I had high expectations of New Orleans. I have heard great things about the people, the food, the culture, and the architecture, so when we arrived there, I had a picture of what the place would be like in my mind. As excited as I was for Florida and all it entailed, I was excited to see somewhere new as the last stop before a family reunion. And it did not disappoint.
We chose to stay across the river and outside the main city of New Orleans because we couldn’t really afford to stay in the French Quarter. The place we ended up staying was close to lots of places to eat, and had a pool and a nice big room with a double bed each. The fact it was on the bus line too the french quarter and had a free shuttle to a ferry over the Mississippi was a bonus. We had a day or two off chilling, which my foot and I especially needed.
When we finally sorted our things out, we grabbed the list of things to do that Helen had kindly provided us with, and set off for the French Quarter. And when we arrived in the French Quarter, everything I expected it to look like was there and present. The old building with the ivy growing up the sides; the over hanging balconies, the jazz band in the square playing for a group of spectators, an old style street car/tram passing alongside the river.
After much research on the best food places in New Orleans, Jade and I decided to go to Coop’s Place. Both of us have seen The Princess and the Frog and both of us know that New Orleans is renowned for gumbo, creole and jambalaya, and both of us wanted some before we left, so we treated ourselves with money very kindly given by my Aunt, to a platter in Coop’s. It had everything, plus a piece of fried chicken, and was the best meal I have eaten since our travels began. Yeah, seriously that good.
Not only did we eat authentic New Orleans cuisine, but we listened to Helen’s advice and wandered around the voodoo museum, as well as other known voodoo establishments. I can’t say it is something I am really interested in, but it was a cool thing to do while we were there, and we saw some fascinating and bizarre stuff.
Helen’s best piece of advice was to sample beignets at Cafe du mode. We were a bit full after visiting Coop’s place, so looked round a few shops before making it to Cafe du Monde on the river. It was fairly busy, and as perthe warning, the place was covered in icing sugar. Surprisingly (a little like Coop’s) it wasn’t expensive to eat there, so we ordered a set of the pastries each and enjoyed them as the city changed from day to night. We probably should have a got a set between us, we wouldn’t have had to take some away, and we would have limited the amount of sugar on ourselves. We only just made the bus back to the hotel and collapsed in a gumbo sugar coma when we got back.
Our final day in New Orleans was spent in the cinema, back in Cafe du Monde, and waiting for a bus in the dark. My foot was hurting after a day walking round New Orleans itself, and as we had to check out of our hotel a full 12 hours before we were due on our bus, we decided to see two new films before wasting time in the city. The lucky films were Ant-Man and Trainwreck, and we enjoyed them both. It took up most of the day, so after finishing at the cinema, we took our overly full rucksacks into the icing sugar covered cafe to enjoy some more of their beignets before making our way to the bus stop.
We were there for hours waiting, talking to strange people, but we ended up with great seats extra room, and were finally on the way to see Mum and Dad, and of course arrive in Florida.