This page is dedicated to just the daily life that you will discover as you explore New Orleans. Maybe not while on a tour or while enjoying an attraction but just simple things you will see as you walk the streets of New Orleans and the French Quarter. It could be as simple as a snowball stand or riders climbing aboard a streetcar or it could be as breath taking as the fog that rises from the river, creeps over the levee and envelopes the French Quarter.
Steamboat Natchez Sunset Cruise
While walking the dogs along the Mississippi River levee in Algiers one July evening I took this picture. This is the steamboat Natchez on her sunset cruise paddling up the Mississippi river. The Natchez leaves the French Quarter, travels down the river to the Chalmette - Algiers ferry crossing and then turns around and sails up river returning to the French Quarter. If you have never been on the river and seen New Orleans from a sailors perspective I would recommend this excursion. In this picture the river appears not to have much of a current. That is because it was taken in July when the river was 6ft at the Carrolton gauge which is considered low but later in the year it may actually drop to one or two feet on the Carrolton gauge. Flood stage is 17ft and the record high was 21.27ft in 1922.
New Orleans Oysters
Patrick unloading oysters in the French Quarter where oysters aren’t just oysters—they’re a way of life. Your visit to New Orleans will not be complete if you don’t experience our oysters. You can eat oysters ice cold on the half shell, char-grilled and sizzling in garlic butter, as Oysters Rockefeller, fried to golden perfection or on an overstuffed Po-Boy sandwich. Although oysters have been eaten for thousands of years in was in New Orleans where Oyster Rockefeller and Char Grilled oysters originated. The first in 1899 at Antoine's restaurant and the latter at Draggo’s Restaurant in 1993. Oysters are safe to eat all year round, but are best during autumn, winter and early spring. Many locals will tell you that during the Christmas season oysters are at their peak. Being the perfect size, firm, and tasting like clean ocean water. And Yes, research shows that raw oysters are “rich in rare amino acids that trigger increased levels of sex hormones.”
St Louis Cathedral in Jackson Square from the Canal St ferry
I took this picture one December evening on my way home from work, while crossing the Mississippi River on the Canal Street ferry. When I boarded the ferry there was not a hint fog on the river. During my brief several minute crossing to Algiers Point the fog began to rise off of the river. Just minutes later by the time the ferry approached the Algiers terminal the fog had thickened and I was able to take this shot of the St Louis Cathedral. Moments later the St Louis Cathedral was completely shrouded in fog. Although dangerous for travel river fog can be quite picturesque as it forms on the river and then slowly rises and creeps over the levee into the French Quarter. As it fills the Quarter it brings an eerie stillness to the air and muffles the sounds. With the passing mule drawn carriages it takes you back in time to the Vieux Carre in the mid 1800s. If you hope to experience the ghostly affects of the fog on the French Quarter you need to keep in mind that fog season in New Orleans is usually in the months of December, January, and February.
Carnival Cruise Ship Dream navigates the foggy Mississippi RIver
I happened to be walking the dogs at the levee one cold dreary January afternoon when slowly the fog began to rise off of the river. As the fog thickened the horn conversation between the ships moving up and down the river increased tenfold. Listening to a distinct ship horn make its way down the river I waited in anticipation for the appearance of the Carnival Cruise Ship Dream. My wait was a short one and it did not disappoint me. I was able to take this picture as I watched the Carnival Cruise Ship Dream appear as she navigated through the fog on her voyage down the Mississippi River towards the Gulf of Mexico. I thought to myself tomorrow those passengers would wake up to much nicer weather in the Gulf of Mexico and then the following day in the beautiful Caribbean. Fog season in New Orleans is usually in the months of December, January, and February. .
Board the New Orleans Streetcar at Canal Street Ferry terminal
Passengers board the Riverfront streetcar bound for excitement at every stop! Stops along the Riverfront streetcar line include the Riverwalk Market Place(shopping and eating) * Canal Street ferry terminal(cross the Mississippi River) * Aquarium of the Americas(lots of neat fish n things)* IMAX theatre(great movie) * Waldenburg Park(picnics, relaxing, and river view) * Moonwalk and Café’ Du Monde(coffee and beignets) * New Orleans French Market(shopping and flee market) * The Shops at Canal Place(more shopping and eating) * Cruise Ship Terminal * The Ernest N. Morial Convention Center
I recommend that you take a Caribbean cruise from New Orleans
The cruise ship Norwegian Spirit sailing down the Mississippi River past my neighborhood as she heads for the Gulf of Mexico and ultimately the Western Caribbean. If you are planning to take a cruise there is no better place to start then in New Orleans. Norwegian Cruise Lines offers a 7 day Western Caribbean cruise out of New Orleans. Carnival Cruise Lines offers 4, 5 and 7 day Caribbean cruises aboard the cruise ship Triumph. When you come plan to arrive several days early and make New Orleans your first port of call. Stay in a French Quarter Hotel and explore New Orleans and the French Quarter.
