First trip to New Orleans

nancyjane_gardener(Zone 8ish North of San Francisco in the "real" wine country)January 20, 2012

I would love to visit some gardens! Any suggestions? We will be going either late march or the 1st of June.

Suggestions for other things would be great too!

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natal(Louisiana 8b)

Unless you enjoy heat and humidity time your visit for late March instead of June. I'd recommend the Botanical Gardens in City Park and Longue Vue.

Botanical Gardens

Longue Vue House & Gardens

lots of info on things to do in NO

    Bookmark   January 21, 2012 at 10:13AM
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louisianagal(z7bMS)

I second the suggestion to visit the City Park Botanical Gardens and Longue Vue. I'm from N.O. and whenever we visit we always enjoy the aquarium, the French Qtr with Farmers Market, the zoo. The zoo is very nice with lots of very old oaks. Try to take a ride on the streetcar down St Charles Avenue. I believe there may be some French Qtr tours where you can visit some of the hidden courtyards. I would definitely recommend that. Late March would be better than June as far as lower humidity and comfortable temps.

    Bookmark   January 21, 2012 at 1:58PM
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nancyjane_gardener(Zone 8ish North of San Francisco in the "real" wine country)

Thank you! I'm very excited! Nancy

    Bookmark   January 21, 2012 at 6:53PM
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ogrose_tx

I visited in June - louisianagal is so right, June is miserable. I was on business so didn't have a choice, but enjoyed my off time for sure, what a fun city! The streetcar ride out to the garden district was my favorite!

You'll have fun no matter what time you go!

    Bookmark   January 22, 2012 at 1:30PM
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seamommy(7bTX)

See the gardens in the daytime but take at least one evening and take a riverboat dinner cruise. It was a beautiful ride and the city was breathtaking.

    Bookmark   January 22, 2012 at 4:42PM
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ogrose_tx

Oh, now I want to go back to N.O.!! Being alone I made sure I was back to my hotel well before dark, not a place to be after dark...

    Bookmark   January 22, 2012 at 8:44PM
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nancyjane_gardener(Zone 8ish North of San Francisco in the "real" wine country)

We have a great VRBO apt just off Magazine St in the garden district! Beautiful place and just a couple of blocks from everything!
Thanks for all your suggestions! Nancy

    Bookmark   January 28, 2012 at 9:01PM
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natal(Louisiana 8b)

What month did you decide on?

    Bookmark   January 29, 2012 at 10:53AM
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nancyjane_gardener(Zone 8ish North of San Francisco in the "real" wine country)

Late March. My spring break from school. NT

    Bookmark   January 29, 2012 at 7:56PM
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river_crossroads z8b Central Louisiana

Hi Nancy Jane,

New Orleans Spring Fiesta, March 23-April 1, 2012, is an annual fund raiser when people open their homes for touring, different houses each year, large, interesting houses with pretty gardens. Usually punch and cookies served in the garden of each house.

Biggest gardens: Uptown Home Tour (20th century), Garden District Home Tour (mid to late 19th century), French Quarter Home Tour II starting on Esplanade (early 19 century).

Here is a link that might be useful: Spring Fiesta 2012

    Bookmark   January 31, 2012 at 12:57AM
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natal(Louisiana 8b)

Wow River, Nancy couldn't have timed her visit any better! I would love to do one of those home tours.

    Bookmark   January 31, 2012 at 9:54AM
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river_crossroads z8b Central Louisiana

Natal, I love those tours. Another group has a tour in early December every year so I have been to various tours over the years. A large house in New Orleans that is on tour always has an interesting garden to enjoy so I really have a good time. Have fun, Nancy!

    Bookmark   February 1, 2012 at 8:19AM
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nancyjane_gardener(Zone 8ish North of San Francisco in the "real" wine country)

Akkk! We're leaving the 24th!
I kind of have DH talked into checking out one of the tours!
sound lovely! You guys are so helpful! Thank you! Nancy

    Bookmark   February 3, 2012 at 1:36AM
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plantmaven(8b/9a TX)

One of my favorite places. Have a great time!

After the hurricane I have no idea what it looks like today. But I so enjoyed visiting the Battle of New Orleans cemetery in Chalmette. I love old cemeteries, you might not.
My DH built a major chain of drug stores, so I was able to travel with him. I enjoyed cemeteries every city we went to.

    Bookmark   February 12, 2012 at 7:42PM
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nancyjane_gardener(Zone 8ish North of San Francisco in the "real" wine country)

Does anyone know what I might expect weatherwise March 17-24th?Does it stay warm in the evenings? Is it usually in the 80s around that time?Does it rain much?
I'm in CA and we're having summer-like weather this week. Nancy

    Bookmark   February 23, 2012 at 8:35PM
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river_crossroads z8b Central Louisiana

Sorry, Nancy, I am too far north to know about exact temps but where I live noon is sometimes 20 degrees higher than night. This is a crazy year - spring may be like summer. It is a wet climate so pack all your rain gear. After a torrential rain it is beautiful and sunny and clear. Are you already tan from being out in the California sun? For traveling in the summer I need to carry a straw hat that rolls up and fits inside my shoulder bag (inside my rollup rain hat) & a loose jacket to protect my neck and arms from sunburn. Loose sleeves and body in case it is hot. Then the air conditioning is always on subzero. Coupled with extremely changeable weather in Louisiana, it makes layers a good idea.

