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Holidays in Mardi Gras World

Holiday Travel Guide
Mardi Gras World featuring interior views and art

See how the floats for New Orleans’ world-famous annual fiesta are put together in this museum with a difference.

Mardi Gras is traditionally celebrated on the day before Ash Wednesday, but in party-loving New Orleans the build-up to this colourful parade starts months before. The season begins in earnest in January, culminating in the carefree extravaganza of “Fat Tuesday” itself, when lavish floats fill the streets with colour and music rings out from every building.

One local artist who has created many of the most iconic floats of past years is Blaine Kern, who first stamped his mark on the city’s art world in the 1940s when he painted a mural in a local hospital to help pay for his mother’s medical bills. His talent was recognised by a float captain who quickly invited him to design something for the forthcoming parade. From these humble beginnings Blaine soon gained a reputation as an inspiring designer whose floats were bigger, better and bolder than anything that had gone before.

Now part of his studio on the banks of the Mississippi has been turned into Mardi Gras World, which houses a dazzling collection of floats and props from previous carnivals and allows you to watch some of the craftspeople in action. The workshops also make props for other customers, including Disneyland, Universal Studios and several major theme parks and attractions. The one-hour studio tour takes you behind the scenes of this unusual facility to witness some of the fascinating technology used in the construction of the intricate floats. Afterwards, contemplate your visit from the comfort of the on-site cafe as you watch the river flow lazily past the windows.

Mardi Gras World is open seven days a week except for major public holidays and Mardi Gras itself. The admission fee includes the tour.

3102 Cheap Hotels Near Mardi Gras World

Astor Crowne Plaza New Orleans French Quarter
Astor Crowne Plaza New Orleans French Quarter
4.5 out of 5
739 Canal Street, New Orleans, LA
Fully refundable
The price is AU$174 per night from 16 Aug. to 16 Aug.
Located in French Quarter, this luxury hotel is steps away from Canal Street, Bourbon Street and Royal Street. Decatur Street and Saenger Theatre are also within ...
3.9/5Good! (2,803 reviews)
"I didn't realize how close to Bourbon Street this hotel is and it was very noisy at night. It is on a busy area of canal Street and I was surprised at the number of people hanging out around the outside hotel as well as the number of homeless people sleeping on the street so close to the hotel."

Reviewed on 30 Jul. 2021

Astor Crowne Plaza New Orleans French Quarter
New Orleans Marriott
New Orleans Marriott
4 out of 5
555 Canal St, New Orleans, LA
Fully refundableReserve now, pay when you stay
The price is AU$200 per night from 16 Aug. to 16 Aug.
Located in French Quarter, this hotel is within a 10-minute walk of Canal Street and Jackson Square. Cafe Du Monde and French Market are also within 15 minutes. ...
4.3/5Excellent! (1,868 reviews)
"The elevator floor selection and the way it told you which one to get on was unique and seemed to work well. It did seem like everyone was booked in the same tower and the wait for the elevator took a long time sometimes. The pantry area was really great. An upgrade to the shower/tubs would be the ..."

Reviewed on 27 Jul. 2021

New Orleans Marriott
The Westin New Orleans
The Westin New Orleans
4.5 out of 5
100 Rue Iberville, New Orleans, LA
The price is AU$221 per night from 23 Aug. to 23 Aug.
Located in French Quarter, this luxury hotel is steps away from The Shops at Canal Place and Canal Street. Audubon Aquarium of the Americas and Harrah's New ...
4.2/5Excellent! (1,487 reviews)
"Excellent…."

Reviewed on 30 Jul. 2021

The Westin New Orleans
Lowest nightly price found within the past 24 hours based on a 1 night stay for 2 adults. Prices and availability subject to change. Additional terms may apply.

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Top Mardi Gras World Hotel & Accommodation Deals

Sonesta ES Suites New Orleans Convention Center
Sonesta ES Suites New Orleans Convention Center
3.5 out of 5
345 St Joseph St., New Orleans, LA
The price is AU$157 per night from 8 Aug. to 8 Aug.
Sonesta ES Suites New Orleans Convention Center
New Orleans Marriott
New Orleans Marriott
4 out of 5
555 Canal St, New Orleans, LA
The price is AU$200 per night from 16 Aug. to 16 Aug.
New Orleans Marriott
The Westin New Orleans
The Westin New Orleans
4.5 out of 5
100 Rue Iberville, New Orleans, LA
The price is AU$221 per night from 23 Aug. to 23 Aug.
The Westin New Orleans
Astor Crowne Plaza New Orleans French Quarter
Astor Crowne Plaza New Orleans French Quarter
4.5 out of 5
739 Canal Street, New Orleans, LA
The price is AU$174 per night from 16 Aug. to 16 Aug.
Astor Crowne Plaza New Orleans French Quarter
Bourbon Orleans Hotel
Bourbon Orleans Hotel
3.5 out of 5
717 Orleans St., New Orleans, LA
The price is AU$220 per night from 16 Aug. to 16 Aug.
Bourbon Orleans Hotel
Le Méridien New Orleans
Le Méridien New Orleans
4 out of 5
333 Poydras Street, New Orleans, LA
The price is AU$188 per night from 16 Aug. to 16 Aug.
Le Méridien New Orleans
Royal Sonesta New Orleans
Royal Sonesta New Orleans
4.5 out of 5
300 Bourbon St, New Orleans, LA
The price is AU$268 per night from 1 Aug. to 1 Aug.
Royal Sonesta New Orleans
Loews New Orleans Hotel
Loews New Orleans Hotel
4 out of 5
300 Poydras St, New Orleans, LA
The price is AU$240 per night from 24 Aug. to 24 Aug.
Loews New Orleans Hotel
Hilton New Orleans Riverside
Hilton New Orleans Riverside
4 out of 5
2 Poydras St, New Orleans, LA
The price is AU$162 per night from 24 Aug. to 24 Aug.
Hilton New Orleans Riverside
Lowest nightly price found within the past 24 hours based on a 1 night stay for 2 adults. Prices and availability subject to change. Additional terms may apply.