This city has so many one-of-a-kind places that it was hard to pick just 10. Still, we managed to come up with suggestions sure to make your visit unforgettable.
You cannot discuss New Orleans without mentioning the iconic
Café Du Monde. Established in 1862, it’s famous for
café au lait, using coffee with chicory, along with three
beignets (dough that’s fried and covered with powdered sugar,
served warm). 800 Decatur St., New Orleans; (504) 525-4544.
To soak up some Old Orleans atmosphere, visit Lafitte’s
Blacksmith Shop. The infamous pirate Jean Lafitte and his brother
ran it as a front for their privateering business in the 1700s. Now
it’s a tavern where live music and flickering candlelight
create a cozy hangout. 941 Bourbon St.; (504) 593-9761.
Best Burgers in Town
When they say the world’s best burgers are at Yo Mama’s
Bar and Grill, you probably didn’t expect a plump burger
topped with peanut butter and bacon. But foodies rave about it. And
to add to the fun, you can wash that burger down with a shot of one
of the 50 tequila selections. 727 Saint Peter St., New Orleans;
Paranormal researchers have documented 12+ spirits at Hotel
Monteleone. The Place d’Armes Hotel, built in 1886, sits on
the same site as a school that went up in flames, killing children
and teachers. One ghost often appears, nods at guests, then
vanishes. Hotel Monteleone, 214 Rue Royal; Place d’Armes
Hotel, 625 Saint Ann St.
From voodoo dolls to gris-gris love potions, the fascinating New
Orleans Historic Voodoo Museum in the heart of the French Quarter
is home to all things voodoo. 724 Dumaine St., New Orleans; (504)
To find the “true soul” of the local music scene, many
locals suggest Frenchmen Street, a three-block-long district
boasting a dozen live music clubs. To reach it from the French
Quarter, just cross Esplanade at Decatur, and you’re there.
Cover charges are rare, but be sure to tip the bands liberally
The St. Louis Cemetery No. 1, opened in 1789, is where voodoo high
priestess Marie Laveau’s tomb can be found. Many visitors
leave little gifts at her vault, and some even knock three times or
draw three X’s on the sides (illegal, by the way), hoping
she’ll grant their wishes. Free admission; open seven days a
week. Located at the basin at Saint Louis St., a block from the
Quarter; (504) 482-5065.
Enter if You Dare
For a memorable night, try Ye Olde Original Dungeon. Tucked deep in
the Quarter down a creepy dark alley, this punk/rock club has three
bars: the front bar downstairs; Sound Bar upstairs, with a coffin
suspended over the dance floor; and the Venus Bar. BTW, the
rest-rooms are hidden behind a bookcase in the
“library.” Open from midnight to dawn, but the
downstairs bar opens around 6 p.m. 738 Toulouse St., New Orleans;
Many say the best po’ boys are at Johnny’s Po-Boys.
This family-run eatery offers more than 40 kinds of po’ boys,
plus muffalettas, red beans and rice, seafood gumbo, and more. 511
Saint Louis St.; (504) 524-8129.
Try This Bloody Mary
Tour guide extraordinare Bloody Mary is a native Creole who’s
been featured in 200 documentaries, and on TV and radio. Her
offerings include Tour of the Undead (walking tour of ghost,
vampire and voodoo sites in the Quarter); Haunted Pub Crawl Tour;
Moonlight Graveyard Tour; and VIP Premier Private Tours.
Reservations, (504) 523-7684.