New Orleans or Charleston

Feb 23rd, 2005, 10:37 AM
Original Poster
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 25
New Orleans or Charleston

Planning an anniversary trip in mid-April and would like feedback on New Orleans and Charleston, SC. We need to pick which city we want to travel to soon. Thanks for any feedback.
lreedyva is offline  
Feb 23rd, 2005, 11:45 AM
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I have not been to Charleston so I cannot give an opinion as to which is better. BUT, just so you know, the French Quarter Fest is the weekend of 4/8 and Jazz Fest is the weekends of 4/22 & 4/29. So, keep that in mind when planning if you think about NO.
I love NO & would recommend it to anyone, but after reading GoTravel's post on Charleston last week - I cannot wait to go there!
neworleanslady is offline  
Feb 23rd, 2005, 11:52 AM
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Live in New Orleans and one set of grandparents live in Hilton Head so we visit Charleston often. Both are great. Like neworleanslady, I'm partial to N.O. as its larger and has more to do but you can't go wrong with either. N.O. is more (though not exclusively) adult-oriented and music clubs and restaurants play a big part of the experience.
Dan is offline  
Feb 23rd, 2005, 11:56 AM
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They both have wonderful architecture, interesting history, and great restaurants. I love them both but they're different. Depends what you're looking for.

NOLA is a little wilder; obviously it has fantastic nightlife in the French Quarter and it has that voodoo vibe that's kind of fun and arguably give it a lot more character than Charleston. It's also a little more rough around the edges; if you want everything very sanitized, historic Charleston is probably a better bet.

Charleston is more family-oriented and low key. Compared to NOLA it's more uptight, but there is still fun nightlife and some of the best restaurants anywhere. Lovely B&Bs and historic inns. I would argue that a lot of the historic buildings are in better shape there than in NOLA.

Hope that helps.
oliviadawg is offline  
Feb 23rd, 2005, 12:43 PM
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If this is the type of travel you like (as do I!), you really should see both of them so I don't see that it makes a difference at this point. Pick one (lets say, the one where you can get the best deal on a desirable package) and just do the other on another anniversary!
pollyvw is offline  
Feb 23rd, 2005, 01:14 PM
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I haven't been to New Orleans in years and have no desire to go there. However, we spent a week in Charleston in November. Good food, friendly people, lots to do, not a big city feel at all. Some noisy night-life on Friday & Saturday (which I am not into)-- but otherwise relatively quiet. For me, there would be no deliberation; it would be Charleston.
bo_jack is offline  
Feb 23rd, 2005, 02:52 PM
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Thanks for all the info. Still thinking......
lreedyva is offline  
Feb 23rd, 2005, 02:58 PM
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Olivia, Charleston and the Low Country have a very large very active VooDoo base.

It is a widely practiced religion and not a tourist site in Charleston. A couple of times a year in the Gullah Geechee Festival they will demonstrate a few things.

For wide open VooDoo, hit Savannah. I was in a bar one time and jokingly asked where I could find someone to cast a hex for me and ten people gave me ten different answers at the same time.
Feb 23rd, 2005, 03:00 PM
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Iree, Charleston consistently makes the top ten cities to visit year after year along with New York, Chicago, San Francisco, Boston, etc. It is the one small city that never falls off the list.
Feb 25th, 2005, 10:24 AM
Join Date: Feb 2005
Posts: 17
Hands down, New Orleans. I like Charleston, but only for a few days. For a special trip, like your anniversary, you must go to New Orleans. (New Orleans almost won out for our 10th anniversary trip this summer, but went with Curacao instead. And with that competition, NOLA was still a close second.)

The French Quarter Festival is lots of fun, and really local (we lived there for five years and never missed it). Go then if you can. Hotels will likely be pricey and booked early for JazzFest weekends. Unless you want to go to JazzFest (love it!), I wouldn't go either of those two weekends.

Stay in either the Monteleone (request one of the larger rooms) or the Royal Orleans. They will pamper you. And make reservations at Commander's Palace for your anniversary dinner. As many wonderful restaraunts as there are in New Orleans, Commander's is still the place for celebratory meals. (Just be sure to request a table in the main dining room.)

If the "adult" factor bothers you, just stay off of Bourbon Street at night. Although I have to say Chris Owen's show is a hoot (when is she going to retire?) and you really should go to Pat O'Brien's piano bar (despite the line and the tourists), but that really isn't on Bourbon anyway.

Have a great anniversary trip, whatever you decide!

gumboula is offline  
Mar 7th, 2005, 12:28 PM
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NO - Based on my history (& I live w/in driving distance from Charleston) I've been to NO 15 times, Charleston, 7. I feel I've done all there is to do in Charleston, I still haven't conqured NO.
SAnParis is offline  
Mar 9th, 2005, 02:10 PM
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You can't go wrong either way! Both are beautiful and historic, and April is a great time to visit.

If price is not a consideration, I would give the nod to New Orleans and save Charleston for another time. But be advised, it is the more expensive of the two destinations.
Davemeister is offline  
Mar 9th, 2005, 03:51 PM
Join Date: Jan 2003
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A coouple of others have said it well: You need to decide what you like. There's history in both places, including the people, the architecture, and the overall ambience. But N.O. has been accurately described by several others as a bit seamy (or steamy) yet forever appealing to those with a bit of an edge in their cultural appetite. Charleston is just a great place to visit, relax, and absorb. It grows on you in a gentle way, while N.O. grabs you and shakes you. You be the judge; eventually I hope you will go to both and then let us know what you think.
Wayne is offline  
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