New Orleans Attractions

Top Ten Honeymoon Destinations to Choose From

If you are about to get married and are having a hard time deciding where to go on your honeymoon then you are not alone. A wedding adds plenty of stress to your life and trying to plan your honeymoon around all the other things you have going on can be difficult. If you are currently unsure of where you and your future spouse would like to go here are the top ten honeymoon destinations for those living in the United States.

1. Hawaii – A Hawaiian honeymoon is one of the most desired and romantic destinations for those who are newly wed. Maui is normally the island of choice with its lush tropical hillsides, long white sand beaches, cloud covered mountains, and world class accommodations that cater to newlyweds. It is truly a honeymoon that will create a lifetime of memories.

2. Mexico – A Mexican honeymoon is a great choice as a destination. There are a number of world class resorts to choose from with a large majority of them being all inclusive. The people are warm and friendly and if you’re on a budget you can’t beat the prices. Plus it is easy to get there with many daily flights to choose from.

3. The Caribbean – A trip to a Caribbean island, or multiple islands if you choose a honeymoon cruise, is a truly romantic experience. The great thing about a Caribbean honeymoon is the sheer number of islands you can choose from, each with its own distinct cultural attractions.

4. Florida – The sunshine state has a little something for everyone. From long stretches of sandy beaches, to the night life of big cities and everything in between a Florida honeymoon is a truly memorable experience. Even Walt Disney World in Orlando has packages for the more adventurous honeymooners.

5. Key West – Technically this secluded little island is in the state of Florida but it deserves a mention all its own. With Anti-bellum homes that have been turned into cozy bed and breakfasts and its New Orleans atmosphere Key West is a well kept honeymoon destination secret.

6. Las Vegas – There is nothing quite like a honeymoon in Sin City. With many world class hotels to choose from your every want and whim will be catered to. And no matter the time of day or night there is always something to do, whether it’s eating at a five star restaurant, seeing a show on the strip, dancing the night away, or relaxing pool side.

7. California – The golden state offers many honeymoon choices. There are large cities such as San Diego, San Francisco, and Los Angeles that have first rate hotels and restaurants. You can spend time at the beach or in rustic mountain towns. And for a truly romantic experience the Napa Valley with its vineyards and small town atmosphere.

8. The U.S. Virgin Islands – With beautiful white sand beaches and warm tropical waters these three islands are true romantic paradise. And since they are a U.S. territory you don’t need a passport. In fact any of the three islands, St. Thomas, St. Croix, or St. John is the perfect destination for a white sand wedding and honeymoon.

9. Puerto Rico – Another US territory in the Caribbean Puerto Rico offers all manner of amenities to the honeymooning couple. Scuba diving, snorkeling, marling fishing, and many other activities for water enthusiasts abound. Then there is Rincon Beach and Resort, a 4 star resort known for its honeymoon packages.

10. New York City and Niagara Falls – The city that never sleeps and the great falls 500 miles to its north are both known as great honeymoon destinations. The city itself offers every amenity you can imagine with 5 star hotels and dining, Broadway shows, and shopping. A honeymoon in the Big Apple is hard to beat.

While you don’t have to go to one of these top ten honeymoon destinations be assured that you can’t go wrong if you do decide to visit anyone one of these destinations. In the end wherever you go with your loved one you will create a memory that will last for the rest of your lives together.

Andrew Bicknell

I am going to New Orleans for the first time and….?

I heard it was not the safest place to be. Is this true? Also, what are some hot spots like resturants, attractions and bars for me and my husband to go to?


New Orleans made the news after Katrina because drug dealers returning to the city have been killing each other over turf. That doesn’t make the crimes OK, but the average resident or visitor doesn’t have to worry about it. Realize that news reports almost never cover the motive (crack cocaine)or victim/perpetrator relationship (they knew each other) for an incident like that due to PC reasons, Other crime in New Orleans is at or below the national average.

All you need do to be safe in New Orleans is use the same basic common sense required in every big city in the world. Also – and to be blunt – stay away from people who, buy/sell/use crack cocaine and your chances of being the victm of anything worse than a hangover are remote.

