Make The Best Of Your New Orleans Mardi Gras TravelFebruary 5, 2014
Mardi Gras in New Orleans is probably the only place in the world you can get away with a wild purple, green and gold outfit. This year, the fun-filled annual celebration kicks off in mid-February and comes to a spectacular ending on Fat Tuesday, March 4. And it’s not too late to join the party! Book your flight, throw on your dancing shoes, and make the best of your New Orleans Mardi Gras celebration.
Watch New Orleans Parades
Parade season lasts for six weeks in New Orleans, ending with a million people in downtown NOLA on Fat Tuesday. Each krewe in New Orleans has their own parade and theme, so you can go to several parades and have a unique experience at each one. The entire city joins in on the celebration and the routes not only follow major streets, but also snake into small neighborhoods for local flavor. The parade experience can be a great place to snatch brightly colored beads thrown from floats, tokens from the krewe and toys. Make sure to get a parade schedule that has routes indicated so you know what streets will be closed off and where to go for the best viewing spot.
If you only have one day to dedicate to parades and are really looking for a party, make sure to go out on Fat Tuesday. Millions of people crowd the streets in costume and party the night away. The highlight of Mardi Gras is certainly the bacchanalian revelry that occurs on Fat Tuesday. Be sure to eat plenty of food and drink lots of water to stay full and hydrated throughout your celebration.
Discover Top Southern Eats
New Orleans is a foodie’s paradise due to its incredible regional cuisine. During Mardi Gras, King cakes are frequently part of the menu, but restaurants have far more to offer than these seasonal favorites. Many restaurants focus on Creole food, which is an amazing combination of French, Cajun and Native American influences in the region. Fresh seafood from the Gulf, such as crawfish, and a wide array of local produce are also available.
Antoine’s is one of the best known and has been setting the bar high since 1840. Oysters Rockefeller was originally created here and it’s just one of the many delectable appetizers. Another acclaimed New Orleans restaurant is Cochon. Located in a renovated warehouse, Cochon is chef Stephen Stryjewski’s homage to the Cajun food of his youth. Choose from delicious dishes like smoked beef brisket with horseradish, apple and potato salad, Louisiana cochon (pork) with turnips, cabbage, pickled peaches and cracklings or rabbit and dumplings.
For simpler, faster takeaway food, you won’t be disappointed either. One bite of a shrimp po’ boy from Johnny’s Po’ Boys in the French Quarter is a heavenly experience. A traditional cup of coffee (chicory) and a delightful light fluffy sweet beignet from Café DuMonde is the perfect way to start the day. In this city, your stomach is guaranteed satisfaction.
Don’t Skip The Late Night
A trip to New Orleans during Mardi Gras is not complete without indulging in some of the famous night life. As the home of jazz and blues, New Orleans offers so many clubs like the House of Blues and The Bombay Club, where you can hear both local and world famous jazz musicians every night of the week. On almost every corner, you can hear amazingly good music drifting out into the street, so let your ears direct your feet to some of the finest live music in the country.
Another top choice is Lafitte’s Blacksmith Shop Bar. It’s one of the oldest in New Orleans and is rumored to be the oldest bar location in the United States. Named after the pirate Jean Lafitte, who played a role in the 1812 war in New Orleans, the bar is a place that was frequented by pirates, renegades and smugglers. Lighted with gas lighting and full of atmosphere, Lafitte’s is located in the French Quarter and loads of fun.
Traveling away from home can sometimes be uncomfortable and being out of your normal routine can trigger feelings of motion sickness. This should not prevent you from enjoying your classic Mardi Gras itinerary. Instead, try using Motioneaze, an all-natural product. Dab a couple of drops behind your ears about 10 minutes before you start your activities or any time you are feeling a little queasy and you are good to go. You can purchase Motioneaze at www.Motioneaze.com or call to find local retailers.
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