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New orleans

KatWAGKatWAG Chicago member
2500 Comments Fifth Anniversary 500 Love Its 5 Answers

Talk to me about New Orleans.

H and I have never been and I am turning 30 (eek!) in a few months. We thought this would be a perfect excuse for a long, baby- free weekend. We are thinking we would leave Thursday night and come home Sunday afternoon in June. 

I know don't know anything about New Orleans. So I am looking for a bit of local knowledge. Where should we stay, what should we eat, what should we avoid, not miss? etc,

We have airline miles and would not want to spend anymore than $2,000.

Thanks ladies!

 

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Re: New orleans

  • theycallmelinztheycallmelinz Georgia member
    500 Love Its 500 Comments Second Anniversary Name Dropper
    I LOVE NEW ORLEANS. I've never been in June, I've only gone in early May. I hear it's miserable in the summer. Heat + humidity + lots of stale alcohol spilled in the streets. Maybe someone can speak to this better since I don't have personal experience of that time of year.

    Other than that, it's amazing. Definitely go on a ghost tour. They're really interesting stories even if you don't believe in supernatural stuff. Definitely eat a beignet. It's delicious. 

    Definitely avoid Bourbon Street at night if you're offended by boobies and alcohol ;)
    If it's not mardi gras, you won't see a lot of boobies. But there are strip clubs and some of the girls hang out outside to entice customers to come in.
    Anniversary



    KatWAG
  • abl13abl13 member
    Fifth Anniversary 100 Comments 25 Love Its Name Dropper

    EAT ALL THE FOOD.

    Oh my god it is so good.

    ChemFanatic25
  • dcbride86dcbride86 Washington, DC member
    500 Love Its 500 Comments Second Anniversary First Answer

    I also LOVE New Orleans!  I went for the Sugar Bowl about 3 years ago, and had so much fun!  I don't really love big crowds, so we stayed about a block away from Bourboun street, which was perfect.  I was able to ease myself into the craziness (but it was a lot of fun to go there a bit!). 

    DEFINITELY get coffee and beignets from Cafe Du Monde.  OMG best coffee I've ever had.  So good.  Also, right by Cafe Du Monde, there's a big square (I think it's famous), and there were street musicians and some artists, which was really cool.  There were musicians basically everywhere we went, and they were all AMAZING!  It was really cool.

     

    We didn't do any tours or anything, but exploring on foot was really fun.  Also, if you like the book "Confederacy of Dunces," there's a huge statue of Ignatius J. Reilly.  I can't remember where (we just stumbled on it), but it was super cool since FI and I both love the book.

     

    Have SO MUCH fun!!!!!!

    KatWAG
  • SmileDamnitSmileDamnit Mile High City member
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    We had our work conference there a couple of years ago so I was there for 2 weeks in June. Beware that it is (can be) miserably hot & humid so just be prepared to sweat something fierce. 

    It can be obnoxious (so, so, so many drunk people - very Vegas-esque on the tourist front) and stink badly, but other than that I enjoyed it. Agree that the food is fantastic...beignets, gumbo, poboys, so much goodness. The drinks are fantastic (I heart absinthe BIG). The architecture and history are ahhhmazing. You obviously have to see the French Quarter, but I liked the Garden District better. If you're looking for a very nice meal, try Commander's Palace. We went for brunch and it was awesome. You'll definitely need a reservation & there is a dress code, so be prepared for that. 
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    KatWAG
  • princessleia22princessleia22 Oceanfront Property in Arizona member
    Sixth Anniversary 500 Love Its 1000 Comments First Answer

    We got married in NOLA last June and that was my first time there.  Our impression: Bourbon Street was dirty and smelled like beer, piss, and shit. Not at all impressed.  It was fun for one night, but otherwise stay away, unless those things are what you are looking for. We stayed one night in hotel on Bourbon and it was loud all night.  The other nights we stayed in hotel near Harrah's and it was nice.  It was walkable to most areas. 

    Don't spend all your time in FQ... there is so much more to see.  FQ kind of lost its appeal to us after a day or two.  DH has no interest in ever going back to NOLA, but he spent the entire trip in FQ and around Bourbon St (I was there a few days alone and did more sightseeing outside FQ)... plus we had wedding guests with us so it was hectic and crazy. So, I would like to get him back there someday, but we will probably do everything EXCEPT FQ on that trip.

