Driving long distances can be a hassle but your trip to New Orleans doesn't have to be. If you're driving to New Orleans, I-10 is the main artery into and out of New Orleans.
Driving to New Orleans From the West or East
If you're coming in from the west, take I-10 through Metairie. You will see the I-10/I-610 split. Stay on I-10 (aka the Pontchartrain Expressway) into New Orleans. From I-10 take U.S. 90 toward the Mississippi River. (Westbank). From 90 take the Poydras Street exit (on left) for the Superdome and New Orleans Arena. If you're coming in from the east exit I-10 at US 90 West. Follow signs to N.O. Business District, US90 West, Crescent City Connection to the West Bank.
Driving Around New Orleans
To go Uptown or Downtown, or into the French Quarter, go past the Poydras Street exit to the Carondelet/St. Charles exit. (Carondelet goes downtown, St. Charles goes uptown) Follow Carondelet across Canal and into the French Quarter. Carondelet becomes Bourbon when it crosses Canal Street.
One important thing to know is that New Orleans is divided at Canal Street. The Uptown side (toward Poydras Street) is in the American Sector of the city and the downtown side (French Quarter) is in the old Creole side of the city. All streets change names at Canal Street. St. Charles Avenue becomes Royal Street, etc.
Follow St. Charles Avenue for the Garden District, Tulane and Loyola Universities and the Audubon Zoo and other uptown attractions.
Cruise Ship Directions
If you're taking a cruise out of New Orleans take exit 11C off Hwy. 90 (Tchoupitoulas and South Peters St.) Turn right on Tchoupitoulas, then left on Henderson Street. Go over the railroad tracks and turn left. You will see Mardi Gras World on your right and the Convention Center on your left just before you turn. The Port of New Orleans building is just ahead on the right and a little further ahead are the Erato and Julia Street Terminals with parking.