takes it a step further by teaching you how to mix mica powder, acrylics, glitter, and gold leaf and turn them into an exquisite work of art.
Address: 3950 Magazine Street, New Orleans, LA | 504-571-5342
Hours: ShardWorx® Daily Classes: Mon–Thu 11am–5pm; Fri–Sat 11am–4pm; Sun 12:30pm–3:30pm; ShardWorx® Oyster and Glass Cascade: Sun and Wed 9:30am and 4pm; Fri and Sat 9:30
Cost: ShardWorx® Daily Classes: $60 to $100 per head, depending on the size of the canvas; ShardWorx® Oyster and Glass Cascade: $69.99 per head
Website: The Shard Shop | New Orleans
Romantic New Orleans Restaurants For A Date
Eating out is one of the fun things to do in New Orleans for couples.
Whether you like French, Creole, Southern, or fusion cuisines, there is something for you in this city.
Here are a few of the best restaurants to consider, where the food, ambiance, and overall experience are conducive to romance.
Housed in the iconic pink building in the heart of the French Quarter, Brennan’s prides itself on serving traditional New Orleans cuisine alongside modern interpretations of Creole and French dishes.
Breakfast at Brennan’s has been a local tradition since the 1950s. Get the Eggs Hussarde, which are perfectly poached eggs on housemade English muffins and Canadian bacon, with hollandaise and marchand de vin sauce.
Wash it down with a brandy milk punch (brandy, heavy cream, vanilla, and nutmeg poured on ice) to truly experience this tradition.
This is also one of the best places to get Bananas Foster, a famous New Orleans dessert made of bananas sautéed in butter, sugar, and cinnamon, and then bathed in rum and flambéed.
Address: 417 Royal St., New Orleans, LA | 504-525-9711
Open For: Breakfast and Lunch: Thu–Mon 9am–2pm; Dinner: Thu–Sun 6pm–10pm
Attire: Smart Casual (no tank tops, cut-offs, or athletic shorts for men)
Reservation Required: Encouraged (via their website or OpenTable)
2. Café Degas
Named after the 19th-century painter Edgar Degas, Café Degas is a cozy French bistro that features reasonably priced French-inspired cuisine with a touch of Creole.
This has been voted the “Most Romantic Restaurant in New Orleans,” so it’s probably the best way to cap off a romantic trip.
Don’t forget to order the La Gratinée d’Oignons, which is French onion soup with crispy croutons and bubbly Swiss cheese.
Address: 3127 Esplanade Ave., New Orleans, LA | 504-945-5635
Open For: Lunch: Wed–Thu 11am–3pm; Brunch: Fri–Sun 11am–3pm; Dinner: Wed–Sun 5pm–9:30pm
Attire: Smart Casual
Reservation Required: Encouraged (via OpenTable)
Website: Café Degas
3. La Crêpe Nanou
A cozy little French crêperies in uptown New Orleans known for their dessert and entrée crepes, as well as their tasty main courses.
Order the Moules Marinière, which is PEI mussels steamed in white wine and garlic and finished with cream; share the large one (served with pommes frites) over a couple of glasses of rosé champagne.
Address: 1410 Robert St., New Orleans, LA | 504-899-2670
Open For: Dinner: Wed–Sun 5pm–9pm
Attire: Business Casual
Reservation Required: Yes (via phone)
Website: La Crêpe Nanou
Chic French and Italian-inspired restaurant Lilette has been consistently ranked as one of the top restaurants in New Orleans and has been a special occasion destination for years.
One of their famous entrées is the Roasted Muscovy Duck Breast served with cauliflower polonaise, sautéed spinach, and toasted shallot sauce.
Address: 3637 Magazine St., New Orleans, LA | 504-895-1636
Open For: All-Day: Tue–Thu 11:30pm–9:30pm; Fri–Sat 11:30pm–10:30pm; Dinner: Mon 5:30pm–9:30pm
Attire: Business Casual
Reservation Required: Yes
Sylvain is set in a carriage house built in the 1700s, and they’ve kept the interior with an authentic classic feel.
They offer classic Southern bistro fare with a modern, refined twist.
Start your meal off by splurging on Champagne & Fries, which is exactly what it sounds like.