    I did a couple of walking tours and they were great.  It was a great way to see a lot and get the history behind the city.  We did one of FQ, Garden District, and a Haunted FQ tour. They were all awesome. And I heard they are closing down access to St. Louis Cemetery #1 to public and can only be accessed with tours now, so stop people from vandalizing it. But, the info and history gained on tours is worth it anyway.

    image 

    KatWAG
  • I was there a year and a half ago and I"m going back in 2 weeks.  I will report back
    image


    theycallmelinz
  • lyndausvilyndausvi Western Slope, Colorado mod
    Moderator Knottie Warrior 10000 Comments 500 Love Its

    I was there a year and a half ago and I"m going back in 2 weeks.  I will report back

    I will be there the 14th until the 19th.


    I lived there for a little over a year.  I go back twice a year because of work.  Oddly, I'm not a fan.  It's okay to visit once.    I love French Quarter Fest and Jazz Fest, but that's about all.

    June can be hot.  Bring a rain jacket because there tends to be passing showers that time of year. 

     I love the WWII museum.    Swamp tours can be pretty cool.   There are a lot of other walking tours that are interesting.   Food is amazing.  Willie May's fried chicken is a must.  I like po-boys at Parkway Bakery or Mother's.      






    What differentiates an average host and a great host is anticipating unexpressed needs and wants of their guests.  Just because the want/need is not expressed, doesn't mean it wouldn't be appreciated. 
    KatWAG
  • theycallmelinztheycallmelinz Georgia member
    500 Love Its 500 Comments Second Anniversary Name Dropper
    I second Willie May's chicken!! 
    Also go to Lafitte's Blacksmith Shop. It's supposedly the oldest bar in the US. 

    I cannot for the life of me remember the name of the bar, I think it was something Charley's but they claim to have invented the Hurricane (drink) and theirs is deeelicious.
    Obviously I was there for the alcohol lol.
    Anniversary



    KatWAGonefootinthebayou
  • abl13abl13 member
    Fifth Anniversary 100 Comments 25 Love Its Name Dropper
    I would recommend staying in a hotel far from bourbon street. Also, Café Du Monde always has a really long line in the morning. We found a café called Café Beignet that we liked just as much and was not as crowded :-)
    KatWAG
  • lyndausvi said:

    I was there a year and a half ago and I"m going back in 2 weeks.  I will report back

    I will be there the 14th until the 19th.


    I lived there for a little over a year.  I go back twice a year because of work.  Oddly, I'm not a fan.  It's okay to visit once.    I love French Quarter Fest and Jazz Fest, but that's about all.

    June can be hot.  Bring a rain jacket because there tends to be passing showers that time of year. 

     I love the WWII museum.    Swamp tours can be pretty cool.   There are a lot of other walking tours that are interesting.   Food is amazing.  Willie May's fried chicken is a must.  I like po-boys at Parkway Bakery or Mother's.      
    I'm going from the 20th-22nd!
    image


  • KatWAGKatWAG Chicago member
    2500 Comments Fifth Anniversary 500 Love Its 5 Answers
    Thanks for all the recommendations! I found a company that does free walking tours!
    BabyFruit Ticker
  • June will probably be really hot/humid. If you can swing a trip any earlier (May or late April) that might be more enjoyable. 

    I'd try to stay in the Garden District - lots of cool restaurants and shops, plus easy access to St. Charles and the street car, which can take you to the French Quarter for all the touristy things. You couldn't pay me to stay in a hotel near Bourbon Street, but if that's more your style, go for it! 

    Cafe Du Monde is a must do. Personally, I'd do it later in the afternoon on a week day if possible - it won't be as busy then. 

    As far as restaurants, Apolline on Magazine St. is really good - upscale, but with a traditional, Creole spin. Tableau right next to Jackson Square is good for after/before dinner drinks and has wide open doors so you can hear the music/buzz from the quarter. Bayona is really good, close to the quarter, and you should be able to sit outside in their courtyard that time of year. 

    A swamp tour would be cool. Also, just bar/restaurant hop for live jazz/blues. We did a ghost tour of the quarter and it was not worth it. Would not recommend if you were considering that.

