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Old 09-22-2010, 04:40 AM
 
Location: Kentucky
311 posts, read 710,134 times
Reputation: 161

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I've been living in New Orleans for about four months now, and I've done a good deal of sight seeing. I've been to the French Quarter of course, Uptown, the Lake, drove around the 9th Ward and in the East a little to see some of the hardest hit areas from the storm. With all that, I know there is still a ton of stuff to do and see around here. Any restaurant suggestions would be great, any attractions that would be fun or interesting too. I plan on visiting the zoo at some point, Frenchmen Street is on my list, I still want to take a cemetery tour. I also really enjoy the swamp, would you recommend a tour or is there a park that would be better as a DIY thing.

Thanks in advance!
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Old 09-22-2010, 09:43 AM
 
Location: Pereira, Colombia
1,246 posts, read 2,142,480 times
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There's a great DIY option by going to Bayou Segnette (check that spelling) inside Jean Lafitte Park. That is south of Marrero on the westbank, only 25 minutes from the city. You won't get out on an airboat that way, but there are miles of paths that take you up close to the swamp. You will be 10 feet from alligators. There's no admission fee, so I'd say cost wise its worth it compared to paying a lot of money for a private tour somewhere else.

You should take the ferry and check out Algiers Point. Its a neighborhood with the same history and architecture as Uptown, maybe not quite as old as the French Quarter. Both banks of the Mississippi were settled early, as the riverfronts were the only places in the 17/1800's that weren't swampland!There is a cool live music spot called the Old Point Bar not far from the ferry terminal. The ferry departs from Canal Street at the River at :15 and :45 past the hour and Algiers at :00 and :30. The last ferry runs at 12:15 AM. Pedestrians ride free and cars are only $1.

Uptown is more dynamic than you may or may not realize. You may have taken a ride on the St. Charles streetcar, but have you browsed the 80some blocks of small businesses and cafes on Magazine? You may have gone to the Crescent City Farmer's Market, but did you check out the Freret Street market in the funkier, up and coming side of town? What goes on in the University Area of Uptown is very very different from the Garden District, for example. Make sure you don't say you've seen it all there if you haven't.

If you're up for an hour road trip, I would cross Lake Pontchartrain and go to the Abita Brewery in Abita Springs. The entire tour is free, and for a good 10 minutes you get to see how and where the world famous Abita beer is made. And the other 80 minutes? Feel free to go behind the bar and try as many beers as your heart desires, it's on them. Get as tanked up as you want! For lunch get on I-12 West then take I-55 North to Independence, and eat at Gina's. You won't be disappointed. In this little restaurant (lunch only, 11 to 2 I think M-F) you will be served authentic Sicilian food from the vibrant community that immigrated here to pick strawberries in the early 1900's. Across the lake is so different yet so close to the city!

Hope that helps.
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Old 09-22-2010, 10:05 AM
 
Location: Kentucky
311 posts, read 710,134 times
Reputation: 161
Thank you. That's just the kind of stuff I'm looking for .
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Old 09-22-2010, 01:50 PM
 
Location: Pereira, Colombia
1,246 posts, read 2,142,480 times
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You're welcome. And I forgot to mention Mid-City. Even though it flooded it seems to have bounced back quite well, on the main streets you'd never know anything ever happened. You can start off in City Park, it is HUGE, much larger than Audubon Park/Zoo. You can take the Canal Streetcar (red) there, although it sounds like you drive a lot anyway which would be easier. The New Orleans Museum of Art is a must see and is located inside of the park. There is even Storyland, a mini amusement park for the kids, located inside in the park. There are horse stables, golf, and canoe rentals, if you'd be interested in that.