French Quarter Street Vendors
This is a street vendor selling refreshing cold drinks, water, and ice cream sandwiches on Royal and St Louis Street. While you are exploring the French Quarter do not worry about getting thirsty or hungry. Besides and abundant selection of restaurants in the French Quarter there are also many convenience stores scattered through out the neighborhood and it's usually not difficult to find a friendly street vendor selling cold drinks, hot dogs, as well as other snacks. At times it can get down right hot in New Orleans. So be a big spender and treat the family to some ice cream and cold drinks.
Proclaiming the Gospel of Jesus Christ
On any given day you will find evangelist Keith Sam with his bible, a bull horn and wearing an umbrella hat proclaiming the good news of the gospel. “That in Jesus Christ, God was reconciling the world to himself by not counting their sins against them”. This evangelist has been on the corner of Decatur Street and Canal Street for over thirty years. No doubt many thousands of people have heard his message.
Enjoy some New Orleans boiled crabs
Whether you buy your crabs or catch them yourself, nothing beats a New Orleans crab boil. A crab boil is part of every day life in New Orleans just as a barbeque is in other parts of the country. The ingredients for a perfect crab boil are friends and family, Louisiana Blue Crabs, Zatarain’s (pronounced ZAT-uh-rans) crab boil, corn, onions, whole potatoes, garlic, and sausage. Everyone has their own personal recipe for boiling crabs and there are numerous recipes available on the web so I will not give you my two cents worth here. But I will tell you that in New Orleans they tend to be a little hotter and tastier so when in New Orleans do as the New Orleanians do and find yourself some boiled crabs and enjoy. Nothing beats the sweet taste of a perfectly boiled crab like these my son just cooked up for us.
Crabbing around New Orleans
Crabbing:Nothing beats a Louisiana crab boil and the New Orleans area offers an abundance of places for recreational crabbing that you can get to with or without a boat. We go crabbing year round usually when the urge for a crab boil hits but we find that the crabs run better in the summer and a moving tide is a must. When we go crabbing we just pack up the truck with about a dozen drop nets, turkey necks for bait, a sharp sturdy knife for cutting the bait, a hamper to put the crabs in and plenty of snacks and drinks. We go to Lafitte, Chalmette, Delacroix Isle, Port Sulphur just to name a few places. When we find what looks like the right spot we bait up our nets and start crabbing. The limit you can catch is 12 dozen a person and on many trips we have come home with 8 – 14 dozen crabs. Next time you visit New Orleans be sure to order yourself some boiled crabs.
Crawfishing Louisiana style
Crawfishing: although its not as popular as in years past it is still enjoyed by many locals. It usually starts in early February. We get our nets and bait and head out to our favorite ditch or swamp. For bait we use melt it's from the lining of a cow's stomach...very bloody, spongy, rubbery, stinky stuff. The blood and stench attract crawfish like moths to a flame. Each time you pick a net up, you empty all those crawfish out into the bushel basket, you step on the melt in the center of the net so it oozes blood, you muddy the water with a stick, and you set the net back down in the cloudy spot. When done you head home for a delicious crawfish boil.
Treat yourself to a New Orleans Style Snoball * Seasonal
If you are vacationing in New Orleans during the hotter months (May – Oct) don’t leave without experiencing a New Orleans style snow-ball. There is nothing as refreshing as sitting in the shade enjoying a snowball on a hot New Orleans day. Whether you are a child or an adult this is a treat you don’t want to miss. Snow-balls, not to be confused with snow-cones, differ from other icy treats because they are made with shaved ice. They are sweet, light and melt in your mouth and come in dozens of flavors. You can also get just about any topping you want added, including ice cream, whipped cream, condensed milk and chocolate syrup. If you are in the French Quarter or CBD you will find this New Orleans Snoball stand in Spanish Plaza which is on the riverfront between the Aquarium of the Americas and the Riverwalk Market Place. He also sells smoothees, ice cream, shakes and malts.