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Mississippi River Tours

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2,097 Reviews
Mississippi River
A central character in Mark Twain’s The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, the mighty Mississippi River has long captured the American imagination. Originating in Minnesota and sweeping across 95 river miles (153 kilometers) south to New Orleans where it spits out into the Gulf of Mexico, the Mississippi is the largest river system in North America and has gained an almost mythical place in American history.

The Basics
The river divides New Orleans in two, and experiencing it is a fundamental part of any trip to the Big Easy. One of the most iconic Mississippi River experiences is a river cruise aboard a paddlewheel riverboat to the tunes of live jazz music in New Orleans, with options for brunch and dinner experiences. Swamp and bayou tours of the Mississippi River Delta show off the region’s wildlife (alligators, raccoons, snakes, turtles, and native birds).

Things to Know Before You Go
  • Don’t forget your camera; the Mississippi River affords stellar views of the city’s skyline.
  • Some of New Orleans’ riverboats are wheelchair accessible on certain decks.

How to Get There
The Mississippi riverfront is an easy walk from anywhere in the historic French Quarter. The Riverfront streetcar follows the banks of the river, stopping at Canal Street, Toulouse, Dumaine, Ursulines, and French Market stations.

When to Get There
The best time to enjoy the Mississippi River in New Orleans is from February to May, when the weather is comfortable, and there’s plenty going on in the nearby streets and neighborhoods. Expect temperatures between 86°F (30°C) and 94°F (34°C) in summer.

Points of Interest on the Riverfront
Many of the most popular attractions in New Orleans are situated on or near the Mississippi Riverfront, including the Audubon Zoo, Audubon Aquarium of the Americas, Mardi Gras World, Harrah’s New Orleans casino, Jackson Square, St. Louis Cathedral, and Crescent Park.
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48 Tours and Activities to Experience Mississippi River

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Steamboat Natchez Harbor Cruise

Steamboat Natchez Harbor Cruise

star-4.5
The Steamboat NATCHEZ is taking some time off, but her sister vessel will be taking her place. You’ll get the same authentic riverboat experience, journeying back in time to when cotton was king and New Orleans was a budding port town that dazzled visitors with its colorful Creole culture. Board the historic riverboat for a morning or afternoon float down the mighty Mississippi. Stroll the deck, admire the iconic paddlewheel, enjoy live music, and snap picturesque shots of the beautiful urban shoreline. This family‐friendly excursion offers an optional tableside lunch (additional expense).
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  • 2 hours
  • Taking safety measures
From
$38.00
From
$38.00
Taking safety measures

Steamboat Natchez Jazz Dinner Cruise

Steamboat Natchez Jazz Dinner Cruise

star-4
The Steamboat Natchez is taking some time off, but her sister vessel will be taking her place. You’ll get the same authentic experience of New Orleans at night on this romantic riverboat cruise! Journey through time on a paddle-wheel boat ride along the mighty Mississippi. Stroll the deck, cozy up with family and friends, and delight in the sparkle of the urban shoreline at dusk. This excursion includes a Creole‐inspired dinner and live jazz music.
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  • 3 hours
  • Taking safety measures
From
$50.00
From
$50.00
Taking safety measures

Swamp and Bayou Sightseeing Tour with Boat Ride from New Orleans

Swamp and Bayou Sightseeing Tour with Boat Ride from New Orleans

star-4.5
Discover the mystique of the swamps and bayous on a sightseeing boat tour from New Orleans. Travel deep into the secluded bayous across the Mississippi River to witness Cajun life and spot native wildlife. Your guide will provide commentary on Cajun culture and the myth‐laden swamps while you snap photos of alligators, raccoons, snakes, turtles, and native birds.
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  • 4 hours
  • Free Cancellation
  • Taking safety measures
From
$52.00
From
$52.00
Taking safety measures

Steamboat Natchez Jazz Brunch Cruise in New Orleans

Steamboat Natchez Jazz Brunch Cruise in New Orleans

star-4
The Steamboat NATCHEZ is taking some time off, but her sister vessel will be taking her place. You’ll get the same classic New Orleans experience of a lovely jazz brunch aboard a historic riverboat! Journey through time on this cruise along the mighty Mississippi. Stroll the deck, admire the iconic paddlewheel, and snap picturesque shots of the beautiful urban shoreline. This family‐friendly excursion includes a delectable brunch loaded with famous Louisiana dishes and live music from a local jazz trio.
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  • 2 hours
  • Taking safety measures
From
$38.00
From
$38.00
Taking safety measures