When you get hungry you have options. If you want traditional New Orleans you can't get more authentic than Parkway Tavern. The shrimp po boy is the best in New Orleans, I don't care if the Travel Channel didn't declare it the winner! You can get your sandwich and eat it right on Bayou St. John outside. Or you can try something very very new to this city, and that's one of Mid-City's authentic taquerias. I was curious to see if the Hispanic influx would just be cheap labor or if it would establish itself as a community, and the latter it has. I recommend Taqueria Guerrero on N. Carrolton near Canal. You can get Mexican food like you've probably never had before (I recommend the Camarones ala Diabla, which are shrimp with fajita vegetables in a spicy tomato/red chilie sauce with rice and beans and salad). Or you can get a pupusa, a flatbread stuffed with white cheese and shredded pork and topped with a cabbage salad, the staple of Honduran cuisine.. in fact Hondurans outnumber all other Hispanics here, it's been that way since the 1930's. On your way out get some lemon gelato at Angelo Brocato's, an Italian dessert shop. Two ethnic groups that have settled in Mid-City now have businesses side by side.

Anyway, you ought to have an exciting few weekends ahead...
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Old 09-22-2010, 07:34 PM
 
Location: Kentucky
311 posts, read 710,134 times
Reputation: 161
Good stuff! Keep 'em coming.
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Old 09-22-2010, 09:29 PM
 
Location: New Orleans, LA
239 posts, read 551,480 times
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I second City Park! If you're a musical and/or meditative type, the "Singing Oak" (a tree with giant wind chimes tuned to the pentatonic scale) is absolutely one of the coolest things ever!
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Old 09-29-2010, 11:26 AM
 
Location: Lafayette, LA
245 posts, read 413,415 times
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Grab a po-boy and head over to the little park area on the levee next to the Harvey Locks (westbank). It offers one of the best skyline views of the City. I'd post a quality pic but have none on my work computer. You'll see the Dome, downtown, CCC bridges and the river all laid out in front of you. Well worth the short trip. Be sure to visit for night views too.

This is a really poor quality representation of the view, but you'll be able to get the idea.

Google Maps
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Old 09-29-2010, 04:39 PM
 
67 posts, read 155,648 times
Reputation: 53
Get a very large bag of peanuts and feed the squirrels at Audubon Park, go in from the entrance across from the zoo on Magazine Street. A funky little restaurant we like in the quarter is Green Goddess. On a nice day you can sit in the alley and have a specialy drink while people-watching. The Canal Street ferry is a nice ride. Bon Ton is one of my favorite old N.O. style restaurants. In the Warehouse District you have Chez Clay (paint your own pottery), a vintage guitar store, the Childrens Museum (fun for all), Lucy's (known for Drew Brees sightings and fun funky bar/restaurant), the Spanish Plaza, Piazza D'Italia, Lafayette Square... I could go on. If you ride up Airline toward LaPlace there is a place to take the levee all the way to the lake (at the spillway). I hear there's a bird watching area but I have not been all the way to the lake on the levee in a couple of years. Right on Airline at the spillway there's also a bike trail thru the woods and picnic/fishing area. Go across the spillway and take a right you will see a boat launch area. There's a short scenic boardwalk you might like. Keep going into Gramercy and stop at the tourist info center for your free Zapp's chips and yet another little boardwalk thru a swamp. They have very nice restrooms too LOL! At that point you can cross the river and head up the westbank side to all the plantations. There are a few concentrated in one area. There's also a little seafood market/restaurant called B&C. Bring an ice chest so you can bring goodies home with you. If you go up old 51 (I prefer it to 55) there are a few restaurants on the lake in LaPlace. We like the Crab Trap and Gilligan's. Pick up some driftwood while you are there. Continue north (notice the canals every mile or so, you might see gators, snakes, etc.) to Middendorf's. Go around back to see the chickens, kitties and bunnies. Have lunch on the deck. It's nice. Continue north and just before you get back up on the interstate take a right onto the Joyce Wildlife Management area. There is a mile long nature walk deep into the swamp. There's no sign so you need to just know to turn right before the interstate or you will miss it. Fill out the check in/out sheet before wandering onto the trail or they can fine you. Continue north to Ponchatoula for antiques and more food. Strawberry daiquiris at Paul's and Strawberry Angelique at Rockefeller's are lovely. Have fun!
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