Chasing Davies: Girlfriend Getaway: New Orleans

November 30, 2016

Girlfriend Getaway: New Orleans

Girl Friends trip to New Orleans

A girlfriend getaway with some of my best gal pals from college was long overdue (babies, jobs and differing schedules... you know. I think the last one was eons ago to St. Maarten!).  So when we finally made plans for our long overdue getaway to New Orleans, it was a baby miracle that it actually happened - sorta.  We had one friend not able to make it, and the other ended up having to come late, and I just continued my Sept-Oct travel bender.

We decided on New Orleans because I had never been (and it's just totally one of those places you HAVE to go), and my other two friends had only been once for work/conference reasons so didn't totally experience it from a vacation standpoint.  

We had first narrowed down our vacation window - and based on all our schedules, we had an avail weekend at the end of Oct or early Nov (back when we were planning this in the summer).  In my research, New Orleans was also one of the best cities to visist in the fall.  It was actually still pretty warm (so just imagining NOLA in the summer makes me feel swampy), so only light layers were needed for evening time.

We went the weekend before Halloween, and the whole city was celebrating. Halloween is very big in NOLA - which did make hotels a bit more expensive and scarce than usual, but we got a great AirBnB that seemed reasonable and in a great location.  We stayed on the edge of the French Quarter, so within walking distance to Beale Street and all the great bars/restaurants, but it was a bit off the beaten path so quiet.

We stayed four days/four nights - and towards the end, I just didn't ever want to eat or drink again. LOL! But We had great weather, great girl time, amazing food and loved experiencing the culture of NOLA.  Here is our 4 day trip and recommendations if you are heading there yourself!

Day One

Upon landing, still on the runway, we were looking up our first stop - lunch.  We hit up St. James Cheese Company and it might have been my most favorite meal of the entire trip.  We split a bottle of rose, grilled cheese, salad and cheese plate as we sat on the patio and learned how to relax.

After lunch, we checked into our AirBnB to drop our bags and hit the town to explore and walk. I was immediately taken by all the brightly colored buildings, walls and decor. And I was in love with all the odd and random things... how else do you describe a trophy car with a deer head on the front?  

We had drinks, more food and more walking.  And after a full day of all that - we went to bed and were fast asleep by 9 PM!  NINE PEEEE EMMMMM. And we didn't wake up until 8:45am.  That's a lot of sleep, and my idea of a vacation.

 Day Two

Feeling FULLY rested (oh how I long...), we Uber'd our way to the Bywater for brunch at Elizabeth's, which came recommended alllll over the internet.

After brunch, we walked around the area - stumpled upon the rusty rainbow bridge that we immediately climed and took us over railroad tracks to a very nice garden and jogging/walking path.  We walked around a bit, stumbling upon a beautiful view of NOLA on the other side of the river. It was a really fun surprise.

After climbing back over the bridge, we explored the Bywater neighborhood more. The houses were all so unique and interesting. We stopped at "The Country Club" embedded in a neighborhood and converted from an old mansion. The amazing patio immediately drew us in, and kept up there awhile...  I highly recommend the Club Pimms Cup, which was completly refreshing. Our thrid friend, Katie, met us there from the airport.  So we hung out more before Uber'ing back to the AirBnB for her to drop her bags off.

After walking around the French Quarter/Beale Street some, we freshened up and headed to our first fancy diner as a party of three.  Another place that the entire internet has buzzed about was Commanders Palace - a James Beard Most Outstanding Restaurant in the Garden District.  Famous chef, Emeril Lagasse, got his start at this resturant and it's had a steady stream of famous and notable chefs since. 

Besides being DELISH, the restuarant is just gorgeous - inside and out, so if you can go by in the day time/light, it's a great place to take photos at/in.  We sat in the courtyard - which we walked through the kitch to get to and that was thrilling!.  I definately recommend this place for the total package (environment and food).

Day Three

After sleeping in a bit, getting ready and grabbing coffee, we really started day three (Saturday) with a food tour.  This was awesome, and I only wish we had done this earlier in our trip because it's a great way to get a lay for the land and find out where you might want to back to (though most of the recommendations were places we had already gone - like Commanders Palace!).  

In this tour, we got a little bit of everything and went to some places we might not have otherwise.  It was fun not to think about where we should go next and just follow the leader for 3 hours. We also learned a lot and heard little back stories about all the places we visisted!

 After the food tour....feeling pretty full.  We decided to explore a new area - and walk a lot. But before walking, we jumped on the Street Car to get to Magazine Street to explore new shops.  And of course, because it's New Orleans, we couldn't help but eat in this new area, too. 

 Cavan was set in a charming old mansion, with slightly different decor themes for each room inside. Because it was so nice outside (the theme of the trip), we sat out on the front patio, and it was lovely. We weren't super starving for a huge meal, but to accompany our wine, we had a variety of appetizers. Cavan had a series of toasts that all looked amazing.  We got the roasted tomato toast with goat cheese and bacon marmalade, along with some other things. It was so good.

After dinner, we headed back to our area, stopped at a little store for some wine and chocolate cake and then headed back to our AirBnB studio to watch a Halloween movie.  I know... we're wild. ;) It was a wonderful way to spend our last night in NOLA, all together...

Day Four

Before ending our trip (with afternoon flights), we couldn't leave the city without Beignets.  I can't believe we waited the whole trip before getting some, but it was worth the wait!  We hit up Cafe Du Monde, a hugely popular spot for Beignets.  Every day when we passed it walking around, the line was out the door, but the line always seemed to moved fast. We got there a bit earlier Sunday morning (9am), and didn't have to wait in line!

My only disappointment in the trip is that we didn't find more shopping. A lot of the shops were pretty touristy and had the same things over and over. I'm sure there are some great shops that we just never found/knew about!  BUT, before grabbing our luggage to head to the airport, we did stumple upon a super cute boutique with a gold and pink back shelf that immediately caught my eye.  Nadine Blake has cute little trinkets, gifts, books, small home decor pieces, art, accessories, etc! A little bit of everything!

Have you been to NOLA?  Curious your favorite things to do (or where you can shop!?!?)!  Also, curious your favorite girl trip cities and spots?  We're hoping we are better about taking these trips!

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