Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Vacation. Memphis. New Orleans 2011

Many months ago we were thinking about where we would like to go on vacation.  We decided to drive to our destination so our only requirement was that it was only a 12 hour or less drive.  So with that in mind we decided on New Orleans.  In the last few weeks before vacation we decided it would be best to make a pit stop in Memphis to split the drive in half and to check out Beale street as well. 

We stayed at the Westin which is right across from the FedEx Forum where the Grizzlies play.  I am not an NBA fan but still kind of cool.  Beale street was really fun!  We ate at Rendezvous and had possibly the best brisket I have ever had.  Yummy!!  We also got to see the Peabody which is a famous hotel where they have ducks that walk through the lobby.  We didn't see the ducks but it was still a very cool building.  We also got to hear a ton of good music!  Some of these bands should already be famous!  We also got to see the Coyote Ugly bar.  I am a fan of the movie so I had to see it! It was actually very similar because they were singing and dancing on the bar.  haha

New Orleans:

What a place!  I had a whole list of things that we wanted to see and do while we were there so we hit it hard when we first got there.  Our first night we decided to eat at Hardrock because neither of us are seafood eaters which is the majority of food in New Orleans.  We were still able to find places to eat though!  We had a good meal and then went to Cafe Du Monde for beignets.  This also on the top list to do while in New Orleans.  It was yummy! Then we walked along the river for a little bit and hit some decorations stores on the way back to the hotel.  We stayed at the Omni Royal Crescent which was one block from Canal street and 2 blocks from the French Quarter.  Our hotel was cool because it had the old architecture style and a real New Orleans feel to it.  There was a roof top hot tub and lounge area that was really cool at night!  We went up there and took some pictures and enjoyed some time in the hot tub.  The views were awesome as well! 

Thursday we got up early and went to the Audobon Aquarium.  That was also really cool and we saw some really fun animals.  There was an Otter that Justin decided if Louie were another animal he would be an Otter. :-)  Then we walked down Bourbon street and found a place to eat for lunch.  We ate at Arnaud's Remoulade and it was tasty also! We had mufaletta's and Po Boy sandwiches!  Then we took the street car all the way from Canal street through New Orleans!  The Garden district was so beautiful!!!  So many homes that would be dream homes!  This is where some of the celebrities that live in New Orleans live.  It rained on and off while we were there but we managed to avoid it for the most part.  Then we went back to the hotel for a break then back out again to take the Ferry over the Mississippi.  Justin loved this because we got to see alot of industrial type boats.  Definitely a guy thing!  :-)
Then we went back and got dressed up to go to a nice dinner.  We ate at Cafe Giovanni which was amazing!  The meatballs were as big as my hand!  They were huge!  That was my favorite meal!  Then we went to Harrah's Casino to try our luck at the slots.  No luck! :-)  I had to have some Pinkberry frozen yogurt while I was there, which did not disappoint!  Then we walked the river again and had a romantic evening. :-)  Such a good time with my hubby! 

Friday morning we had scheduled to go on an airboat tour through the swamp where we would hopefully see some gators!  We sure did see them!  Unfortunately I had started feeling congested and started to feel sick on Thursday night so Friday morning it was in full swing, but I made it through and still had fun! 

The tour guide had such a crazy swamp man accent!  They feed the gators marshmallows!  So crazy! They love them!  Oddly enough they were kind of cute! We didn't see any giant gators but they said they usually only come out at night.  We went back to the hotel and I got some much needed medicine.  Later that day we went down to Bourbon street which was our first time to make it down there to check out the night life.  It was crazy dirty and stinky! We would be walking along and get a big smell of sewer or trash.  We went to a few places and had the signature New Orleans drink and had a Lucky Dog from the hot dog vendor which was also on my list to do.  Yummy hot dog!  We also saw several odd people who were doing things for tips.  There was a girl posed in the middle of the street with a bike and dressed in white and had her face painted and a trumpet.  Also there was a man dressed in gold with his face painted gold who would stand perfectly still.  We only spent a few hours walking around and then had enough and went back to the hotel.  It was fun!  Just really dirty! I think Canal street was more my style. :-)  With all the shops! 

The next day we were suppose to stay another night but decided to make the 12 hour drive on Saturday rather than Sunday so we could have a day to relax before work began again.  Overall we had a great vacation, but there is something to be said about having your own home and all of the comforts of your home including our bed! 

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