Need Activities and Restaurant Suggestions for New Orleans (for 12 year olds)

defreakdefreak Registered User regular
There's a volleyball tournament in New Orleans next week, I'm taking a team of 12 year olds. I need some suggestions on where to visit and what to do during our off time. We'll be there for about 4 days. All I got right now is the aquarium and IMAX theater.

I also need a restaurant suggestion that can handle a group of 28 people. Any type of food is fine, not too expensive, along the lines of Olive Garden.

If possible, within walking distance of here please.

Any help is appreciated!


  • GnizmoGnizmo Registered User regular
    You are in a great area for food, which is not exactly surprising given the city. Seating 28 will be difficult. I can think of a handfull of places but I am a little confused on price range. I have been to Olive Garden a total of like 3 times in my life so any clarity will be good. I know Dat Dog has been getting talked up a lot lately as the new thing. I have always been a fan of Port of Call as well. I am a little stumped as well cause many of my favorite places simply can't handle 28 people without just renting out the place for the night.

    Activities I can give a few ideas on. I highly recommend taking time to just walk through the French Quarter and take in the sights. We have some lovely architecture and beautiful cemeteries. Jackson Square is a beautiful park and has a lot of interesting art work being done outside of it. If they are anything like the 12 year olds I know they will get a kick out of the spray can flame thrower used to rapid dry the paintings.

    New Orleans being below sea level we actually bury all our dead above ground to keep them from washing up in floods. It makes for some really pretty sights so a cemetery tour wouldn't be a terrible idea either, but again I don't know who could handle the volume. Not to say it doesn't exist just that I don't know of them off hand.

    The zoo and insectarium are also pretty neat. The zoo is more of a gorgeous park with animals than anything but it does make for a fun day. There are enough exhibits to keep people entertained for a day easily combined with the space to run helping burn off the excess energy. Insectarium is more of just what it sounds like. Very cool exhibits though and a wonderful butterfly garden. The aquarium has a cool bird feeding area too which can be fun to sit in while the bird's play in bags with any pockets. Also coats, but you would have to be very dedicated to a look to wear a coat at this time of year. And also want heat stroke.

    I will say this in regards to food while I try to investigate further, you can't go wrong with po'boys. There will be a million places within walking distance and plenty of people can give you an idea. The front desk will know and you can probably just ask anyone off the street and get a good place. We are a very warm and welcoming city. I don't spend a lot of time around the Dome so I can't help you off hand but I will get back to you soon. Just PM me of I forget.

    Oh go to Cafe Du Monde definitely though. Its a beignet place on South Peters and not at all far from the Aquarium (easily walking distance for almost anyone. Even for me and I have issues walking these days.) Beignets are delicious little donuts that get drowned in sugar and are amazing. I cannot recommend enough going there. They could easily handle your capacity and are pretty cheap. A few bucks per order of 3. Puts you right outside the flea market as well and not far from the river front or from Jackson Square.

    If you are looking for pure time burn you could also try the River Walk. Its a tourist mall but has some cool shops and a lovely view. A couple of restaurant's that I enjoy well enough too, though I haven't been to them in years. Probably could handle the capacity. I will try to look up the name shortly. Gorgeous fountain as well as wonderful view of the river and bridge. A few river cruises leave out of there if you have the money and a free day. Dunno the cost but I always enjoyed them. Probably too pricey but putting it out there.

    There are a lot of haunted house tours and swamp tours as well that you could catch if you wanted. Your best bet would be to catch them as you are doing something else and try to arrange for a tour with the group later. They are a dime a dozen (the haunted house ones at least) and could prove fun. Dunno about handling your numbers though so I wouldn't make any solid plans.

    You could also go to the lakefront if you have access to a van or transportation. The beach aspect of it is poor, but it is swimmable and extremely safe. Lake Ponchartrain gets to be about 12ft deep at the deepest so mostly it wouldn't even be above their heads. Its gorgeous to look at as well. Check before going if you do though just for water quality. It is fine 99% of the time but if it has been raining a lot (by our standards which are really high) it can get sketchy but usually doesn't. Side effect of making it kind of toxic 30 years back, but it's been clean for the last 10 at least.

    A lot of other stuff depends on your mobility. Keep it mind New Orleans is prone to sudden fierce rainstorms. Like 6inches an hour storms are seen as another summer shower so long as they last about an hour. If you don't like the weather though wait 15 minutes and it will be different. Most of the places listed have options for shuttles too and from.

  • GnizmoGnizmo Registered User regular
    Just remembered on my drive to work today about the WW2 museum which is pretty cool as well. They do a pretty good job of making it entertaining for kids as well. There is also the Children's Museum but they might be getting a little old for it. Probably in the top end age range, but you would know them better.

    Also might help to know where you are coming from. I have a little experience living other places. For example a friend came in from out of town once and was talking about this beautiful balcony. I looked around confused as it all seemed pretty standard balconies. No elaborate decorations of anything special. Eventually I ask her which one and she points to it. I ask what is so special since it looks so normal, and she mentions the rod iron railing. I am further confused causes it's pretty standard practice around here. This is the point she clued me in the rest of y'all don't have a lot of rod iron work just everywhere. It clicked at that point, but I wouldn't have thought anything of it the rest of my life without her. Short story long without a frame of reference I will forget something cool you could do.

  • KruiteKruite Registered User regular
    There's an ACME downtown that is kid friendly and can accommodate that many people. You are going to have difficulty with groups larger than 10 at most places.

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