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I haven't been back in a long time but always made sure to spend a day or two there on my amtrak trips across the country. The experience is better if you have a good host to guide you to some dank seafood and bar spots. The architecture and town feeling is charming(if you can look past the ghettoness that accompanies with the area). The music is great though and the history behind it all is even more demanding of appreciation.
I went there underage. So if you want a cover of the nightlife I can't help. Overall I would say it was a positive experience. It was only a couple of years after Katrina when I went. The people were very nice, including the colored folk, but you could sense the racial divide immediately. I was perhaps more sensitive to it though coming from a country where that doesn't exist nearly as much. The cityscape was quite nice, and the architecture. The middle class areas in town had a charming layout. I stayed in the French Quarter, there was quite a bit to see and do. Lots of good food. Heavy on the fried. It was colorful, glad I went.
Check out the Voodoo place(s) they have some weird shit. Hurricanes are the drink or used to be but I don't even remember what is in them. It's a zoo walking around the French Quarter at night but lots to see. In the morning they sweep and hose down the streets and do it again...