Study Music in New Orleans with Worldwide Navigators

Student Trip to Study Jazz in New Orleans

While immersing yourself in the rich musical heritage of New Orleans, remember that as recently as 2005 Hurricane Katrina ripped through the city. Consider giving back to people that need a hand by donating some time at a food kitchen to help feed the hungry.

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Sojourn – Gain a better understanding of the community you’re visiting. Learn about different religions or spiritual practices. How do these impact the communities? How does religion or spirituality influence local traditions?

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Savor – Will you choose sweet or savory? Take the time to visit local markets and discover unique local ingredients. Learn how to prepare traditional meals & local favorites.

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Tip of the Tongue – Each morning, take the time to learn a few basic greetings and phrases in the local language. Learn how to write greetings & your name in the local script.

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A Wrinkle in Time – History influences our present. Discover the history of the country you visit. Hear the stories of your guides & their family history. Where do they come from?

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Journal Journeys – Take some time to reflect on the day’s events and document your journey. Spend a moment journaling about the day had & day ahead. These are memories for a lifetime!

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Culture – From local dances, festivals, or simple gestures to communicate – all of these make up a country’s culture. Learn and practice cultural norms & how to show respect in the culture you visit.

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Land in New Orleans, and head to your hotel in the heart of the famed French Quarter.  There is no better city to explore the roots of jazz. Jazz evolved from the confluence of African, Caribbean and European musical traditions, and many of the most famous jazz musicians come from Louisiana, including New Orleans’ own Louis “Satchmo” Armstrong.

Your student tour of the birthplace of jazz will begin with enjoying authentic Creole cuisine at tonight’s welcome dinner.  Then wander through the Quarter, perhaps along famed Bourbon Street stopping in at Fritzel’s Jazz Club, which is housed in a circa 1831 building.  Or stroll to Jackson Square with St. Louis Cathedral and the equestrian statue of Andrew Jackson, or take a walk along the Mississippi River.

Start your day at Louis Armstrong Park. Located at North Rampart Street on the edge of the French Quarter, the park honors one of the City’s most celebrated native sons and the tradition of jazz in the City.  Within the park is historic Congo Square where slaves gathered on Sundays, their day off, to sing, beat drums and keep their ancestral traditions alive.

Enjoy brunch at one of the most renowned places in the Quarter, Broussard’s, serving up its French Creole food since 1920.

This afternoon, visit New Orleans Jazz National Historical Park and take its 2-hour Satchmo Jazz walking tour. At the park, you’ll learn the history of this quintessential American music style.  Live concerts are offered at the Old U.S. Mint (400 Esplanade Ave.) or at the park’s visitor center in the French Market (916 N. Peters St.).  

Tonight you will hear jazz at the most famous spot in the city, Preservation Hall. Many regard Preservation Hall as the best place to hear jazz music. It’s a no-frills venue in New Orleans’ French Quarter that has changed little over the years.  The Preservation Hall Jazz Band performs traditional New Orleans jazz in this small, intimate one-room venue, for its 5, 6, 8, 9 and 10 p.m. concerts.

After breakfast, take a ride on the St. Charles Avenue streetcar through the Garden District, admiring the beautiful mansions, Loyola and Tulane Universities and Audubon Park.

Jazz plays a big part in New Orlean’s biggest yearly event, Mardi Gras.  You’ll visit Mardi Gras World south of the Convention Center along the Mississippi and see where parade floats are built. There, you’ll learn about parade history, meet the artists who design the floats and have a taste of the seasonal King Cake served at festival time.

Enjoy lunch aboard the historic Steamboat Natchez on a 2-hour jazz cruise with a creole lunch.  The Natchez is the last original steamboat to still ply the Mississippi River, and it’s home to one of the city’s most beloved jazz bands, The Dukes of Dixieland. The group has been performing Dixieland jazz for decades. 

Tonight, head Uptown to find some great live music. As you check local websites, keep an eye out for the Rebirth Brass Band, who play a New Orleans-born, funk-infused and more modern style of jazz.

Learn more about the history of jazz this morning on the New Orleans Music Heritage Tour, which traces the evolution of jazz and blues in the city. The tour will take you to famous venues while you listen to original recordings via a portable Bluetooth speaker.  

Head to Royal Street for brunch at Brennan’s, which introduced the world to Bananas Foster and is known for its posh breakfasts.

Following brunch, walk to Jackson Square to see the Mardi Gras Museum at the Presbytere, which is next to the Cathedral in Jackson Square, and take in its permanent exhibit “Mardi Gras: It’s Carnival Time in Louisiana.”

This evening, visit one of the best areas for jazz in the city, Frenchmen’s Street in the Faubourg Marigny with top clubs to enjoy including The Spotted Cat and the Snug Harbor jazz bistro.

Wander through the French Quarter, visiting the French Market and stopping to enjoy beignets at the Café du Monde.  If you want to take some music home with you, head to the Louisiana Music Factory where you’ll find rare records by jazz artists from New Orleans and beyond as well as books, t-shirts and other souvenirs.  

A good lunch stop is the historic Napoleon House, so named from when the then-mayor of the city hatched a plan to invite Napoleon to stay there during his exile.  He never made it but the name stuck, and it’s a great place to try out the signature muffaletta sandwich or Pimm’s Cup drink. Visit one of the historic mansions in the Quarter such as the 1850 House or Gallier House, or ride the streetcar out to City Park to see the New Orleans Museum of Art.

This morning, take in the Jazz History Tour, a two-hour excursion through the neighborhoods that gave birth to the legends of jazz. 

Travel into the beautiful Garden District and have a fun jazz brunch at Commander’s Palace, one of the grande dames of the New Orleans dining scene and still going strong.  Afterward, walk off brunch by strolling the oak-shaded sidewalks of the District, and admiring the architecture of the gorgeous mansions in the area.  

This evening, experience the People’s Health New Orleans Jazz Market. Part performance hall, part community center, The Peoples Health New Orleans Jazz Market is the hub of Central City’s cultural scene. It’s home to the New Orleans Jazz Orchestra, an ensemble made up of some of the city’s best jazz musicians.

Have a final breakfast at your hotel with the city’s great jazz and blues still ringing in your ears and head out to New Orleans airport for your flight back home.

Your student tour to the birthplace of jazz will give you a firsthand opportunity to experience where jazz was founded and visit venues and clubs where it is still performed today by the best in the business.  Select tours will give you rich insights into the history of the jazz legends that lived and played here. You will enjoy delicious Creole food at some of the city’s most iconic establishments, plus learn more about the Mardi Gras festival that brings the city alive every February.


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