For families that include little girls who love horses, parents fascinated by history, or kids who just don’t want to walk any more, a carriage ride through the French Quarter in the heart of New Orleans is a nice way to meet the desires of everyone.
We took a carriage ride while on a cross-country road trip with some of our cousins. There were a total of 7 kids, so we needed an activity that would entertain all of them. The informed carriage drivers are able to customize the tour to the audience, often elaborating on points of interest pertinent to the passengers aboard. This 30-minute ride gives a great overview of the historic and cultural highlights of the French Quarter while allowing you to sit back in 19th century-style comfort.
Some of the most memorable parts of our ride included our mule, Red Bean, seeing the location of the original slave-trading building (a sobering reality-check for our children), and identification of buildings throughout the French Quarter that were older than the Declaration of Independence. Our driver explained to us the difference between the Creole and Cajun people – two groups of Louisiana originals. He also made sense of the conflict that existed in the old city between the Catholics who came to New Orleans from Spain and France and the English who immigrated from England. The architectural differences of the two groups were easily identifiable, even by the kids, once they knew what to look for.
The cost of the carriage ride was $15 per adult/$8 children. The driver was even kind enough to drop us off at a different destination from where we started, saving us more walking. This was a completely worthwhile spontaneous activity, one that any family would enjoy!