Not every national park is located in the middle of a remote wilderness. The New Orleans Jazz National Historical Park is located right in the heart of New Orleans. This French Quarter institution is a must see for any first time visitor, and many from around the country and around the world come back time and time again to listen to the music, explore the history and enjoy the vibe of this quintessential American city.
Unlike other national parks, this one is built around music, and live Jazz bands perform regularly at the center’s visitor center. Visitors should be sure to stop in for a list of upcoming performances and mark their calendars for a great day of music.
Just like other national parks, the New Orleans Jazz National Historical Park has real live park rangers, and those rangers are extremely knowledgeable about the great history of the park, as well as the rich and storied history of Jazz in the city of New Orleans. The park offers regular ranger programs to help visitors learn about the city, its music and its place in history.
Park rangers also lead tours around the city, starting at the visitor center located at 916 N. Peters Street. In addition to these tours, the center offers a variety of video documentaries, historical information and of course plenty of live music.
In addition to the French Quarter visitor center, the New Orleans Jazz National Historical Park has its headquarters location at 419 Decatur Street. The French Quarter center is open from 9-5 Tuesdays through Saturdays throughout the year, and is closed only on Christmas Day, Thanksgiving Day and New Year’s Day. The Decatur Street office is open from 8-4:30 every day but is closed on holidays.
Anytime is a great time to visit the New Orleans Jazz National Historical Park, but visitors may want to time their visit around one of the special events that take place each year. Every April is Jazz Appreciation month, and the park celebrates with live performances, and special festivals throughout the city. August is a great time for the younger set, with the Satchmo Summer Fest and its special children’s stage. And of course the Christmas season is always a great time to be in New Orleans.
Those who have always yearned to visit a national park without the trip to the middle of nowhere should definitely pay this unique park a visit. With so much to see, do and hear, the New Orleans Jazz National Historical Park is a great place to learn about the history of Jazz music and the role it has played throughout the life of this vibrant and unique city.