After our visit to New Orleans I just can’t help to share some travel tips with you! It was our first visit in over twenty years, and boy it was an experience!
We only had a few days to see as much as we could so I decided on the following things to truly get a “feel” for the city and it’s history.
I know a lot of people immediately think of how smelly the city is (the most common comment I get when I mention NOLA is “it smells like pee”), and it does, but it’s okay, it’s part of the experience! (The cup is half full, not half empty right?)
I also hear how crazy it is … and after three days in the city I agree! We definitely had our share of crazy experiences while in town, but it’s “the vibe” you know what I mean? That’s one of the things I liked about it! It was always new, always hopping, and always full of surprises!
1. Go to Cafe du Monde! I know, you probably already have it on your to-do list, but try to go more than once if you can! You will definitely find yourself thinking about those hot fresh beignets and milky chickory coffee for quite some time after you get home, so enjoy it while you can!
TIPS: Bring cash, Cafe du Monde does not except credit cards, (there is an ATM nearby). Also check out their souvenirs, they’re very affordable and fun to use back home. This awesome mug was only a few dollars more than a cup of coffee served in one of their mugs!
2. Go to a VooDoo museum and/or do a ghost tour in the French Quarter! I know, I know, most major cities offer ghost tours, but this is New Orleans! It’s a great way to learn the truth about the Voodoo religion. Most of us have seen it portrayed as something evil on TV, but it’s actually not! What is Voodoo you ask? This article gives you a good idea, and visiting a museum in the Big Easy will really give you an insight into the culture of the religion, and the people of New Orleans.
We went to the New Orleans Historic VooDoo Museum (there are a lot of choices, so check them all out before deciding on one). It didn’t take much time or money to visit, and was very interesting and really gave us the feel of the history of NOLA.
TIP: Bring a little offering for an altar in the museum, I wish I had!!
3. National World War II History Museum! Whether you’re a history buff or not, this place is a must see attraction. You need to allow a full day to see it in it’s entirety, it’s huge!
It is America’s National World War Two museum, is rated TripAdvisor’s #1 top rated attraction in New Orleans, and #2 museum in the world! Pretty cool huh?
Tip: Buy a second day pass for only $7.00, that’s a huge savings as the one day tickets are $28. Military and students get a discount too, so check it out and order your tickets online in advance.
4. Walk around the French Quarter at night! That’s right, it’s an experience you just can’t miss, a visit to New Orleans wouldn’t be complete without it!
Did you know it always feels like Mardi Gras in the French Quarter? You can buy beads (even catch beads sometimes), and party in the streets late into the night. Not into partying in the streets? It’s okay, just being there and hearing the music, seeing the people, and standing on Bourbon street is an experience in itself!
TIP: Uber to the French Quarter. Parking is outrageous and hard to find!
5. Get a Hurricane from Pat O’Briens! The Hurricane cocktail originated at Pat O’Brien’s in New Orleans in 1940. Due to a shortage of Bourbon and Scotch during that time suppliers pretty much made bar owners buy multiple cases of Rum in order to purchase one case of Scotch or Bourbon.
I know that Rum is popular today, but in 1940 the most popular drinks were made using Whiskey. As you can imagine, storerooms started to get full really fast with all the rum they had to order to get their one case of Whiskey. This led to bar owners having to get more creative, and inventing drinks like the Hurricane (which is delicious!).
TIP: Buy a souvenir glass! You can’t carry it in the streets but don’t worry, if you want your drink to go (like I did), then they’ll box a glass up for you (and even bag it) to take home and send you on your way with a plastic cup.
I’d love to hear your comments on this article. Feel free to share your tips, experiences, and even questions here in the comments section!
Thanks for joining me today, talk to you soon!