Hey /trv/, this is my first time here so sorry if I don't know the rules yet.
I'm going to New Orleans for the first time during Mardi Gras next week. Any tips for a first time visitor? I want to get some drinks and listen to good local music, any sites that list local events?
Please and thank you!
For sure. I've been looking up like, etiquette from a couple websites and a lot of people mention not bringing a lot of valuables. Thanks, anon. I'll have to maintain a steady buzz instead of getting hammered every night.
Yeah safety should be your first concern. There was a shooting in Thibodaux LA at a parade a few days ago, and it wouldn't surprise me if one or two people got killed at parades in New Orleans. But...that's not going to change. So just remember that there is a slim chance you will hear gunshots during your stay.
That said, from Thursday before MG to Fat Tuesday itself, you can't go wrong. I am a local and I've experienced both the family friendly and wild partying sides of it. St Charles Avenue on Thursday, Friday, Sunday and Monday will have hundreds of bars, restaurants, and places to watch the parades -- just walk up and down the street; approximately from Napoleon all the way to the French Quarter will be happening on that street. This will start dying down around 9 or 10 though; go to Frenchmen Street from then on. It will be PACKED but it's the best place in the city for bars and live music. Vaso on Frenchmen is a wonderful place to chill out and listen to some blues/zydeco/funk/whatever else they have.
Do go to Bourbon Street! It will blow you away on Mardi Gras Day. It's only necessary to go there once though, unless you want to get blackout drunk and get ripped off for t-shirts and hot dogs
The Metropolitan is a good higher-end nightclub if you are looking for that kind of thing, but Frenchmen and St Charles will supply more fun than you can take in. Wish I could be in town this year
Holy hell, alright I will definitely be wary of my surroundings haha. I saw something about Frenchmen street that mentioned great music bars and such. We'll probably go to Bourbon street once at least, get all the touristy stuff in. Thanks for the info!
I believe we have a reservation for Cafe du Monde, we want to go for sure. Maybe one of those hangover mornings, I'll go get a drawing.
Not OP, but curious about safety in New Orleans and wonder if anyone can give some more general advice for the city. My partner is travelling here and I want to know what she should keep in mind while she's there.
>I believe we have a reservation for Cafe du Monde, we want to go for sure. Maybe one of those hangover mornings, I'll go get a drawing.
No reservations accepted, I'm sure. If you have a car, you can do morningstar instead, if it is just the elusive beignet you need to try.
Don't fear the crime, but always be aware, and practice that safety first in how you dress and act and where you are. Listen to your gut, if you get a warning about a situation or a person watching you, heed it. Go the other way, cross a street, step into a business, call a taxi to gtfo. Unlike other cities, it's hard to just avoid a bad area. It's like a checkerboard of hot alleys or safer streets, every other one. Be among people most of all, but not in huge-cattle like crowds both. When walking don't take shortcuts if others aren't on that street too.
The most cool part of Mardi Gras is knowing locals and getting to experience krewe parties and the more exclusive things that way with their memberships (like balls a month ago). Do your best to see something of the atmosphere of a parade without being on the street with anyone behind you, so set up lawnchairs in a local neighborhood or cafe. There might be tix online to better music being offered (same as home). Tipitinas for instance, and they're likely sold out ages ago. Gonna have to wander
For your next trip, you should INSTEAD experience jazz heritage festival for music fun.
>For your next trip, you should INSTEAD experience jazz heritage festival for music fun.
Louisiana native here and I highly agree.
I find it much more relaxed and less crowded. I think Mardi Gras in New Orleans is a bit overrated and way too fucking crowded, much more enjoyable to view the parades from a high balcony and drink with friends.
I've lived in New Orleans all my life. Everything you are going to want to see or do is within these borders. When you arrive, make a B-line to this area and don't even look out of the windows of the taxi because the rest is so shit.
I'm also glad to give restaurant/destination recommendations if you are looking for things to do. Mardi Gras is in full swing now so I doubt you'll have any problems finding nighttime activities.
Lastly, you don't need a reservation for Cafe du Monde.
I got triggered to make my own version, it's not like the entire city is 3rd world conditions, just a few areas. Just stay out of the black shading unless you're driving
The area on the lake has R&O which makes the best po boy in the city and the lakefront which is pretty. Middle red area near City Park is almost as beautiful as Uptown and has some of the top restaurants (Mandina's)
This was nice of this anon to post this for you OP...still should not let your guard down as you walk block to block.
For food, I love the self-done picnic of getting a sandwich from Central Grocery, craft soda or beer, voodoo chips,and walking to the top of the levee, maybe watch the Natchez load and unload. One of my favorites has the oldest bar in the city (actual wooden bar), or maybe the mirror? Anyway, it has recently moved away from only the 5 course prix fixe menu for whatever the chef is making that day to a selection. It still offers the 5 course, kind of an old school thing to do for long time visitors (150 yrs old). Book a table for the 5 course olden days dining experience with white tie waiters.
If you have a car there are great day trips, such as touring a plantation house with a grand view of the Mississippi, and having some crabs or BBQ to/from, or some delicious boudin balls!.
This map is pretty good, but it doesn't mean everything inside the red is safe. Walk two blocks into lower garden the wrong way and tell me you feel safe. The good and bad are right next to each other in New Orleans. There are even some sketchy blocks near Audubon! Still it's not like you are 100% going to be shot even if you walked up and down MLK all day.
Don't wander around drunk, don't sell drugs on someone else's turf and odds are you'll be fine.
Yeah the city park area is good I just didn't think there was much touristy stuff to do there besides kayak in bayou st john maybe. Some of the houses in that area are quite pretty too
I guess someone in town for a short period wouldn't be aiming to go there but
>food near N Carrollton/Canal
>south portion of City Park
>Esplanade near the Bayou
>big old houses all over
You could spend a whole day there and be occupied the whole time