My boyfriend and I recently visiting New Orleans, and had a blast. This is the general schedule that we followed to help you get started in planning for your own vacation! Of course, mix it up to your liking, and maybe even hire a personal travel planner to take all the leg work out of it and create a customized travel itinerary for you.
Morning: Spend the morning walking down Magazine Street. There are plenty of places to grab some breakfast and coffee along the way. We stopped at French Truck Coffee and it was great! Then get ready for plenty of shopping and art galleries. There a lot of unique shops to explore.
* Another place I wanted to spend more time and would definitely go back to on another trip to New Orleans was The Shard Shop NOLA. We walked in just to check out the art work, and realized they held classes to make your own! They had a ton of interesting materials to use and would make awesome art for your home.
Lunch: We ate at Saj right on Magazine Street, and even though it wasn't traditional New Orleans cuisine (it is Mediterranean), it might have been my favorite meal. Get the lunch platter, and if you aren't too hungry, it is plenty to split between two people!
Afternoon: At the end of Magazine Street, you'll reach Audubon Park. Take a walk around the beautiful park heading north until you reach Tulane University where you can explore the historic campus.
Dinner: Make a reservation at Jacques-Imo's for some authentic New Orlean's food and atmosphere.
Evening: Take the St. Charles Street trolley back to the Canal Street area. Not only was it a blast, this was a great way to see the city. Part of the ride goes past huge, historic houses that we would not have seen otherwise.
Morning: Go the the World War 2 museum! I am not a huge history buff, but this museum was awesome. It was huge and had very modern and interactive exhibits. We spent almost 4 hours here, and easily could have spent double that.
Afternoon: We next took a relaxing ride on the Paddlewheeler Creole Queen Historic Mississippi River Cruise. The tour guide voiced over the speaker on our ride out to a battlefield discussing the history of the area. We then arrived at the battlefield where our tour guide told a fantastic story of the Battle of New Orleans. Again, not a huge history fan, but the way he told the story made it feel like I was there watching all the action! On the way back, Jazz music played over the speaker. We opted not to get the meal onboard. The food didn't look great and there are much better options back on land.
Dinner: You MUST get a Po Boy from Parkway Bakery and Tavern. This was by far the best Po Boy I have ever had. When we were there, there was a film crew from Food Network filming for a new show, so you know it must be good.
Evening: Skip Bourbon Street! If you want to take a walk down the street to see what it is like, fine. But after that, head to Frenchman Street, where the locals go! There are a bunch of bars with live music all the time. We even stopped into a free Drag show.
Morning: Make a trip to Cafe du Monde. This is definitely a tourist trap, but the beignets are so freaking worth it! Fried dough and powdery sugar goodness! Spend the morning exploring the French Quarters.
Lunch: Get out your fancy clothes for brunch at Arnaud's. Make sure to book ahead for this experience that includes a trio of jazz troubadours that take song requests at every table. For my meal, I got a crab cheesecake (right) and bread pudding (left).
Afternoon: Head to the Sazerac House for a free (yes, free!) tour. You'll learn all about the history of liquor in New Orleans and get to taste 3 cocktail samples! Be sure to make a reservation ahead of time for this as well.
Dinner: Cochon is another great southern restaurant that takes inspiration from New Orleans. The food was wonderful, but be prepared to pay a pretty penny for this one.