Here we are, on to the 3rd and final blog on New Orleans! I had to break it up because there was just so much to say about this amazing city. I covered a lot of things to do surrounding arts and music in The Colorful City of New Orleans and places to eat and drink in Oysters and Po’boys and Cocktails, OH MY!, but THERE’S MORE!
STREET CAR – The Street Car is a great way to see the city! You can get lots of info and download the app HERE, and get an unlimited day pass for $3. There are a few lines, but the St Charles Street line is going to be the most scenic. I would know…I missed my stop by about 15 stops because I stopped paying attention. It’s ok, because I just got off, and back on one going the opposite way! Part of my fun solo adventure!
FREE WALKING TOUR – After finding my correct stop on the St Charles street car in the Garden District, I found my group for the Free Walking Tour with 10 minutes to spare! This actually isn’t truly free of course, you just get to pay at the end what you think it was worth. The tour started at the Lafayette cemetery, where we learned a lot about why the graves are above ground and the history of the area. After about 45 minutes in the cemetery, we ventured into the neighborhood, where we saw house formally owned by a member from Nine Inch Nails, and now John Goodman’s full-time home. We also saw the Manning home, where Eli and Peyton grew up, Sandra Bullock’s home, and many other beautiful, historic places! The Garden District is really beautiful, and totally different than the French Quarter, or even where we stayed. It is filled with much larger homes and properties, as well as Loyola University.
The National World War II Museum is right in New Orleans! I highly recommend coming here! I came on one of my solo days on a recommendation from my mother in-law. It’s really cool, because at the beginning you are given a virtual dog tag, which follows someone involved in the war all the way through the museum. I had Lawrence Johnston, who was a scientist that helped build the detonator for the Manhattan Project.
MAGAZINE ST SHOPS – After the WWII museum, I ventured down Magazine Street to get coffee, and to visit some of the cool boutique shops. There are also a few art galleries too! ( If you want to do more shopping or visit some art galleries, Royal Street is excellent for that.
GAMBLING – If you are feeling lucky, you can go visit Harrah’s Casino! Best part? NO SMOKING!! That’s one thing I hated about Las Vegas, everything smelled like cigars! We went in with a few bucks, and left about 20 minutes later because we were having NO luck that day.
CRESCENT PARK – We wanted to get some walking in one evening before going to Bacchanal, so we visited Crescent Park. We on a set of stairs, that took us over the levee on a bridge, and down into the park. We got some great pics on this walk, including the Rusty Rainbow Bridge! We exited at the main entrance and walked to the restaurant from there.
JACKSON SQUARE – After you enjoy your café au lait and beignets at Café du Monde, head over to Jackson Square! This place is filled with artists, tarot card readers, psychics, and street performers! As we finished our coffee, we watched the guys below perform which is so fun!
LIVE MUSIC – I know I mentioned a lot about the street music in New Orleans in my first post The Colorful City of New Orleans, but there is also great live music in many places, especially on Frenchman St. The first place we stopped at was Bamboulas, but unfortunately, we did not time this right, and the band was just finishing up when we arrived. We enjoyed a beer and fried okra, and moved on to Maison. Maison was great because if you wanted to sit (or dance) and enjoy the band up front you could, or you could head to the back bar of the venue, still hear the music, but also be able to carry on a conversation without shouting. Oh…and the bartender? I swear he was Khal Drogo from Game of Thrones! Swooning, haha!
FRENCHMEN ART MARKET – In addition to the music on Frenchman, there is a really cool Art Market at night and weekends which we really enjoyed. We have decided that when we buy a home, we will be visiting New Orleans again to get some art work! There are some really talented artists, and this city is a great source of inspiration for many pieces!
PATRIOTS BAR! – Calling all Patriot and Packers fans! On football Sunday, I scouted out the New Orleans official New England Patriots Bar, the American Sports Saloon for the big game. This was another place where everyone felt like family….so much energy, so much fun, and Tiago is ALMOST a Patriots fan! Ha!
So much fun energy at the end of the National Anthem!
GHOST TOUR – Ghost tours are a great way to get a walking tour of the city, learn about the history of some of the people, and hear some spooky stories. I’ve always liked these tours, not because I think I’m going to see ghosts, but to just hear about the buildings, the history, and the people who lived there. We found a Groupon for the Witches Brew ghost tour, which covered ghosts, voodoo, witches and vampires which was very interesting.
Tiago getting his arm cut off by our tour guide to demonstrate how most soldiers died who needed a limb amputated!
CATS OF NOLA – As you walk on the streets of New Orleans, you will see many many CATS! Most of these cats are wild, and it is a pretty big problem here. They are very skittish and won’t let you go anywhere near them, but many people work to get them spayed and neutered, and also offer them food on their porches. If you want to learn more on how to help, visit the Feral Cat Program.
I’m sure most of this just scratches the surface of all the fun you can have in New Orleans, but we really tried to squeeze in as much as possible and enjoyed every moment of it!