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Most people know New Orleans for its parties, particularly the orgiastic
indulgence of Mardi Gras or the year-round bacchanal on Bourbon
Street. But if crowds and alcohol poisoning aren't your thing, don't
despair. Aficionados of historic architecture will exult in the crowded
French Quarter and grandiose Garden District, while those with a
hankering to take history home will adore the antique shops of Royal
Street. New Orleans has a tendency to bring folks out in a rash of
Lestatesque gothic brooding - have a wander among the city's ornate aboveground
cemeteries or shed a tear for Jeff Buckley on a ferry cruise of the
Mississippi River, then forget your troubles with some crawfish, cool
jazz and a mint julep.
Aquarium of the Americas
This is a world-class aquarium with state-of-the-art exhibits, allowing visitors
young and old to experience underwater nature first hand. Visitors immerse
themselves in the major marine and submarine habitats of North and South
America, including the Caribbean Sea and the Amazon Rainforest. The aquarium
also features thousands of fish, reptiles and birds native to these habitats.
The newest addition is the Pacific Coast Adventure, which brings the cold
Pacific Northwest to the deep South.
A visit to this flea/farmer's market, going strong since 1812, makes for a day
of fun. Visitors to the farmer's market find items ranging from fresh produce
and fruit to gator-on-a-stick. The flea market offers souvenirs, such as
T-shirts, hats, jewelry, belts, crafts and sunglasses. You can also find great
spices, mixes and food products. Though there are plenty of shops that offer
cheap knickknacks, you can always find something funky and unique here.
Contemporary Arts Center
This modern art exhibit center, located in a renovated warehouse, is at the
center of the New Orleans' art community. It offers a series of seasonally
rotating exhibitions, classes, lectures, performances, screenings and concerts
every year. The exhibits waver between traditional and alternative art forms
with works from both local and national artists. The center also houses the
Cybercafe, which serves gourmet coffees and specialty wines as well as a variety
of pastries and sandwiches.
New Orleans Historic Voodoo Museum
There are Voodoo walking-tours featuring artifacts and sacred objects related to
the realm of "voodoo." Learn everything you wanted to know about this spiritual
practice and its history in the Crescent City. There are also guided swamp,
plantation and cemetery tours. Be sure to stop by the gift shop to pick-up a
voodoo doll, love potion or T-shirt.