Tuesday, February 28, 2017

New Orleans with Kids

Living in the middle of Texas every time there is 3 day weekend or a school break I look on the map to see where can we road trip and see new things.   In honor of Mardi Gras today I am going to tell you that New Orleans, Louisiana is a great road trip from Austin.  It is about an 8 hour drive and is easily done in one day. We drove there over New Years and the kids had a blast.  Now driving and then parking at your hotel in New Orleans is a problem.  They want close to 60 dollars to park you car at a hotel over night.   So we opted for self parking in down town garages blocks from the hotel because we were not going to be using the car as we walked everywhere.

We stayed in the French Quarter and which was quaint and historic.  Jackson Square is great.  There are artists selling their work, museums, magicians, great shops, musicians and even tarot card readers. This is also where we picked up a carriage ride for an hour long tour of the french quarter.  Our driver was great.  He knew all about the history.  He let my kids ride up front and feed the mule.

Part of the tour you get to walk into one the oldest cemetery in New Orleans.   You see all these amazing crypts.

The one on the right is he renowned Voodoo priestess Marie Laveau's crypt. 

When you are done with your carriage ride the drop off is right at Cafe Du Monde.  This is the world famous open air chicory coffee and beignets (powdered deep fried pastries) and yes they are delicous.  


While waiting in line for a table which can take a while the kids grabbed a balloon from another local artisan. 

We had a great time walking up and down the streets.  Stopping for New Orleans Pralines.  So yummy.  The seafood is amazing Crawfish Etoufee, Shrimp Grits,  Jumbalaya, Gumbo and Oysters.   All great options as sea food and cajun is not very popular here in Austin. 

Swamp Pop was also a big hit. We tried Ponchatoula Pop (strawberry soda) and Praline Cream Soda floats.  Also picked up a few mini voodoo dolls. 

The Street cars are also famous here. This is the oldest continuously operating streetcar line in the world and its been working since 1835.  Take a ride and you can see Audubon Park, Tulane University, Loyola University New Orleans and the Garden District.  A one day all day pass is only $3.   You can download the RTA app and buy a ticket on your phone or pay cash on the street car.

Finally, no trip to New Orleans is complete with out Mardi Gras masks.

Laissez les bons temps rouler!   Let the good times roll.  If you can't make it to New Orleans for Mardi Gras or any other time of the year you can pick up King Cake locally here at the HEB. 

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