Address: 625 Chartres St., New Orleans, LA | 504-265-8123
Open For: Dinner: Mon–Fri 4pm–11pm; All-Day: Sat 11am–11pm, Sun 11am–10pm
Attire: Business Casual
Reservation Required: No
Romantic Places To Stay in New Orleans
Nothing sets the tone for romance more like a stay at one of New Orleans’ gorgeous bed and breakfasts or hotels.
These are a few of the most fun and romantic places to stay in New Orleans for couples.
1. Grand Victorian Bed and Breakfast
Built in 1893, the 7,600-square-foot inn is a historic house, and you can tell that from its high ceilings to its period furnishings.
But the Grand Victorian has all kinds of modern amenities in its rooms: private baths and showers, central temperature controls, custom-made mattresses, and wireless internet.
Book one of the suites and you ramp up the romance, with a jacuzzi bathtub and a private balcony.
It’s located in the garden district, but the St. Charles Avenue streetcar provides access to the more action-packed neighborhoods.
Bonus: This inn was voted one of the best places to elope in 2015.
Address: 2727 St. Charles Ave., New Orleans, LA | 504-450-8524
Type: Bed & Breakfast/Inn
Website: Grand Victorian Bed and Breakfast
2. Canal Street Inn
Canal Street was the original dividing line between the American and European sectors of New Orleans, and the Canal Street Inn shows this contrast in its unique architecture.
Now, it remains one of New Orleans’ most elegant bed and breakfasts, with the surrounding gardens providing a more picturesque atmosphere.
Amenities include private baths and showers, luxury bed linens, and central temperature controls.
It’s best for couples who want a relaxing getaway from the hustle and bustle of downtown.
The inn is located in Mid-City, but it’s near the Canal Street streetcar line, which provides access to other neighborhoods of interest.
Address: 3620 Canal St., New Orleans, LA | 504-483-3033
Type: Bed & Breakfast/Inn
Website: Canal Street Inn
3. Hotel Le Marais
Hotel le Marais is an award-winning, three-star luxury hotel with the intimacy of a boutique hotel.
Room amenities include luxurious mattresses and bed linens, private baths and showers with granite floors, and central temperature controls.
Other amenities in the hotel include a gym, a heated saltwater pool, and a well-stocked restaurant.
Located on Bourbon Street, right in the heart of the historic French Quarter, it’s steps away from the wonderful sights and sounds of this lively district.
It’s the best hotel to stay for young, trendy couples who want to be at the center of activity.
Address: 717 Conti St., New Orleans, LA | 504-525-2300
Website: Hotel Le Marais
4. The Eliza Jane Hotel
The Eliza Jane, named after the Daily Picayune’s first female publisher, is a one-of-a-kind boutique hotel built within nine historic warehouses that used to house liquor, gunpowder, and a warehouse for the Daily Picayune newspaper.
The buildings stand distinct from the outside but are combined inside to create guest accommodations plus a huge interior courtyard.
The hotel features 196 rooms and 12 signature suites, all with state-of-the-art amenities set in vintage décor and furnishings. There’s also a 24/7 fitness center, a French restaurant, and a lobby bar.
It’s located in the Central Business District, two blocks away from the French Quarter.
Address: 315 Magazine St., New Orleans, LA | 504-882-1234
Website: The Eliza Jane
5. Royal Sonesta New Orleans
If you have the funds for it, why not go all-out?
The Royal Sonesta New Orleans is a resort-style, AAA Four Diamond-rated hotel that offers a sophisticated take on resort-style accommodations.
Rooms have excellent mattresses, stylish furniture, and all the modern amenities you’d expect in a modern hotel.
You have a choice between staying in a room overlooking the French Quarter or a courtyard-facing view if you want a quieter stay.
The saltwater pool is state of the art, with a huge, sunny pool deck, covered bar, complimentary pool towels, and plenty of lounge chairs. There’s also a huge, 24/7 fitness center.
It’s home to dining and entertainment venues Restaurant R’evolution, The Jazz Playhouse, Desire Oyster Bar, Le Booze, and PJ’s Coffee Café.
It’s best for couples who can live large in the Crescent City.
Address: 300 Bourbon Street, New Orleans, LA | 504-586-0300
Type: Resort Hotel
Website: Royal Sonesta New Orleans
Plan Your New Orleans Visit Today!
New Orleans has been underrated as a romantic city, but hopefully, you’re now convinced that New Orleans is a romantic city, filled with fun things to do for couples.