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First Time Visitors

1 post
First Time Visitors

Hi, My Boyfriend and I was visiting the 2nd week in January. Mainly to celebrate my 25th Birthday. We want to stay somewhere that is in walking distance from the "hot spots" (Budget $290 a night maybe) We want to try a lot of food places he loves seafood but I like simple food so places where they have a good variety. Also cool bars or places to have drinks would be nice. Whatever else anyone can think of for cool things to do. Thank you!

4 replies to this topic
College Station...
Destination Expert
for New Orleans
Level Contributor
13,255 posts
2 reviews
1. Re: First Time Visitors

Hard to estimate lodging rates without knowing precise dates. Shooting from the hip, you might want to check out the very much amongst the “hot spots” Bourbon Orleans.

Nice restaurants with a combination of both adventurous and less adventurous choices include Muriel’s and Red Fish Grill. Hundreds (not an exaggeration) of bars; you need to let us know your specific preferences.

los angeles
Level Contributor
2,346 posts
31 reviews
2. Re: First Time Visitors

Check out neworleansonline.com and gonola.com for lots of info on what to do.

College Station...
Destination Expert
for New Orleans
Level Contributor
13,255 posts
2 reviews
3. Re: First Time Visitors

This is my "canned" list of New Orleans "must see/do" (particularly note the St. Charles Streetcar/Garden District/Uptown excursion):

Daytime stroll 200 – 1200 Royal St. – See note on Carousel Bar and Lounge below.

Daytime stroll 1200 – 600 Decatur St. – See notes on Café du Monde, Jackson Square and Central Grocery below.

Daytime or early evening stroll Jackson Square, passing surrounding buildings and going through Pirate’s Alley. Carriage rides depart from the Decatur St. side of the Square.

Evening or nighttime stroll Frenchmen St. between Decatur St. and Royal St. (Faubourg Marigny) - Location of musical performance venues.

Nighttime stroll 200 – 1000 Bourbon St. – See note on Lafitte’s Blacksmith Shop below.

Experience the River from the River bank, inexpensive Canal St. Ferry, or, time and finances permitting, the Steamboat Natchez or Paddlewheeler Creole Queen.

Ride St. Charles Avenue Streetcar (requires exact fare [$1.25]) – Board across the street from French Quarter on Carondelet St. (Bourbon St.) at Canal St. Time permitting, get off in the Garden District (at Washington Ave.), at The Columns Hotel (at Peniston St. [pronounced like tennis ton]), at the “Bend” (at Carrollton Ave.), or at Oak St. If you anticipate boarding more than 2 times that day (including end of line) get a $3 unlimited ride day pass (exact change) when first boarding (available on streetcar) that day. See Note on Commander’s Palace below.

Laffitte’s Blacksmith Shop – Bar in historic (1770's) building. 914 Bourbon St.

Carousel Bar and Lounge – In the Monteleone Hotel at 214 Royal St.

Café du Monde – Café au lait (coffee with chicory and cream) and beignets (fried pastry). 800 Decatur St. Crowded mid morning; most interesting late night/very early morning.

Central Grocery – Muffuletta (sandwich). Open 7 days 9:00 – 4:00. 923 Decatur St. Get your sandwich, chips (Zapp’s) and drink to go; picnic on the River bank (other side of French Market across the street).

Commander’s Palace – Traditional and famous restaurant. Corner of Washington Ave. and Coliseum St. (2 blocks off St. Charles Streetcar route). Consider lunch (M-F 25 cent martinis) or brunch (S-S) to allow for Garden District walking tour, including Lafayette Cemetery (closes at 3 PM) across the street.

Other popular activities/locations: City Park/Museum of Art (Sculpture Garden), Preservation Hall (traditional New Orleans jazz), National World War II Museum, Napoleon House Bar & Café (warm muffuletta and Pimm’s Cup), dueling piano players and/or flaming patio fountain at Pat O’Brien’s, Blaine Kern’s Mardi Gras World, free History of French Quarter morning walking tour given by Jean Lafitte Park and Preserve’s Folklife and Visitor Center, various other French Quarter walking tours (ghost, haunted, voodoo, pub crawl, historical, cocktail, culinary, architecture, etc.), demonstration class at New Orleans School of Cooking, daytime Magazine St. shopping and/or restaurant/bar hopping via Magazine St. bus, Audubon Park/Zoo via St. Charles streetcar and/or Magazine St. bus, and outside of the City swamp and/or plantation tour.

Chicago, Illinois
Level Contributor
739 posts
27 reviews
4. Re: First Time Visitors

I would highly suggest staying in the French Quarter area for first time visitors - just do a search for Hotels and these all show up for under $150 a night right now -

Hotel Villa Convento

La Galerie Hotel

French Market Inn

Inn on St Ann

Inn on Ursulines

Le Richelieu in the French Quarter

Place d'Armes Hotel

You can search through these boards as well as the Trip Advisor reviews but I feel that all of these are generally well reviewed and liked by the folks here who visit New Orleans often. I think Villa Convento is probably one of the most loved and also one of the least expensive consistently...I have never stayed there personally but a lot of people here swear by it.

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