The coolest thing happened on the morning of day four. As we were coming out of the hotel, we heard loud and festive music and saw a large crowd of people walking right down the middle of Canal Street. We had no idea what it all meant, but after the progression passed, we asked a police officer and he told us it was an Indian wedding.
So glad we were able to experience that!
Then we walked over to Huck Finn’s Cafe for a New Orleans-style breakfast. My daughter enjoyed a cup of chicory coffee and the Bayou Lafitte skillet – crawfish scrambled with eggs, onions, potatoes, and green peppers topped with etouffee sauce. I had the Honey Island pancakes with fresh fruit, not as adventurous, but still delicious.
After breakfast, we waited at a hotel across the street for our pre-arranged shuttle to Blaine Kern’s Mardi Gras World. (Free transportation from nearby hotels and pick-up points is included in the ticket price.)
As you walk into the building, you’re immediately surrounded with giant float figures. Admission includes a guided tour through the prop shop and float den, and there’s also plenty of time to look at everything on your own. Make sure you have a camera with you!
In the prop shop, they work on construction and restoring float figures. They glue together sections of styrofoam, carve them, layer them in papier mache and hardening plastic before finally painting them.
The artists work from a sketch, and the most important thing for them to get right is the scale.
After the tour, there is an area where you can try on Mardi Gras costumes and take some fun photos.
They also give you a piece of King Cake to try!
I don’t usually like gift shop souvenirs, but they had some really unique finds here. My daughter decided on this fun little sign!
It was early afternoon when we finished and we were still full from lunch, so you know what that means! A dip in the pool and a nap before we were picked up by another shuttle for a ride out to Lafitte, Louisiana and Airboat Adventures.
The airboats are noisy but they go really fast, and they’re fun!
The views were just spectacular, and we kept our eyes peeled for alligators as we rode along.
We saw tons of them! Yikes!
Seriously, that tour guide is nuts!
At one point we were just floating along and the next thing I knew our guide was holding a baby alligator in his hands. What the heck?!!! He just pulled it right out of the water to show us!
It was a really fun way to end the day! On our return trip, the shuttle driver was kind enough to drop us off at a restaurant we were really wanting to try: Mother’s!
I know they’re really famous for their ham, but I absolutely had to have a debris sandwich and it was sen-sational! Seriously phenomenal. We also tried red beans and rice for the very first time and oh my gosh, it’s delicious!
I’m definitely going to visit Mother’s every time I go to New Orleans from now on.
I Love New Orleans!
Next up: Day Five
Comments & Reviews
Terry (My Journey With Candida) says
I want to go to NEW ORLEANS!! Dang, we almost went too. But I wouldn’t have known all the fun things to do unless I read this post. How fun to come out of your motel and be in the middle of a street party.
I want to meet your guide – that is so awesome that he would pick up a baby gator! I would be totally scared to try that!
april yedinak says
I would have gained 30 lbs on that trip. Such great experiences. I have lived in the south most of my life and any swampy areas I have seen are always loaded with reptiles (gators!) and they smell pretty foul. Are the Louisiana bayous pungent, too?
Slap Dash Mom says
These photos made me want to visit New Orleans! I’ve never had the desire before but that baby alligator is SO cute.. and the photos make me think the town is rich in culture that I’ve never experienced. I used to have a pet gator, about the size of the one in the last photo. His name was Chomper. But, he got big.. and went to live in a lake. 🙁
Raw Thoughts and Feelings says
Wow..looks like you had such a fun time in N,o.
brian miller says
yikes…some of those floats are a bit scary…we used to have gators like that in florida…i would not get more and ten feet close to them though…and yum…..food looks amazing…that is what i miss from there….
Tiffany Pinnix says
Looks like so much fun, especially that airboat tour! I would love to visit New Orleans one day, and yes red beans & rice are delish!
Amber Edwards says
Dang I want to come touring with you!!! So many fun things to see and do in New Orleans!
These posts just make me happy. They remind me of our visit to a great American city.
wow it looks like you guys had a blast and got to see and visit so much fun stuff!
