Wagwan! I just got back from New Orleans (NOLA) and I am ready to share some goodies with you guys! Here are 5 things I tried in NOLA that you should all try if you find yourself there.
Lol, you already know this would be the first thing my fat butt would recommend. Do not leave NOLA without eating char-grilled oysters. I repeat, DO NOT! I tried Neyow's and ACME. I personally preferred Neyow's, but ACME will not disappoint. Beignets. Are they worth the hype? Meh. But you have to at least try it. I got mine at Cafe Du Monde.
YESSSS, JAZZ MUSIC! Don't be surprised if you catch yourself bobbing to the lush brass instruments. Regardless of the time of day you are bound to catch some vibey tunes from restaurants to dedicated lounges. I highly recommend the lounge at Royal Sonesta. The lighting and size of the lounge creates a cozy and intimate environment. Cafe Beignet also brings the vibes once the sun comes down. Grab a beignet, a drink, a seat, and vibe out. Be on the lookout for street performers also.
Obviously, there are the main attractions off Canal street that have plenty to keep you busy for a couple days. Once done, I highly recommend venturing out into the Marigny and Bywater area. Go by feet or bike on the crescent park trail to experience various art installations, unobstructed views of the NOLA skyline and Mississippi river, and other scenic goodies. Venture off the trail in the Bywater area for a meal at The Joint, if you like bbq, or Elizabeth's (very busy, try weekday) for brunch. Continue past the St. Claude bridge to the Holy Cross district for a walk besides the Mississippi river on the levee trail, If you still have juice left in your legs.
I was able to navigate the different sites I mentioned by foot. This was a lot of walking, so bring good shoes. If you're not keen on walking long distances (6-10 miles/day), the RTA (bus and streetcar) are very reasonably priced and convenient modes of getting around town. Pro-tip, download the RTA app and purchase day passes (3 dollars). This will give you access to all RTA vehicles. Another pro-tip; make sure your phone is charged.
Plenty of rooming options, depending on how much you want to spend. I went with an Air BnB half a mile away from Bourbon and Canal street.