My favorite thing to do in the summer is swim. But I don’t own a pool or have a membership anywhere that does.

So, here are fo easy ways to stay cool in New Orleans this summer:

  1. “Adult Swim”

    For the first time, the W New Orleans (at 333 Poydras St.) will be opening its rooftop pool every Sunday from June through August, free to locals. Starting at 1 p.m., entrance is free (though drinks and such are not) on a first-come, first-serve basis (so get there early). Or you can pay for a package, which includes bottle service for six, fresh fruit, water, a flat-screen TV and DVD player, wireless Internet and comped parking for one car (with reduced parking for the second).

  1. All On an Audubon Day

    While the zoo isn’t known for its air conditioning, there are cool rooms, the cool zoo (for kids, but adults can get their feet wet) and cool drinks. Then take the ferry (stand outside for the breeze and a great view) to the aquarium. The aquarium: dark, cool and there’s seating – yes! Then walk on over to the Insectarium and end in the butterfly garden to get yourself acclimated before walking back outside.

  1. Watch & Shop

    One of my personal favorites: Go see a movie (dark and cool with drinks and food) then go shopping (cool and finding that perfect score will get your adrenaline going) then go see another movie.

  1. Drive & Dive

    Gulf Shores is a little over three hours away and has plenty of public beaches. Dolphin Island offers another opportunity. New Orleans is well situated for short drives to the coast, and there’s nothing better than some sun, sand and surf (well, hopefully no surf so that swimming is easier).

With that said, I’m off to Gulf Shores myself; see you there!