Top 10 New Orleans Shopping Tips
Written by: Catalogs.com Editorial Staff
January 11, 2012
Filed Under Shop
Contributed by Paul Seaburn, Catalogs.com Top 10 Guru
New Orleans is back and not just for Mardi Gras and Super Bowls!
When it comes to shopping, the Big Easy is big on selection and easy to get around. From great food to colorful masks to voodoo dolls for keeping your traveling partners away from your food and masks, New Orleans is a shoppers dream. Here’s ten New Orleans shopping tips to help you let the good ‘dimes’ roll!
The sweet sugary pecan treats know as pralines are everywhere in New Orleans. These sinfully delicious candies are perfect for munching while you wander around. Just be careful not to buy too big a bag of them…you won’t b able to stop eating them until every last one is gone! To avoid putting on extra pounds until you get home, save buying pralines by the box until the last day of your trip.
9. Fresh Produce
The Crescent City Farmers Market is actually three producer-only farmers markets held weekly year-round at locations on Broadway, Orleans and Magazine Street. Local farmers and vendors offer dairy products and cheeses, meat and fish, fresh bakery and homemade pastas and seasonal fruits and vegetables. It’s a great place for a do-it-yourself lunch or dinner.
If you’d like to sample raw oysters before investing in a dozen or so, visit Le Bon Temps Roule Bar & Sandwich on Magazine Street on Fridays for free oysters. Wash them down with a beer from its large selection or samples some of the other New Orleans menu items while listening to the music of local bands.
Glassblowing is an art and a science and a lot of fun to watch. The New Orleans GlassWorks & Printmaking Studio offers free daily demonstrations by artists creating glassware, metal art and prints. You can also take a walk-in course and make your own glass paperweight before visiting the GlassWorks’ Garage Sale for bargain glass sculptures, prints and etchings.
Café du Monde on Decatur Street in the French Quarter has been serving the New Orleans powdered sugar donuts called beignets since 1862. They’re traditionally eaten with a hot cup of café au lait – coffee and chicory mixed half and half with warm milk. Coffee and beignet mix is available in the gift store to make your own at home.
5. The Riverwalk
If you’re looking one place to buy everything New Orleans, head for the Riverwalk Marketplace on Poydras Street overlooking the mighty Mississippi River. The site of the 1984 Louisiana Worlds’ Fair is now a shopping center for both local merchants and national chains. It also has great eateries and musical performers and is across the street from Harrah’s Casino.
Whether you’re a believer or just curious, Marie Laveau’s House of Voodoo is an interesting shop for all things voodoo. Located on Bourbon Street, the store is full of books, charms, voodoo dolls, talismans, candles, incense and all other things pertaining to the ancient spiritual practice. This is not a place for casting spells or placing hexes, just a fun and enlightening enter for this uniquely New Orleans custom.
Magazine Street runs through the Uptown and Garden District of New Orleans and is named for the warehouses or ‘magazins’ that once lined it. Today it’s the place for antique stores, art galleries, craft shops and boutiques. After a day of shopping for decorations or furniture, stay on Magazine Street for great music and fine restaurants.
2. Mardi Gras
Mardi Gras and its parades happen only once-a-year, but you can get a taste of the celebration at Haydel’s bakery on Jefferson Highway. The traditional King Cakes and other treats are baked fresh daily and Haydel’s also stocks Mardi Gras beads and souvenirs.
Wearing masks, feathers and colorful costumes are part of the fun of Mardi Gras in New Orleans. Beautiful hand-crafted masks made of ceramics, porcelain and paper mache can be found year-round at shops like Masks & Make Believe on Poydras Street, where you’ll also find hats, costumes and other accessories for your very own parade.