Wow, those statues are so cool. I love the colors and details on each one. Part of me wants to say F that that to the Alligators, I do think that’s pretty cool your guide scooped a baby right out of the water!
vianney rodriguez says
How fun! I have always wanted to go to NOLA, what a guide!
All of these awesome recaps of your trip to New Orleans (I have no idea how to spell it the way they actually say it 😉 ) makes me want to take a trip! My husband says the NBA All Star Games are there this year so we may have just found two good reasons!
Those are some unique figures in that Mardi Gras World place! I’ll have to plan a grip to NOLA soon, I’ve never been and you have me itching to go! Oh who am I kidding the King Cake tipped me over the edge 🙂
Heather @OurKidsMom says
Oh MY what a full day!!! Alligator huh? Not sure I would have the guts to touch one. Definitely a lot to see there! Thanks for sharing!
I have never been to New Orleans but the way you have described it I now really want to get there someday. I think I could do without the alligators-my first thought was-what if Momma Gator realized baby was on that boat!!
Wow, those photos are amazing… seems like a awesome trip. We haven’t been yet, but really want to go. I think we will wait till the kids are a bit older and don’t need daily naps, HA!
Jenny F says
OMG, best post of the day!! Gators, baubles, floats, king cake, and Red beans and rice; sounds like heaven! Thank you for sharing your adventures.
What a wonderful experience this must have been! I so want to go to NOLA some day! And that wedding was a great treat, I bet!
Matthew's Mom says
We now live within a day’s driving distance of New Orleans, so we have to go! This looks like a lot of fun.
Ashley Sears says
Nola is one of my favorite places to visit. My best friend from high school lives there so I was able to see a day parade during Mardi Gras a few years back, and then went to the French Quarter on a business awards trip. Let’s just say Canal Street and I have lots of memories!
New Orleans is one place I would love to visit one day. My husband has been there a couple of times, one time there was a hurricane coming and they had to rent a car and race home ahead of the storm – crazy experience for a Canadian!
I’m so jealous of your King Cake! 🙂 I haven’t been to New Orleans in a few years, and I would love to go back sometime in the near future. As someone who loves art, music, and history, I just love visiting this city.
Oh how fun!!! An Indian wedding procession is always so much fun and I’m sure they wouldn’t have minded if you jumped along in to dance with the bhaarath! (Bharaath is the wedding procession :>)
I haven’t been to New Orleans since I was a kid. I’m sure it is much different now. It would be nice to go again!
Kristen from The Road to Domestication says
Oh, I’ve always wanted to go to New Orleans! Looks like you had a wonderful time! Great pics!!!
mommy2jam (Adrianne) says
I always wanted to go to New Orleans and go to Mardi Gras celebration. I always say next year, maybe it will be this year. Looks like you had a blast with the amazing pictures.
Penelope (NYC Blogger) says
Wow, what a fun thing to experience, so colorful! And everything is amazing, I loved New Orleans. I don’t have a daughter to travel with though 🙂
Growing Up Madison says
OMGoodness I’m so jealous. I wanted to to be there although I’m not so sure about the alligators. Those I can stay away from. I totally agree that the tour guide is nuts. 🙂
Man, that looks like so much fun! The alligators would make me nervous though, lol.
Janet W. says
Wow lots to do in New Orleans! Looks like a great time! And yes, that tour guide is definitely nuts! Look at the size of those gators!!
Dawn Lopez says
WOW that is a lot of stuff to do in one day! That sounds awesome from start to finish! I’d love to go for a visit.. I went during Mardi Gras years ago.. but I didn’t get to take in much of what there was to do aside from all the festivities. Looks so fun!
Looks like so much fun. I love New Orleans too. Thanks for taking is along with you!!! 🙂
Jessica @FoundtheMarbles says
I am so envious. This looks like one heck of an awesome day!
My family and I really enjoyed Mardi Gras World. Looks like ya’ll did too!
Jo-Ann Brightman says
Your entire trip sounds wonderful – the Indian wedding the breakfast with the Bayou skillet, the floats and then the boat ride/excursion.
Colette S says
Now that is how you do a wedding celebration!
