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Old 06-30-2010, 10:42 AM
 
34 posts, read 112,031 times
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My sister and I have planned a vacation to New Orleans in September. To say I am excited doesn't cut it...we are both BEYOND excited to see NOLA.

We love to travel. The touristy things can be fun, but we live by the "when in Rome" philosophy whenever we travel. So, beyond the tourist things to do and see (which we have found plenty of through generally easy research)...I want to know what the LOCALS do. Unless locals truly hang out in FQ, GD, CBD, cemeteries, plantations and swamps, please avoid those suggestions. Although I wouldn't mind specific place ideas (like restaurants, best coffee, etc).

Any suggestions for places to eat, or hang out, things to do and see that the people who LIVE in this great city might do?

We are both foodies and love to eat....where do you suggest we have a good meal?

We both love to shop, people watch, hang out and relax, etc...where do the LOCALS hang?

Where is the best live music? (If FQ truly is the answer, suggestions on best venue down there....)

Any suggestions that will make our trip that much more memorable is appreciated. We will be there for 4 days total.

Thanks in advance~!
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Old 06-30-2010, 11:46 AM
 
Location: Metairie, LA
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Will you have a car? That will be a consideration for a lot of places.

There is plenty of live music every night spread out all over town. It depends on what you're into. WWOZ has a good music calender with venue info. http://www.wwoz.org/new+orleans+community/music+calendar

We hang out all over town, not really concentrated in the quarter or CBD. There are lots of places in Uptown, Carrollton, Mid-City and the Marigny. Most places in the Quarter are a little too touristy. Definately check out Magazine St., more locals and lots of bars, food and shopping.


Near the quarter I would say Lil Dizzy's, Mothers, Yo-Mama's(burgers)

For dinner I would reccomend Jaques imo's in Carrollton, really good food, very reasonable and I wouldn't say it's touristy outside of Jazz-fest weekend. There are more expensive places, but for me they are tough to beat food wise. The Maple Leaf bar is next door and they have live music most nights.
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Old 06-30-2010, 02:26 PM
 
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We won't have a car. I've been told you can catch the streetcars and buses just about anywhere (and the $30 / night parking fee at hotels is crazy~!)

Can I reach the places you've mentioned with public transportation?
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Old 06-30-2010, 03:37 PM
 
Location: Metairie, LA
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Absolutely. Yo Mama's is on St. Peter in the quarter, and Lil Dizzy's and Mothers are definately walking distance. The Marigny is right next to the quarter if you need to get to Frenchman St. Everything in Carrollton is right on the streetcar line and there is a bus that runs the entire length of Magazine from Canal St. to Audubon park. If you prefer to just use the streetcar, Magazine St. is about 1/2mi walk from it as it runs parallel to St. Charles.

Mandina's on Canal St. can be reached by the Canal Streetcar. Good local dishes and seafood, reasonable prices. Juan's Flying Burrito can also whithin a block of the same streetcar. It's a mexican food New Orleans style, very good and very cheap. You won't find many tourists in either of these, but plenty of happy locals
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Old 06-30-2010, 05:07 PM
 
34 posts, read 112,031 times
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Awesome~!

Thank you so much for some great ideas to see the REAL NOLA, not just the FQ, etc. We are very excited to experience this great city for the first time.

The link you provided for the music scene is wonderful...we both LOVE music.

If you think of anything else, let me know. What you've provided is great, and I thank you for taking the time.
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Old 07-01-2010, 11:09 AM
 
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This is the one city where you REALLY can blend in if you want to stay off the beaten path.
You can't catch a streetcar anywhere, and where you can will depend on where you are going
to stay. And the route is limited. Luckily limited to some of the places you will want to go,
anyway. But it's nowhere near city-wide. Check out as stated, the WWOZ website, NOLA.com
and that alone will do ya right. Share where your reservation is and you will get a list of places
near where you are. For french quarter cheap food, Cafe Maspero. For world reknowned NO
elegance, men take a jacket, but visit Galatoire's RIGHT on Bourbon. Mother's should be a must stop.
Mandina's on 3800 Canal St., not too far from the quarter. Uptown and near the end of the
streetcar line, Camelia Grill. Across the street, Cooter Brown's for beer around the world,
(think a funky Flying Saucer) The world-famous Tipitina's is a block off the streetcar line
at 501 Napoleon Ave, about halfway down the line. And never forget, just RIDING the
streetcar uptown and back is a joy for the digicam and the body. Especially in September,
when it will STILL be hot. (yep)
DM me for any particulars.
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Old 07-01-2010, 12:08 PM
 
34 posts, read 112,031 times
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Thanks for the info Brad.

