(Not) Exploring New Orleans, Louisiana

I spend alot of time outdoors for work and at the end of January I was fed up with the cold here in PA. I had vacation days that I had to use or lose, so I started scanning the internet for a cheap, warmer destination. I found a sale on flights from Philly to New Orleans for $73! The next order of business was to check the weather for the next weekend. It was going to be seventy-three degrees and sunny. sounds like a spot for me.

flags and plants on a Bourbon Street terrace in New Orleans

I had never been to New Orleans or Louisiana and was excited to cross one more state off of my list. forty-five down, five to go. When I travel, I pride myself in finding cool, off-the-path things to see and do. I always try to immerse myself in the destination by finding local hangouts rather than only sticking around the super touristy places.

Courtyard of our hotel on Rue Bienville, The Saint Louis in New Orleans

Our hotel on rue Bienville, The Saint Louis

On this trip that didn’t happen. We landed in New Orleans and headed straight for the French Quarter. After arriving in the Vieux Carré we never left. My plans to check out historic places, famous cemeteries, as well as countless other things went out the window. We had a hotel room half of a block from Bourbon Street and the food, drink, and entertainment there was plenty to keep us occupied. If you go and are looking for watering holes that are less touristy, the consensus from New Orleans natives seems to be to check out Frenchman Street. There you’ll meet more locals and spend less money. I’ll have to hit Frenchman Street next time.

A bike and a band on Bourbon Street, Louisiana

Bourbon Street

I really love the vibe of  New Orleans, especially the food and music. It really struck me how much talent there was in a small area there (no, I’m not talking about the many gentlemen’s clubs on Bourbon Street). Nothing beats strolling from bar to bar, drink of choice in hand, and checking out the music. There might be a jazz band in one, a bluesman playing the harp in the next, and a cover band playing the latest pop tunes ten more feet down the road.

As for the food, I just asked for a recommendation and ate that. I had alligator for the first time. I liked it, I just thought it was weird that it was recommended to me as part of our breakfast. NOLA hangover cure?

alligator and jumbalaya on the table for breakfast, New Orleans

alligator and jumbalaya(shrimp,sausage,grits,bbq+pepper sauce)

An art store in the French Quarter, New Orleans

Art in the French Quarter

View of the Misissippi River from Woldenberg Park in New Orleans

View of the Misissippi River from Woldenberg Park in New Orleans

Statue and flags near the French Market, NOLA

Having lunch near the French Market, NOLA

The Mystery Machine Van on Boubon Street (which was closed to traffic)

Van on Boubon Street (which was closed to traffic)

After a few nights of serious imbibing, it was time to leave. We arrived back in PA just in time for an impending snow storm. Have you been to New Orleans? Did you explore further than Rue Bourbon?

2 thoughts on “(Not) Exploring New Orleans, Louisiana

  1. I find that happen a lot to us – changed plans when coming to the destination, but maybe that is the part of the charm with trips?

    …and often I also got hindered by either bad weather – or worse: sickness. Yikes….

    I like your post, honest writing just as it is and what your experience really was like.

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