New Orleans is undoubtedly a beautiful city in the state of Louisiana, United States. The city is also known as the ”Big Easy” and is well-known for its vibrant nightlife, live-music scenes on the streets, and it’s delicious cuisine. It has a blend of French, American, and African cultures. The city is full of life and culture, especially during the Mardi Gras season. Now, you must be wondering, “What is Mardi Gras season?” It is an exciting winter carnival famous for its costumed parties and energetic parades on the streets.
New Orleans is famous for being a great tourist destination. Each year over 19 million people visit this vibrant city. There is so much to see in the city, from visiting the French Quarter to admire the great architecture, or to visiting Bourbon Street to experience the lively nightlife or to enjoy a much calmer side of the city at the Garden District. There are so many places that tourists can plan to explore while on their vacation to New Orleans.
However, like all big cities have some problems and safety issues, New Orleans can also encounter some safety issues. There is no completely safe place, some petty crimes exist almost everywhere. It is just important to know which places are safe and which are not. Here, we will let you know all about safe areas in the city and which to be avoided. This blog post will help you get to know the best about if the city is safe to travel alone, with family, or with a group of friends. Read till the end to grab some safety tips and make your trip the most memorable one! So, let’s begin!
Is Visiting New Orleans Safe?
The short answer to this question is ”YES” New Orleans is safe to visit despite having a bad reputation. The city has a bad reputation for its crime rates but it should be noted that it is fairly safe for tourists. There are only some neighborhoods that are to be avoided but otherwise, all the other areas that are famous tourist spots are usually very safe.
This is proved by the massive number of visitors the city gets each year. There are no such serious crime cases registered through any of the tourists. Travelers from all over the world come to the city to attend different festivals like Jazz Festival, Mardi Gras Season, and French Quarter Festival.
Is New Orleans Safe as a Solo Traveler?
While planning to travel alone, many concerns and worries may come across your mind but the good news is that New Orleans is completely safe to travel alone. Traveling alone can give you so much confidence and experiences that you never had before. But of course, you must travel safely and stay alert.
Avoid walking alone in quiet places because you can be more of a target here than in crowded areas. Avoid drinking too much as you are alone and if you lose your consciousness there might be no one to help you. Use a cab for moving around in the city as it is more convenient and safer. Always keep your phone charged and stay connected to your family back at home. In this way, they will not worry about you and will know where you are exactly.
Is New Orleans Safe for Girls’ Trip?
New Orleans is the best city for parties and females love enjoying this way, don’t they? Well, luckily New Orleans is safe for all the solo female travelers out there. There are so many festivals, art, and music scenes that the ladies can enjoy. But as mentioned before if you are traveling alone, you must stay alert and take care of yourself while walking in the city.
Females can join different group activities and can even contact other solo travelers before planning out. This can be an opportunity to make new friends and have a wonderful time on the trip. But be aware of any strangers who might harass you or harm you.
Is New Orleans Safe for Families?
New Orleans is completely safe for families. There is a wide range of Airbnb where you can get accommodation at an affordable price. But make sure that while staying with your family, choose a safe neighborhood. You don’t want to get in any trouble with your kids around.
It is summer here most of the year but hurricanes and tornadoes are also common. It is also important to check for weather updates while moving into the city as you don’t want to ruin your plans because of it. But overall, you do not need to hesitate before planning a trip to the ”Big Easy.”
Safe Areas of New Orleans for Visitors?
Most of the areas of the city that are popular among the tourists are completely safe. There might be only a few cases of petty crimes but overall, these areas are safe for visiting. We have made a list of all the safest places for you to visit or stay when you are in the city. This will help you to stay safe and comfortable while visiting.
This famous place is located in the center of the city. It is the hub of everything – food, music, art, and culture. French Quarter is highly popular and the safest place in the city as there is so much crowd here and the area is secure as police are present at all corners. So, while planning a trip to New Orleans, French Quarter is a place that is not to be missed.
