NOLA for Bachelors & Bachelorettes and Everyone in Between
New Orleans is full of too many options for groups & so you find yourself on Bourbon St. one too many times, dazed by drinks sold in novelty cups designed make you look like an idiot ready to get bamboozled by "I bet I can tell you where you got your shoes..." ("on my feet". always. then duck into the first bar or shop you see.)
But we have so much to offer for those willing to break away & take a 10 minute Uber from the one square mile confines of the French Quarter. There's breweries and ax throwing, there's drag and burlesque, there's the chance to try your hand at pole dancing or circus arts- there's opportunities to have one experience outside the box that is going to be the "thing" you talk about with your group for years to come. If you know, you know- so, without further delay (links for things to do, see & drink in pink, food in green)...
Take a food tour or bar crawl with me! Bon Moment offers off-the-beaten-path experiences & group discounts for those who want to see NOLA like a local! Hear live music and taste classic cocktails on a Bar Crawl of Frenchmen Street. Looking for a daytime adventure? For lovers of street art, colorful houses, beer & meat, try my Bywater tour. For small biz shopping, big mansions and history buffs, get a great taste NOLA on the Garden District tour.
Catch drag, burlesque, cabaret, theater and comedy nights at the distinctly queer and subversive Allways Lounge. Grab some delicious dinner beforehand at Arabella Casa di Pasta or Kebab and end the night with after-hours karaoke and colorful locals at Kajun's Pub- this ain't the cheesy sing-alongs on Bourbon St. The Country Club in Bywater also has Saturday drag brunch and bring your swimsuit because $20 gives you all day "membership" to their lush secret garden backyard pool area (cabana boy not included).
Looking for more obscure things to do for a night out? Fling some axes at Stumpy's Hatchet House before leaving downtown. Book a table at N7 or grab tacos at Galaxie then head to Sea Cave for an adults-only 10pm happy hour in the arcade bar. After some Street Fighter, choose from the extensive beer collection across the street at Junction, see if there's a mod DJ spinning 45s in the backyard at The Domino or catch a live show of anything from blues to funk to Cumbia to sea shanties at Saturn Bar.
Start early & self-guide a brewery stroll uptown. Tchoupitoulas (chop-i-too-luss) street between Race St and Napoleon Ave boasts Urban South, Miel, NOLA Brewery and Port Orleans, as well as outdoor bar Tchop Yard and two delicious outdoor dining options for tacos & cocktails inspired by Mexico- El Cucuy and Barracuda. Check the calendar at landmark music venue Tipitina's or divey neighborhood stalwart Le Bon Temps Roule (Soul Rebels brass band every Thursday is a must-do) for live music at night.
If the hard stuff is more your speed, there's another path uptown... Start early evening with a tour of Happy Raptor rum distillery- it includes a guided rum tasting and lots of fun history. Book in advance to ensure a table at Laguna Madre - the 5 course tasting menu is unpretentious exploration of modern Mexican cuisine that is incredibly special. After dinner, head to Barrel Proof - they carry lots of the brown stuff for barrel heads. If you're a fan of European and Belgian beers, Avenue Pub is a mecca for fans of craft suds. Or a couple of lazy pints outside at Courtyard Brewery is a great way to wrap up the night with some interesting brews. And don't miss your chance to try a scoop of the off-the-wall, downright pornographic, ice cream offerings of Rahm Haus, their cold case is located inside the brewery.
Book a private class with Awakenings Pole & Aerial studio. Excellent teachers make sure your party feels comfortable and has a ton of fun and lots of laughs learning the basics of pole dancing, sexy chair and floor work and/or aerial tricks. Live your fantasy- be it in the club or in the circus- while you have an absolute blast with your group!
Grab some blue bikes and eat/drink your way through Mid City. The Lafitte Greenway gives you access to a part of town most tourists snooze on, but locals love. You can also rent kayaks & paddleboards for a little water fun on Bayou St. John before stuffing yourselves stupid. Just a stone's throw from each other, here's some of the restaurants you should wear your stretchy pants for: Neyow's, Katies, Liuzza's, Mandina's, Blue Oak BBQ, Piece of Meat, Parkway Po-Boys, Toups Meatery, Vessel, Angelo Brocato's, Bevi or Clessi's. Finish the night at Wrong Iron, or my fave, Bayou Beer Garden and Bayou Wine Garden, joined by a shared backyard dining area, it's always bustling with a diverse crowd and options for everyone.