Mid-City New Orleans Outdoor Activities
Spring is here, the warmer temperatures are drawing people out of their winter slumbers, onto their front porches and out into their neighborhoods. If you are lucky enough to live in the Mid-City neighborhood then you have a lot of options for getting out to enjoy the weather.
This park offers something for everyone. Live Oaks dripping with Spanish moss canopy the lazy bayous and walkways that frame New Orleans infamous City Park.
The park covers 1300 acres and is filled with secret places, magical gardens, and wandering waterways. Known as one of New Orleans’ most beautiful green spaces, it draws visitors, athletes, and art lovers from around the city to share her space.
Art lovers can easily spend the day visiting the New Orleans Museum of Art that sits regally at the park entrance. The museum is famous for showing regional and American artists as well as hosting a variety of traveling art exhibitions from around the world.
From there, they can walk to the sculpture garden and stroll through the whimsical creations of Sydney & Walda Besthoff. The lush Botanical Gardens are next, where volunteers guide visitors on a detailed tour of local flowers, vegetables, herbs, and trees.
Nature lovers gather to share free wi-fi and get a dosage of Vitamin D while swinging quietly on giant porch swings in the green space across from the new Cafe DuMonde.
Others sip coffee on outdoor tables set beneath the oak trees and watch their children play in the park. People on Blue Bikes slide by looking to discover other hidden wonders of the park.
Athletes are drawn to the park’s multiple athletic fields and recreational sports leagues. Golfers tee off at the scenic 18-hole golf course, and tennis enthusiasts hit the courts at the Pepsi Tennis Complex. Marathon runners and bikers take advantage of the miles of roadways winding through the park as they prepare for their next 5k.
Big Lake covers 25 acres and is hidden within the expanse of City Park. There is something for everyone around Big Lake. Home to many rare and native birds, like the brown pelican and gaggles of ducks and swans.
The lake’s fountain, known as The Pump House, shoots water 40 feet into the air and the Louisiana Trail that surrounds the lake is dotted with trees representing our state’s seven distinct tree regions.
The Trust for Public Land, in partnership with City Park, developed the trail and meadow of Big Lake to commemorate the indomitable spirit of the residents and life in Greater New Orleans and for the resilience and commitment they showed to rebuild their homes and neighborhoods after Hurricane Katrina.
For a full list of City Park attractions click here.
BAYOU SAINT JOHN
What better way to spend the day than paddling the beautiful Bayou Saint John. Canoes and kayaks are available for rent from companies such as Bayou Paddlesports, open Thursday to Monday, 9 am to 7 pm, March through December.
The bayou goes all the way to Lake Pontchartrain and meanders along the edge of City Park where you can catch sight of the Holy Trinity Greek Orthodox Cathedral. If you don’t want to go it alone, Kayak-iti-Yat offers a two-hour guided kayak tour.
Each May, Bayou Boogaloo fills the banks and the waterway of Bayou Saint John. The annual festival features live music, food and drink, an arts market, boat rentals, and much more.
The Bayou Boogaloo is a relaxing way to spend the day enjoying the bayou and listening to good, local music at Bayou Boogaloo. The festival is free until 3 pm, then there is a $5 on Friday and $10 on Saturday and Sunday. Wristbands for all three days are available for $20.
Every Labor Day weekend, Holy Trinity Greek Orthodox Cathedral puts on the Greek Festival along the banks of the Bayou. The Greek Fest features food, music, dancing, cathedral tours, toga-wearing, a market, and more. Canoe & Trail Adventures rent canoes during the fest for those wanting to hang out along the bayou. Admission is $8, and children under 12 are free.
THE LAFITTE GREENWAY
The Lafitte Greenway is a 2.6-mile bike and pedestrian path beginning in the French Quarter at Basin Street and Lafitte Avenue and runs to the tip of Bayou St. John. Riders can ride their own bikes or rent a Blue Bike from one of the many stations along the greenway path.
Along the way stop by the Backatown Coffee Parlour for coffee and croissant. The trail takes riders, runners, and walkers on an urban trail through the heart of the city and ends at Bayou Saint John.
For more information about New Orleans, things to do, or real estate, contact your local real estate agent.