Central Business District
Whether you are a sports fan or someone who is looking for food, shopping, music, art, parties, anything you name can be found here at the Central Business District. There are plenty of affordable hotels and hostels in this neighborhood. This area has a good reputation regarding safety matters and thus welcomes and attracts numerous tourists.
This neighborhood is located in the north of the city and is quite popular among families who come to visit. It is far from the crowded areas of the French Quarter and Bourbon Street but not too far from the city center. This area is known for offering great outdoor activities and scenic views of the city.
The Garden District
It is considered to be one of the richest and safest areas of the city. The Garden District is on the list of every tourist because of the exquisite Antebellum architecture. The area has many beautiful mansions and famous restaurants such as Commander’s Palace restaurant that people love to visit. The Garden District is not to be missed for your next trip as it is safe and fun.
Some other safe neighborhoods and areas of New Orleans include Treme, Armstrong Park, Oak Street, and City Park. All these areas are completely safe during the day but it is better to stay cautious while going out at night time.
Which Areas Should Be Avoided?
No city is completely safe. Some areas might not be as safe as those mentioned above. Bad neighborhoods are part of every region and it is important to note them and be cautious while going there. We have made a list of all such areas that should be avoided while visiting New Orleans.
This area is not considered safe at all! The crime rates are high here. Be aware of any sketchy people that roam in this area.
It is located in the north of the Central Business District. The crime rates are quite high and there are no tourist attractions here so it is better to avoid this area, especially at night. Avoid walking here alone and take a shared ride.
Located at the north of the French Quarter, this neighborhood is considered very dangerous. There is a high rate of violent crimes here. It is better to be safe and avoid visiting this neighborhood.
This place was badly affected by Hurricane Katrina which destroyed a major part of the city. Since then, Saint Roch has had a high crime rate due to the increasing poverty in the neighborhood.
This place is well-known for the “Black Panther” shootout that happened in 1970. Many drug abusers can also be seen on the streets here. Because of this the area always had a bad reputation and it must be avoided if you are alone or with family.
Other places that require caution while visiting include Pines Village, Florida, the Lower 9th Ward, Viavant-Venetian Isles, Dixon, Fischer Dev, West Lake Forest, and Tulane- Gravier. There have been reports of robberies and assaults in these areas so it is advised to avoid them, especially after dark.
10 Safety Tips for Traveling to New Orleans
Your travel itinerary should definitely have this New Orleans on the list, but at the same time, you must look for the safety tips and tricks to go to a specific place. It is imperative to guard yourself up in all situations to avoid any mishap and enjoy a smooth trip. Here are a few tips that you should consider following while visiting the ”Big Easy.”
Be Aware of the Surroundings: It is important that wherever you are going you must be aware of the surroundings and look like you belong here. This prevents you from being a target for petty crimes and robberies.
Take Care of the Belongings: Make sure to keep your belongings somewhere safe. Try to avoid carrying valuable items while going out. Keep them stored in a safe place in the hotel or any other storage facility.
Avoid Walking Alone at Night: It is advised to take a cab at night to go anywhere and avoid walking alone. Keep an eye out for any strange person on the streets and always stay alert.
Stick to Well-lit Areas: Try to stay in busy, well-lit areas. Avoid walking on quiet streets alone.
Be Careful of Scams: You might be approached by someone who tries to scam you in some way, be careful of such persons and avoid talking or listening to anyone strange who approaches you.
Avoid Getting Too Drunk: If you are too drunk and wasted, you will become the prime target for any scam or crime. So, it is better to avoid drinking a lot, especially at night to protect yourself from being the victim.
Keep an Eye on the Weather Forecast: The weather in New Orleans could be very unpredictable so it is advised that you check the forecast before going out. It is always better to be safe and take the necessary precautions.
Do the Research: If you are visiting for the first time you must do your research before traveling to the city. The research will help you know which places are safe to stay with family and which are unsafe. This can help you plan a safe and convenient vacation.