Glad you are enjoying our cajun country 🙂 This is definitely an adventure!
Such fun photos too!
I’m so jealous! New Orleans is on my bucket list. Love all the photos!!
Tina Ashburn says
I feel like I’m right there with you! Thanks so much for sharing this adventure!
Wow, those are some wild displays. Looks like tons of fun and SO much to do!!! Ah… one day!
Lisa M says
Looks like you had a full day. The food looked absolutely delicious.
Diane Sallans says
I really think I’m going to have to get to New Orleans – so much to do!
Amy Desrosiers says
Super cool! I love the baby alligators!
We just saw alligators on an air boat tour we went on. They’re crazy!!! I can’t believe he pulled a baby out of the water. He looks tiny!
Jennifer B says
Awesome pictures!!!!! The food looks delish of course, and I would love to see the Mardi Gras World too!
Helene Cohen Bludman says
I have never been to New Orleans but it is definitely a city I hope to visit some time. Your photos really captured the unique qualities of this amazing city!
Ms. A says
Talk about some fantastic photo ops… and yours are spectacular I might add!!!
Looks like you had a great time! I would like to see those alligators!
That looks like you had a good time. I actually think that baby alligator looks very cute. lol
Melanie a/k/a CrazyMom says
I love your trip.. and thanks for taking me along.. BOY you sure have a lot on your TO DO list.. boy the food looks amazing and how about that gator… chop chop… :-).. Thanks for sharing, can’t wait what you have planned for the next day ….
Every one needs to hold a baby alligator at least once. New Orleans has so much stuff to do!
Looks amazing!I would love to go to New Orleans one day, I dont think Id hold the alligator though 🙂
Cynthia L says
You are on a vacation that I have been dreaming about for a long time! We were lucky enough to experience holding a baby alligator in Florida, but I would do it again!
i think mardi gras world might give me nightmares. the food looks fantabulous tho!
Kate, aka guavalicious says
Basically jealous of EVERYTHING about this post. I love New Orleans. The prop museum is going on my must list for my next trip. And I want to hold a baby alligator too!
What a fun place to visit!!!
Mmmm…. I love red beans & rice.
There is a restaurant here in town that serves all Louisiana/Cajun style food and my oh my… it is delicious. As a matter of fact I ate there today and they make their own ham… best thing ever!
I just love all of your pictures! The wedding looked gorgeous and the food all looks so good!
Stacie @ The Divine Miss Mommy says
I have always wanted to go to Mardi Gras. It looks like so much fin. I have a lot of friends from there and they always invite me to come and join the party. I may just have to do that sooner rather than later.
I’ve always wanted to try a ride on those airboats!!!
Melinda Dunne says
I would love to visit New Orleans. Your pictures are fantastic and really bring things to life. It looks like it was a wonderful trip.
Dawn ~ Spatulas On Parade says
NOLA is famous for the food and parties. I would love to go there someday. Now the air boat ride is DEF something I would want to do.
Laurie - Steals and Deals for Kids says
Seriously? I am so jealous!! Your trip looks like it has been a lot of fun!!!
[email protected] says
I have always been dreaming about visiting New Orleans! maybe one day I will get to see it!
Tough Cookie Mommy says
I love the giant float figures, they are amazing! It seems from your photos that you are surrounded by so much culture and history when you visit this place. Your photos made me feel like I was right there visiting with you.
I have never been to New Orleans. Isn’t that crazy? I’ve always wanted to go and seeing your fun makes me want to go even more. Everything looks so amazing.
Is that your daughter holding the sign? She’s beautiful! 🙂
katherine bartlett says
This trip sounds fantastic! I haven’t done anything so scheduled in years!
Virginia @thatbaldchick says
I probably would have dropped my camera at the baby alligator suddenly appearing in the boat. Made your daughters sign more appropriate, though. LOL
omg that baby gator is Cu-uuute!!
Is that a cast iron skillet!! Love that!