Things to do in New Orleans:

Mardi Gras and the Jazz Festival are world famous events, but New Orleans hosts many festivals and celebrations throughout the year:

The Saint Charles Streetcar is the oldest continuously operating street railway in the world and is a "tourist attraction" in its own right. It is part of the public transit system, as are the Canal Street and Riverfront streetcar lines:

There is always music, but the bands change: Go to and click on Music then Listings or to and click on Listings, then Music.

Note that music clubs often advertise "No Cover", meaning there is no charge for entering. However, clubs with "No Cover" often require that customers buy a beverage each for every "set " of music (which can be every 20 minutes) so KNOW THE PRICE before you sit down. Clubs do that because some people will sit in the club all evening drinking nothing (clubs only make money from the drinks they sell – not from the music). It is also a good idea to pay for each round of drinks (in clubs on Bourbon Street) as it is delivered so there can’t be any confusion at the end of the evening.

An incomplete guide to bars & clubs:

About certain alcoholic beverages: Realize that some famous drinks are VERY potent compared with regular cocktails that have only 1 to 1 ½ ounces of alcohol. For example, a Hurricane is basically 3 or 4 ounces of rum in something like red Kool-Aid, and a Hand Grenade has at least 4 ½ ounces of Everclear + rum + vodka mixed with melon liquor. They don’t necessarily taste like an alcoholic beverage and it is easy to over-indulge.

Wander around the French Quarter, enjoy the architecture, watch the street entertainers (do tip), and visit some of the historic buildings that have been turned into museums (go to and click on Historic Attractions).

Assuming the weather is good, you can collect a sandwich lunch and eat in the riverfront park (watch the shipping) or in Jackson Square (a very nice park).

The Riverwalk shopping center has an air-conditioned food court with dining overlooking the river ( The Canal Place shopping center is in the French Quarter and has a cinema and higher-end shopping (Saks 5th Avenue, Brooks Brothers, etc.). Magazine Street is a miles-long shopping district:

Louisiana is the only US state that offers tax-free shopping for international visitors:

The lobby for the Westin Canal Place Hotel is on the 11th floor and overlooks the French Quarter. It is a great place for an afternoon drink/snack:(

Cafe du Monde is in the French Quarter and you shouldn’t miss having cafe au lait & beignets ( Another great coffee shop is the Croissant d’Or (at 615 Ursulines Street), which is open from 7:00am to 2:00pm and has food in addition to pastry.

The Palm Court restaurant is very nice, has moderate prices, and offers traditional live jazz starting at 8:00pm: 1204 Decatur Street, tel 504-525-0200 (reservations are important and they are not open every day). The Palm Court is closed from about July 25th to about September 25th each year.

Maximo’s Italian Grill has great food and atmosphere: 1117 Decatur Street in the French Quarter, (504) 586-8883.

All of the famous restaurants (Antoine’s, Arnaud’s, Brennan’s, Commander’s Palace, etc.) have reopened. The Pelican Club (on Exchange Alley in the FQ) is not as well known but is the same type experience. Reservations are a good idea, and probably essential on weekends. Tujaques Restaurant (823 Decatur Street) is very traditional and has moderate prices:

Cafe Degas is a very French restaurant near City Park at 3127 Esplanade – which is not within walking distance of downtown (5 to 10 minutes by taxi). They are closed on Mondays & Tuesdays (504-945-5635).

The Napoleon House restaurant is at 500 Chartres Street in the FQ, and has a menu of great local dishes:

Preservation Hall has traditional live Jazz, and doesn’t serve alcohol so all ages are welcome:

New Orleans has ballet, opera, a symphony orchestra, and theatre:

There is a free ferry across the Mississippi at the "foot" of Canal Street. It is a short trip but like a harbor cruise w/o a guide:

The Aquarium, Audubon Zoo, and the new Insectarium are world-class attractions ( and you should see them if you can. The Zoo is several miles from downtown. You can drive to the Zoo (which has free parking) or take public transit from the French Quarter.

The Louisiana State Museum is in the French Quarter: New Orleans is also home to a number of other museums, such as the National World War II Museum ( and the New Orleans Museum of Art ( Both can be reached by public transit: The WWII museum is in the central business district but a long walk from the French Quarter. NOMA is not within walking distance of downtown but has free parking. Go to for info on more museums.

