The end of April marks the beginning of the New Orleans Jazz and Heritage festival, more commonly known as Jazz Fest.
- When? 27th April - 6th May 2018
- Where? Fair Grounds Race Course & Slots, New Orleans
- Price: $80 on the gate, advance tickets $70 per day per weekend.
Let your hair down, it's time to boogie-woogie, as Jazz Fest swings into town.
As the birthplace of Jazz, the New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival was created with the intent of becoming an important cultural event with popular appeal over 40 years ago. The first Jazz Fest took place in 1970, with only 350 music-lovers in attendance. The festival has grown massively since its inception, now boasting annual attendance figures of over 400,000 guests and a slightly larger venue of the Fair Grounds Race Course & Slots.
With music spanning seven days across successive weekends in April and May, the festival's lineup features both indie artists and bigger names like the Red Hot Chili Peppers and Pearl Jam. It's not solely a Jazz festival either, celebrating all early forms of music originating in New Orleans. From blues, R&B, folk, rap, country and everything in between, there's certainly a variety of genres on offer to suit all tastes.
Food is as much a cause for celebration at Jazz Fest as the music, with over eight areas to choose from, each housing a variety of options. For a truly authentic N'awlins (that's how the locals pronounce it) experience make sure you try unusual dishes such as alligator pie, crawfish sausage Po-boy and shrimp bread.
The Craft village and marketplace also provides entertainment for guests visiting Jazz Fest. The Congo Square African marketplace offers drumming workshops and also gives you the chance to watch local artisans at work, creating unique canvas art and handmade jewellery. The Louisiana marketplace is the place to buy unusual gifts to take home, including acid etched jewellery and performance photography to remind you of your Jazz Fest experience.
Be-bop along to the Fair Grounds Race Course & Slots and we guarantee, it'll jazz up your spring.
- Get there: A Jazz Fest shuttle will take visitors from areas in downtown New Orleans and near City Park. Other travel packages are available on the website.
- Stay: The official host hotel is the Sheraton New Orleans, though other options are suggested on the official website too.
Visit the official Jazz Fest website to view travel and hotel options and to book tickets.
*We do our very best to verify the dates of our events but please check with the official event provider before booking your flights. We would hate for you to be disappointed!