New Orleans has been holding an Open House of sorts since the colony was founded in 1718. The early French settlers were followed by the Spaniards, Germans, Africans and Americans, who produced an ever-changing cast of river folk, pirates, musicians, chefs, and even voodoo queens. Today, New Orleans, often called the Big Easy, is a slow paced, friendly town. From the narrow streets and iron lace balconies of the French Quarter to the muddy brown of Ol’ Man River, the city has a complex and romantic past. You can ride a horse-drawn carriage or a clanging streetcar, linger over a five-course Creole dinner, and explore unique shops. Then stop outside for the street corner shows from tap dancers, mimes, musicians, and other eclectic performers.


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