Harrah’s Casino is in the Central Business District: (age 21 required for entry)

New Orleans City Park has a variety of attractions+ free parking: (

Check and for ideas about other things to do.

Hope you have a great time!

New Orleans Hornets @ Sacramento Kings Friday NBA Basketball Preview

Tony T Breaks down the Big NBA Basketball TV Games and offers his selections on this edition of Tony T' Sports Bets airing now on Game previewed is New Orleans Hornets @ Sacramento Kings. Check out for more videos like these.

Duration : 1 min 59 sec

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New Orleans Flavorful Fun

The world famous Astor Crowne Plaza in New Orleans awaits you for this New Orleans Flavorful Fun vacation. Located at the heart of the French Quarter. You will be in the center of it all. The Astor Crowne Plaza Hotel in New Orleans allows quick accessibility to all the popular tourist attractions. is a premier supplier of Luxury Vacations in the USA. Book Online at or call us at 888-948-8687 Unlike most online travel companies, we broker our own deals instead of acting as a reseller, to make sure that you are able to get the most from your money.”

Duration : 0:0:45

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The Bad Lieutenant: Port of Call New Orleans

Terence McDonagh is a drug- and gambling-addled detective in post-Katrina New Orleans investigating the killing of five Senegalese immigrants.

Duration : 2 min 27 sec

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Court of Two Sisters

Judging from the gorgeous day I spent in the French Quarter yesterday, spring is sneaking up on us.  With sunshine and birdsong I can’t think of a better place to enjoy a scrumptious Jazz  Brunch in the Big Easy than the Court of Two Sisters.  Located at  613 Royal Street in the heart of the New Orleans French Quarter the buffet style spread is vast or just order from the extensive menu.  One is as good as the next, but believe me the brunch doesn’t leave much out.  You may not need to eat the rest of the day! The relaxing courtyard seating and the New Orleans Jazz music is just the ticket to start a beautiful NOLA day. A mimosa or two is the perfect compliment for this whole leisurely dining event.
Easter and Mother’s Day are coming soon! The Court of Two Sisters is the perfect place for your special family gathering. Mom will love this!! (Hint, Hint) Reservations, which are highly recommended, can be requested by visiting or by calling 504-522-7261.

If you can’t make it to the Crescent City anytime soon, try out this recipe from the famous kitchen at the Court of Two Sisters just to tide you over until you can experience heaven on a fork in person.

Crab Meat Au Gratin

3 cups Mornay Sauce (see recipe below)
1 oz. Sherry
1 tsp. Creole Seasoning
¼ cup Green Onions, sliced thin
2 lbs. Jumbo Lump Crabmeat
1 cup Parmesan Cheese, grated

Method: In a stainless steel bowl, combine Mornay Sauce, sherry, Creole seasoning and green onions. Stir well and fold in crabmeat (do NOT break up crabmeat). Divide equally among six casserole dishes, top with Parmesan cheese and bake at 375° degrees for approximately 20-25 minutes until cheese starts to brown and sides bubble.


2 cups Milk
2 tbsp. Parmesan Cheese, grated
2 oz. Gouda Cheese, diced
2 oz. Romano Cheese
2 oz. Roux, blanc
1/8 tsp. Ground White Pepper
4 tbsp. White Onion, chopped
4 tbsp. Celery, chopped

Method: Bring milk to a boil. Add cheeses and whip smooth. Add pepper, onion and celery. Continue whipping for smoothness. Add roux to thicken. Strain sauce through fine mesh china cap.

By Sharon Denise Talbot

Taste of New Orleans Returns

Five years ago, on August 29, a powerful hurricane struck the Gulf Coast of the southern United States, killing more than 1,800 people and causing billions of dollars in damage to states along the coast. Much of the flooding and many of the deaths occurred in and around the city of New Orleans. And in an extra blow to the economy, the city’s tourist attractions were especially hard-hit. But, if the New Orleans’ restaurant scene is any indicator, New Orleans is definitely on the way back.

