• Travel

New Orleans, Bourbon Street – US Travel Diary 11

After one day of almost rest for Christmas, New Orleans came back to live on 26th December and we were ready to take on as much of the lively city as possible.

Sticking with Boxing Day tradition we hit up the sales! Outlet mall RiverWalk was only a short 20 minute walk away from our hotel and had plenty of shops to help me burn through that Christmas cash. After a quick wander around the packed out mall I found the Coach store and blew my entire budget, so we made a quick exit to find a cheaper way to spend the rest of the day.

Riverwalk New Orleans

Deciding to steer clear of the tourist heavy French Quarter until later on in the evening we made our way along the river in the opposite direction taking in some of New Orleans less well trodden streets. Walking in the humidity we worked up quite the appetite so stopped to grab a bite at vegan cafe, Seed. The food was fresh, creative and well worth the walk. Enjoying a slow stroll  back to our hotel through The Garden District it was great to see the more residential side of the city and the mix of poverty, creativity and opulence that live side by side just outside the city centre.

Seed New Orleans Vegan

Garden City New Orleans

Being total workaholics Pablo and I both had a bunch of admin to catch up on after taking two days off over the festive period, so we took our laptops up to The Ace Hotel rooftop bar and enjoyed a beer and views of the city as we typed away.

Ace Hotel New Orleans

Soon the sun was setting so we went back to our room and prepared ourselves for a night on Bourbon Street.

Sunset New Orleans

The bar lined street was much livelier than the day before with music blaring from each bar and various types of street performers all competing for our attention. Many of the bars were crowded with wasted party goes who swayed and hollered along to the various live artists. Despite my love of live music the vibe kind of reminded me of the strip on a European party island which, while fun, isn’t really my scene.

Bourbon Street New Orleans

After a checking out what was on offer, we joined the tamer crowd at Legends Square for some beer and live Jazz. Now feeling a little more settled in our surroundings we aimed to head onto famed Preservation Hall but as we turned the corner we were greeted with a queue that spiralled around the block. Deciding to asses the situation from the Boondocks themed bar across the street, we gabbed another beer and were kept far too entertained by a lady who had a cat on a lead perched on the bar. Waiting around 45 minutes it was obvious that the Preservation Hall line was not going to be moving anytime soon, so we came up with a plan B.

Legends Plaza New Orleans

New Orleans Frenchman Market

Emma from Adventures of a London Kiwi had given me a bunch of great recommendations for New Orleans, so we took her advice and headed towards The Spotted Cat to get our live jazz fix. Leaving the buzz of the French Quarter behind we were met with rows of completely unique houses that were like something straight out of a fairytale.

Soon the quiet was taken over by the sound of brass welcoming us into the Frenchman Market area. Though we could not get into The Spotted Cat as people  spilled out onto the street from the tiny bar, we did find a great little art market to potter round.

Frenchman Market Art New Orleans

Art Market New Orleans

Each of the bars we passed were as busy at the next, but soon we found ourselves joining in a spontaneous street party where a bunch of musicians had literally stopped traffic with their catchy tunes.

New Orleans at night

Having danced in the streets, and enjoyed a few beers, New Orleans’ laid back spirit was beginning to grow on me with each hour we spent in the city.


  1. I’m just sad you didn’t get into The Spotted Cat! Next time!

    1. Emma says:

      Me too it looked incredible! It’s top of my list for my next visit

  2. Sounds like a Boxing Day well spent!

  3. I’m glad it grew on you! I missed out on The Garden District when I visited, definitely want to check it out next time around.

    1. Emma says:

      It was pretty residential but still some awesome little hidden gems

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