Swann's Way by Proust - the grandmother who lives in the French countryside habitually stays outside in her garden in heavy rain to enjoy the drama of nature - she would not miss it for the world. Very changeable here - never a dull moment with our weather!

Weather forecast for NOLA = New Orleans, LA

    Bookmark   February 26, 2012 at 3:17PM
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natal(Louisiana 8b)

River gave you great advice! Hopefully we won't be experiencing summer temps the end of March, but the climate is changing so all bets are off.

    Bookmark   February 26, 2012 at 4:43PM
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nancyjane_gardener(Zone 8ish North of San Francisco in the "real" wine country)

Well, first of all, I'm Swiss and Irish, so you can forget the tan!LOL It was 80* last week and 29* this morning! I think it got up to the mid-50s today!
I am a big fan of hats, though and thanks for the suggestions! I have a great lightweight waterproof jacket, but will need to get a new fold up hat! Nancy

    Bookmark   February 27, 2012 at 8:50PM
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NHBabs(4b-5aNH)

Have a good time! I worked on and off in NOLA for about 6 months. I loved taking the St Charles streetcar through the garden district and would have loved to have had time to get off and wander around, but I had to get back to work. I also enjoyed taking the ferries at the end Canal St. The Algiers ferry just goes across the river and back, but the Gretna ferry travels upriver about a mile. I loved doing this, and best if all it was free. We went by a wide range of places, from working docks to cruise ships, barges hauling cargo, an abandoned historic power plant with hurricane damage, storage tanks, and a warehouse for Mardi Gras floats( which could be glimpsed through the open doors.) It was a refreshing and much less touristy view of NOLA and the river. The aquarium was nice, and I enjoyed wandering around the French Quarter, peaking into gardens and admiring the architecture during the day, but like ogrose, I didn't do much after dark (unfortunately) since for a single woman, it didn't feel too safe. Great food, but it took me a bit to find healthy great food - much of NOLA's tourist cuisine has high fat and salt levels. I would have loved to have caught some music, but my coworkers' tastes seemed to run more to rock than jazz.

I found the weather quite variable also. In the fall, the day might start around freezing but be in the 70's midday. It often was windy, and rain came and went, so the suggestions for a raincoat and layers are excellent. Also take comfortable and water resistant footwear as you will do some walking and the streets aren't always dry or clean.

    Bookmark   March 5, 2012 at 11:18AM
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nancyjane_gardener(Zone 8ish North of San Francisco in the "real" wine country)

Thanks again for more info! I have a little notebook that it is going into.
We travel with 2 other people, so there will never be anyone going out alone.
Also, we have a well stocked apt, so we'll be cooking in about every other day (I get a little ill on vaca-only food!) I usually have to detox with salads & veges from time to time.
The weather so far looks pretty nice! I'm getting excited! Nancy

    Bookmark   March 6, 2012 at 8:32PM
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natal(Louisiana 8b)

Be sure to eat some crawfish. They're in season now. I ate my first boiled crawfish in the French Quarter many years ago.

    Bookmark   March 6, 2012 at 9:52PM
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nancyjane_gardener(Zone 8ish North of San Francisco in the "real" wine country)

Natal- I'll try them, but I WON'T suck the brains out! LOLOL Nancy

    Bookmark   March 8, 2012 at 8:57PM
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ogrose_tx

I hope you'll post a followup following your trip. We're interested in what interested you!

    Bookmark   March 10, 2012 at 4:30PM
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natal(Louisiana 8b)

Nancy, never heard it put that way, lol. Dh just left to pick up 7 pounds of boiled crawfish. I WILL be sucking the heads. ;)

    Bookmark   March 10, 2012 at 6:38PM
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nancyjane_gardener(Zone 8ish North of San Francisco in the "real" wine country)

I'm so excited! We arrive on St Patricks Day , but there is some Italian festival going on that week also, just a couple of blocks from where we are staying.
Ogrose, I'll try to give an update from time to time. Sorry, I don't know how to post pics or video, but I might figure it out once I get back!
Natal, no sucking heads for me! (oooh, that sounds really BAD!!!!)

    Bookmark   March 10, 2012 at 9:02PM
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nancyjane_gardener(Zone 8ish North of San Francisco in the "real" wine country)

Thank you guys for all of your help!
We're taking off early Sat morning!
I'm soooo excited! Nancy

    Bookmark   March 15, 2012 at 8:37PM
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ogrose_tx

Have a great time, Nancy, I know you will! We want to hear all the details when you get back...

    Bookmark   March 15, 2012 at 8:55PM
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nancyjane_gardener(Zone 8ish North of San Francisco in the "real" wine country)

Well, thank you all for your suggestions! Unfortunately, my BIL had a bulging disk (he always seems to have SOME sort of ailment!)and many things got put on the back burner! We were also a few miles out of the main area (Magazine and Octavia)and missed out on a lot of things!
We did see the Indian "parade", the usual stuff in the French Quarter, a dinner cruise, a regular tour (which I find very informational) and also a drive through some of the "Plantations" on a day when it was raining quite a bit.
Had a great night of 3.17" of rain along with a GREAT night of booming thunder all night long!
Hopefully the next time will be better!

    Bookmark   March 24, 2012 at 9:55PM
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natal(Louisiana 8b)

I'm sorry Mother Nature intervened. We had bad storms here on Wednesday. My rain gauge recorded 7 inches. The storm moved a bit east and then sat over the New Orleans area on Thursday.

What restaurants did you try?

    Bookmark   March 24, 2012 at 10:08PM
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