Sometimes the best trips are the ones that are spontaneous! And this trip to New Orleans happens to be one of them! We were so excited to take our first trip EVER to New Orleans! We did so much research before our trip and of course looked up the cutest spots for the ‘gram! Along with the most iconic landmarks and the best places to get creole cuisine, a style of food that originated in New Orleans!
🌟 Download a copy of our easy to follow New Orleans Itinerary!⚜️👉 here
Where to stay:
Fleur De Lis Mansion
📍1216 Annunciation St, New Orleans, LA 70130
We decided for this trip that we wanted to experience some genuine Southern Hospitality. So what better way to do that than to spend the weekend at a bed and breakfast! 🛏🍳 There are so many bed and breakfast options in New Orleans and since we didn’t have a lot of time to book a room in advance, we stayed at Fleur De Lis Mansion. Although we can’t say we got the experience we were expecting, this place is super unique and cute. All of the rooms have their own different themes!
Places to Eat:
Cafe Du Monde
📍800 Decatur Street
Our first stop and actually our first meal of the day was at Cafe Du Mondé, the Original French Market Coffee Stand in New Orleans, LA! Where they serve their infamous beignets! If you’ve never had a beignet before you’ve got to try one in Nola! Beignets can best be described as a small powdered square donut. This place is known to have a super long line that goes down the street at all times, but luckily because we were there during the week we were able to walk right in and grab a seat on their covered patio. All of the servers wear these cool vintage paper hats and they sell them too, just incase you want one for yourself!😉 We ordered some iced coffees and an order of a beignets! Delicious!😋 This place is a landmark for New Orleans and a must for foodies visiting the Big Easy!
🌟 Couple of things to know before you go:
– They’re open 24 hours
– It’s always busy, so be prepared to wait in line
– it’s cash only!
📍334 Royal St, New Orleans, LA 70130
Another spot to get some beignets and iced coffee are at Cafe Beignet. What caught our eye was most definitely the decor! This place is absolutely so instagrammable, they have the cutest most charming vintage theme! During the evening they have a live musician that really adds to the ambiance. From their “Cafe Beignet” tile at the entrance to the metal heart chairs, this place just screams adorbs!😍
📍600 Decatur Street
We actually did three stops at Cafe Beignet.😬 The second time was to get another iced coffee, it was THAT good! It literally gave us so much energy. And the third time we accidentally came across their huge location at the corner of Decatur Street, right by the Jackson Brewery. Here we got sandwiches and a frozen cafe au lait! Basically a frozen coffee… slushy. Sounds amazing right?!
Beignet… Done That! 😉
Check out our blog post where we compared Cafe Beignet to Cafe Du Monde, and find out favorite!! 👉 here
Lafitte’s Blacksmith Shop
📍941 Bourbon St, New Orleans, LA 70116
We visited this place based off the recommendation of one of our Uber drivers. This bar is unique because it’s the oldest bar in America, serving drinks since the 1700s! This place isn’t one of those tackier bars you’ll find on Bourbon Street. Lafitte’s stays true to their history by using no electricity at all, it’s just dimly-lit with candles!🕯 We grabbed some hurricanes, which is a staple cocktail in New Orleans!🍹 And don’t forget you can take your drinks to-go!👍🏼
📍630 St Peter St, New Orleans, LA 70116
This restaurant is another recommendation from an Uber driver, (we literally had the best Uber drivers in NOLA). If you’re looking for a restaurant to go to it seems like a lot of the restaurants are closed at certain times of the day between lunch and dinner, which also happens to the time where we’re ready to eat lol. 😆 The Gumbo Shop is located not too far from Royal Street, in the French Quarter, and has a pretty big menu. New Orleans sure does love their cajun flavors and Creole cuisine, which was something new to us! And when at the Gumbo Shop you have to try the gumbo of course!🍛🍤 They actually have a few different kinds so we had a cup of the “Gumbo Z’Herbes”, their vegetarian gumbo. It has a flavor that we can’t describe, but it was actually pretty delicious!
