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New Orleans Help Please!

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Jul 5th, 2012, 08:52 AM
  #1
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New Orleans Help Please!

Hello All!

I am going to NOLA for the first time with a group of 6 of us. We are all first-timers! I had a few questions that I'd like to bombard you with

1. We are interested in doing a ghost tour, we don't want the cheesy tour guides or anything kiddy-like. Any suggestions? Also, do you have any recommendations for the cemetery or voodoo tours? Any tour companies your prefer over others?
2. How long should we allow to visit the WWII museum?
3. What are some of your favorite restaurants that we will see more locals than tourists?
4. Favorite restaurants to get the vietnamese banh-mi sandwiches at?
5. Any other suggestions for must see things for a group of childless adults in their early 30s that don't drink?
6. Just how hot will it be in late August/early September? Humidity?
silver52900 is offline  
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Jul 5th, 2012, 09:28 AM
  #2
 
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#1. Don't know
#2. Go when it opens-leave when it's time for lunch.
#3. Anyplace that serves Gumbo and Jambalya- look for menu in the window.
#4. Never had a vietnamese sandwich in NO. The Po'Boy is the sandwich of choice in New Orleans.
#5. Find a place where jazz is played outdoors.
#6. Could be 90+ temp and humidity or 70's and rainy.
Ride the St Charles streetcar to the Garden District. Don't spend all your time and money in the FQ.
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Jul 5th, 2012, 11:15 AM
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Allow at least half a day for the museum, and it's well worth the time. The restaruant attched is supposed to have really good foor, but I didn't have time to check it out.

The Gumbo Shop on Saint Peter Street has a fair number of locals...at least for lunch it did.

The street car ride is good advice.

As noted by tomfuller Po'Boy in the sandwich of choice in NO. Johnny's Po'Boys in the FQ makes mighty good examples, but we didn't like the restaurant itself. Get your Po'Boy and find a park for a little picnic.

Avoid Bourbon steet at night...seems like everyone but the youngest is drunk. But in the light of day it can be interesting.
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Jul 5th, 2012, 12:09 PM
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1a. Magic Walking Tours -- www.magictoursnola.com
1b. Save Our Cemeteries -- http://www.saveourcemeteries.org

2. About twice as long as you expect...it's THAT good.

3. Too many to name...can you narrow it down a bit (location, price, dress, cuisine?)

4. In the French Quarter, try the Moon Wok (http://tinyurl.com/7ocdfe9). It's a dive, and I think their Vietnamese food is better than their Chinese, and they deliver! If you're willing to go outside the Quarter, let me know. There's a new Vietnamese place on Magazine called Magazin. It's good, but their banh-mi is not my favorite, because they use a harder french baguette instead of the traditional softer french bread.

5. Take the free Canal Street ferry for a great view of the City from the River. Explore the lesser-traveled City Park, Mid-City/Esplanade Ridge area.

6. http://www.weather.com/weather/wxcli...graph/USLA0338
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Jul 5th, 2012, 12:47 PM
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Hi NO_Native,

We are trying to stay within a relative budget with our food, maybe around $20 and under per dish. We are looking at hotels near the French Quarter but wouldn't mind using transportation to go anywhere for a great authentic NOLA meal. We probably will be dressed casual after a long day of touring.

I also had another question... what tour company do you recommend for the hurricane re-birth type tour?
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Jul 7th, 2012, 02:51 PM
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Tours by Isabelle is a great tour company.
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Jul 7th, 2012, 03:05 PM
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Ditto Littleman. tours by Isabell I have used them twice. I would so recommend the plantation tour it takes you out to the old plantations. It is so interesting!!! That is if you are history buffs at all. The history of new Olreans is like no other. Ask for Jenny with the tours by Isabell. She is totally awesome and a wealth of information.
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Jul 7th, 2012, 04:14 PM
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While I think the plantations are worthwhile, I'm not sure I would make that recommendation for first time visitors.

Back in March we did a ghost tour at night with Bloody Mary and enjoyed it, but felt like it was a little too memorized. I highly recommend a cemetery tour that includes St. Louis #1, as well as a voodoo "house". We did our cemetery tour many years ago and don't remember who we used.
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Jul 7th, 2012, 07:23 PM
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Our favorite restos in NOLA are:
The Bombay Club - great food & drinks!
http://www.thebombayclub.com/
Bayona - excellent food
http://www.bayona.com/
Commander's Palace
http://www.commanderspalace.com/

I am including Commander's Palace (even though it might be 'touristy') for two reasons:
We were on our honeymoon and showed up on the wrong day for our lunch reservation...they didn't bat and eyelash and seated us and treated us like royalty. We went back 8 year later for the Sunday Jazz Brunch. Both times the food was fantastic and we had a marvelous time. Highly recommend!
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Jul 8th, 2012, 05:31 AM
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Deb15July, not sure why you would not recommend those plantation tours. I have been twice with different people. I was there 5 days and found it difficult to find that many things to do in the daytime. I am glad I did that as there is a whole day and half day. They have restored the old homes to how they were back in day and the homes are beautiful while educating oneself on the true New Orleans history.

We did a cemetary tour can't remember the name of the company. Yes it will be very hot there, and humid.
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Jul 8th, 2012, 08:24 AM
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1. The tour from "Save Our Cemeteries" was a bit long-winded, but at least it should be guaranteed to go out. Tours in NOLA often have minimums, and whether they actually go out or not can be hit or miss -- check first.

2. I'd allot at least a full morning or afternoon to the WWII Museum -- it's excellent, but good sized.

3. Would recommend checking out my food trip report from NOLA here:

http://www.fodors.com/community/unit...experience.cfm

I also don't see the need to differentiate between a 'tourist" and "no-tourist" place. I was a tourist in NOLA, and most of the food experiences I had were very worthwhile -- plus, I saw what looked like a mix of both at most places.

4. no idea. If I were in NOLA, I wouldn't personally spend my calories getting a banh-mi sandwich when I could have a po-boy -- they're pretty much the same thing, anyway -- or a muffuletta.

5. see my trip report, located in the latter posts of this thread, for sightseeing ideas:

http://www.fodors.com/community/unit...y-184065-2.cfm

There's a ton of stuff to see in NOLA.

6. if it's anything like Florida that time of year, it will be exceedingly hot and humid.
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Jul 8th, 2012, 09:14 AM
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We took a Plantation tour - it took us to a Creole plantation and to Oak Alley
http://www.lauraplantation.com/index.asp
http://www.oakalleyplantation.com/welcome.html

We took a Swamp tour that was a lot of fun; a walking tour of the Garden District; and a "Courtyards of NOLA" walking tour.
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Jul 9th, 2012, 05:54 AM
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In my experience, the Laura/Oak Alley tour halfapair mentions is the one plantation tour option that normally has a good chance of going out, as it's apparently pretty popular.

It's always wise to check ahead with any NOLA tour you want to book to get a good sense of whether it'll actually happen or not.
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Jul 9th, 2012, 06:32 AM
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diann,
It's not that I don't recommend a plantation tour, I just think there is plenty to do in NOLA itself the first time around.

silver,
I agree with others...go with a po-boy or muffaletta...those are items for which NO is famous!

I should also mention that beignets and chickory coffee at Cafe du Monde (the original) are a must!
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Jul 9th, 2012, 06:34 AM
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halfapair, yes those are exactly the ones I am refering to in my post. They seem to be the only ones I had ever seen advertised. I loved the Mint Juliips at Oak Valley! Very good on a hot day! We also did a Swamp tous which was also great fun.
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