There is so much to do in New Orleans during Mardi Gras, well basically anytime, but it is always more fun to go to New Orleans during Mardi Gras. So read on to find out my Mardi Gras bucketlist, beyond the obvious activities during Mardi Gras (such as the parade or drinking).
(Courtesy of Travel Channel)
- Watch the Mardi Gras parade from a balcony.
- Go to a crawfish boil in someone's backyard. It is so different than eating in a restaurant. Locals use a Crawfish app to find the best prices.
- Take a ride on the streetcar. The streetcar is a beautiful, yet historic, means of transportation.
- Go on foodie road trips. Middendorf's fried catfish, Tan Dinh Vietnamese food, Mosca's Italian dishes, Drago in Metairie for their charbroiled oysters, and a Cajun country truck stop for boudin and cracklins...these are just some of the places to go on your foodie trip.
- Catch the Soul Rebels on a Tuesday night. Make sure to stay for entire set.
- Eat the city's staples...these include Creole and Cajun cuisine, oysters at Casamento's, muffuletta from Central Grocery, Po-Boys from R & O, fried chicken at Willie Mae's, panéed rabbit from Brigtsen's, and BBQ shrimp from Pascal's Manale.
- Make sure you get in line early to get lunch at Galatoire's on a Friday afternoon.
- See a live tradition jazz performance, hopefully at Preservation Hall.
- Listen to local legends, like Irma Thomas, sing.
- Visit Pat O'Brien's dueling piano bar.
- Get a sno-ball, with condensed cream, from Hansen's.
- Listen to the church choir at St. Louis Cathedral.
- Do the tourist-y things. Eat beignet at Cafe du Monde, ride the carousel in City Park, watch the street dancers in Jackson Square, take a horse and buggy tour, and try on carnival masks at souvenir shops.
- Visit one of the historic cemeteries, such as St. Louis Cemetery No. 1.
- Get a coveted ticket to the secretive MOMs ball. Make sure your costume is up to par so you don't get turned away.
If you can't go during Mardi Gras, see if you can line up your visit with any of the events below.
- Attend the entirety of Jazz Fest. This is quite the accomplishment that many don't get around to. Make sure to at least one item from every food vendor at Jazz Fest.
- Enjoy Bayou Boogaloo from a canoe on Bayou St. John...just don't rock the boat.
- Watch the St. Patrick's Day parade from a balcony.
- Watch the World Oyster Eating Championship.