New Orleans, Louisiana
Mardi Gras New Orleans Reviews
Feb 24, 2004
I've been to New Orleans about three times now. My first time was around April, my second time on Halloween, and my third time during Mardi Gras, which was, by far, the best.
New Orlean's is the location of many of the Anne Rice Vampire books. So, it was really neat to walk through the streets and visualize her books in my head. Read one of her books before you arrive.
The city has incredible history and I highly recommend the walking tours. I would also read a couple US history book regarding New Orleans before you arrive. It will help you appreciate the destination even more.
Most of the action is in the French Quarter, but there are some really nice walking tours in the Garden District. The city truly never sleeps, so, if you stay in a B&B, make sure you are on the inside facing the courtyard. If your room faces the oustide, make sure you at least have a balcony so you can hang out and watch what is happening and interact with the crowd.
Since the Quarter kind of sprawls, it's really nice to have a bicycle there. I brought my bike with me and it was a lifesaver. You can get around so easy throughout the Quarter on a bike. You are in a swamp, so, it can get extraordinarily hot and humid for about 8 months out of the year. So, dress and pack appropriately.
There are a few really nice hotels in New Orleans. But, it's also nice to really get to know the locals by staying at a B&B. Either way, you won't go wrong. New Orleans is known world-wide for its Jazz bars and Creole cuisine, which is kind of like a combination of French, Spanish, African, and Louisiana.
Bring cheap, interesting, and unique bead necklaces because they are good bartering materials to get women to bare their body parts. Make sure you have your camera or camcorder as well, because the folks at home won't believe what you have seen.
I thought New Orleans was completely safe, despite the crazy characters, funky looking people, and homeless transients. But, as with any city you visit nowadways, certainly keep your guard up. I walked around for five days with $10,000 worth of camera equipment around my neck and not once did I have any problems or even felt insecure. But still, go with caution.
Part of the New Orleans for Mardi Gras travel blog
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