You took a bus tour of New Orleans? Why?
That’s what our friends asked when Hubby and I told them how we spent the day together a few weeks ago. You see, we live in the New Orleans area now, but we were born and raised in another part of Louisiana. Sure, we’ve spent many a weekend in the French Quarter and our school field trips included the Wax Museum on Conti Street (now closed), Jackson Square, Café Du Monde, and the French Market. But there’s still a lot we don’t know or haven’t seen. We wanted to explore the area with fresh eyes since this is now home for us and The Deuce (who BTW just took a school field trip to Café Du Monde and the French Market).
We purchased an Amazon Local Deal several months ago for a 3 hour New Orleans City Bus Tour by Southern Style Tours. The week of Spring Break, we realized the deal was about to expire. Since The Deuce was hanging out with my parents, we decided to have a day date and book the tour. And boy am I glad we did.
We met the tour bus at 8:30 a.m. on St. Charles Avenue with about 25 other excited folks. As expected, we were the only locals. John, our driver, took us through the French Quarter, Central Business District (CBD), Warehouse District, Marigny, and Treme. He was an awesome tour guide and maneuvered that bus through the narrow streets of the Quarter like a pro. We learned about the architecture, the facts, the rumors, and current events of these areas. I especially enjoyed seeing Musician’s Village which was built after Hurricane Katrina (we refer to it as “The Storm” here).
After about 2 hours on the bus, we stopped at City Park so we could stretch and look around. I had never been there before, but Hubby had.
With over 1300 acres, it’s one of the largest urban parks in the country. Some of the trees are over 600 years old. It also houses the New Orleans Museum of Art. Was difficult to capture everything in pics because the park is massive.
We then headed over to nearby St. Louis Cemetery No. 3 to explore some more. Because New Orleans is below sea level, the deceased are placed in above ground vaults. Established in 1854, this cemetery is still used today and has a waiting list.
|Photo credit: beingawordsmith.com|
The tour culminated in the more affluent parts of New Orleans, the Garden District and Uptown. I’ve always loved looking at the beautiful homes and mansions in those areas and enjoyed John’s fact-filled narration of their history. We passed by Millionaire’s Row where our Saints QB Drew Brees and other local prominent people live.
We even got a peek at the former and current homes of celebrities such as Nicolas Cage, John Goodman, Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie, and Sandra Bullock. As the tour came to an end during our ride down the historical parade route on St. Charles Avenue, I felt a true sense of pride for this beloved city. There’s no other place in the world like it.
Have you taken an official tour of your city?