New Orleans, Louisiana
One of my favorite cities in the US. This place is absolute magic, you can just feel the history and the people have this spunkiness about them. I love roaming around the French Quarter it really feels like you are somewhere in Europe. So if you are unable make it to Europe anytime soon and still want the feel of being there this is a great choice.
You probably know New Orleans from their infamous Bourbon Street and that street is great for partying, but there's actually so much more the French Quarter has to offer!
Our favorite place to barhop was Frenchman street which is more of a local hangout. It's still a huge party, but without the touristy feel to it like Bourbon Street.
On Frenchman Street there is a night market! They have great local artists. I actually discovered one of my favorite illustrators while I was there, Kersey Barrett-Tormey.
While we were bar hopping down Frenchman Street we ran into a woman in drag promoting a drag show a block away and so we went. It was the BEST drag show we had ever been to. The women were doing flips, splits, and everything in between. I believe the bar was called Mag's 940.
If you go to New Orleans you have to go to Cafe Du Monde for Beignet's. Its overcrowded and touristy, but it's just one of those staples you have to do. There will be a huge line around the building, but a local tip is you actually don't wait in line. No one is there to seat you, and it takes forever for people to wait in line and figure this out. You actually just go sit down at an empty table, even if it's dirty. A lot of times they won't clean off a table until someone new sits down. It's a very fast turnover so you can make this a relatively fast stop if you catch an open table when you arrive.
Near Cafe Du Monde there is a great local market that has food, drinks, and shopping. We stopped here for a drink and Gator sausage.
Another staple of New Orleans is the Acme Oyster Bar.
When in New Orleans you must get all the classic New Orlean dishes! They are all great so you can't go wrong. Try to stay away from high trafficked areas to avoid high prices. We found a great place down a random alley that had amazing food, and lower prices than restaurants around the town square and Bourbon Street. If you go in the Spring or early summer that is their peak crawfish boil season so definitely try to go to one when you see it.
Things to do during the day
There are actually a lot things to do in New Orleans that are outside of the French Quarter.
We went to Audobon Park where they have the classic Oak trees with spanish moss. It's absolutely beautiful. There is one tree that stands out amoung the rest, The Tree of Life. It has massive drooping limbs that you can climb on.
A great stop outside of the French Quarter is The Drifter Hotel! It's aesthetic is very Instagram worthy. You don't have to stay there to come visit the bar and pool area. It is also top optional so ladies feel free to leave your top at home. When we went you paid an entrance fee to go in for an unlimited amount of time, but now it looks like you must buy tickets for two hour entry time.
Every trip we go on we try to go thrift shopping. New Orleans had some great spots for this both in the French Quarter and outside of it.
Here are some of our favorites:
One of My favorite stores we went into was Trashy Diva Lingerie! It is far from trashy lingerie and in fact has some really high end beautiful pieces there. If you want a really fun lingerie shopping experience in the French Quarter go here!
One of the things that makes New Orleans unique is their creepy/haunted history, so if this is one of the reasons you want to visit New Orleans a fun museum to go see is The Museum of Death. They have crime scene photos, serial killer memorabilia, and so much more on display. The entrance fee is $15 and takes 30 minutes-2 hours (depending on how much you want to read) to get through it.
If you want to get your fortune read, New Orleans is the place to do it for sure. There are store fronts that have Fortune Tellers working in the back, but also if you go to Jackson Square in the French Quarter there's always a few set up there.
Other than that just walking around the French Quarter is fun within itself. There's so many interesting people and things going on. The architecture is very unique and there is always something new around every corner.