    Have fun!
    *********************************************************************************

    image
    KatWAG
  • SmileDamnitSmileDamnit Mile High City member
    500 Love Its 1000 Comments Second Anniversary Name Dropper
    Ohhh, forgot to add that if you like bloody marys, then go to The Royal House for one of theirs. To.Die.For.
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    KatWAGthemuffinman16
  • I second Willie May's chicken!! 

    Also go to Lafitte's Blacksmith Shop. It's supposedly the oldest bar in the US. 

    I cannot for the life of me remember the name of the bar, I think it was something Charley's but they claim to have invented the Hurricane (drink) and theirs is deeelicious.
    Obviously I was there for the alcohol lol.
    The place with the Hurricane's is Pat O'Briens! It has a dueling piano bar and is super fun!

    Commander's is a great choice for a nice meal. They have 25 cent martinis and a very reasonably priced fixed-price menu for lunch (maybe only weekedays?), and the jazz brunch is more expensive but very fun too! I also love Acme Oyster House for a casual meal - they have all the New Orleans staples plus the BEST chargrilled oysters!

    Also, be sure to check http://www.neworleansonline.com/calendar/year.html  or nola.com to see if there are any festivals when you will be there. Even the smaller festivals are lots of fun, with great food and music! 
    KatWAG
  • I went to LSU - 45 Mins from New Orleans! I have such a special love for it. 

    The Ruby Slipper Cafe has amazing brunch, but be prepared for a wait.
    image
    KatWAG
  • theycallmelinztheycallmelinz Georgia member
    500 Love Its 500 Comments Second Anniversary Name Dropper

    @emmyyyk Haha I don't know where the hell Charley's came from. But yes! Go to Pat O'Briens!

    Anniversary



    KatWAG
  • AprilH81AprilH81 Columbus, OH member
    2500 Comments 500 Love Its Third Anniversary 5 Answers
    I recommend eating at NOLA, a restaurant by Emeril Lagasse.  It was very good and reasonably priced.
    photo composite_14153800476219.jpg
    KatWAG
  • KatWAGKatWAG Chicago member
    2500 Comments Fifth Anniversary 500 Love Its 5 Answers
    Am I correct in assuming that I don't need to rent a car? We can just take a cab from the airport and then pretty much walk everywhere?
    BabyFruit Ticker
  • lyndausvilyndausvi Western Slope, Colorado mod
    Moderator Knottie Warrior 10000 Comments 500 Love Its
    KatWAG said:

    Am I correct in assuming that I don't need to rent a car? We can just take a cab from the airport and then pretty much walk everywhere?

    Depending on where you stay you should not need a car.    






    What differentiates an average host and a great host is anticipating unexpressed needs and wants of their guests.  Just because the want/need is not expressed, doesn't mean it wouldn't be appreciated. 
    themuffinman16
  • princessleia22princessleia22 Oceanfront Property in Arizona member
    Sixth Anniversary 500 Love Its 1000 Comments First Answer
    KatWAG said:

    Am I correct in assuming that I don't need to rent a car? We can just take a cab from the airport and then pretty much walk everywhere?


    I was fine without a car.  I took a taxi a couple times, but mostly walked or took the streetcars. 

    image 

  • KatWAGKatWAG Chicago member
    2500 Comments Fifth Anniversary 500 Love Its 5 Answers
    lyndausvi said:

    KatWAG said:

    Am I correct in assuming that I don't need to rent a car? We can just take a cab from the airport and then pretty much walk everywhere?

    Depending on where you stay you should not need a car.    
    So I don't have a hotel in mind yet. But based for everyones recommendations I was going to look for one in the Garden District. Is that reasonable?
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  • princessleia22princessleia22 Oceanfront Property in Arizona member
    Sixth Anniversary 500 Love Its 1000 Comments First Answer
    I think staying in Garden District is a great idea.  And the streetcar does connect it to French Quarter, so it's easy to get back and forth to that area.

    image 

    KatWAG
  • ElcaBElcaB member
    2500 Comments Fifth Anniversary 500 Love Its First Answer
    NOLA is amazing! There are three places you must visit:

    Acme Oyster House
    While you are here you absolutely have to try the chargrilled oysters. It is one of the best things I've ever had in my life. 

