We arrived in Louisiana yesterday for a short 2-night stay. We were not sure if we just wanted to rest between two driving days or spend the day exploring New Orleans. John and I had been to New Orleans once before but it was a long time ago. This morning we decided we would drive into the city and spend a few hours walking around. One of the things we wanted to do was drive across Lake Pontchartrain on the causeway. The bridge that crosses the lake is 24 miles long and is the longest bridge over water in the world. It has two spans, one south and one north. The first span was completed in 1956 and the second in 1969. The spans are supported by over 9000 pilings There is a $3 toll for cars going south but not on the return north. This was a great way to get from our campground up near the I-12 down to the city. Once you are on the bridge it is clear sailing for 24 miles with beautiful water views all around you. We arrived in New Orleans and started looking for a place to park. Saint Patrick’s Day combined with spring break meant the area was very busy. We decided to park in one of the pay lots near Cafe Beignet. We were shocked when we went to the kiosk to pay for parking. It is $18 for 2-hours and $22 for 3-hours. We opted for 3 hours and laughed at the fact that we just paid the same price to park the car for 3-hours as we did to pay for our full hook-up site for the RV for 2 nights. Our first order of business was to get some beignets. We had not done this on our first trip years ago. We made our way to Cafe Dumond but the line was well over an hour long. We decided to go back to Cafe Beignet where the line was about 1/10th as long. John secured a small table on the sidewalk and waited with Gizmo while I waited in line for 30+ minutes. The beignets were amazing and tasted very similar to the “fried dough” you get a New England country fair. We were covered with powdered sugar by the time we finished them.
We decided today was a good day to give the dog stroller we had purchased at a campground lawn sale a trial run. Gizmo would have had no problem walking the streets but it was so crowded it would be difficult to keep him from getting stepped on. Gizmo took right to the stroller and enjoyed being up where everyone could see him and make of him. John enjoyed the fact that it helped to clear a path on the sidewalk for us to walk through. Gizmo got a lot of attention from the crowds on Bourbon Street. We had about 2-hours to take in the sites and people watch. I enjoyed looking at the old buildings and wrought iron railings as well as people watching. The crowds were already celebrating Saint Patrick’s Day by noon, and everyone in the streets was decked out in green. We enjoyed going into the various shops and we had no problem bringing Gizmo in with us, we just asked before entering.
We had several restaurants tell us they had “dog friendly” dining as we passed by. We finished off the afternoon with a green beer from Huge Ass beers. We were tired, and full, by the time we left the city. New Orleans is one of those places that can cause sensory overload, in a good way.