New Orleans is a Louisiana city on the Mississippi River, near the Gulf of Mexico. Nicknamed the “Big Easy,” it’s known for its round-the-clock nightlife, vibrant live-music scene, and spicy, singular cuisine reflecting its history as a melting pot of French, African and American cultures. Embodying its festive spirit is Mardi Gras, the late-winter carnival famed for raucous costumed parades and street parties. New Orleans celebrates all year round with concerts, music shows, second lines, and parades. Click here to see the New Orleans events calendar.