Monday, 6 June 2016

One night in New Orleans..

As part of my American Road Trip series, I bring you a quick overview of how you can spend one very fun night in The Big Easy!

We only had one night of our road trip in New Orleans, but if you do it right - one night in NOLA is all you need!

Start the clock ...

6pm - Louis Armstrong Park 

It was gorgeous in the park at this time, the sun was still up but there was no one around, leaving us free to stroll, relax and take pictures. I can imagine in summer, in the heat of the day it's a great escape from the bustle of the city and perfect to find a shady spot to cool down. It's really a special place and the statues and memorials are a fantastic way to take some time to sit, read the plaques and appreciate in some small way the movement and revolution that came about due to some incredibily brave people.

Louis Armstrong Park was originally known as Beauregard Square, and is an impressive 32 acres of parkland. It's just over the road from the famous French Quarter, so easy to include in any itinery of the city. The park today honours Jazz legend, (and I feel legend is an understatement), Louis Armstrong, but is also a historical site encompassing Congo Square a place where slaves would meet in the 1800s making music and dancing and is the origin of many genres of music have their roots. There's a whole lotta of history contained within the gates of this park and I would urge anyone visiting to take some time to learn some of it before visiting.


7.00pm Walking through the town down to the Mississippi 

We walked through the streets, down to the river as the sun was turning the sky blood red. There's just something about this place, it's difficult to describe but it bewitches you. It's magical. We took some time to explore the French Quarter, walking through the tangle of streets taking it all in. From the architecture to the horse drawn carriages it's like walking through another world. Drink it in and enjoy all the sights and sounds.

8.30pm Food time!

There's a whole host of excellent restaurants, cafes and bars offering local cuisine and if there's one way to get a real New Orleans experience it's through the food. Walk through the streets and pick a place you feel suits you, there are a lot to choose from.

We lucked out and stumbled upon a fantastic place which as well as boasting a crazy good assortment of micro brewery beers gave us the opportunity to sample some of the food NOLA is famous for, and at its best. 

Between us we sampled gumbo, crwfish etouffee, and aligator po boys, my mouth is watering just thinking about it now! 

9.30 pm Bourbon Street

Bourbon Street is one of the most famous in places in America, steeped in history, packed with iconic buildings and known for it's wild ways, it's one big party from start to finish. You don't even need to enter a bar to be in the middle of the action and there are plenty of street vendors selling the world famous Hurricane cocktail, (note - if you like rum and tropical flavours this ones for you!).  Take a walk, catch some beads, (even if it's not mardi gras), and soak up the atmosphere.

10.30 pm Maison Bourbon

Live jazz and Sazerac. Thats all I'm going to say. No really though this place is like something straight out of a movie and an incredible experience. Maison Bourbon is one of Bourbon Street's oldest live jazz clubs and one of only two jazz clubs remaining on the famous street. Luckily for us the club is dedicated to keeping the genre alive in New Orleans and they do a fine job.

For the full experience I would reccomend going after sundown, sit back, order a Sazerac and sip it slowly while your mind is blown by the finest quality, authentic jazz performances. When I think of all my favourite moments from my road trip this is right there at the top, there's nothing like it.

If you want to take the party on after that just follow the crowds down Bourban Street  and there are tons of hot spots to spend the night until the early hours.

So there it is my one night in New Orleans. If I can fit all that into one night in NOLA then just think what you can do if you have longer.

If you are planning a trip let me know what you intend to get up to, and I'd love to hear any reccomendations for the next time I visit. Leave your comments below or get in touch via my social links,  I'd love to hear from you!


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