Explore New Orleans

New Orleans' Voodoo To-Dos

Voodoo continues to cast a spell on the Crescent City.

Voodoo is more than just a festival, especially in New Orleans—long a center for the Haitian religion. So even if you can't make it to the city's Voodoo Experience Music + Arts festival, which takes place each October, you can still get your own experience with our quick guide of New Orleans voodoo stops for the adventurous traveler.

Start your exploration with tombs. Just outside the French Quarter in St. Louis Cemetery No. 1 is the tomb of Marie Laveau, the legendary queen of voodoo, where visitors and locals leave offerings year-round in hope of gaining her favor.

Voodoo queen Marie Laveau's tomb in St. Louis Cemetery No. 1. (©Shawn Fink)
Voodoo queen Marie Laveau's tomb in St. Louis Cemetery No. 1. (©Shawn Fink)

Those looking for a more tactile voodoo experience can visit the New Orleans Historic Voodoo Museum or Marie Laveau's House of Voodoo. Visitors will spot a number of voodoo shops around the city, but for the real deal stop in at Esoterica or browse the selection of herbs, candles and books at modern-day voodoo high priestess Sallie Ann Glassman’s Island of Salvation Botanica in the New Orleans Healing Center.

Voodoo priestess Sallie Ann Glassman. (©Shawn Fink)
Voodoo priestess Sallie Ann Glassman performing her St. John's Eve ritual. (©Shawn Fink)

Similar to the St. John's Eve voodoo baptism, which takes place June 23 on Bayou St. John, during October the Center hosts the annual Anba Dlo Festival to celebrate an element the Crescent City has a love/hate relationship with: water. Meaning “beneath the waters” in Haitian, the festival—featuring parades, costume contests and a midnight voodoo ceremony, the celebration is presided over by Glassman—acknowledges the importance of water in everyday life as well as the impact it has had on the city.