New Orleans vacation in a house of ill-repute during the Cosmic Convergence Festival

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Travelers: Bethany & Joe

Budget: Budget ($500-$1000)

Where did you go? We went to New Orleans, Louisiana. Bethany's parents spent their first anniversary there, so we had already heard about how wonderful it is. Mix in our love of food, music, and history, and Giorgio Tsoukalos and the Intergalactic Krewe of Chewbacchus' Cosmic Convergence Festival, and it was a recipe for awesomeness.

b&b details

What did you do? We stayed in the Banana Courtyard Bed and Breakfast, which is in an historic house of ill-repute. They served fresh pastries from local bakeries with homemade jams and preserves, with coffee, tea, juice, and fruit.

nirvana indian cuisine

On the first day, we walked five miles across town to have lunch at Nirvana Indian Cuisine (you can't beat a $10 vegetarian-friendly buffet!), and had our first experience (of three) eating beignets at Cafe du Monde.

cafe du monde

drinks in new orleans

We spent nearly every day walking around the city, eating wherever we felt like, especially the 24 hour dive bar on the same block as the B&B. We devoted a day to the National World War II Museum, and visited a glassmaking school in our quest for the perfect Christmas ornament.

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We attended free concerts at St. Louis Cathedral on the weeknights, and finally went to the Cosmic Convergence Festival to help prevent the end of the world on December 21st.

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What's your best travel advice for other offbeat honeymooners? Order the guide book. Thanks to the guide, we were able to find vegetarian-friendly restaurants, the December off-season "Papa Noel" specials, and a ton of free or cheap things to do on our trip.

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Also, since we booked with a travel agent, we got even more discounts on the Bed and Breakfast, so that it came out to about half of what it was supposed to cost.

Avoid the tourist trap restaurants and bars, and ask the cab drivers and staff where they like to eat.

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What are your New Orleans vacation travel tips?

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  1. My partner and I went to New Orleans in March. We stayed at India House hostel – highly recommended! We're in our early 30s but still prefer to stay in hostels when we travel for reasons of budget and atmosphere. We actually like hostels more than b&bs and hotels.

    Also, if you go to New Orleans the Trashy Diva flagship stores on Magazine Street are a must!

    1 agrees
    • We stayed right around the corner from the trashy diva on magazine st, I bought souvenir shoes and sweaters there – love it!

  2. My husband and I went to new Orleans for our honeymoon too, we rented an airbnb apartment and were in town for 311 day and the Irish channel st Patrick's day parade. It's a fantastic place to wander around and we did much the same with asking locals where to eat 🙂

  3. This holiday looks like it was awesome, but honestly, I'm just here to say how much I love Joe's taste in shirts!

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  4. Ooh, I love that I can contribute to this one! I lived in New Orleans for 2.5 years.
    I have a few things, in no particular order.

    The food in the French Quarter is mediocre at many locations. There are several exceptions to this (Cafe Envie comes to mind with LAYERS of breakfast in a go cup, yum!) but walking into a random restaurant will probably be disappointing. Do Your Research, is the bottom line here for food. Drinks are generally fine.

    Make a trip to the Marigny at least once. It's the neighborhood to the east-ish of the Quarter and a good walk or short taxi ride. I'd suggest doing it at night, and walking down Frenchmen street. You'll hear the live music drifting out of the bars and you can walk down the street until you find a sound you like; then go in and listen or dance.

    There is a festival or two or more in the area every weekend in "festival season". So check the festival listings to see what's going on the when you are going to be there.

    I wouldn't bring kids to the French Quarter for more than a day or so. Not because it's obscene (except Bourbon street, which has strip clubs and sex shops and stuff), just because after you've walked Decatur street and Jackson square and seen the the houses and shops, the rest is nightlife. But other areas of town are fun too, and the WW2 museum is renowned.

    I've found most of the popular attractions in the city to be worthwhile so get out there! It's a fun city, and definitely worth at LEAST one visit.

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