It finally happened. The boy and I took a vacation. It was the first time that we’ve truly “gotten away” since 2009 when we went to Boston! This Spring we packed our bags and headed out to a place we have both always wanted to visit, New Orleans.
Nola was literally magical to me. To divulge a little bit about myself, I tend to romanticize everything that I haven’t experienced; places, jobs, travel, life experiences etc. Because of this terrible habit, when I visit different places, I can sometimes be let down as they don’t live up to this insane fantasy that I have in my head. New Orleans was everything I hoped it would be and more. The city was so incredibly beautiful. The homes, the small businesses, the people, the energy – everything had this warmth to it that I can’t explain.
We booked an apartment for the week through airbnb, which I highly recommend! The past few times we have traveled we used airbnb to find our accommodations, and have really enjoyed it! You get a completely different experience compared to staying in a hotel. We stayed in a lovely little neighborhood in the lower Garden District, just one block away from Magazine St. The location was perfect, and our little lavender and mint colored home was so lovely!
Our flight didn’t arrive til a little bit later in the evening, so our first night there we stayed fairly close to the apartment and wandered up and down Magazine St, checking out all the little shops. Then we stopped for dinner at a little restaurant called Maya’s: Nuevo Latino that totally rocked my world. The food was creative and delicious, and the mojitos were on point.
The next morning we woke up and had breakfast at this super cute little coffee shop, then headed into the Garden District for a tour. If you are traveling and want to do something touristy on a hella small budget, I highly recommend Free Tours by Foot. They host very comprehensive walking tours that are 100% free, then at the end you pay what you think the tour was worth, or just what you can afford. Our guide was awesome and hilarious, and we found out a lot of things about New Orleans culture that I don’t think we would have discovered otherwise. Plus, when she wasn’t on the clock she was part of The Bearded Oysters krewe, so mad respect.
One of the reasons I have always wanted to go to New Orleans was Anne Rice, so it was pretty amazing to walk the aisles of Lafayette Cemetery, and finally see the house on First St. in all of it’s deliciously creepy glory. To round it out I picked up her newest novel, The Prince Lestat at the Garden District Bookstore. That’s the stuff dreams are made of, my friends.
Later that afternoon we checked out the Audubon Insectarium, which was ridiculously cool. Expect to see some more bug illustrations fueled from this particular adventure.
Over the next few days we explored the French Quarter, saw some insane live music, had beignets and coffee at Cafe Du Mond, went to the World War II museum, enjoyed holding baby gators at the Jean Laffite National Park, and had the best damn hot dog of my life.
I don’t think I have ever had a vacation that was as amazing as New Orleans! I seriously can’t wait to go back.