Duration : 0:5:27

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Mexico’s Carnival, Fiesta Forever! It’s More Than Just Beads…

Celebrated the week prior to Ash Wednesday and normally lasting a little less than a week, Carnival in Mexico has a long tradition dating back to the nineteenth century. Coming from the Latin word Carnavale, meaning “goodbye to the flesh,” Carnival refers to the week before Lent (Cuaresma), where carefree abandonment and indulgence are encouraged.

Beauty Queens and Burning Moods, what else can you ask for?

Kick-off begins with the burning of El Mal Humor (Bad Mood), in which an effigy, usually modeled after an unpopular politician of the day, is hung and burned, followed by a flurry of confetti and fireworks. This gives commencement to nearly a week of festivities in some of Mexico’s most popular coastal cities, including Campeche, Mazatlan, Veracruz and Merida, just to name a few.

Host cities celebrate all sorts of parades daily, depending on the local carnival’s theme, which differs from region to region. Parades display an array of floats decoratively inspired by Mexican scenery and normally featuring bright flowers and live entertainment. Some parades require an entrance fee, and visitors are advised to get tickets to the parade as soon as they can through the local tourist office or hotel.

Mexpipe Challenge Surf Carnaval-February 16-20

For the first time ever, a surf carnival has been added this year at Zacatela beach in Puerto Escondido, Oaxaca. This festival with a laid-back Woodstock-like atmosphere will take place on the beach and will have D.J.S, a fashion show, electronic dance parties and break dancing competitions as well as plenty of surf in the Pacific Ocean.

Men and women can compete in surfing competitions as well as enjoy the many festivities offered in conjunction with the carnival. The Grand Carnival Parade takes place on Tuesday the 20th, followed by a costume contest and an awards ceremony at Town Hall.

Mazatlan– February 8-20

Mazatlan, home to the third-largest Carnival celebration in the world after those in New Orleans and Rio de Janeiro, attracts more than 400,000 people each year. From February 8 to 20, thrill-seekers fill the malecón (oceanside promenade) running along downtown’s Ollas Altas beach, singing and dancing along roving mariachi bands. You can also catch regional Sinaloenses bands with lots of brass, as well as rock groups that set up along the way.

Food lovers can enjoy open-air culinary festivals in the Zona Dorada (Golden Zone) and in Machado Plaza. Prominent dishes on hand include Mazatlán’s famous pescado zarandeado (barbecued fish), camarones con mango (mango shrimp) and marlín ahumado (smoked marlin). After enjoying some fresh seafood, Ollas Atlas port offers a unique offshore fireworks presentation February 17 representing a mock naval battle, in commemoration of Mazatlan’s 1864 victory over the French Navy.

Veracruz – February 13 – 21

Known for its Afro-Caribbean-influenced culture, the port city of Veracruz on the Gulf of Mexico hosts the second-largest Carnival in the country. Parade-goers can expect to see Draculas, drag queens and women in sparkling dresses dancing to the infectious Caribbean/Spanish rhythms along Miguel Avila Camacho Boulevard. Groups from neighboring villages dance in peacock and pheasant-feathered headdresses. A must during Carnival in Veracruz is dancing! Visitors should not miss the chance to dance at the zocalo, or central square. Salsa, cumbia, reggae and marimba are popular, but Jarochos (people from Veracruz) hold a special place in their hearts for the music and dance known as danzon, which first arrived from Cuba in 1880. For live music, visit the zocalo and/or the malecon on February 21, featuring Mexican artists.

And when they aren’t dancing, there’s nothing like sitting on the banks of the Jamapa River in the nearby town of Boca del Rio and enjoying succulent grilled huachinango (red snapper), or a vuelve a la vida (Veracruz-style seafood cocktail, a well-known hangover remedy) at bargain prices.

Cozumel – February 14-21

Known as one of the most popular celebrations in the Mexican Caribbean, Cozumel has commemorated this pre-Lenten celebration for nearly 100 years bringing Carnaval to life in an exciting explosion of color and music. Cozumel’s unique celebration includes a variety of costumed characters, such as Harlequins, rumba dancers, Spaniards, gypsy women, fairies, princesses, bullfighters and kings and queens that can be spotted during the week.