New Orleans Super Saver: City Tour and Steamboat Natchez Harbor Cruise

New Orleans Super Saver: City Tour and Steamboat Natchez Harbor Cruise

star-4
See the best of New Orleans by land and water on this combo city tour and riverboat cruise on the mighty Mississippi! The Steamboat NATCHEZ is taking some time off, but her sister vessel will be taking her place. You’ll get the same authentic riverboat experience of a leisurely, two-hour cruise on the mighty Mississippi, enjoying traditional live jazz, craft cocktails and all the beautiful New Orleans sites. On your city tour, enjoy a guided coach trip through the French Quarter, Garden District, and Jackson Square, where you’ll witness the city’s cultural history and diverse colonial heritage.
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  • 4 hours 30 minutes
  • Taking safety measures
From
$74.00
From
$74.00
Taking safety measures

VIP: Steamboat Natchez Dinner Cruise with Private Boat and Engine Room Tour

VIP: Steamboat Natchez Dinner Cruise with Private Boat and Engine Room Tour

star-4.5
The Steamboat NATCHEZ is taking some time off, but her sister vessel will be taking her place. You’ll get the same authentic riverboat experience while you step up the luxury on this Viator VIP dinner cruise. Your experience begins with a complimentary Champagne cocktail while you take a guided tour of the boat’s authentic fixtures and spaces such as the pilot house. In the dining room, you’ll have a reserved table where you can relax, indulge in a sumptuous tableside dinner and enjoy a live jazz performance. If you want to go all out, upgrade to a full‐bar option.
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  • 2 hours
  • Taking safety measures
From
$159.95
From
$159.95
Taking safety measures

Whitney Plantation Tour

Whitney Plantation Tour

star-4.5
Travel back in time to the era of the antebellum South on an afternoon tour from New Orleans to the Whitney Plantation, a former indigo and sugar plantation on the River Road now dedicated to promoting an understanding of slavery in Louisiana. Learn about the realities of plantation life through museum exhibits and recorded narratives as you explore the restored structures and historical slave cabins. Please download the Whitney Plantation app for the self-guided tour of Whitney Plantation Museum.
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  • 5 hours
  • Free Cancellation
  • Taking safety measures
From
$69.00
From
$69.00
Taking safety measures

Paddlewheeler Creole Queen Jazz Cruise with Optional Dinner

Paddlewheeler Creole Queen Jazz Cruise with Optional Dinner

star-3.5
Go for a sunset cruise aboard the Paddlewheeler Creole Queen on this boat trip. Listen to an on-board jazz band and choose to add on a Creole-style dinner buffet as the boat sails along the Mississippi River. Take in the views from the promenade deck and sip New Orleans-inspired cocktails.
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  • 2 hours 30 minutes
  • Free Cancellation
  • Taking safety measures
From
$52.00
From
$52.00
Taking safety measures

French Quarter Historical Sights and Stories Walking Tour

French Quarter Historical Sights and Stories Walking Tour

star-5
Delve into the stories behind the oldest neighborhood in New Orleans during a French Quarter walking tour. Take in famous landmarks including Jackson Square, St. Louis Cathedral, and the Mississippi River, along with lesser-known places of interest. Hear from your guide about the architecture and heritage of the district, and get the inside scoop on recommended places for shopping and dining as well.
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  • 2 hours
  • Free Cancellation
  • Taking safety measures
From
$26.67
From
$26.67
Taking safety measures

New Orleans VIP Sightseeing Flight Including Champagne and Chocolates or Wine and Cheese

New Orleans VIP Sightseeing Flight Including Champagne and Chocolates or Wine and Cheese

star-5
Add magic and romance to your New Orleans vacation with an unforgettable VIP sightseeing flight! Choose between champagne and chocolate or wine and cheese as you glide by small plane over urban New Orleans and the surrounded wetlands. On the 45-minute flight, hear colorful tales of the city from your experienced pilot and enjoy aerial views the French Quarter, the Mercedes-Benz Superdome, the winding bayous and more. Sightseeing requests are welcome!
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  • 45 minutes
  • Taking safety measures
From
$168.00
From
$168.00
Taking safety measures