Anita Breeze says
I would sure love to go to New Orleans. I would not have expected to see the Indian wedding! We have a huge Indian population here in Vancouver, so these are commonplace, just not something I associate with New Orleans. I love them, so colorful! Looks like a very cool place to visit.
sandra davis says
I have never been to New Orleans before, but would love to go.I would love to go to the Mardi Gras World but i dont think i would be real adventurous to go on airboat ride. I would be freaking from the gators. Looks like you had a great time!!!
Melissa @ Living A Frugal Life says
I have never been to New Orleans. Mardi Gras looks crazy!!!
I love your pictures! Makes me want to visit there myself 🙂 The Airboat looks like a great adventure!
Cheryl F. says
It’s been so many years since I’ve been to NOLA. I love the city!
Gorgeous pictures! I’ve started watching now The Originals, the new TV series following the Vampire Diaries and it also takes place in New Orleans. I guess these are kind of sources I can live vicariously from since I don’t think I’ll ever get to the US.
kay adeola says
Wow thank you for sharing,Being from the UK New Orleans is a place i would love to visit and it is on my list,seems amazing from all your pictures,also would love to see the alligators well maybe just the baby ones lol.
Deborah Wallin says
What a neat trip, and I agree, the tour guide was nuts to get that close to a big aligator.
WOW! I wanna go! Great pictures and wonderful memories.
Wow this is jammed packed with fun! you guys really did a lot everyday. All the food looks awesome. I am hungry now 🙂
looks like you’re having a blast! I would be terrified on the boat though with all those ‘gators! 😐
Giveaways 4 Mom says
These pictures are amazing. I have always wanted to go here. Maybe one day that dream will be able to come true.
Julie Wood says
WOW! How amazing! The sites the food will keep you busy and enthralled all day. I love the food that you had and your daughter is pretty. I would love to visit New Orleans for the places to see and all the places that I would love to eat at. You look like you are having a blast!
Whitney @ It's Gravy, Baby! says
It’s nice to see NOLA in a different light. I’ve only heard about Bourbon Street which is totally not my style, but the wildlife and the food are things I’m definitely into. Thanks for sharing so many photos!
Anne - Mommy Has to Work says
Wonderful pictures!! That head with one eye was kinda of creepy though!
Betty Manousos says
wow! what a memorable trip! what fun photos!
i love new orleans, too!
i’d love to go there…one day.
Dorothy Teel says
Looks to me like you and your daughter are enjoying New Orleans – I think that the tour of the workshop for the floats was also very interesting. I have never been to New Orleans but perhaps one day we will go.
Dana Rodriguez says
I want to go to NOLA so bad!That looks like so much fun..and the food?YUM!
Pretty sure where there’s a baby alligator there could be a momma mad that you picked him up, lol
We used to canoe in Florida with the alligators. It always made me a bit apprehensive, but now that I’ve been gone awhile, I know it’s something I wouldn’t do again.
The airboat, however, looks like a blast!!
The woman in the blue dress at the Indian wedding looks like she’s smiling at you for the picture. 🙂
You make New Orleans sound fabulous, it’s on our ‘to go to’ list here .
Courtney Pies says
You had a fun filled day four! I think it’s so awesome that you can go through and see the different floats! I love the sign your daughter got!
you captures some great moments. the indian wedding looks fun and colorful
OMG! next time I’m going with you! You’ve had such a wonderful time!
wow this looks like such an amazing time! loved looking at all the photos!
Jennifer @TheRebelChick says
Your series on NOLA is totally making me want to go!! I’m hoping to be able to make it next month!
Wow. What a trip! The food really looks wonderful. I love ham so I would have tried the ham. The boat trip is something I would want to do but most likely I would have been nervous, LOL. Cute little baby alligator. Your daughter is beautiful and I love that sign she found. Went right along with the boat trip.
It looks like you had a great time. I would love to dress in Mardi Gras Costumes.
Really a Baby alligator?? Is he nuts? I will pass on that part of your trip. I liked the part about the food. Interesting breakfast food with the crawfish scrambled eggs! And the Honey Island pancakes sound yummy.
Alissa Apel says
Some amazing experiences. I love those sculptures! I would have totally loved the Indian Wedding as well!
