We had a few things we wanted to see in New Orleans but #1 on our list was the National WWII Museum. It’s contained in five separate buildings and was as well done and interesting as we had heard.
They had lots of different ways to see and engage with the information and the kids enjoyed it.
The scope of the war and so many different unbelievable stories is mind-boggling but they did a good job trying to walk through it all.
The war in Europe
The exhibit led you through time of what was happening and did an great job walking you through the changing landscapes and seasons as the Allies made their way into Germany.
And the war in the Pacific
The exhibit started on Navy battleships and aircraft carriers before heading into the jungles
Another exhibit showed what life was like back home in the US with food rations and news from the family radio
It talked about the factories and industry that sprung up as we fought to catch up from having the 19th largest military at the time (smaller than Portugal!) to fighting two major and separate wars against incredible adversaries.
After a day and a half at the WWII Museum we branched out to the other sites of New Orleans.
Beignets in the French Quarter – we tried them at both Cafe du Monde and Cafe Beignet and decided Cafe Beignet is slightly better with a way shorter line!
Cool shops along the streets
We went to The Presbytery which had a Hurricane Katrina exhibit and one for Mardi Gras. The Katrina exhibit was well done and gave a good recap of what this devastating event was like. The Mardi Gras exhibit fell short of what it could be in my opinion and we sped through it pretty quickly.
We hit the Gumbo Shop for a late lunch and thankfully during a home game for the New Orleans Saints. The lines at many restaurants wrapped around the block breakfast, lunch and dinner and the Gumbo Shop had a line out the door by the time we left so we felt incredibly lucky with our 10 min wait even if we did squeeze 7 people into 4 chairs. We tried shrimp creole, red beans and rice, jambalaya, grilled boudin with spicy mustard and chicken andouille gumbo. It was all very good and almost everyone had a different favorite dish.
It is hard to believe how good most of the city has recovered 12 years after Katrina – the culture and unique style come through strongly and it’s easy to see why the people are proud of this place.