The New Orleans Tourism Marketing Corporation has revealed their latest New Orleans tourism slogan: "Follow Your NOLA," and there's a new commercial and a snazzy interactive website to go along with it.
The slogan is catchy enough, I suppose, but what I like about this campaign, unlike a lot of the tourism campaigns that came before it, is that it comes with a new push to encourage tourists to leave the French Quarter and see some of the other amazing neighborhoods around the city.
Entirely too many people have come and gone from their New Orleans trip thinking that Bourbon Street was all that we had to offer, for better or for worse. I'm glad to see a push away from that. Sure, some of the other neighborhoods around the city are a little bit funkier, but they're still largely safe for tourists, and there's great stuff to be seen (and eaten) all over town.
If nothing else, visitors should at least check out The Garden District and Frenchmen Street, for great architecture and great music, respectively, but that's just the tip of the iceberg. Head into the Tremé to visit the amazing Backstreet Cultural Museum and stop over at Willie Mae's Scotch House for the best fried chicken in the world. Head into the Bywater to hear Kermit Ruffins at Vaughan's or eat breakfast at Elizabeth's (praline bacon, y'all). Go out to Carrollton to catch ReBirth at the Maple Leaf and have one of the finest affordable meals of your life at Boucherie.
See the cemeteries and the Bestoff Sculpture Garden. Kayak on Bayou St. John and take a picnic out to the Fly. And please, please consider heading out to New Orleans East for Vietnamese food, because the pho out there can be a transcendental experience, I'm telling you.
What's your favorite thing to do outside of the French Quarter? Leave a comment and let us know!
Streetcar image © Jo Jakeman, Creative Commons via Flickr