Family Days Out Blog
familyDaysOut Apr 09, 2019
During Family Days Out time in New Orleans, we visited the Historic Voodoo Museum and St Louis Cemetery No 1 with Island of Algiers Tours, and what an adventure it was.
When we first arrived in New Orleans, we knew that high on our list of places to visit were the Historic Voodoo Museum and St Louis Cemetery No 1, and luckily for us we found Island of Algiers Tours who cater for both.
There is so much history in this incredible city, that it is always an advantage to meet with someone who knows it inside out, and can offer a truly authentic experience. And we met "Nu Awleans" Nate!
Let's start with the Historic Voodoo Museum. This small but charming museum is probably the most authentic interaction with the "voodoo" history you could have in the Big Easy.
Not really suited to the younger children (with human skulls and alligator heads adoring the exhibits), the Historic Voodoo Museum really packs in everything you could want to know about the history of voodoo, and even the connection with West Africa. Much of what we learnt might just surprise you!
Nu Awleans Nate gave us the deluxe tour, and was every bit of charismatic that you would want from a tour guide in the Deep South. He was witty, knowledgable, charming and just drew the attention of everyone who came into the museum.
The exhibits span the origins of voodoo, and what it means to the local culture and heritage, with a number of artifacts focusing on Marie Laveau - the Queen of Voodoo as she is known in the region.
There really are only two exhibit rooms in the museum, but we couldn't fit more in if we tried! There are information sheets next to most of the artifacts, and these really help with understanding it all.
Before you move on, make sure you spend time in the gift shop. From voodoo dolls, to tarot cards and spells, it's almost as interesting as the museum itself! (And you can get your tarot read if the psychic is in!)
Once we were finished in the museum, we began the trek to St Louis Cemetery No 1 on foot, with Nate leading the way, via some key points of interest.
Our first pit stop was the site where Marie Laveau's house once stood (you will find it by the plaque!), and here is a great spot to ask even more questions that you might have on the infamous Marie and her history.
Next stop was Congo Square, an open space that really was instrumental in the history of African American music. Nate explained to us that this was the place where both enslaved and free African Americans gathered during the 19th century, and the drumming and the singing formed the foundations of jazz as we know it today.
Whilst the en route exploration is normally longer, we were pressed for time so we moved straight to St Louis Cemetery No 1 after Congo Square, and what an iconic New Orleans attraction this is.