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Mardi Gras season has begun in New Orleans! All the locals are talking about the parades, the outfits and what they are going to throw!

Mark Twain once wrote that a traveller "…has not seen the United States until they have seen Mardi Gras in New Orleans". Of the hundreds of Louisiana festivals that take place every year, none tops Mardi Gras. Spectacular parades, unbelievable costumes, music, dancing, food and drink including lots of family style celebrations.

Mardi Gras takes over the whole city of New Orleans and is the biggest celebration the city hosts every year. This magnificent, costumed, beaded and feathered party is laced with tradition and but it's all about having a good time.

Mardi Gras 2013 is on Tuesday 12th February. The Carnival traditionally begins the 12th night after Christmas, and about two weeks before Mardi Gras, the parading begins. This year parades begin January 19th. Fat Tuesday itself typically features back-to-back processions by some of the largest and oldest Carnival organisations in the state. Be sure to learn the Mardi Gras lingo, including what a King Cake is, and about Mardi Gras History. More Mardi Gras information...

If you are travelling to New Orleans for Mardi Gras this year and would like some travel guides and maps email Follow Louisiana Travel on Facebook to get all the latest news and pictures!

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