Where do you go when it is time to get away? What if you knew of a place where the scenery isn’t all that changes? A place where centuries old architecture is the backdrop for a culture so invigorating, it’ll rouse your spirit. Join us as we visit the most fun and authentic city in America – New Orleans, Louisiana!
We travel today through Missouri, Arkansas, Tennessee and into Mississippi, stopping for the night at the Ridgeland Drury Inn. Go at your leisure for the light dinner served at the hotel. (D)
We depart following breakfast, arriving at Oak Alley Plantation, in Vacherie, Louisiana, in time for lunch and tour. It’s more than a house! It’s a majestic place by the Mighty Mississippi River where 300-year-old oak trees have held root through times of prosperity and through times of suffering. Wander twenty-five acres of history and romance, regret and rebirth, tragedy and triumph. Explore the historic grounds and see the legacies left by the Romans, The Stewarts and others who made an impact on this iconic landscape. Nowhere in the South is there a more spectacular setting!
Later this afternoon, we arrive in New Orleans, Louisiana, where we will check into our deluxe accommodations, The Bienville House, located in the historic French Quarter. Just as the French Quarter is perfectly situated in the heart of New Orleans, The Bienville House is perfectly situated in the midst of the historic French Quarter. This 83-room Inn is a truly distinctive French Quarter hotel. It offers premium accommodations with a boutique hotel feel with many amenities. Surrounding the beautiful Bienville House are New Orleans’ most popular attractions, including the antique shops of Royal Street.
Tonight, we will board Royal Carriages for a tour of the French Quarter. Old world ambience, history, architecture and jazz!
Experience the sights and sounds of the colorful French Quarter as our quaint mule-drawn carriages take us back in time to another era. Courteous and informative guides will escort us past many landmarks of New Orleans’ heritage, including courtyards and iron-laced balconies, as well as famous restaurants and galleries. We will end our carriage tour at Mulate’s, recognized throughout the world as the King of Cajun Dine and Dance Halls, featuring live Cajun music and dancing along with great authentic Cajun food every day of the week. Mulates is a place where Cajuns come to celebrate their heritage and the world comes to join them in their celebration! (B, L, D)
Following breakfast this morning, we depart for Mardi Gras World, the only place where Mardi Gras happens all year round! Since 1947, Blaine Kern Studios has built breathtaking parade floats not only for Mardi Gras but for parades all over the world. We will take a tour to see what it takes to bring Mardi Gras to life year after year. We will learn about the history of this unique and festive tradition and go beyond its reputation for revelry to get a deeper understanding of the real Mardi Gras.
Lunch is included before we are joined by a licensed guide for a city tour, beginning with Explanade Avenue, with a stop at St. Louis Cemetery, often called the “city of the dead” because of its above-ground tombs. After a refreshment stop in City Park, we will proceed alongside Lake Pontchartrain and the city’s finest yacht harbor.
Following the St. Charles Avenue streetcar route, we will pass Tulane and Loyola Universities, Audubon Park and beautifully restored mansions. Our guide will also highlight the French Quarter, where you will see Jackson Square, St. Louis Cathedral, The Cabildo, seat of the old Spanish government and the Architecture that makes New Orleans unique among American cities.
This evening we will learn the basics of Louisiana cooking in a way you will never forget at the New Orleans School of Cooking! Fun is a primary ingredient in this kitchen. It’s a “ga-ron-teed” good time for all! (B, L, D)
This morning we depart for a Cajun Pride Swamp Tour on a privately owned wildlife refuge just 25 miles from New Orleans. We will be taking a unique and educational journey back to the early days of Louisiana bayou and swamp explorations.
Cajun Pride Swamp Tours is unique in that their privately owned swamp ensures that our narrated tour will not be disturbed by other boats. The native Cajun Captains are all natural…homegrown in the Bayous of South Louisiana. With accents and humor, they will take you back to the early days of Louisiana bayou and swamp explorations through the primitive beauty of the moss-draped cypress trees and show off the American Alligator and abundant wildlife. Experience up-close the fauna-the inhabitants of their swamp, the flora-the sweet smell of the wild hibiscus rose mallow and marsh mallow plants, plus the unique history of the Cajun town of Frenier within the Manchac Swamp. What a fun morning! We will also enjoy a picnic lunch following our swamp tour!
We will then return to New Orleans for a free afternoon. Your choice – whether to relax by the pool, shop for antiques on Royal Street, visit the National World War II Museum, casino, or city market, etc., etc.
This evening, a delicious dinner is included at Court of Two Sisters, while listening to the music of our own jazz trio! (B, L, D)
We sadly depart this morning and turn our motor coach northward. Taking the necessary stops, we will arrive in Memphis, Tennessee, for the night, staying at the legendary Peabody Memphis. With a style and tradition befitting one of Memphis’ grandest, most legendary hotels, The Peabody Memphis offers a magnificent bridge between the “Blues City’s” celebrated past and cosmopolitan present.
Known as the “South’s Grand Hotel,” The Peabody is legendary for its charm, elegance, gracious hospitality and rich history. This Memphis icon, opened in 1869, is listed on the National Register of Historic Places and is world-famous for its five resident ducks, who march daily through the lobby at 11:00 a.m. and 5:00 p.m.
Dinner is included at the Peabody Hotel tonight. (B,D)
This morning enjoy a delicious breakfast as well as the many amenities at the hotel. Don’t miss the Duck March at 11:00 a.m. Lunch is included at Rendevous before we depart for home. (B, L)
- 14 meals: 5 breakfasts, 4 lunches and 5 dinners
- Cajun Pride Swamp Tour
- Guided New Orleans city tour/guide gratuity
- New Orleans School of Cooking
- French Quarter Royal Carriage tour to Mulate’s Cajun Restaurant
- Dinner at Mulate’s with Live Cajun Music
- Court of Two Sisters with private Jazz Trio
- One night at the Peabody Hotel in Memphis
- Oak Alley Plantation tour and lunch
- Mardi Gras World and lunch
- Free afternoon in New Orleans
- Five nights’ deluxe accommodations with luggage handling
- Deluxe Motorcoach
- Fully escorted by Jane’s Journeys
COST PER PERSON:
$250 deposit with reservation; final payment is due by February 15, 2021.
Purchase travel cancellation insurance due to illness for $112 per person all categories.