    Erin Rose's
    This place looks super sketchy but they have incredible food & the best bloody Mary I've ever tasted. (I've also heard great things about their frozen Irish coffees, but I've never tried them). 

    Cafe Du Monde
    Beignets. Need I say more? 

    Also, not far from the French Quarter (or maybe in it, I can't remember) is a fabulous hot sauce store. They have about a million hot & BBQ sauces, and you can sample almost all of them! Winning. 

    image
  • plainjane0415plainjane0415 The hills of Tennessee member
    500 Love Its 1000 Comments First Anniversary Name Dropper
    edited March 2015
    Anyone done a bachelorette there?  If so, what are your fav places for that type of special occasion :)?
    image
  • IrishPirate60IrishPirate60 Clare Island member
    Fourth Anniversary 250 Love Its 100 Comments Name Dropper
    Hit the Central Grocery in the French Quarter for a muffelatta (sandwich). Worth the whole trip.
    themuffinman16
  • Okay, I need to watch this thread because we're planning on going for Halloween. Definitely staying in FQ, probably through Airbnb to save some money. We will not have a car, so being able to walk everywhere or take a streetcar or something is essential. We know we want to see the Beauregard-Keyes House.

    I was wondering though if anyone has a rec for beignets besides Cafe du Monde. I have seen pictures of the insane lines of people and no thank you. Surely it's not the only place for them in the city or even in the French Quarter.

    Also, is a swamp tour worth it or is it a dumb tourist thing?
    image
  • SmileDamnitSmileDamnit Mile High City member
    500 Love Its 1000 Comments Second Anniversary Name Dropper
    Forgot to mention Preservation Hall. It's a wonderfully intimate venue to hear some old school NOLA Jazz. They generally do 3 shows nightly and you'll definitely want to get reservations. Highly recommend it!
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  • lyndausvilyndausvi Western Slope, Colorado mod
    Moderator Knottie Warrior 10000 Comments 500 Love Its

    Okay, I need to watch this thread because we're planning on going for Halloween. Definitely staying in FQ, probably through Airbnb to save some money. We will not have a car, so being able to walk everywhere or take a streetcar or something is essential. We know we want to see the Beauregard-Keyes House.


    I was wondering though if anyone has a rec for beignets besides Cafe du Monde. I have seen pictures of the insane lines of people and no thank you. Surely it's not the only place for them in the city or even in the French Quarter.

    Also, is a swamp tour worth it or is it a dumb tourist thing?
    Cafe Beignet on Royal street.  It's next to the police station.






    What differentiates an average host and a great host is anticipating unexpressed needs and wants of their guests.  Just because the want/need is not expressed, doesn't mean it wouldn't be appreciated. 
    artbyallie
  • edited March 2015
     My family is from NOLA. Cafe du Monde, and their beignets are a must. My sister stayed at Le Pavillion, but it wasn't as nice as it used to be (it needs some refreshing). H and I stayed at the hyatt and it was really nice... they don't have a pool, though. Fun things to do are to go on the Natchez Steamboat cruise, go to Emeril's restaurant, the Aquarium of the Americas, Pat O'Brian's Bar and Restaurant (always crowded, but the best hurricane drink), Bourbon street, and if you can, head outside of the city and visit a few sugar plantations (Oak Alley is my favorite). Also, take a Garden district tour, and most definitely take the Layfayette Cemetery tour.
       I second other posters. To go down to the French Quarter, you must be drunk, first, so the smell doesn't bother you.
  • lyndausvi said:

    Okay, I need to watch this thread because we're planning on going for Halloween. Definitely staying in FQ, probably through Airbnb to save some money. We will not have a car, so being able to walk everywhere or take a streetcar or something is essential. We know we want to see the Beauregard-Keyes House.


    I was wondering though if anyone has a rec for beignets besides Cafe du Monde. I have seen pictures of the insane lines of people and no thank you. Surely it's not the only place for them in the city or even in the French Quarter.

    Also, is a swamp tour worth it or is it a dumb tourist thing?
    Cafe Beignet on Royal street.  It's next to the police station.
    Thanks!
    image
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