Keep Wallets in a Hidden Pocket: While walking on the busy streets of the city, it is advised that you keep your wallets in some hidden pockets. Anything that is in a backpack or back pocket can be identified by the pickpockets. Stay alert to this.
Call the Police Helpline: In case you encounter anything strange or if you are a victim of any crime, you must call the police immediately for help. For this, you must have the number of the police helpline handy.
Crime in New Orleans
The city of New Orleans has a bad reputation for having high crime rates but it should be noted that this is not the case for all areas in the city. Some places are very safe while others might have a high rate of violent crimes. Some common crimes that happen in the city are:
There also have been some reports of scams in the city. Con artists roam on the streets and might talk to you and convince you to fake betting. Fake petitioners are also seen in the city, to avoid all kinds of scams try to avoid talking to these strange con artists and simply walk past them by saying that you are running late.
Most areas of the city that are visited by tourists are very crowded and it is highly unlikely that a violent crime can take place in areas such as the French Quarter. But because the areas are crowded petty thefts might occur, purse snatching or pickpocketing is quite common here. Make sure you stay alert while walking on the streets and take care of your belongings.
New Orleans was the target of a large number of homicides in the year 2022. In 2016, analysts warned that the city’s social conditions such as poverty, inequality, and lack of education can result in increased crimes including homicides. The police’s lack of preparation might have aggravated the situation.
Locals are the most easy targets of these homicides and tourists are usually safe. Specifically speaking, the young black men of the city are the prime targets. Most of the time, the victims knew about their attacker as they are somewhat connected.
Is the Weather Safe to Travel to New Orleans?
Because of the history of Hurricane Katrina, it is no wonder that people are concerned about New Orleans’ weather conditions and whether they are safe to travel or not. No doubt that hurricanes and flooding are quite common concerns in the city. The city is below sea level so even a heavy tropical storm can do a lot of damage. Thunderstorms and tornadoes can occur too. It is better to check the weather forecast before planning your trip to New Orleans. Hurricane season lasts from July to October so plan your trip accordingly to avoid all sorts of troubles.
Is Public Transport in New Orleans Safe for Tourists?
The public transport in the city is safe and reliable. You can travel around anywhere in the city very easily. There are many options for public transport for you to choose from. The most famous is the iconic streetcar. Streetcars run throughout the city and cover large distances but these are usually a bit crowded so make sure to take care of your belongings while traveling on them.
Buses are also safe in the city. You can use a bike to get to the bus station and can park your bikes there on bike racks. Taxis and Ubers are also easily available and are a safe and convenient choice if you are traveling alone at night. Driving your car is also a good option but you must know that it is an extremely busy city and traffic can be very slow here which can make you frustrated. So, it is better to stick to public transportation.
When is the Best Time to Visit New Orleans?
The ideal time to visit New Orleans is from February to May. These months have the most pleasant weather. Another great news is that Mardis Gras plays up in these times, so you can enjoy it with your family. However, if you are not interested in these festivities, you can plan your trip between December and January. The weather is cool and the prices are low due to being an off-season. Adding more to your information, summer months are usually very hot and there are chances of hurricanes, so it is advised to avoid these months for your visit.
The Final Takeaway
The energetic city of New Orleans is undoubtedly a safe place to visit with family or even alone. There are so many activities that you can plan in the city. From partying to enjoying art or experiencing the best street music, there is so much to do on your vacation. Always stick to the safer areas wherever you go, and for New Orleans, we have already mentioned them in detail above. Take the necessary precautions and follow simple tips to get a more reliable experience and enjoy yourself in this thrilling city.
Diana was an active fitness model in the past. She has had numerous shoots done at different locations and found out that her true interest was in exploring the world! Later on, this passion motivated her to write multiple tarvel blogs about whatever place she visited and discovered, and here it is! Enjoy reading a variety of blogs by Diana to get a lively experience of several places.