Want to experience NOLA like Tiana in The Princess and the Frog? Follow this 2-Day New Orleans Itinerary to step into the two shoes of the first African-American Disney Princess!
I’ll first start off by letting you know that as a black woman, traveling to New Orleans by myself was definitely worth it. I felt like as I was going through the city, I was living out my Disney Princess dreams in Tiana’s footsteps. Therefore, as the writer, I hope that this 2 day itinerary will give you same the magical moments I had during my time there.
Day 1 – Jackson Square, Dooky Chase Restaurant and St. Louis Cemetery
Stop 1: Get breakfast at Cafe du Monde!
Beignets are such a signature pastry of New Orleans and they were clearly represented in The Princess and the Frog. So my suggestion is to start off your day with some beignets to see how they taste! When I was in New Orleans, I went to Cafe Du Monde to get my first beignet and it was absolutely delicious. They weren’t really sprinkled with honey like in the movie but they had a lot of powdered sugar as you can see below.
The address for the Cafe Du Monde I went to is at 800 Decatur St, New Orleans, LA 70116. Make sure to bring some cash with you when you get there because they do not accept card!
Stop 2: Make your way to Jackson Square and breathe in the scenery!
The scenery around Jackson Square is magical and breathtaking at the same time. I want to encourage you to take some time to capture any pictures you want on your phone. Jackson Square is extremely Instagrammable for all tourists and if you’re lucky, you might see some street performers here and there around the square. I saw a couple in the square during my time in New Orleans and they were super funny and entertaining. Jackson Square is also right across the street from Stop 1 so you shouldn’t have any trouble finding it. (It’s really hard to miss!)
Stop 3: Get a Tarot Card Reading! (Optional)
So, personally, when I was in New Orleans I did not go to a Tarot Card Reader because I knew it was going to make me feel uncomfortable. However, if you are okay with seeing a Tarot Card Reader, then there are plenty of them around Jackson Square that you can go visit. All I would suggest is that you would just use your discernment in this because the last thing I want is for you to get scammed.
Stop 4: Go inside the St. Louis Cathedral!
When I was in New Orleans, I actually went inside the St. Louis Cathedral and it made me feel like I was actually present at Tiana’s wedding. I saw the altar, the pews and even the ceiling. It was a complete replica of the movie and I couldn’t be any happier. If you are planning to visit the St. Louis Cathedral you are free to go inside without purchasing a ticket. However, just on a side note, on Saturdays, the cathedral is open from 5-6pm so that wouldn’t be the best day to visit. Also, I don’t know if it’s just me but doesn’t St. Louis Cathedral look like a Disney castle?? If that’s not magical, I don’t know what is.
Stop 5: Make your way down to Royal St for some photos!
As one of the most famous streets in New Orleans, Royal Street is known for some of the best balconies. In my opinion, this is where the magic happens. When I was in NOLA, walking underneath these balconies made me feel like I was going back in time. As you walk along Royal Street, you’ll find an eye catching balcony at every turn. Don’t let those moments go to waste! Have your camera ready at the end of every block.
Stop 6: Hop on over to the infamous Bourbon Street and visit a bar!
As you walk along Bourbon Street, I would suggest you check out Fat Tuesday! It’s the best bar to get the New Orleans Original Daiquiri, a cocktail made with rum, sugar or any other sweetener. In fact, Fat Tuesday loves to mix their daiquiris with all different kinds of flavors. You cannot afford to miss this!
Stop 7: Head on over to Dooky Chase Restaurant at noon for a delicious lunch buffet in NOLA!
