7 Meals (3 dinners and 4 breakfasts)
Round trip airport transfers
- Spend 3 nights in “The Big Easy,” New Orleans, just minutes from the French Quarter
- Narrated New Orleans sightseeing tour with a local guide including Jackson Square, St. Louis Cathedral, the Garden District and the French Quarter
- Visit the National WWII Museum, dedicated to the victory by the Allies in World War II
- See the world’s largest fleet of carnival floats and learn about their making at Mardi Gras World
- Enjoy dinner and fun at the New Orleans School of Cooking featuring traditional cuisine
- See two Pre-Mardi Gras parades from reserved seating along the parade route
- Spend 2 nights at the fabulous Beau Rivage Resort & Casino located on the shores of the Gulf of Mexico
- Visit the Beauvoir Estate, the historic post-war home of President Jefferson Davis
- Tour the beautiful Bellingrath Gardens and Home, featuring 65 acres of year-round floral pageantry
- Farewell dinner at the Beau Rivage Casino Resort
$30 in Mayflower Money
Day One — Arrive in New Orleans
Welcome to New Orleans, Louisiana, America’s jazz capital. Meet your Tour Manager in the hotel Lobby at 6:00 p.m. for a transfer to our welcome dinner and cooking demonstration at the New Orleans School of Cooking. Located in a renovated molasses warehouse in the heart of the French Quarter, you will learn the basics of Louisiana cooking from well-known local chefs. Creole/Cajun experts teach New Orleans specialties such as Gumbo, Jambalaya and Pralines, and season them with history, trivia and tall tales. You’ll be treated to a wide range of local classics and get to enjoy them in sumptuous feast. It's a "ga-ron-teed" good time for all. After dinner, feel free to enjoy the French Quarter on your own.
Day Two — New Orleans City Tour and National WWII Museum
We begin with a narrated tour of New Orleans. See the sights you’ve heard about for years such as the historic French Quarter, the beautiful Garden District, the colorful River Walk along the Mississippi and famous Bourbon Street. See New Orleans as the city prepares for the biggest celebration of the year, Mardi Gras, with its colorful costumes, parades and parties. In the afternoon we pay a visit to the National WWII Museum. Designated by Congress as the country's official World War II Museum, this remarkable attraction illuminates the American experience during the WWII era. Celebrate the American Spirit as you experience moving personal stories, historic artifacts and powerful interactive displays. From the Normandy invasion to the sands of Pacific Islands, the Museum salutes the optimism, courage and sacrifice of those who won the war and changed the world.
Day Three — Mardi Gras World and Pre-Mardi Gras Parades
This morning we learn what goes into the making of the Mardi Gras parade floats. Since 1947, the artists of Blaine Kern Studios have been bringing Mardi Gras to life, creating many of the parade floats, from concept through completion. The colors, the lights, the music, the “joie de vivre” is all in one magical place, Mardi Gras World. You’ll get a behind the scenes look at the world’s largest fleet of carnival floats... .everything that goes into making Mardi Gras such an international phenomenon. Later, we will see two Mardi Gras parades from reserved bleacher seats and cheer on the “Krewes” who sponsor the floats. Delight in their ornate costumes and royal courts and try to catch some of the gold, purple and green beads thrown at you from the floats. Be sure to sample Kings Cakes, a traditional Mardi Gras treat!
Day Four — Beauvoir Mansion and The Beau Rivage Resort and Casino
Resting proudly along the gulf coast sits Beauvoir Mansion, the last home of President Jefferson Davis. Built by a wealthy plantation owner the mansion was completed in 1852 and Davis purchased it a number of years later to pen his Civil War memoirs. Today, the home houses Davis’ Presidential Library as well as the Beauvoir Confederate Cemetery which contains 771 graves of Confederate veterans and their wives. Next, we arrive at the fabulous Beau Rivage Resort and Casino, a waterfront resort which means "beautiful shore" in French. Enjoy two glorious nights at this luxurious retreat where you can shop in the Promenade, dine in the many restaurants providing a variety of local and international cuisine, enjoy entertainment or intimate nightclub gigs. You can also put Lady Luck on your side in the casino with table games, video poker and 2,100 slot machines.
Day Five — The Beautiful Bellingrath Gardens
Today we visit Bellingrath Gardens, one of the South’s most beautiful gardens. See why this delightful garden was named the 2004 Top Public Rose Garden by the All-America Rose Selections. Experience the Bayou Boardwalk, marvel at Mirror Lake and the Asian-American Gardens. Tour the Bellingrath Home, with its original furnishings and decorative arts. Built in 1935, the 10,500 square foot home was designed by prominent architect, George B. Rogers in a style he called “English Renaissance.” Later, we return to The Beau Rivage for a sumptuous farewell dinner.
Breakfast and dinner
Day Six — Travel Home
After breakfast, we travel to New Orleans on a group transfer at 8:00 a.m. for flights out after 12:00 p.m.
Days One through Three
Wyndham French Quarter, New Orleans, Louisiana
Days Four and Five
Beau Rivage Resort & Casino, Biloxi, Mississippi
Call for air rates and schedules from your city to and from New Orleans
Rooms for the night before the tour are available. Cost for a room in New Orleans is $299, tax included.