Garden District

Experience the charm of America’s most fascinating city with a self-guided tour of New Orleans’ famed historic Garden District neighborhood.

The area in New Orleans known as the Garden District is bordered by Jackson and Louisiana Avenues, between St Charles Avenue and Magazine Street. Grand, elegant homes inhabit lush, flower gardens and feature an unusual mixture of Spanish, English, French and Greek Revival architectural styles.

Populated by the first Americans to settle in New Orleans after the Louisiana Purchase of 1803, the Garden District reflects an exciting and prosperous period of time. Shunned at first by the Creoles, who continued to live in the French Quarter, the new Americans developed their own community and established their own church, a grand hotel, a theater, a cemetery, even a railroad.

These people spared no expense in custom-designing their 20-to-30-room homes. Hand-painted murals decorate some of the ceilings; hand-carved mahogany banisters adorn winding staircases; imported Italian marble covers many of the mantles; and large, open galleries, or verandas, stretch from one side of the homes to the other.

A walking tour through parts of the Garden District is an especially pleasant walk. Quaint, narrow sidewalks are lined with wrought-iron fences; they’re shaded by magnificent live oaks, magnolias and palm trees. As a point of departure, Commander’s Palace provides easy access to some of the city’s most beautiful homes and gardens.

Highlighted in our map are the Garden District homes and areas that possess especially interesting histories or portray antebellum architectural styles. As you walk past the District’s many homes suggested on our map, notice the distinct architecture – grilled ironwork, ornate exterior moldings, the Greek columns, lead or stained-glass windows. Many of the homes are still owned by descendants of the original owners.

Garden District Tour information courtesy of Commander’s Palace