I actually didn’t know this when I was in New Orleans at the time but the Princess and the Frog was actually inspired by a real person, Leah Chase. She unfortunately passed away 2 years ago but her and her husband, Edgar “Dooky” Chase, owned the Dooky Chase Restaurant together in the Treme neighborhood. As a legend, Leah Chase was the nation’s pre-eminent Creole chef and at 95 years old, she still held the title of Head Chef as the “Queen of Creole Cuisine.” Similar to Tiana, Leah also had a bunch of jobs growing up in New Orleans. She waited so many tables in the French Quarter but even then it was completely unheard of for a black woman to do this. Like Tiana, she also had a dream of owning her own restaurant and with her husband she made that dream come true. Disney producers were so inspired by Leah’s story that they actually created a character like Tiana to reflect her legacy.
If you’re interested in attending the lunch buffet at Dooky Chase Restaurant, I would highly recommend getting the signature Creole Gumbo! It’s absolutely delicious, plus, you can’t forget to have it with some wine on the side. The wine, Chateau Ste. Michelle Riesling, usually does the trick!
Stop 8: Go to the St. Louis Cemetery #1 for a licensed guided tour!
The St. Louis Cemetery in New Orleans is definitely a must-see for any Princess and the Frog fan! After having lunch at Dooky Chase Restaurant, I would highly recommend walking over to St. Louis Cemetery #1 since it’s closer to the French quarter and it’s open longer than St. Louis Cemetery #2. However, on a personal note, I did get a lot of weird vibes walking into the cemetery by myself. I’m just glad these cemeteries weren’t open at night, which would have been a completely different story. The above ground graves definitely hint at the stories of the people who are deceased inside them. So if you do go, you must get tickets from Basin St. Station. They’re only $20 and from what I’ve heard your experience in the cemetery will be very educational. However, if you hate guided tours and you just want to walk on your own, then you should go to St. Louis Cemetery #2 instead. But as a tip, just remember St. Louis Cemetery #2 closes at 3pm.
Stop 9: Finish the day with some dinner at Acme Oyster House for some Cajun and Creole NOLA classics!
And last but not least.. end your first day in New Orleans with some dinner at Acme Oyster House! At this restaurant, you’ll have a wide variety of Cajun and Creole classics to choose from like the Acme Soft Shell Crab Po-Boy!
A Po-boy is a traditional New Orleans sandwich that is made with roast beef or fried seafood. It’s typically served on New Orleans bread which has a crisp crust and a fluffy center. I, unfortunately, did not get the opportunity to try a Po-boy sandwich while I was in NOLA but I don’t want you to make the same mistake I did. From what I’ve heard these sandwiches are something to die for!
Day 2 – Streetcars, the Garden District, and Steamboat Natchez
Stop 1: Get some colorful beignets at the Bakery Bar!
If you’re looking for a place to get some awesome brunch, I would highly recommend the Bakery Bar for some colorful beignets! In the Bakery Bar, each beignet is filled with whipped Grand Marnier cream cheese and topped with dusted yellow, blue or green sugar. Not only are these pastries oh so delicious but they are also very Instagrammable. You will not be disappointed!
Stop 2: Hop on the St. Charles Streetcar!
Hopping on one of New Orleans’ streetcars should definitely be a must on your list. I would personally recommend the St. Charles Streetcar since it gives you a grand view of some of New Orleans most beautiful homes. The fare for the streetcar is $1.25 and it runs 24 hours a day and 7 days a week. If you don’t have any change on hand for the streetcar make sure to download the RTA Go Mobile 2.0 app. When I was in NOLA, I used this app to purchase all of my single ride tickets. The app also gave me insight on when the next streetcar was coming and how long it would take to get my next destination. Having this app is definitely a must if you plan on taking any streetcar in NOLA. Not only will it make your trip easier but you’ll also see some interesting stops along the way.
Stop 3: Head on over to the Garden District to see houses similar to “Big Daddy’s “ in NOLA
Hop off the streetcar at St. Charles and 1st street to make your way to the Garden District. The homes in the Garden District are very reminiscent of the neighborhood Charlotte, Tiana’s friend, and her father, Big Daddy, lived in in the movie. The Garden District is full of extravagant homes and it has one of the lowest crime rates in New Orleans. If you’re interested in a guided walking tour of this neighborhood, feel free to book one beforehand here!
