New Orleans is a unique city - it has something to offer for all ages and all tastes. Party people will have countless places to enjoy their parties while history and culture craving tourists will definitely have their pick of activities. The city is known to offer reasonable accommodation and food prices, but entertainment cost is a bit steep. This is the reason behind New Orleans Power Pass.
Every visitor has his own unique goal coming to the Big Easy, but most of us crave new experiences and want to explore as much as we can. The Power Pass might be the best money spent in those cases. It might be a pretty bad investment if party is the only destination in the city. The pass covers a wide range of popular activities and gives plenty of options while saving money.
Every first time visitor should start the city tour by seeing it from a bus - it introduces tourists to the city, its districts, history, and gives great ideas for further exploration. The price for this tour is just a little less than the Power Pass and makes financial sense to purchase it if you have at least one other attraction on your agenda.
Let's explore the benefits and drawbacks of this Power Pass further:
Is it worth to purchase the Power Pass?
The price of the pass might seem quite high, but it only takes a short analysis to realize that the city is not cheap and every activity purchased separately will greatly affect your budget. That only applies to people who want to see a lot in a short period of time. Sure, New Orleans is a beautiful place and can entertain you for hours if you just want to walk through French Quarter, CBD, and the beautiful Garden District. You don't even have to see any attractions to have a good time - some repeat visitors do just that. However, if you don't come here very often, the city invites you to see and enjoy so much. If you have already spent $500 or more just to come here, you might invest just a bit more to really understand and experience this city to the fullest.
What attractions are included in the pass?
Some of us might be disappointed with city passes because of previous experiences. For example, it is sad that London Pass doesn't cover the London Eye, and the Paris Pass doesn't include the Eiffel Tower. Rest assured - the New Orleans pass covers literary everything, even highly priced activities and tours. There is a great chance that you will want to do most of these with or without the pass.
This tour is a great introduction to the city from the comfort of your seat under a shaded roof. The bus tours include the French Quarter, St. Louis Cathedral, the Botanical garden, the French Market, St. Louis Cemetery, and Jackson Square. The buses are very popular, so make a reservation.
Everybody should see and experience the natural beauty of Louisiana bayous. This tour will take you to historic fishing village of Westwego and from there you will hop on a motor boat to start your wetlands adventure. During those amazing couple of hours you will hear about the importance of the swamp lands in the past and today, marvel at beautiful cypress, covered in Spanish moss, meet alligators, wild hogs, egrets, and turtles.
Have you dreamed about being on a boat on the beautiful Mississippi River? Dream no more and hop on this modern, but designed after historic boats from a 100 years ago. Step back in time and see New Orleans like people long ago saw it first - from the water. This cruise will take you to Jean Lafitte National Park, Port of New Orleans, the French Quarter, and Chalmette Battlefield. This adventure is a sure hit for adults and kids alike.
Blaine Kern is the creator of famous Mardi Gras floats and is one the most famous persons in the city. This tour will open the doors to the history and story of Mardi Gras - you will see some beautiful floats and will learn about the process of making them. Tourists are guided through the Mardi Gras studio and the gallery of costumes. You can watch a video about the history of this celebration and truly understand this beautiful tradition. The tours are every 30 minutes and are enjoyed by adults and kids.
This museum is included for 3-5 day pass holders. It is one of the newer museums, but has already been voted as one of the best museums in the world. It is the first national museum dedicated to WWII in the U.S. Young kids might find some of the expositions disturbing, so take them in with caution. It is a great place for history buffs and for all who want to have a deeper understanding of our involvement in the war and what was it really like to witness the horrors firsthand for our soldiers overseas. The expositions include war artifacts, recorded veteran stories, pictures, and finally a touching movie produced and narrated by Tom Hanks.
This plantation is one of the most popular and beautiful plantations in New Orleans. It was built in 1845 and was used for growing sugar. Visitors will get a deeper understanding of sugar and Creole culture. It will also tell a story of slavery and cruelty. There are 14 original rooms, a 1830s school house, and 1840s slave cabin. Be ready to spend 1-2 hours here and learn a great deal about the past of this region.
The class will teach you the secrets of Louisiana cuisine and will welcome adults only, so no young kids. This class in held at the New Orleans School of Cooking and will offers gumbo, pralines, jambalaya, and many more classes.
Expect to spend about 2 hours walking and learning about the history and significance of French Quarter. There are three tours to choose from. They all include a walk through the oldest African-American neighborhood in the country and will tell you a great deal about the local music and traditions. This attraction is most fun for adults.
This adventure takes you to the Manchac Swamp. Enjoy another visit to the country away from the city and learn about the bayou significance. Look out for local alligators while on the boat. Visit Cajun town of Frenier and hear its history. The children are especially loved on this tour. The tours are available year round, but be armed with sunscreen and bug spray in warm weather periods.
New Orleans is the oldest city in the country, so there is no surprise that some spooky things and sights can be found here. Visitors can choose from two tours. French Quarter Ghosts and Legends Tour will take you through French Quarter and tell stories about its grim history and haunted sites. Another, Cities of the Dead Cemetery History Tour, will lead you through the #1 cemetery and show you famous tombs and paces of rest of many perished local celebrities. Both tours can be enjoyed by kids and adults.
This list covers only 10 attractions, but the pass offers another 15 tours and places of interest.
What is not included in the Power Pass:
The Pass includes virtually every adventure you can think of, except for the children's amusement park, where the little visitors can enjoy carousel rides for $4.
Does the Power Pass provide good value?
Our answer is definitely yes! Any motivated and organized traveler will get to enjoy a lot of things the city has to offer with this pass. After you'll take the bus tour and 2 other activities, the pass will be paid for and a lot of room to play with other adventures will remain. This is a really great way to see everything you came here to see.
You do have to plan ahead and get up early to enjoy the full benefits of this pass. If you plan your day, you will definitely get your money's worth, won't have to rush, and will have plenty of time left to enjoy the city on your own, wonder around, shop, and dine. Don't buy the pass if you like to sleep in on your vacation and hate planning ahead. The price doesn't matter if you don't like active vacation and don't feel like getting out of the door.
First time visitors can really benefit from this Power Pass, because it will allow them to see everything with the least money spent. All tourists who like to immerse themselves in local culture and experience tours, boat rides, and personalized cooking classes will enjoy this pass.
Visitors with a very tight budget and lack of desire to get up early and plan their day should probably stay away from it.
In conclusion, buy the pass if you are ready to come to New Orleans and really experience it. Plan ahead, discover what you want to see and save money. This pass covers 99% of what most visitors want to experience, including some pricey tours and attractions. You will get a good value and will be able to see New Orleans in a short amount of time.
You know yourself best, so don't waste your money if you won't leave you hotel before noon. Some people start their activities late, when everything is already crowded, and then blame the pass for their negative experiences and lack of available tours. Do your math and start right after early breakfast.