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Post-Mardi Gras respite in Algiers Point

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Louis Armstrong statue in Algiers

New Orleans is once again sobering up from the Mardi Gras madness. According to Mayor Mitch Landrieu, “to put it simply, Mardi Gras 2012 rocked.” With 97% hotel occupation rate and busy restaurants and businesses, that’s great news for the city still in the post-Katrina recovery. But those who are leaving NOLA (no doubt with a killer headache) right after Mardi Gras are missing out on some great places to explore beyond the French Quarter. One of those places is Algiers Point.

Anybody gazing across the Mighty Mississippi from Jackson Square has seen it on the other bank. Located directly on the other side of the river bend, Algiers Point is the second oldest neighborhood in the city and used to be a separate settlement until incorporation into New Orleans in 1840. All it takes to get there is just a short ferry ride – the same one featured in Denzel Washington’s 2006 movie Déjà Vu, nota bene the first major film to be shot in the city after its hurricane devastation. No worries, despite what you see in the opening scene the passage is quite safe =)

Crossing the Mississippi provides a whole new perspective on New Orleans. The familiar landmark of St. Louis Cathedral looks remarkable from the water, getting smaller and smaller as the ferry inches toward the Algiers shore. Algiers Point, the oldest part of the Algiers neighborhood, greets visitors with the stature of Louis Armstrong – and the atmosphere of a 19th century village, which can be a welcome respite from Bourbon Street’s din and debauchery. Read the rest of this entry