New Orleans French Quarter Walking Tour

New Orleans French Quarter Walking Tour

star-5
Explore New Orleans' history, culture and architecture with a 2-hour walking tour through the French Quarter’s atmospheric streets. Stroll alongside a local guide as you hear about the multicultural heritage of the Vieux Carre, and spot the distinctive architectural styles that tell the city’s stories. Learn about the slaves that found community in Congo Square. Finish your walk with tips on how to eat, drink and live it up like a local — or yat — in New Orleans.
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  • 2 hours
  • Free Cancellation
  • Taking safety measures
From
$25.00
From
$25.00
Taking safety measures

New Orleans French Quarter Walking and History Tour

New Orleans French Quarter Walking and History Tour

star-4.5
Immerse yourself in the best of the French Quarter on this 2.5‐hour historical walking tour. An entertaining local guide will lead you through the Vieux Carré, along the mighty Mississippi River, and to Louis Armstrong Park and Jackson Square, describing the city’s cultural history and diverse colonial heritage. See notable literary and cinematic landmarks, bustling scenes of local life, and architectural gems including some of the nation’s oldest buildings.
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  • 2 hours 30 minutes
  • Free Cancellation
From
$25.00
From
$25.00

New Orleans City Tour with Swamp Tour Options

New Orleans City Tour with Swamp Tour Options

star-4.5
Travel through the bayou on this three-hour New Orleans city tour with optional swap adventure. Journey with your professional guide in a comfortable air-conditioned minibus as you learn about the history, culture and highlights of southern Creoles. You'll see major city highlights, plus areas affected by Hurricane Katrina and have the opportunity to add an optional swamp tour to this already comprehensive trip.
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  • 7 hours 30 minutes
  • Free Cancellation
  • Taking safety measures
From
$98.00
From
$98.00
Taking safety measures

Fly a Plane in New Orleans: No Experience or License Required

Fly a Plane in New Orleans: No Experience or License Required

star-5
Get your flying chops in beautiful New Orleans with a personal 50-minute flying lesson! No prior experience is needed for this excursion, which includes a 20-minute on-ground lesson and 30 minutes of flying time in the company of a Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) certified instructor. You’ll help guide the small plane through take-off and landing, and — once airborne — maneuver over New Orleans’ famous sights such as the French Quarter, the Mississippi River and the sleepy Louisiana bayous.
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  • 50 minutes
  • Taking safety measures
From
$258.14
From
$258.14
Taking safety measures

New Orleans French Quarter Kids and Family Tour

New Orleans French Quarter Kids and Family Tour

star-5
Get your kids marching to the tune of New Orleans on a family-friendly romp through the French Quarter. Explore the city’s history with pictures and stories, from pirates and voodoo to jazz and Cajun culture, and treat young tastes buds to some local snacks. An entertaining guide tailors games and activities to kids’ ages on this small-group tour that has the whole family wearing Mardi Gras beads and stomping in a second-line parade, just like locals.
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  • 2 hours
  • Free Cancellation
  • Taking safety measures
From
$32.00
From
$32.00
Taking safety measures

New Orleans Mississippi River Cruise & City Tour Bundle

New Orleans Mississippi River Cruise & City Tour Bundle

Enjoy a fully narrated city tour of historic New Orleans, where you will visit the world famous French Quarter, Jackson Square, Audubon Park and even uncover the mysteries surrounding Voodoo. Then take to the waters on the Natchez Riverboat for a 2 hour cruise on the Mississippi River. Come and discover New Orleans today!
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  • 4 hours 30 minutes
  • Free Cancellation
  • Taking safety measures
From
$82.00
From
$82.00
Taking safety measures

New Orleans Helicopter City Tour

SPECIAL OFFER

New Orleans Helicopter City Tour

star-5
Get amazing aerial views of New Orleans on this 15-mile helicopter tour. While listening to guided commentary from your pilot through your headset, you and just a two other passengers will fly over Jackson Square, the French Quarter, City Park, and Lake Pontchartrain, among other landmarks.
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  • 15 minutes
  • Free Cancellation
  • Taking safety measures
From
$76.00
$95.00
$19.00 savings
Price varies by group size
From
$76.00
$95.00
$19.00 savings
Price varies by group size
Taking safety measures

