New Orleans

No American town places such a premium on pleasure as New Orleans. From swank hotel lounges and refined jazz halls to sweaty dance clubs and raucous Bourbon Street bars, this city is serious about frivolity—and famous for it. Partying is more than an occasional indulgence in this city—it's a lifestyle. The bars and clubs that pulse with music are the city's lifeblood, and are found in every neighborhood. Like stars with their own gravity, they draw people through their doors to belly up to their bars or head feet-first onto their dance floors. Blues, jazz, funk, R&B, rock, roots, Cajun, and zydeco—there are many kinds of music and nightlife experiences to be had in New Orleans. On any day or night of the year, the city is brimming with musical possibilities.

The French Quarter and Faubourg Marigny are the easiest places to find great music and nightspots. The venues are numerous and all within easy walking distance of one another. In the nearby Warehouse District, New Orleans institutions like Howlin' Wolf, Mulate's, and Circle Bar have been joined by scores of new bars, clubs, and restaurants. Moving upriver through the Garden District and Uptown, you'll find some of the most famous music spots in the city, such as Tipitina's and Maple Leaf. Bywater, Mid-City, and Tremé are residential neighborhoods with fewer commercial strips, but they too have their crown jewels, like Vaughan's, Bullet's, and Rock ’n’ Bowl.

Sort by: 13 Recommendations {{numTotalPoiResults}} {{ (numTotalPoiResults===1)?'Recommendation':'Recommendations' }} 0 Recommendations
  • 1. Bourbon Pub

    French Quarter | Bars/Pubs

    It's impossible to miss this 24-hour video bar at the corner of St. Ann and Bourbon streets, especially in early evenings, when the doors are...Read More

  • 2. Café Lafitte in Exile

    French Quarter | Bars/Pubs

    This Bourbon Street stalwart attracts a somewhat older and very casual group of gay men. The second floor has a pool table, pinball machine...Read More

  • 3. Corner Pocket

    French Quarter | Bars/Pubs

    Filmmaker John Waters reportedly counts the Pocket as a New Orleans favorite, and with skinny, tattooed strippers on the bar and an inebriated...Read More

  • 4. Good Friends

    French Quarter | Bars/Pubs

    With its tasteful decor and reasonable volume level, this is a slightly more upscale, sedate alternative to the blasting disco bars down the...Read More

  • 5. Mag's 940

    Faubourg Marigny | Bars/Pubs

    This recently re-vamped, friendly gay bar hosts special events ranging from country Western line-dance lessons to burlesque and drag shows....Read More

  • 6. Napoleon's Itch

    French Quarter | Bars/Pubs

    The only gay bar in New Orleans that's also attached to a large hotel, this narrow space is in the heart of St.-Ann-and-Bourbon gay central...Read More

  • 7. Oz

    French Quarter | Dance Clubs

    A spacious dance club that mainly attracts young gay men also draws straight men and women, largely because of the scarcity of good dance floors...Read More

  • 8. Parade Disco

    French Quarter | Dance Clubs

    High-energy disco is the rule at this dance club above the Bourbon Pub. If it gets to be too much, a quieter back bar and a balcony offer respite...Read More

  • 9. Phoenix

    Faubourg Marigny | Bars/Pubs

    This lounge bills itself as a "Leather/Levi Neighborhood Alternative Bar," and that's a pretty apt description. The downstairs bar is a popular...Read More

  • 10. Rawhide

    French Quarter | Bars/Pubs

    As the name indicates, this is a rowdy—and sexually charged—leather-and-Levi's gay bar. It's two blocks from Bourbon Street and is open around...Read More

  • 11. The Golden Lantern

    French Quarter | Bars/Pubs

    The Lower Quarter has become a lot more upscale since this neighborhood gay haunt's heyday, but (the officially named) Tubby's Golden Lantern...Read More

  • 12. Ninth Circle

    French Quarter | Bars/Pubs

    One of the more popular Rampart Street bars, this small joint gets jumping late with DJs and frequent drag shows. The sunrise happy hour caters...Read More

  • 13. Rubyfruit Jungle

    French Quarter | Bars/Pubs

    After shutting its doors nearly a decade ago, this landmark lesbian bar reopened in 2010 with most of its original staff and DJs in a new three...Read More

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