📍 417 Royal Street, New Orleans, LA 70130
Another iconic restaurant in New Orleans is Brennan’s located on Royal Street. It’s easy to spot because it’s a gorgeous pink building! They created the Bananas Foster and that is what they’re most known for. 🍌🍨 They serve this delicious dessert tableside and flambeed. We did enjoy a few cocktails and some appetizers as well. Make sure to have a reservation because it is somewhat hard to get a table as they are very busy! While we waited for our table we were able to sit in the courtyard, it’s so beautiful! Watch how they make the Bananas Foster tableside in our Youtube video! 👉 here
Best places to take a photo “for the ‘gram”:
St. Louis Cathedral/Jackson Square
📍615 Pere Antoine Alley, New Orleans, LA 70116
The St. Louis Cathedral is the oldest cathedral in America and a landmark in New Orleans! It’s located right in the heart of the French Quarter, overlooking Jackson Square. This area is well kept and even has a quiet sign hanging, as it’s located only a few blocks from Bourbon Street (aka party central lol). This cathedral has so much detail and reminded us of Cinderella’s Castle at Disney World! 🏰💫 They also have live street performers playing music right in front of the cathedral. It was so beautiful! One of the musicians played music from an instrument we’ve never seen before, it must have hypnotized us for several minutes because we couldn’t stop listening! It was so cool and different! 🎺🎶
Take a Ride on the St. Charles Street Car
📍333 Canal St, New Orleans, LA 70130
This is the address to The Shops at Canal Place, where we got dropped off to ride the streetcars! Pretty much right in front of Saks Fifth Avenue. They do a lot of pick up and drops offs in this area. It’s so picturesque with the storefronts and palm trees all along the street!🌴 We felt like we were in California!🤩 Unfortunately, we didn’t get to ride the streetcar because we ran out of time, but it seems like they go all around New Orleans. It would have been a really cool way to see the city if we had time!
🌟 What to know before you go:
– it’s cash only!
– and it’s exact change, so if you hand them a $20 you won’t get anything back!
Carousel Bar & Lounge
📍214 Royal St, New Orleans, LA 70130
This is one of those places where you think like why did we not think of this?! The Carousel Piano Bar & Lounge is located inside Hotel Monteleone, right in the French Quarter. The Carousel Bar is truly unique, not only does it look like a classic carousel but it actually rotates and revolves at a very slow pace! 🎠 And they’ve been spinning for 65 years!!! There’s no excuse not stop at this place to grab one of their delicious hand-shaken piña coladas 🍹. Unless you’re impatient because they’re only 25 seats available! There are other seats around the carousel, but of course we waited until a few spots opened up and we got on! And we stuck around long enough to listen to the live jazz band perform in the lounge.🎶
Link to their website: Hotel Monteleone’s Carousel Bar
Of course Bourbon Street is known for their Mardi Gras festivals and their parades and just overall crazy wild fun located right in the heart of the French Quarter! It was pretty crazy with people in costumes, voodoo shops, and lots of dancing on the street! This is where you’re going to find hand grenades and the famous hurricane cocktail! Bars, strip clubs, street performers and the most interesting costumes we’ve ever seen on a weekday, Bourbon Street definitely left an impression on us!
The LaBranche House/Royal Street
📍700 Royal St, New Orleans, LA 70116
The LaBranche House was actually really hard to find (we didn’t know the address or name of it). We had ask a couple of different Ubers to drive us around before we finally found it at the corner of St. Peter and Royal St! This building is so gorgeous! 😍 There are beautiful potted flowers that hang from the laced iron balconies. 💐 Royal Street was definitely our favorite street to walk down. Seriously so pretty! And at the corner, they had a full band performing on the street!🎷🎻🎶
The Garden District/Buckner Mansion
📍 1410 Jackson Ave, New Orleans, LA 70130
We didn’t have a lot of time to explore the Garden District, because we started to run out of time during our last day, but we did stop by to see The Buckner Mansion. Notoriously known as the main location for the FX horror TV show, American Horror Story season 3: Coven. It’s just as beautiful and eerie in person as you would expect! 👻 Another place we wanted to check out (but didn’t make it) was the famous Cornstalk Fence Mansion. Built in 1860, this mansion spans over 9,000 square feet! It’s known for its iconic fencing and New Orleans charm.⚜️
Also, if you’re looking for nice place to eat try Commander’s Palace.
