Jenny Adams

New Orleans can’t be pinned down to one identity. She is — much like her famous gumbo — a collection and compilation of all that’s come and gone in her storied, occasionally sordid, 302-year history. There are reminders of the thousands who fled the Haitian slave revolts in the city’s antique ironwork, Second Line parades and classic Creole dishes. Touches of European influence also abound, from Spanish architecture to French street names.

Yet, intriguing history isn’t the only reason to venture to The Big Easy. The city’s newest restaurants and cocktail bars have only cemented its reputation as a top-tier culinary destination. NOLA's art scenes also continue to thrive, from the street performances of the French Quarter to the galleries of the Marigny. Even as the city looks toward its bright future, New Orleans is invested in maintaining its unique character.