We’ve all seen images of New Orleans. The city famous for Mardi Gras, amazingly delicious food, home to jazz, beignets and as some say witchcraft. Visiting this beautiful city is a must for any person who truly enjoys and appreciates good food, beautiful architecture, music. and a little bit of magic.
Volleyed between the French and the Spanish, both heritages linger. Claimed for the French crown by explorer Robert Cavelier, Sieur de La Salle in 1682, the city La Nouvelle-Orleans was founded in 1718 by Jean Baptiste Le Moyne de Bienville. Spain took control of New Orleans in 1763 after the signing of the Treaty of Paris, a 37-year rule that left a lasting mark on the city’s street names and architecture. As I walked around the streets I could not help but be reminded of home. The streets filled with a mix of old colonial Spanish and French architecture made me feel like if I was walking on the streets of Old San Juan. Being reminded of San Juan and truly loving everything about the city I could not help but fall in love with New Orleans.
I only spent 3 days in New Orleans. Some friends and I rented a car and drove from Mississippi. As a bunch of broke 20 something-year-olds, we definitely did not plan for a luxury trip but never the less its been one of my favorite road trips ever. We rented a room in a shady hotel, like those you only see in movies. We left our things and hit the road. When we arrived we decided we wanted to experience authentic New Orleans food by eating at a hole in the wall, definitely not in a restaurant in the most touristy places so we decided to stop in Cajun Seafood, located at 1479 N Claiborne Ave New Orleans, LA 70116
Amongst a sea of locals, we were definitely the only outsiders in there. When we first got there the first thing we saw was the HUGE line to order. When I saw this I got excited, I firmly believe that the way to know if the food somewhere is good is because the place it’s packed. After waiting in line for a while we ordered 2 pounds of shrimp, 2 pounds of crawfish and 1 pound of crab legs, Needless to say, it was way too much for us 3. But we still went at it! The food was amazing and it’s definitely a place I recommend to someone who wants to experience a more authentic New Orleans.
We decided that we should play tourist if just for a few hours, so we all decided to take a hunted bar crawl. A hunted bar crawl is basically a whole bunch of drunks walking around the city stopping on different bars, on each bar our guide would tell us a spooky story often about prostitutes, ghosts and pirates mixed with cool historical facts and good booze. We had a blast!
Before bar crawling, we decided to visit the historic Cafe du Monde, where we stuffed ourselves with beignets and coffee. This place even though it was packed it still is one of my favorite places in the city. The warm beignets were delicious, we left the cafe full and completely covered in powdered sugar.
After cafe du Monde we went on our tour we tried the famous hurricane. We walked all around the famous Bourbon St. The city of New Orleans is a vibrant place where music and history collide. There’s a certain vibe in there that I feel you can only experience in New Orleans. There, you can be as weird as you want and it will be completely ok. The colorful streets filled with locals and tourists alike create a happy environment that can only be experienced there.
New Orleans is a city of rich culture, proud people that have survived and thrived against all odds. New Orleanians have always held tight to their unique culture, music, cuisine, and festivals and tourists from around the world like me, can’t seem to stay away. I am sure I’ll be back. There is still so much of the city I have yet to discover. If you know of more cool places to visit in NOLA please let us know in the comments!