Friday, November 1, 2013

New Orleans French Quarter

We decided to take one last run downtown and visit the French Quarter. We expected crowds, good times and good food. We were not disappointed. We took the shuttle from the campground into the city for lunch and some shopping. Besides the usual assortment of shops in the French Quarter there is a large outdoor featuring food, clothes and souvenirs. The Riverwalk is also open and provides upscale shopping and browsing. Wandering along the Mississippi River, listening to the street musicians provides for a relaxing and enjoyable afternoon in The Big Easy.

The New Orleans Riverwalk and Marketplace is scheduled to open completely in 2014. It's current configuration has many shops and restaurants but the new Riverwalk will also include upscale stores like Neiman Marcus and many outlet stores.  It's location alongside the Mississippi River makes it one of the premier shopping and dining locations.

Ted's Frostop diner on Calhoun St. in New Orleans. This giant mug of root beer is notable in that it sat atop this huge steel pole for many years until Hurricane Katrina knocked it off it's perch. Amazingly, the huge mug fell upside down on the very pole it was setting on. It remained upside down until 2011 when the owner's finally righted it and placed it back atop the steel pole. The diner is know for it's unique ambiance and great food.  As a diner, it's claim to fame is it's hamburger fare.

Mercedes-Benz Superdome, home of NFL's New Orleans Saints, Wrestlemania, Final Four Basketball and many other venues. The stadium was also used as shelter after Hurricane Katrina.

A small taste of the New Orleans skyline, with the Superdome at the right.

No trip to the downtown area would be complete without a stroll down famous Bourbon Street. Crowded almost any time of the day or night, it features many unique eateries, bars and strip clubs.

It's party time almost anytime on Bourbon Street, unless you're driving a car.

Once away from the downtown area, we wanted to see the site of the Battle of New Orleans. There is a memorial, museum and much of the area where this pivotal battle during the War of 1812 took place.

The Battle of New Orleans is widely regarded as the greatest American land victory of the war. 

For non history buffs, the Battle of New Orleans took place on January 8, 1815 and was the final battle in the War of 1812.  The British were trying to capture New Orleans and reclaim the vast territory granted by the Louisiana Purchase. Casualties for the British exceeded 2,000 while the Americans lost less than 100. Shortly after losing the Battle, the British felt the Louisiana campaign would be too costly and ordered all their troops to withdraw. The Treaty of Ghent was finally ratified in mid February 1815 effectively ending the War.

Unfortunately, we were not able to tour the facility due to the government shutdown.

This was such a beautiful drive, I included this picture. These are Pecan trees lining Hwy 46 near Chalmette. 

As a footnote, St. Bernard State Park is a great place to stay when visiting New Orleans. It is under used yet has very nice facilities and is close in to New Orleans.
This young lady was found sunning by a fountain off the French Quarter.

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