This past weekend I visited a friend in New Orleans, Louisiana.
I’ve been wanting to travel more before school was over, so I figured … why not? I went for four days, and although I broke up with my significant other and got bitten by ants so badly that I could barely walk, it was one of the most fun long weekends I’ve had in a while. The scenery and the lack of open container laws definitely helped 😛
I don’t believe in making “travel guides” for places — you should just go see what you think is cool! — so I thought I’d take you on a photo tour instead.
My friend goes to Tulane University; this was the first time I’d set foot on a large college campus since my own college visits in high school. I go to a really small school, and it was really interesting getting a feel of what it was like to not know every one of your classmates on a first-name basis.
This is Tulane’s famous Mardi Gras bead tree. It’s a tradition to throw your beads on the tree after coming back from a parade, and it’s in “full bloom” year-round. In general, I was surprised to see how accepted it was to walk around with a full neck of beads. I assure you that I took full advantage of this opportunity to be as flashy as possible in public.
Makerspace is a really cool building in Tulane where there are 3D printers and other cool machines that my school totally doesn’t have. Oh, the things I could have 3D printed, had I been a student there …
Tulane is located right next to Loyola (where G-Eazy attended!). Apparently the two schools have a rivalry, and it’s a thing to steal these letters to do, uh, unspeakable things to them?
Not that I did, of course.
Streetcars are still the main mode of transportation in NOLA, which I still can’t get over. They do go at a somewhat slow pace, but the entire ride is super scenic.
Yank on this to get the streetcar to stop.
The St. Charles Line has been running since 1835! All the streetcars are still the same as they were back then. It was so cool riding in them — most historical things are stationary in museums, but I got to see the streetcars in action and really get a sense of what it felt like to be going places in the olden days.
The St. Charles streetcar passed by all these elegant antebellum mansions. I had a hard time keeping my hands and head inside the car at all times.
Canal Street had the prettiest red streetcars. I’m from Sarasota, which is a resort town and already super vibrant, but this street literally took my breath away.
Bourbon Street & French Quarter
French Quarter was my favorite part of NOLA, so we kept coming back to it day after day during my visit. Drinking in public is totally legal, so I got to enjoy one of French Quarter’s famous hand grenades while walking around (hand grenades are only available in five bars in New Orleans!)
There were a lot of cool stores in the Quarter, including this quirky place that sold yarn.
Tons of horse-drawn carriages were on the streets. I found out later that every driver is a licensed tour guide!
Bourbon Street is famous for its nightlife; seeing it during the day was also an experience.
That last one wasn’t sketchy or cringeworthy at all … ?
Jackson Square is where Louisiana became part of the United States in accordance with the Louisiana Purchase. There were so many entertainers there, but I didn’t get any pictures because I was too busy watching!
I stopped in countless galleries — my favorite New Orleans artist is Ally Burguieres, who sells her art on clothing items in her boutique, Cocoally, as well as through traditional mediums.
I bought four sweatshirts with her designs on them. No shame.
Hotel Monteleone / Carousel Piano Bar & Lounge
We dropped into the Hotel Monteleone to see the famous Carousel Piano Bar & Lounge — the bar is an actual indoor carousel that spins around super slowly (one rotation every fifteen minutes).
Apparently the hotel and the bar are haunted, but I didn’t see any ghosts when I was there — only lots and lots of very nicely-dressed drunk people, which is an interesting thing to observe on its own.
All the pretty houses
Something interesting I found out about myself during this visit: I really like New Orleans architecture. Almost every house in the French Quarter had these narrow balconies — at night, rowdy people will stand on them and throw beads at the flashers. I got hit in the eye by a strand, but it was all good because hey, free souvenirs! No clothing had to be removed for their acquisition. 😛
This trip was a welcome mental break from all of my schoolwork, and it was a lot of fun seeing my friend in the process. I’m definitely going back as soon as I get another chance. ♚