New Orleans here we come!
It’s hard to believe all the places I visited, I’ve never been to New Orleans. And as much as I like a good party, one would think it would have been first choice. Scoring a great two-night package deal, my gal pal Danielle Lescure and I had 48 hours to do some damage… and that’s exactly what we did!
The airline tied to the package was Spirit Airlines. Definitely not my airline preference, but watcha gonna do?! Have you ever traveled Spirit before?
Well, if not, here’s a few tips:
- If you intend on checking carry-on or luggage, pay online ahead of time. Paying at the airport will cost extra. And yes, you have to pay for carry-on.
- For a short trip, travel by backpack only. It’s your free personal item. This is exactly what we did!
- Print your boarding pass at home. It will cost extra to print at the airport.
- Arrive to the airport early to purchase water and bring snacks. Food is extra including water.
I swear it almost feels that breathing will cost you extra so be sure to double check all their guidelines before flying with Spirit. However, for our whirlwind trip it served us just fine.
We arrived late afternoon to the greeting of sticky humidity that immediately engulfed us. It was refreshing to be welcomed by the people of Louisiana that were eagerly willing to help. Two people approached us separately to offer assistance by giving direction on where to catch a Lyft to the hotel. Even our Lyft driver was accommodating by providing a ton of information of what to see and do in the city.
We stayed at the Four Points by Sheraton French Quarter located right on Bourbon St. Talk about being in the center of the action… it was perfect! We also lucked out because there was serious street renovation taking place and our hotel was at the other end away from the construction chaos. After settling into our room, we decided to venture out to explore and grab a bite to eat before our ghost tour that evening.
The hotel recommended Oceana Grill. We were a bit skeptical because sad to say neither one of us are big seafood eaters, but the menu offered something for everyone. The restaurant has several floors with incredible art decor throughout. I wasn’t feeling super adventurous that night and had a burger (which was delicious) and Danielle got the rice and beans, New Orleans style, which was to die for (of course I had to try). And for her, the meal wasn’t complete without some good ‘ole southern sweet tea.
Afterwards, we made our way over to the meeting point for the ghost tour hosted by Ghost City Tours. TC Elliot was our phenomenal guide who took us around the French Quarter at night for the The Killers & Thrillers East Tour. First thing to remember when taking a city tour (which lasted 2 hours), wear comfortable shoes! Luckily, I wore my sneakers yet still exhausted at the end. TC provided a ton of in depth information on the city’s history and its notorious killers which most of what we learned that evening were women. I was completely captivated and blown away by everything we learned. It’s definitely worth checking out the next time you visit!
Later that evening we took Bourbon St. by storm! I was pleasantly overwhelmed by all the live music that came from almost every bar. Surprisingly, most of the music was today’s hits, nevertheless jazz was still in the mix. We found our spot, enjoyed a drink, and headed back to the hotel to rest up for Day 2.
There are several places throughout the French Quarter to score these wonderful delights, but it was a goal to visit the original established cafe in 1862; Cafe Du Monde. Here’s a tip: do not wait in line and grab a seat in the cafe. When you see a waitress, wave one down, and be ready to order. Otherwise, they’re off to the next person! Having full and content tummies, it was time to walk off breakfast and explore many of the cute boutiques throughout the French Quarter. Loved all the art galleries with a ton of interestingly unique and beautiful pieces. And of course, you can’t but help to be swept away from the incredible architecture throughout the quarter.
After exploring it was time to take our cemetery tour with The Voodoo Bone Lady Haunted Tours. Bris was our extraordinary lively guide who gave us an educational tour of the city including resourceful information about voodoo. It was truly enlightening since so many have a preconceived notion about what is voodoo and its rituals. Cemeteries, old churches, bridges, windows/doors, are just a few of my favorite things to discover when traveling. Having the opportunity to visit St. Louis Cemetery, one of the oldest cemeteries in New Orleans, was a magnificent treat!
Being out in the hot sun after a cemetery tour, one can work up a thirst, and what better way to quench it than with a Hurricane drink at its original home Pat O’Brien’s. We ended our last evening in New Orleans on Frenchmen Street for more live music. The street art galleries were delightful and once again you can hear live music from almost every bar. The liveliness of the people and music combined is intoxicating.
The next morning was one last dash for a little shopping before it was time to take our Lyft back to the airport. Checking out the French Market was a lot of fun! Neither one of us barely had the strength, but we mustered up whatever bit of energy we had left and gave New Orleans one last hurrah before we headed back home.