New Orleans Journals

Jazz Fest - Nawlins Style

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An April 2003 trip to New Orleans by jenandfrank

Royal Sonesta Photo, New Orleans, Louisiana More Photos
Quote: This is a great place to relax, with friendly people, great food, nice weather, and incredible music of all kinds.

New Orleans Fair Grounds and Racetrack

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Attraction | "New Orleans Jazz Fest"

New Orleans Fair Grounds and Racetrack Photo, New Orleans, Louisiana
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This is almost always held the last weekend in April (Friday to Sunday) and the first weekend in May (Thursday to Sunday). It is lots of fun, with a more mature crowd than Mardi Gras (you won’t see any bare-breasted women on this trip), and it is definitely something for everyone. To be honest, this was not a trip I was looking forward to. It was a gift (from me) to my husband for his birthday. He had been dying to go and I figured, how bad could it be? It is definitely one of the best festivals we have ever been to. It is extremely well-organized and attended, with lots of food, lots of entertainment, and plenty of security. We bought the tickets in advance through Ticketmaster, and it allowe...Read More

New Orleans Fair Grounds and Racetrack
1751 Gentilly Blvd.
New Orleans, Louisiana 70116
(504) 522-4786

Cafe du Monde

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This is one of the most famous places in New Orleans - to say the least. And it’s just a coffee shop. The BEST coffee shop you’ve ever been to, though. It is a must-stop when it town, regardless of how long your trip is. Most of their business is due to word-of-mouth since they do not advertise. This coffee stand was established in 1862 in the French Market (now there are seven locations in total in Louisiana). Don't waste your time going to any location other than the original. It’s open 24 hours a day (closed only on Christmas) and always serving the freshest chicory coffee and the tastiest beignets. It is located by the river, just outside of Jackson Square and at the end of the French Market...Read More
Royal Sonesta Photo, New Orleans, Louisiana
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There are two W Hotels in New Orleans. Many people (especially those who have written about their experiences on this site) confuse them. The W French Quarter is where we stayed, and it is located IN the French Quarter (on Chartres Street) and is very quaint and small; you’d probably pass it unknowingly when walking down the street (if it wasn’t for the red W sticking out). The other W hotel is called the W New Orleans and is located on Poydras Street (main road). That hotel is large and is your standard big-chain hotel, inside and out. The W French Quarter offers you a great location, easy walking distance to just about everything (Bourbon Street, Jackson Square, Harrah’s Casino, House of Blues, e...Read More
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Emeril’s – 800 Tchoupitoulas Street, (504) 528-8383. There are three Emeril locations within New Orleans: Emeril’s New Orleans (where we ate—his flagship location), Emeril’s Delmonico, and Nola. (New Orleans is where he got his start.) He calls it eclectic New Orleans cuisine, and you really can’t go wrong. After eating at several of his restaurants around the country, I can say that this one did not disappoint. As with all of his locations, the kitchen has an open-wall/window look. Directly in front of that is the "food bar", equivalent to a regular bar, but there are no bottles of liquor behind it; thereby, any patron can watch the chefs cook and prepare. The service was excellent, only topped...Read More
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Brigtsen’s – 723 Dante Street, 504-861-7610. Brigtsen’s is another stunning restaurant, in a 19th-century Victorian cottage near the Riverbend (you must drive, take a cab for $15, or catch a street car to get here, but it’s worth the ride). It’s a family-run (actually, the chef is the husband, and the maitre’d is the wife) restaurant with limited seating, so you must make reservations. The food served is contemporary Creole cuisine with flair, and it’s very different from the Creole we had anywhere else. Their chef uses a lot of local ingredients, which to me makes the meal so much more special, because it’s obviously unlike anything we can get at home. Their menu changes daily, but we had ...Read More
Walking Tour- New Orleans  Photo, New Orleans, Louisiana
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Steamboat Natchez Riverboat Cruise This was a two-hour cruise from the French Quarter down the Mississippi on an authentic steamboat. The boat itself was beautiful and very well-maintained. The cost was $18.50 for the cruise only and $26 if you included lunch. Tickets were available at the riverfront. Lunch is served in a cafeteria-style manner. The food was okay—not great, buffet-style out of tin trays (like the ones they use in sterno set-ups), and we ate off paper plates. I think I was expecting more after hearing the words "cruise down the Mississippi," but nevertheless I was disappointed. First of all, the water is brown… very brown. And along the part of the Mississippi that the cr...Read More

New Orleans - Notes & Thoughts

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Jackson Square Photo, New Orleans, Louisiana
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New Orleans, best known for its food, music, and Bourbon Street shenanigans. Bourbon Street is the mecca for those traveling to New Orleans. For anyone who is unaware, New Orleans is below sea level and therefore has a major sewage problem (that’s why they bury their dead above-ground, in mausoleums). That said, the town has a certain smell to it, especially on Bourbon Street (located within the French Quarter). Once you have spent some time there, you get used to the smell, but for those who aren’t expecting it, it can be quite a shock. Bourbon Street is like no place that we have ever been, filled with food, drinks, strip clubs (male, female, and the excessive), regular clubs, bars with live mu...Read More