by Michael Satterfield

New Orleans is a very special place, a city that has been redefining itself since its inception, the melting pot of cultures has produced a unique feeling that is hard to describe to those who have never been. Decedent street parties during Mardi Gra, Zydeco and Jazz Music, and the cross-cultural Cajun Food what most people think of when you bring up the Crescent City, and while it is all of those things, to me it is so much more.

Spending a day wandering through the French Quarter is like stepping back in time, with some buildings dating back to the 1700s, with the narrow streets and buildings cropping out the modern world it is easy to forget that just a few blocks away there are modern skyscrapers and the 21st century. But here, you can still tour in a horse-drawn cart or aimlessly stroll through the countless small shops and antique stores.

It is the perfect place for street photography, the mix of locals, entertainers, and tourists set against the dramatic architecture give create some amazing shots. Staying in New Orleans for a night or two is more than enough for me, I prefer to stay out in Plantation Country and take the day trip into the city.

Driving into the city, in the Acura RDX (loaned to us for the trip), was not as bad as I assumed it would be, there is plenty of public parking in and around the French Quarter. But the drive in along the Mississippi River took us past some of the most well-known Plantation houses as we followed the levee road downriver. 

While New Orleans is exciting, after a full day of exploring I was excited to head back to our quiet cottage on the grounds of Oak Alley, just about an hour drive from the French Quarter. While many people will stay in New Orleans and take a day trip out to the Plantation County, for this trip doing the reverse made for a much more relaxing trip.

For more info on staying at Oak Alley visit their website HERE, rates are surprisingly reasonable and it is a truly unique experience.