February 20 – 26 Mandeville, Louisiana (outside of New Orleans)

February 27, 2024  •  Leave a Comment

Fontainebleau State Park



A short drive and a beautiful day….the park is situated on Lake Pontchartrain which is

HUGE!!! We’ll get back to this in a bit…..




New Orleans, a city with a rich history that beckons visitors with its vibrant culture,

mouthwatering cuisine, and live music.

Life in the French Quarter of New Orleans is a song - full of color, bustling streets, jazz

musicians trying to make a buck, cobblestone streets, baroque ironwork balconies,

courtyards filled with bubbling fountains, unique shops, and one bar/restaurant after the

other. Bourbon Street – the infamous party hub, was a onetime thing for us. It’s the “big”

draw for the French Quarter but its crowded and smelly LOL!!! Lots of homeless people

hang out in this entire area so it’s wise to be very aware of your surroundings……


NOLA-1-156 MKNOLA-1-156 MK NOLA-3-027 MKNOLA-3-027 MK NOLA-3-082 MKNOLA-3-082 MK


NOLA-1-150 MKNOLA-1-150 MK

NOLA-1-039 MKNOLA-1-039 MK NOLA-1-036 MKNOLA-1-036 MK NOLA-1-217 MKNOLA-1-217 MK


A stop to the Café de Monde is a must to have THE BEST beignets ever……SO sinfully delicious!!


PXL_20240221_184139681PXL_20240221_184139681 PXL_20240221_185542186PXL_20240221_185542186

NOLA-1-056 MKNOLA-1-056 MK

While the draw to the French Quarter is understandable, outside of the popular streets (Bourbon and Royal), there is much to explore and see. The French Market (shopping area), Jackson Square (National Historical Landmark), and the St. Louis Cathedral which is the oldest Catholic cathedral in the continuous United States – originally built in the early 1700s.

NOLA-1-072 MKNOLA-1-072 MK NOLA-1-075 MKNOLA-1-075 MK IMG_0362IMG_0362 IMG_0363IMG_0363 NOLA-1-088 MKNOLA-1-088 MK NOLA-1-107 MKNOLA-1-107 MK

If you get tired of walking the MANY blocks of things to see, the Streetcar is a great/cheap way to see New Orleans. We called it a Trolley and were quickly told “it’s a streetcar”.  We hopped on it one morning to the outskirts of town to see the Garden District. This historic residential neighborhood is laden with trees, ivy, and beautiful homes with gorgeous gardens.

NOLA-2-044 MKNOLA-2-044 MK NOLA-2-056 MKNOLA-2-056 MK

IMG_0372IMG_0372 IMG_0373IMG_0373 NOLA-2-123 MKNOLA-2-123 MK NOLA-2-137 MKNOLA-2-137 MK NOLA-2-171 MKNOLA-2-171 MK NOLA-2-311 MKNOLA-2-311 MK NOLA-2-351 MKNOLA-2-351 MK

We saw production crews setting up for a filming of the Season 2 of Mayfair Witches.

NOLA-2-207 MKNOLA-2-207 MK

Pat O’Brien’s was suggested as a great place for lunch. We stood in a long line at noon as

they opened so obviously we had picked the right place. We filled our faces once again

with Louisiana cuisine and sipped on their “signature” Hurricane drink. Diet…..we keep saying this….diet!!! LOL….



Never in our lives did we imagine that cemeteries would be fascinating…..until we saw a few in New Orleans. These are hidden gems we tell ya…..Most of the cemetery's date back to the 1800s. They are home to an array of elaborate monuments, sculptures, and mausoleums that showcase the artistry and craftsmanship of the period. These are literally open-air museums!! Most of the graves are above-ground vaults because of the water table. Because of vandalism, there are only a few cemeteries that you can visit without signing up for a tour.

IMG_0374IMG_0374 IMG_0370IMG_0370

The Sazerac cocktail gained fame in New Orleans in the 1850s and is served around the world to this day. Now it has it grandest home: The Sazerac House. It’s a historic building that showcases the history and traditions of New Orleans cocktails. A free tour – 3 floors –3 free tastings – and a gift shop.

NOLA-3-123 MKNOLA-3-123 MK



After walking several miles, it was nice to just sit by the riverfront and watch the ships go by on the Mississippi River….and eat a double scoop waffle cone ice cream from Killian’s.

NOLA-1-197 MKNOLA-1-197 MK

After exploring everything we wanted to see in New Orleans (and we were done with all the crowds, etc.), we poked around a couple of towns near our campground. Mandeville – which also has a Café de Monde (yum), the quaint (small) towns of Covington, and Abita Springs. A roadside attraction in Abita caught our eye – the quirky Abita Mystery House. Welp…it was definitely quirky. Entering thru the funky gift shop, the owner has collected stuff (shit) for years and well, tried to make things out of other things – LOL!! But what caught our eye in the back was an old Airstream. Poor thing was a sore sight and had obviously been there for years……



The Abita Brew Pub just down the street was bustling with people and cars. We happened upon a small car show of some sort and a farmers' market. Highly suggested by the folks at the Abita Mystery House, we sat outside and enjoyed our lunch on a most gorgeous Saturday afternoon….


 Lake Pontchartrain is not a lake, but an estuary that covers 630 square miles and is about 40 miles from west to east and 24 miles from south to north. To cross the lake into New Orleans, the 24-mile Lake Pontchartrain Causeway awaits you. It is the longest continuous bridge over water in the world!!! One foggy morning we crossed, and you could NOT visually see any land – anywhere – kinda creepy!!! The lake does provide for some stunning sunsets and the park has provided plenty of places to sit and enjoy it. Along with a fishing pier and a small man-made beach, there is a pond which houses lots of turtles and alligators (which we didn’t see).


SunSet-138 MKSunSet-138 MK SunSet-084 MKSunSet-084 MK SunSet-034 MKSunSet-034 MK FULLmoon (45) MKFULLmoon (45) MK Oaks-010 MKOaks-010 MK

PXL_20240220_234751779PXL_20240220_234751779 PXL_20240220_235309024PXL_20240220_235309024

PXL_20240220_213734968PXL_20240220_213734968 PXL_20240220_215527752-EDITPXL_20240220_215527752-EDIT




No comments posted.