Travel to NOLA -- New Orleans, LA

nola
nola

It's Mardi Gras season ya'll ... and one of the best times to be down south!Drinks are flowing, crawfish are boiling, kings cakes are baking, but most importantly, its carnival season a.k.a. PARTY season.

Since moving to SoCal, I've had to celebrate the season in my own little way. I've tried holding down at least a few traditions; baking a king cake, making shrimp po boys, and eating crawfish. HA. That last one is an absolute joke though! If and when crawfish surfaces in Los Angeles, it's usually a million dollars and not that tasty. Any suggestions for southerners craving crawfish in Cali? And no, Boiling Crab will not cut it.

I've got the South on the brain so I've posted a few of my favorites spots to eat, sip and play. If you haven't been to New Orleans,  add it to your list immediately! There's so many things to see, eat, drink and do. There's something for everyone in this special city. 

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{St. Louis Cathedral -- Oldest Catholic Cathedral in Continuous Use}{Voodoo Town}

Obvious Iconic Stops:

  • Jackson Square
  • St. Louis Cathedral
  • The French Quarter
  • Magazine Street

Off the beaten path:

  • Abita Springs Brewery Tour - Abita Springs, LA (about 20 miles north of New Orleans)
  • Jean Lafitte National park
  • Swamp Tours - www.cajunencounters.com 

{Jam Session on St. Charles

}

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{G-E-A-U-X Tigers}

Places:

Frenchmen Street

-- This street comes to life when the sun goes down. If you want to experience real New Orleans live music -- blues, reggae, jazz, swing ... come here. New Orleans is the birthplace of Jazz and this street proves it. Frenchmen Street is filled with dive bars and music clubs that you can hop in and out of until the sun comes up. You can also find some amazing street food and a growing restaurant scene. Its located in the 7th Ward and still has some of the original blues bars from back in the day.

This

website has weekly updates on the live music and performances.

Rum Distiller Tour -- "Celebration Distillation - Old New Orleans Rum"

. This distillery is located in the Gentilly neighborhood of New Orleans on Frenchmen Street. If you are looking for a cool daytime activity, sign up for a tour. They give tours of the distillery and tastings for a small fee. Don't worry, you won't be judged for day drinking in this city.  Click

here

for more information and tour schedules.

Must Do Bike Tour -- Confederacy of Cruisers 

This company offers cocktail tours, culinary tours and history tours all on bikes! It's worth the money and is a great way to see New Orleans and burn some calories that you are sure to consume over the course of your trip. Click

here

 for more information. 

{Beignet Artist}

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{Mardi Gras Aftermath}

EATS (just a few. SO hard to narrow it down, this is city is a mecca of culinary temptations)

Brunch

:

Croissant D'Or Patisserie --

In the French Quarter. They are dishing out high quality croissants and pastries. For something a little heartier they have Quiche and Eggs too. (They close at 3p.)

Cafe Du Monde

 -- Located in the French Quarter, this place has the best beignets in the city. Grab a beignet to-go or stalk people until you find an open table. The line is usually outrageous, but wait for it; I promise it's worth it.

Stanley Restaurant

-- Awesome brunch in the heart of Jackson Square. There's usually a wait, so give them your phone number and go check out some local art work and music while you wait.

Elizabeth's Restaurant

-- Serves traditional Southern brunch and breakfast in the Bywater neighborhood. Get there early!

Court of Two Sisters

 -- One of the top jazz buffets around. On the pricey side but so much variety and a beautiful patio. Make reservations.

PoBoys

Parkway Bakery and Tavern

Parasol's

Johnny's Po Boys

Dinner

:

Muriel's Jackson Square

-- Creole restaurant in the heart of Jackson Square. Killer dinner and Sunday Jazz Brunch.

Willie Mae's Scotch House

 -- If you want good fried chicken and soul food, this is your spot. Located in the Treme neighborhood.

Acme Oyster House

 -- Amazing oysters and seafood. Its touristy, but the food is still amazing. Check

THIS

beautiful article out on Acme. 

Desire Oyster Bar on Bourbon street

 --Traditional Cajun food. 

Port of Call 

- Best burger and great beer. There is usually a line or a wait, but its worth it. 

Sips

Carousel Bar

-- their revolving bar will make you wonder if you've had a few too many. Order their famous Sazerac cocktail.

Arnaud's French 75 Bar

Bar Tonique

Sazerac Bar

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{Vaughan's Lounge -- Locals Dive Bar in the Bywater Part of Town}

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{Sidewalk Decor in Treme}

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{Original Signage -- Entrance to Croissant D'Or Patisserie}

{Bamboulas: Caribbean-Creole Joint with Live Music & Stellar Fried Pickles}

{Sunday Sister Fun. Candy & Bikes in the 9th ward neighborhood}