📍1403 Washington Ave, New Orleans, LA 70130
Located right in the Garden District you can’t miss it because it’s a beautiful bright blue hue! (It would have been perfect for our Instagram feed, dang it!) It is a bit pricey $$$, however if you happen to go for lunch they have $0.25 martinis!🍸 Does it get any better than that?!
– Reservations are highly recommended!
📍 600 Decatur Street (closest Public Parking Area)
There’s no better way to see New Orleans than from the Mississippi River while on Steamboat Natchez! 🚢⚓️ Not only are you going to see gorgeous sights along the way, but you’ll also learn about the life and history on the Mississippi River. And don’t forget the entertainment and food! They have a live jazz band that plays 🎶, and a full buffet during both their lunch and dinner tours! See our full review in our blog post 👉🏼 here
– The best way to spot the closest parking area is to look for a Cafe Beignet restaurant on the corner!
– Arrive early to get a good seat (in the shade)
Cajun Pride Swamp Tour
📍110 Frenier Rd, Laplace, LA 70068
This is a MUST if visiting New Orleans! Just 30min away from the heart of Nola you can see what the deep South is really like by taking a swamp tour on the Manchac Swamp! 🐊 Not only did we get to see countless alligators but we actually got to hold one!! 😱 Along with other critters! 🐍 Our tour guide Brandon really went above and beyond to make sure we had the best up-close experience. We highly recommend this tour!! For more info check out our blog post 👉🏼 here
– Book in advance online to save some $$$
Ghost City Tours
If you’re into get spooked and you want to hear the history and the grueling stories that took place years and years ago, definitely take a ghost tour with Ghost City Tours! 👻 We took the “Killers and Thrillers- East” tour, where we heard tales of female serial killers and mad madams, and even got to see a lot of beautiful homes in the haunted French Quarter! Our tour guide, Monique was really engaging and knowledge about the history of New Orleans.
– New Orleans allows open container, so grab yourself a hurricane to-go before the tour!🍹
– Get 10% off by booking online ahead of time
Link to their website: Ghost City Tours
The Spotted Cat Music Club
📍 623 Frenchmen St, New Orleans, LA 70116
Known as the The Quintessential Jazz Club of New Orleans, what’s a more fun way to experience the culture of this amazing city than to enjoy some jazz music! 🎷🎶 For a small bar with barely any seating and a tiny stage, this place really knows how to bring in a crowd! This place was so packed, even on a Wednesday, that it was hard for us to get to the bar and then back to the stage! But it was well worth it because we did have a really fun time, and even got to try some local brews! ⚜️🍻 The band was really good and it was really cool too feel those jazz vibes!
– it’s cash only!
– there is a 1 drink minimum per set, aka everytime the band takes a break its time to grab a beer
– even though Nola allows open containers, no outside drinks are allowed in The Spotted Cat
We had no idea New Orleans was such a fun city! We didn’t know that it was full of skyscrapers, amazing shopping, they have their own Mercedes-Benz Superdome, and of course lots and lots of rich history and absolutely gorgeous architecture! We’re so happy that this is one of the places in America that preserves a lot of their original buildings! If you have ever been to New Orleans before, you know there’s definitely so much to do and see while in the Big Easy. For it being our first time, if you ask us we got to see a lot of what New Orleans has to offer!
If you guys want to get a detailed look at some of the locations and places that we went to definitely check out our previous blog posts and our YouTube channel!
Download a copy of our easy to follow New Orleans Itinerary 👉 here
Check out our Top 10 things to do in New Orleans video below! 👇🏼