It's officially the second day of February and I still have my January trip on my mind. If you are new then you should know my plan is to take one trip every month. So in January I went to New Orleans with my family to celebrate my brothers 21st birthday. I had been told by a number of people that I would love the city and I was not let down. New Orleans has the southern charm you want with the bite that gives it a little edge. Let's talk about my top 6 reasons New Orleans should be on your travel bucketlist!
New Orleans is the birth home to many famous and classic cocktails as well as cocktails that aren't as classic but are definitely just as delicious and fun. Check out my walking cocktail tour if you want to enjoy all of the best ones! New Orleans is also one of three cities in the United States that doesn't have a law prohibiting open container on the street. That means no waiting in a packed bar or staying somewhere if the entire group doesn't like the bar. It also makes talking your friends into seeing the city a little bit easier. Just tell them to grab a go cup and keep moving. We've got things to see here people! But that doesn't mean we can't continue to enjoy a nice drink.
Blame on the art school degree or the 4 years in Savannah but I love a city with unique architecture. There's something to walking down a street and being fully enthralled by the porches, the windows, the colors, the lines and everything in between. New Orleans definitely knocked it out of the park with this one. I could have walked around the city for days... speaking of bring some good walking shoes because I kid you not while looking to see how far away one of our stops on our cocktail tour was it was a 5 minute walk and an 8 minute drive. You do NOT need a car in New Orleans you just need a good pair of shoes and some will power.
Obviously the beignet's are something that New Orleans is known for. But you can't really go wrong if you know where to look. Try some creole, take a stroll in the French Market and pick up a grilled cheese or something on the fly. Definitely do a little research before hand and trust your gut. I prefer to trust my gut and walk down the road and pick a place but my moms method (and to be frank it's probably the better method) is to do a quick little search on yelp real quick.
I mentioned this above but you can and SHOULD walk everywhere. At least in the French Quarter. Of course the exclusions to this would be if you are wanting to go to the Garden District or the park. In these cases you would want to hop on the trolley. But that's quite fun anyway so it's a win-win! Again, get some good walking shoes ready for this trip. I wore boots and booties and was fine but I wouldn't be caught dead in New Orleans in stilettos. But you may be more of a bad ass than me and by all means do your thing, girl!
The bars, the drinks, the food, the streets and everything in between all have a story to tell. If walls and streets could talk this city would never shut up! Alas they do not and you may have to rely on menus and books or even a good ol' google search to tell you what the history of a place is. But give it a little bit of a chance. Even if all you do is read the story on the back of the menu! Enrich yourself a little bit. Half the fun of traveling to a new place is definitely learning about the past and present culture.
There's Something for Everyone
Three 21 year-old boys, one 23 year-old girl and two tired parents take a trip to New Orleans and they all have a damn good time. My mom came in clutch with a plan of action, my brother and his friends were just happy as long as they could have a nice cold... bud light and my dad and I were very much enjoying our self made cocktail tour and exploring the nooks and crannies of the French Quarter. Well, as much as we could in less than 72 hours. Moral of the story is that everyone had fun. And as long as each person is accountable for their actions and aware of what others want to do and everyone makes a sacrifice here and there you are bound to have a ton of fun in New Orleans.
I was catching up on my sleep for a solid 3 days after returning from this trip but the first of 12 trips is in the books and I can't wait for my February trip to St. Louis. Leave your recommendations on where else to travel this year in the comments!