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First time to New Orleans. Need suggestions on things to do

Fort Worth, Texas
6 posts
First time to New Orleans. Need suggestions on things to do

Me and a few college buddies will all be making our first trip to New Orleans for Mardi Gras this year. We will be in town 3/5 - 3/9 and curious if we anyone has any suggestions on must see places, things to do, resturants, etc. etc. We will be staying at the Hilton New Orleans/St. Charles Ave.

Thanks for your help!

Los Angeles...
Level Contributor
480 posts
1 review
11. Re: First time to New Orleans. Need suggestions on things to do

Covsting -

Thanks for the additional info about who you are and what you're looking for. Last year was my first MG and I would say the parades (at least the day ones) are much tamer than I expected. It's really run to stand and watch the floats and catch beads. You guys should do this for a while near your hotel, as I think you will find the beads you catch (especially the good ones) useful to your adventures on Bourbon Street.

Print a copy of the parade schedule and routes to bring with you. During parades, you will not be able to cross Canal into the FQ, so you will find it useful to know when they are running, meaning when you can escape your hotel (and get back there!). In between the parades, the police will usually open one barrier at an intersection to let everyone across. Sometimes you have to walk a block one way or the other to get where you are going.

Bourbon Street can get pretty crowded and wild during MG. Have a meet-up place/time planned with your buddies, if you want to be sure to reunite. With crowds, and drinking and noise, etc., it's not easy to deal with cell phone, checking voicemail, etc. In any event, I would plan on texting, rather than calling.

You will find lots of bars and interesting stuff on Bourbon Street. Try to keep your wits about you and don't stay out until the wee hours, as bad stuff seems to happen then. If one of your buddies gets too drunk, probably best to walk him back to the hotel, rather than let him stumble home.

Go to Yo Mama's bar for really great burgers, served until 3 a.m. (I believe). IHOP on the corner of Dauphine/Canal is open 24 hours. If you put the number in your cell phone, call them as you are leaving the bar, put in your order to-go, and take it back to your room for you late-night munchies.

Also, Brother's Chicken is on the corner of Carondelet and Tulane Avenue is about a block from your hotel, away from Canal 1 block and away from the river 1 block. They serve good fried chicken and french fries until late (2 a.m.?). This is also a mini mart, so you can buy water, chips, booze, beer, soda, etc.

Also, there is a CVS on the corner of Canal and St. Charles. You can buy beer, booze, chips, anything essential that you forgot (toothpaste, deodorant) here.

Other than drinking, eating and parades, it will depend on what other things interest you. There are some great museums in Jackson Square though you may have trouble with timing due to Mardi Gras. The National WWII museum is very interesting and has a 4D movie. (American Sector restaurant is right next door with 1/2 price beer and $0.75 sliders during afternoon happy hour). The Steamboat Natchez has a 2 hour cruise up and down the Mississippi. There is a free ferry to Algiers. You don't have to get off if you don't want to, can just ride there and back to experience the river. Go to French Market for cheap souveniers (t-shirts, beads, masks, etc). Street musicians tend to hang out on Royal Street. Frenchman Street has lots of different live music, though you will also find a lot on Bourbon Street.


New Orleans...
Level Contributor
3,336 posts
13 reviews
16 helpful votes
12. Re: First time to New Orleans. Need suggestions on things to do

The "Tips & Tricks" section of the linked website has a pretty good run-down of things you may wish to know in advance. The main thing for young men to know: (1) if you're drinking, pace yourself and re-hydrate frequently - it's a long five days (2) don't pee in public, you can get arrested (3) don't engage in problem behaviors or give NOPD any flak; they will put up with a lot, but if you cross the line and get arrested, you'll be in thrown into the notorious Central Lockup until Wednesday with some very, very unpleasant cellmates. Other than that, you'll have a great time!


Edited: 21 February 2011, 19:44
13. Re: First time to New Orleans. Need suggestions on things to do

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