A Week in New Orleans


After a semester of exploring Central Europe, I was excited to be back on a plane. This time, however, it was to a much different location: the Deep South. My little sister is starting her first year at Loyola University in New Orleans this fall so I headed to Louisiana to help her move. My older sister and her roommate flew down from Washington D.C. to meet up with us for a girls weekend in the Big Easy. 

It was my first time in New Orleans and I got to experience it in prime heat, humidity, and hurricane season. Despite the muggy weather, it’s a vibrant city full of character and culture. Everywhere we went we were greeted with southern hospitality, delicious soul food, and upbeat music. 


It was early evening when we all met up at the airport and caught a ride to our hotel in the Garden District. After settling in, we ventured out to explore the night life and find some food. We ended up at Dat Dog, a local favorite hot dog joint with amazing veggie dogs! 

The next morning, we started the day with some chicory coffee and a walk around the Garden District. I loved seeing all of the historic, southern style houses that lined the streets. Along the way, we stopped in the public library, which is housed in an old mansion. They were also having a used book sale in the carriage house out back so we spent a while searching through the $1 book bins. 

Later in the day we met up with a family friend who lives an hour outside of the city. She gave us a city tour and then took us to lunch at a great hole-in-the wall place called Sneaky Pickle. After lunch we experiences our first New Orleans sudden downpour, so we escaped to the movies for the rest of the afternoon. We ended the day at the infamous Café du Monde, where we met up with one of my friends from study abroad who goes to Tulane University. 

On our second day, I was on the hunt for vegan beignets. I found some at the cutest little vegan brunch place called Seed. Even the non-vegans said they tasted like the real thing! Afterwards, it was time for college shopping, which meant an exciting afternoon at the local Target.


Once that was out of the way, we were ready from some actual local culture, so we set out to find some Po’boys - a traditional Louisiana sandwich - and jazz. We stumbled upon a cute little street market before finding some vegan Po’boys. We ended the night with drinks at a restaurant featuring live music. 


The next day was the official Loyola move in day! We all helped my little sister get her stuff into her dorm and I, of course, was in charge of organizing. In the afternoon, we met up with my Prague kávarna bud and he took us to his favorite cafe: Rue De La Course. It was a beautiful café in a refurbished bank building and reminded me of being back in Europe.

Our last full day in New Orleans was filled with Loyola family orientation, but we ended the trip with an incredible dinner at Carmo. Everything on the menu looked amazing so we ordered a bunch of dishes and ate family style.


Afterwards, I said goodbye to my sisters and Prague friend and hopped on a plane back West. I can’t say I’ll miss the humidity, but I will miss the incredible vibe of New Orleans. 

travelBrelynn Hess