This carnival is also considered a family-friendly version of the holiday and begins with the crowning of the emperor and empress as well as the king and queen of Carnaval. As the week progresses and the momentum builds, the island’s celebration continues with colorful parades, nightly street fairs and daily musical performances and dancing throughout the streets of downtown San Miguel.

Merida– February 14-21

The Yucatan Peninsula’s capital city of Merida is one of the many cities that celebrate Carnival, with this year’s theme centered on “The Circus”. Since 1980, the people of the Yucatan celebrate the marching of “El Jacarandoso,” a popular character who was once king of the Carnival and annually displays the most colorful and amusing costume. On Monday during Carnival week, the ladies don hand-embroidered dresses and the gentlemen sparkling white guayaberas, the dress shirts typical of the region.

Other important carnival destinations in Mexico include Ensenada, Baja California; Guaymas, along the Sea of Cortez in Sonora; Tepic, Nayarit; and Chamula, Chiapas, said to be one of the most indigenous festivals in the country.

About the Mexico Tourism Board

The Mexico Tourism Board (MTB) brings together the resources of federal and state governments, municipalities and private companies to promote Mexico’s tourism attractions and destinations internationally. Created in 1999, the MTB is Mexico’s tourism promotion agency, and its participants include members of both the private and public sectors. The MTB has offices throughout North America, Europe, Asia and Latin America.

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Erick Laseca

Mexico Tourism Board

312-228-0517 x14

Erick Laseca

New Orleans Apartment Living Guide – New Orleans Apartments For Rent

Find New Orleans apartments for rent. Discover New Orleans neighborhoods, attractions, dining and more. Find the perfect New Orleans apartment or ways to love the apartment you’re already in. Visit

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Loire Valley, France, Holiday Property Rentals

The Loire Valley in France is famous for its chateaux and its beautiful landscapes. It’s an area rich in history and is a perfect destination for a self catering holiday for all the family.

The Loire Valley is also known as the Garden of France and has a wealth of places and attractions to visit, many sports and leisure opportunities on offer and some delicious food and drink (not forgetting the wine!) to sample during your stay.

There is a good choice of self catering accommodation in the Loire Valley, so it’s a great location for a holiday property rental. A rented holiday home also makes an ideal base for your holiday in France.

Not surprisingly, there are some beautiful and historic cities and towns and picturesque villages you will want to discover during your vacation in the Loire Valley. For example, you could visit Amboise, Blois, Chartres, Orleans, Saumur or Tours.

Amboise is an attractive town. While you are there, be sure to visit Chateau d’Amboise, take an enjoyable walk by the river or check out the market, which is held on Friday and Sunday mornings.

If you’re interested in chateaux, then you should also try to make time to visit the famous Château de Blois which is located in the city of Blois.

Meanwhile, the city of Chartres and its beautiful Gothic cathedral is popular with tourists. The cathedral is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and Chartres itself makes a good day out.

The Loire Valley is also famous for its wine and it is the third largest wine region in France. What’s more, a great variety of wines are produced here. Whether you prefer red, white, rosé, sweet or sparkling, you will find them all here in the Loire Valley!

If you’re feeling energetic, you can tour this lovely area on two wheels. Why not hire a bike and discover this beautiful part of France? Or if you prefer to hike, you can also enjoy the sights on foot. The River Loire (France’s longest river) runs through here, so the Loire Valley is ideal for an activity holiday.

Other activities you can do in the area include kayaking, canoeing, fishing and golf. If you want to see the beauty of Loire Valley from the air, you can even take a hot-air balloon trip!

The Loire Valley is also good for a family holiday, as there are plenty of things for the children to see and do. You will no doubt see plenty of chateaux during your stay. Well, the kids (and adults, too!) can get the opportunity to see them on a smaller scale at Le Parc des Mini-Chateaux, which has a collection of miniature replicas of the famous Loire Valley chateaux. Other family-friendly attractions in this area include Loire Valley Aquarium, ZooParc de Beauval and more!

The Loire Valley is a great place to spend a great holiday, whatever your age and taste. Whether you’re interested in just spending some quality time relaxing or if you’re planning an activity holiday, you will have fun in this area of France!

Karen Waller

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