48 Hours in New Orleans

48 Hours in New Orleans

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48 hours in New Orleans… Just enough time to take in all the major sites and stuff your face with all the tasty not-good-for-you foods.

New Orleans, Louisiana is a destination that often shocks visitors with its rich history and gourmet cuisine. I know I was pleasantly surprised, even after heavily researching the best activities and delicacies beforehand (guilty!) 48 hours can give you a good feel for the city and a taste of what it has to offer.

Here is my perfect 48 hours:

Day 1

8:00am Have an early breakfast at Powdered Sugar, inside the Hyatt French Quarter (even more convenient if you’re staying here!)  The creole eggs and rosemary biscuits are to die for.  A plus since they open at 6am.  A nice way to start your jam-packed day.

9:00am Take an alligator tour of the Louisiana Swamps and bayous. With more than 3 million acres of coastal wetlands surrounding the area of New Orleans, it’s not unlikely to see hundreds of these reptiles in their natural habitat on any given day. I’ll say that again: HUNDREDS.

12:00pm Have lunch at Willie Maes Scotch House for some world famous fried chicken- it’s worth the cab ride. No exaggeration, it’s some of the best food you’ll EVER have. Being only open until 5pm, make sure you head here for lunch.

2:00pm Stuff your face with beignets and hot cocoa from Cafe du Monde, the tastiest treat you’ll have in the French Quarter. World famous for it’s cafe ‘au lait, beignets, and the opportunity to people watch, you can’t come to New Orleans without a visit to Cafe du Monde. Being so popular, this place is always so super crowded!

flickr CC chuckyeager
3:00pm Go shopping and walk around the French quarter, check out all the architecture and monuments around the area. Just take it all in.  It’s a gorgeous area- I could have stayed there wandering for days.  Get some Zapp’s potato chips while you’re out exploring.
7:00pm Have dinner at The Royal House, where you can linger your taste buds over some fried alligator.

10:00pm Experience the thrill of Bourbon Street. Go to Lafitte’s Blacksmith Shop for some live jazz music, the oldest bar in America. Throw back a few hurricanes while weighing down your neck with beads. Have some fun and don’t hold back- it literally feels like Mardi Gras every night on Bourbon Street!

flickr CC heroiclife
Day 2

8:00am Get up early for breakfast at the Gumbo Pot, where you can have an authentic Creole meal first thing in the morning.   If it’s a sunny day, opt for outdoor seating. Try the Eggs Basin St., two poached eggs nestled atop cornbread, smothered with spicy red beans that are cooked with pork Andouille sausage and smoked ham and topped with Hollandaise sauce.

10:00am Go on a FREE (yes, free!) walking tour of the French quarter.  You’ll be fascinated by all the history and wish it was longer than 2 hours!
12:00pm Get some lunch at the Napoleon house for some muffulettas and po boys, two of New Orlean’s signature sandwiches.  Go with a friend and share them, or eat your heart out and feast on both yourself.

1:30pm Indulge in some gelato at La Divina Gelateria and hang around Jackson Square watching street performers.  You’ll be highly entertained.  Pay a few bucks to take a few unforgettable pictures with them in their crazy, grandiose costumes.

3:00pm Take the cable car to the Garden District, spend a few hours admiring the gorgeous houses (more like mansions) and super-detailed architecture. Or you could take the hop-on/hop off bus and spend an hour at the Mardi Gras World looking at the colorful floats they use year after year at the parade in addition to walking the Garden District.

6:00pm Have dinner at Coops Place, might be a long line, but I urge you to wait! I had red beans and rice with andouille sausage, it was delish!!!

8:00pm Take a haunted history walking tour.  You can find a company on the streets, they’re all good.  Don’t let the ghosts and ghouls scare you in New Orleans.  You’ll believe it’s all real, because it is…

10:00pm Head back out to bourbon street (if you dare!), but be sure to wake up in time for your flight the next morning!

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