Stop 4: Get some southern chicken from Daisy Duke’s!
After your walking tour of the Garden District, I would suggest heading over to Daisy Duke’s for the most delicious fried chicken!! When I was in New Orleans, the fried chicken at Daisy Duke’s took my breath away. I never thought I could have chicken that tasted so good to the point where it left a lasting memory in my mind. Not only is the service amazing but the food they serve really hits the spot. If I ever went to NOLA again, I wouldn’t even hesitate stopping by this place. It’s such a shame they don’t have an Instagram though.. if they did I would’ve linked it here for you all to see!! However, if you still don’t believe me, these reviews on Tripadvisor say it all.
Stop 5: Take a walk along the Mississippi River!
As you get close to the end of your day, talking a walk along the Mississippi River is one of the best ways to relax and reflect on your time in New Orleans. When I was in NOLA, the riverwalk actually had some benches nearby you could sit on if you wanted to take a break. Doing this is definitely a must if you’re they type of traveler that likes to admire the scenery near any body of water.
Stop 6: Hop on the Steamboat Natchez for a Jazz Dinner Cruise!
And last but not least, this NOLA itinerary will end with a Jazz Dinner Cruise on the Steamboat Natchez. I did not get the chance to do this when I was in NOLA but I would highly recommend this. For a true Princess and the Frog experience, riding this steamboat is a must. I definitely couldn’t even think of any other way to end this itinerary than doing this. Steamboat Natchez departs daily from its docks right near the Toulouse Station. Make sure to book your reservation beforehand so that you can enjoy jazz and a dinner New Orleans style!
NOLA Frequently Asked Questions
To end this magical itinerary, I thought I would finish it off with a beautiful GIF and some frequently asked questions about NOLA! 🙂
– Where To Stay In NOLA?
If you’re interested in staying in a hostel as a solo traveler, I would definitely recommend the Auberge NOLA Hostel. This hostel is like no other hostel I have ever stayed at. It has Netflix, a TV, a cinema room and even a library! I don’t know about you all but I have never stayed at a hostel that had Netflix. Staying at this hostel will definitely make you feel better than not traveling at all. On top of all of that, they also have nightly social events where you can go meet other travelers, whether it is inside the courtyard or out in Downtown NOLA.
If you’re interested in staying at a hotel, here is a list of some I would personally recommend here.
– What can I expect as a solo traveler?
As a solo traveler, you can expect a lot of drunkenness around the evening if you’re around Bourbon Street at the time. Always stay alert and don’t ever give any stranger the time of day unless you have to!! Southern hospitality is also something you can expect as well. I felt very respected during my time there when I went to different restaurants so you shouldn’t expect anything less. Also, don’t be surprised if you see a local doing some kind of weird voodoo magic out in public. One time, I was in Louis Armstrong Park and I saw a black man doing some kind of magical ritual to a tree for a couple of tourists.
– Is NOLA safe?
In my opinion, I find some areas of NOLA safer than others. However, at the end of the day, you really need to just use your discernment if you think you’re in an unsafe area. No city is ever really 100% safe. But, as long as you have your street smarts and your pepper spray you should be okay. After the sun goes down, you really just need to be aware of your surroundings. However, please don’t let fear stop you from exploring this beautiful city. NOLA truly has so many magical moments to offer that you really cannot miss.
– What’s the best way to get to NOLA?
The best way in my opinion to get to NOLA is by plane! For me, since I live out of state, flying was truly the most efficient way to get there. Once you’re at the airport, you can easily take an UBER or a LYFT straight to your hotel. Or, you can take a shuttle from the airport to downtown NOLA for $24.00. However, if none of these options work for you, you can always take public transportation outside of the Ticket Lobby on Level 3 of the airport. Click the link here for more information.
Overall, I hope you really enjoyed this magical 2 day New Orleans Itinerary! Let me know which stop you liked the most in the comments down below. I would love to hear from you!