New Orleans Haunted Ghost Tour

SPECIAL OFFER

New Orleans Haunted Ghost Tour

star-4.5
Discover the spooky side of New Orleans with a historian-led walking tour. Visit haunted locations throughout the French Quarter such as the Lalaurie Mansion and May Bailey’s Brothel. Hear stories from local history over the leisurely stroll. This tour is kid-friendly and based on historical research.
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  • 1 hour 30 minutes to 2 hours
  • Free Cancellation
  • Taking safety measures
From
$21.60
$27.00
$5.40 savings
From
$21.60
$27.00
$5.40 savings
Taking safety measures

The New Orleans Sightseeing Flex Pass: Save Big on 20+ Attractions and Tours

The New Orleans Sightseeing Flex Pass: Save Big on 20+ Attractions and Tours

star-3.5
Experience the best of the Big Easy at a great value with the New Orleans Sightseeing Pass. With immediate activation, the pass gives you access to your choice of three or five of the city’s top attractions and tours, from Mardi Gras World and paddlewheel cruises to plantation, cemetery, and swamp tours. It’s valid for 30 days, so keep your pass handy and customize your visit on the go with a guidebook listing opening hours, directions, and other helpful info.
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  • 30 days
  • Free Cancellation
From
$74.00
From
$74.00

The New Orleans Sightseeing Day Pass: 20+ Attractions & Tours in The Big Easy

The New Orleans Sightseeing Day Pass: 20+ Attractions & Tours in The Big Easy

star-1
Experience the best of New Orleans on your own schedule and at a discount of up to 50% with the New Orleans Sightseeing Pass. Save big at top attractions like the Audubon Zoo, Mardi Gras World, the WWII History Museum, Houmas House Plantation, and the Cabildo, and get around town hassle free with an included hop-on hop-off bus pass. Choose the pass that fits your plans, with 1- to 5-day options available.
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  • 1 to 5 days
  • Free Cancellation
From
$95.00
From
$95.00

New Orleans Sightseeing Flight

New Orleans Sightseeing Flight

star-4.5
See New Orleans in a whole new way on an exhilarating sightseeing flight! Choose a 30-, 45- or 60-minute flight time, and delight in lovely aerial views as you glide by small plane over urban New Orleans and the surrounded wetlands. You’ll hear colorful tales of the city from your experienced pilot and glimpse famous sights including the French Quarter, the Mississippi River and sleepy Louisiana bayous.
More
  • 30 minutes to 1 hour
  • Taking safety measures
From
$128.00
From
$128.00
Taking safety measures

French Quarter and Cemetery Walking Tour in New Orleans

French Quarter and Cemetery Walking Tour in New Orleans

star-5
Enjoy an overview of the French Quarter and St Louis Cemetery No 1, known as the ‘city of the dead,’ on this 2-hour walking tour in New Orleans. An informative guide takes you through 300 years of history and shares intriguing facts about the oldest French settlement in the United States. Learn about the cemetery tombs built above ground and which prominent New Orleans families are buried here.
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  • 2 hours
  • Free Cancellation
  • Taking safety measures
From
$29.13
From
$29.13
Taking safety measures

New Orleans Night Sightseeing Flight

New Orleans Night Sightseeing Flight

star-5
Delight in sweeping views of New Orleans at twilight on an evening sightseeing tour! Choose a 30-, 45- or 60-minute flight time, and glide by small plane over dazzling urban New Orleans and the surrounding wetlands. You’ll hear colorful tales of the city from your experienced pilot and glimpse famous sights by night including the French Quarter, the Mississippi River and the sleepy Louisiana bayous. Sightseeing requests are welcome!
More
  • 45 minutes to 1 hour
  • Taking safety measures
From
$165.34
From
$165.34
Taking safety measures

Private Helicopter Sightseeing Flight in New Orleans

Private Helicopter Sightseeing Flight in New Orleans

star-5
Helicopter Tours. Yeah, we got dat! Take your date, friends, or family sky dancing above the crescent city and sparkling lights of the Big Easy! Leave the traffic and tourists below and go vertical for an unforgettable 15, 20, 30, or 40 mile sightseeing helicopter tour over New Orleans! While aboard the helicopter, listen to city tales from the pilot and look out over famous New Orleans neighborhoods such as the French Quarter. The itinerary can be tailored to the sights that the group wants to see, but typically flights include views of the impressive Mercedes-Benz Superdome, Port of New Orleans and Mississippi River.
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  • 12 to 40 minutes
  • Taking safety measures
From
$101.34
From
$101.34
Taking safety measures

Frequently Asked Questions

The answers provided below are based on answers previously given by the tour provider to customers’ questions.
Q:
What's the best way to experience Mississippi River?