When the French engineer Adrien de Pauger laid out the streets of New Orleans in 1721, he chose one to carry the name of the French Royal Family ruling at the time - Rue Bourbon. Since then, Bourbon Street has become one of the most recognizable party destinations in the world. Beyond its bawdy reputation, Bourbon Street is home to traditional jazz clubs, upscale lounges and historic restaurants.
With two streetcar lines running down the middle of the street and three traffic lanes on either side, Canal has been cited as the widest "street" in America and acts as an anchor thoroughfare for the city. As the dividing line between the French Quarter and the Central Business District, Canal Street is a hub of activity, featuring luxurious hotels towering overhead and restaurants enticing hungry visitors and locals.
If you're craving music or a peek into authentic New Orleans nightlife, Frenchmen Street is a must-see. Known as the "locals' Bourbon Street", Frenchmen is an entertainment district located within walking distance of the French Quarter and offers an amazing variety of venue styles and music ranging from traditional jazz to blues to reggae to rock all week long.
Best known as a destination for shopping, this popular street is also home to museums, art galleries, bars and restaurants. Starting at Canal Street in the Central Business District and extending all the way upriver through the Garden District and Uptown, Magazine Street takes you through some of New Orleans' most vibrant neighborhoods peppered with delightfully diverse commercial pockets.
Those looking to experience the beauty of the Garden District need look no farther than Prytania Street. Prytania begins at the distinctive I -10 overpass at Calliope Street in the Lower Garden District and runs upriver into Uptown, ending just past Audubon Park at the banks of the Mississippi River. Situated between Magazine Street and St. Charles Avenue, Prytania blends the charm of both popular thoroughfares into its own unique style.
Royal Street is one of the oldest streets in New Orleans and is a must-stroll thoroughfare of the French Quarter. Beginning at Canal Street, it runs through the heart of the French Quarter and continues on downriver through the Faubourg Marigny, Bywater and eventually to the Lower 9th Ward. The most spirited section of Royal is found within the French Quarter, where art galleries and some of the nation's best antique stores line the street. Be sure to check out the street performers and artists who set up on Royal during the day.
Experiencing the grandeur of St. Charles Avenue is one of the things you simply can't miss when visiting New Orleans. Home to the historic streetcar line of the same name, St. Charles Avenue stretches all the way from Downtown to Uptown. A ride on the St. Charles streetcar is a great way to see many different sides of the city, all along one gorgeous avenue.