We will be staying IN the FQ on Dauphine Street...just don't want to spend our entire trip there....I believe there is so much more to see in New Orleans than just FQ. I understand the streetcars only go so far. What about the City's bus system? Is there anything compelling I need to see that would only be reached by bus?

I have to say, touristy or not, I'm really looking forward to spending a morning in City Park. So much to do just there alone.
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Old 07-01-2010, 12:36 PM
 
268 posts, read 666,351 times
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Default Good info.

OK, that makes it easier. From the French Quarter, you would want to go to Canal St, just blocks away and the OLD main shopping center of town. Now it's a bunch of crap shops, but in the old days, this is where you wnet to buy shoes, to shop for clothes, etc before malls. But it is still neat. Canal at Carondelet St there is a streetcar stop. Get on there and ride all the way down to the end, when it comes back, you can hit all the things you spotted on the way uptown. Or get out at Audubon Park and see those surroundings, maybe hit the zoo. Get on and ride until the streetcar takes a hard RT at Carrollton Ave. and get off at Camelia Grill and eat lunch. You will want extra batteries and memory cards for that ride, I can tell you, lol.

For a trip to City Park, find out from a concierge where you would take a bus to "Gentilly" the neighborhood where City Park is located. Also there is the Fairgrounds Racecourse, the second oldest horse racing venue in America, second only to Saratoga Springs in NY. Take in the races perhaps. You can rent golf clubs and play golf in city park, you can rent a fishing pole. I think you can rent a bike. City Park Family Attractions

In the area of city park there are a lot of neat places to eat and relax, too. You can tour one of the old cemeteries from that area. In fact that's an old NO joke. Only in new orleans would a person get on a bus marked Cemeteries without batting an eyelash. One encouraging note, I SEE on that linked page I pasted in, that now there is a Canal St. Branch of the streetcar line that will allow you to access City Park (by transfer). Not so when I was there. But NO has been capitalizing on it's unique institutions lately, and I am glad to see you don't have to BUS to Gentilly. The St. Charles line I mentioned starts at Canal and goes through uptown, a different ride altogether, but to me, a much more satisfying one. Looks like the Canal line begins at Harrahs' at the foot of Canal St by the river and goes to the CEMETERIES, yahoo.
That's where you will be able to access city park. Most of all, enjoy yourself. Once you visit, you will KEEP coming back.

http://www.norta.com/?page=system Here is a website with routes.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Streetcars_in_New_Orleans

Halfway down that page they tell the proper boarding area for the complete route to City Park/NOMA.
Apparently you can start at the French Market at the far end at Esplanade Ave. Sweet.

It makes me tear up thinking about it, but when you get on that St. Charles line, you will understand.
The feeling of that car rolling along, the breeze in your face from the flowering plants of the Garden District,
the GLORIOUS old homes of St. Charles Avenue, you will be as young as you ever were, you will be like
a child first discovering something wonderful. Do not miss that. sniff.

Last edited by BradfromNO; 07-01-2010 at 01:12 PM..
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Old 07-01-2010, 01:21 PM
 
268 posts, read 666,351 times
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Another good free thing to do is to just get on as a foot passenger at the foot of Canal Street on to the
Algiers Ferry. It crosses the river and gives you that perfect Kodak moment, a dynamite breeze, and a
closeup view of the river as well.
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Old 07-01-2010, 02:14 PM
 
34 posts, read 112,031 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BradfromNO View Post
It makes me tear up thinking about it, but when you get on that St. Charles line, you will understand.
The feeling of that car rolling along, the breeze in your face from the flowering plants of the Garden District,
the GLORIOUS old homes of St. Charles Avenue, you will be as young as you ever were, you will be like
a child first discovering something wonderful. Do not miss that. sniff.
Awwww...you're making ME tear up~! Sounds like you LOVE this City and miss it very much...perhaps you should go back.

I, for one, REALLY can't wait to get there after reading your post.
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