Sydney and Walda Besthoff Sculpture Garden
1 Collins Diboll Cir., City Park
One of our favorite New Orleans experiences has nothing to do with eating or drinking. This enchanting five-acre garden is perfect for a wander around ponds and magnolia and live oak trees. There are also sixty-four sculptures by artists like Henry Moore and Kenneth Snelson. Originally intended as an offshoot of the New Orleans Museum of Art, the garden is an attraction all on its own. Come in the early morning or hazy late afternoon to see these wonders come alive when the light is most reflective.
New Orleans Museum of Art
One Collins Diboll Circle, City Park
When it was established in 1911, there were nine works of art on display. Now, in addition to a 40,000-piece-strong permanent collection, including works by Picasso, Sargent, and Magritte, there’s a world-class sculpture garden and an impressive calendar of special exhibitions. On Fridays, visitors are invited to stick around past closing for movie screening, poetry slams, and lectures.
1 Palm Dr., City Park
Numerous playgrounds, an amusement park, a hand-carved wooden carousel, paddle boat rentals, and a botanical garden are just a few of the offerings at this historic, 1,300-acre park. There are also tennis courts, running trails, and a stand of oak trees that date back 800 years. While the park was devastated by Katrina (it was almost completely submerged under water for weeks), locals banded together to resurrect it to its former glory and then some.