My husband and I made our first trip to New Orleans in March 2013. The city has been on my bucket list for about 15 years but between hurricanes and life it just never seemed to work out. We made it a weekend getaway and drove in on Friday. It is about a 6 hour drive from our home in Texas. We checked into the St James Hotel on the corner of Magazine and Natchez.
The hotel is full of character. We stayed on the 4th floor in room 401. As you are walking down the hallway you can feel that the floor is uneven from the age of the building. The beds are pillow top and heaven to sleep on . I’ve added some pictures of the room and private balcony.
The St James Hotel is a great place to stay with great rates. It is centrally located to everything that you want to do. We paid for valet parking and never needed our vehicle again the rest of the weekend.
We fell in love with the city immediately. There is so much to see and do. We spent Friday night roaming around the French Quarter and enjoying the 2 for 1 and 3 for 1 beers on Bourbon Street.
Take your tennis shoes. To heck with being fashionable. I started off in my most comfortable pair of boots with a heel on them. They didn’t last long.
Saturday morning we hit the road running. I had a laundry list of thing that I wanted to do and see. We got on the St Charles Streetcar and headed to the Garden District. You can get an all day pass on the streetcars for $3 per person. It is an automated ticket taker on the streetcar so you have to the exact amount of money. It’s not capable of giving change. The streetcar stops every couple of blocks so travel is slow going. I was ok with that. It gave my feet a rest and the opportunity to take some pictures.
This is one of those pictures I took form the streetcar of Lafayette Square. The azaleas were in bloom and they are panted all over the Garden District.
We toured the Lafayette Cemetery No 1. located in the Garden District. When I say toured I mean that we roamed around on our own and explored. It was very interesting.
The Garden District has nineteenth century home and a slower pace. We ended up walking back to the hotel. It didn’t seem that far when we started out. It’s father than you think. Time for a nap.
We hit Harrah’s Casino and made a little walking around money. Don’t stay too long or they will take it all back.
Everyone told me that I had to eat Bennetts while in New Orleans.
Bennetts are fried dough shaped in a square and rolled in powdered sugar. They are served in portions of 3 in a brown paper bag. So simple and yet so yummy!
Time for a carriage ride. Another MUST when in New Orleans. The carriages are pulled by mules because they are more sure footed and smarter that horses, or at least that’s what the carriage driver said. You get a history lesson and a beautiful view of the French Quarter. Did you know that Joan of Arc is the Patron Saint of New Orleans? I didn’t.
There is even a golden statue of her.
We ran across a parade. I think they are pretty common in New Orleans. Any excuse for a party.
This one was the Italian American Parade.
We ended up Back on Bourbon Street.
Make sure you go to Pat O’Briens and have a Hurricane, their signature drink.
Music pours out onto the street.
This guy is playing on the bar.
At the end of the night we stumbled back to our hotel room for some much needed rest.
Sunday morning rolled around and it was time to pack up and head home. New Orleans is a destination that we will be coming back to again. Next time we plan on staying Sun- Wed. Weeknights have better hotel rates by almost half. We didn’t get to eat at any of the restaurants that I wanted to because the wait was way too long. (an hour and a half at most places) I’m hoping that it won’t be as crowded during the week. Friday to Sunday in not long enough to do all the things that we wanted to do. About the time you get the lay of the city down it’s time to go home. Also I will be power walking for the month before we come back. I couldn’t feel my legs by the time Sunday rolled around.
About an hour outside of New Orleans you can visit plantations. We stopped at a couple of them. You can take tours, but we just couldn’t walk another step. That will have to wait for our next visit.
There are posts on my blog that have the photos of the places referred to in this post. Go take a look. I hope you have enjoyed reading about our trip to New Orleans. Please leave comments for anything I should add to my bucket list for the next trip.