Becca - My Crazy Good Life says
SO fun!! I used to live in Louisiana and I miss it even more now!
That looks really cool. I would love to experience Nola someday, but maybe without the gators, lol.
How cool that y’all found a baby alligator?! New Orleans is definitely on my “to visit soon” list!!
OMG, how COOL! I’ve got to get back to New Orleans. I’m missing out. 🙂
Ashley T. says
I am really glad that you enjoyed your visit. I am really jealous, but the scenary was amazing and I like the vibe that new orleans puts off, that was really the first time you had red beans and rice!?! Wow, better now than never 🙂
Shannah @ Just Us Four says
I am so jealous. I really want to visit NOLA and see all the sights.
I’m sold! Book me a vacation there! It looks like a blast!
Ashley - Embracing Beauty says
That looks like such a fun trip….minus the alligators that is. I about peed my pants just looking at them. I hate them more than snakes and spiders!!
Dee @ Cocktails with Mom says
You are really teasing me with all these great posts. I’ve lived in all my life and have not visited some of the places you have. Glad you had a great time!
The airboat ride looks like a blast and I totally love the see you later…sign!
Debbie Welchert says
Sounds like you had a great time and the food looked fantastic. I don’t think I could eat crawfish though. I would have loved the air boat ride. Someday we might make it to New Orleans.
Paula @ Frosted Fingers says
Sounds like an amazing day. I love New Orleans and need to go down there with my husband some time. Airboat rides can be a ton of fun! They always seem to find the crazies to drive them! Some of those floats were scary!
Sandra (at) Coasahmom (dot) com says
I’ve always wanted to go to New Orleans! And these photo’s definitely make me want to go now.
Le-an Lacaba says
what a fun filled day! it looks so fun and entertaining.
Kathy B says
Looks like a fabulous day! New Orleans is on our travel someday list.
That Airboat tour is crazy!!!! I can’t believe the amount of gators you guys saw…UP CLOSE!! We did a tour in Florida earlier this year and while we saw one or two gators they weren’t near as big as these. How fun!
Thats so awesome… I need to plan a trip to New Orleans. The breakfast looked so yummy.
I continue to hope that someday my husband and I will be able to take in Mardi Gras and the beauty and charm of New Orleans.
Melissa M says
OMG, that tour guide is nuts! I would be afraid that he would get bit and then couldn’t take us back! I hope you tipped him well!
Lisa @ Oh Boy Oh Boy Oh Boy says
man you’re lucky you had a tour guide to finish that trip lol that guy is cray cray lol
Marcie W. says
I have been wanting to head to NOLA for years simply for the food alone, but seeing your adventures really gives me a ton of things to add to my someday itinerary.
I’ve been to Mother’s each time I’ve visited NOLA. It’s the best!
Oh wow, you all definitely had an exciting day 4. That is one of the things I love most about New Orleans, you never know what you are going to come across at any given moment.
Jennifer H says
Wow, you did a lot in one day! Sounds like you’re having fun. 🙂
Vanessa: thequeenofswag says
After seeing all your posts on New Orleans I feel like I went myself! It looks so amazing to visit.
So cool you got to see an Indian wedding! I love your daughters sign I so want it!
Seeing the prop shop and float den would be amazing! I would love to see how they make those floats!
Tricia @ Night owl mama says
what a great day 4 luv the parade and those floats are really neat
What a nutty tour guide, haha! He must be the gator whisperer or something. 😉
Rachel @ Following In My Shoes says
Ha! Yeah — take your camera but leave the kiddos outside. Those mardi gras pieces are scary!
I have been to Mothers, isn’t it amazing, it is melt in your mouth meat! mmmmm
Shell Feis says
A lot of those float things freak me out- but not quite as bad as those alligators! EEK!
Crystal @ Simply Being Mommy.com says
Wow, your tour guide sure didn’t have any fear, eh? Sounds like day 4 was quite the day.
noelle d says
I am SO GLAD you went to MOTHERS…
AH MAZ ING 🙂
we love it… and now i want to go to that museum
It looks you had a really adventurous time!