Freshman Favorites from My First Month at Tulane

As a freshman, it’s hard to believe that I’ve already been here for a month. Exactly four weeks ago, I settled into my dorm room, met my roommate for the very first time, and said goodbye to my parents. The adjustment has been hard—much harder than I anticipated—but Tulane and New Orleans are finally starting to feel like home. With this newfound freedom and independence,  I’ve discovered some favorites while exploring the city.

Restaurants

Jazmine Cafe—This cafe is a Vietnamese joint conveniently located along the St. Charles streetcar line. The service is quality and the food is great. Some of my favorite things to order are the tuna spring rolls, fried pork wontons, sesame steak noodle bowl, and the Vietnamese shrimp po-boy. Not only is Jazmine Cafe on Postmates, but they accept Nola bucks too!

Elizabeth’s Restaurant-—Located in the historic Bywater neighborhood, Elizabeth’s is a funky breakfast joint that has been serving up country classics since 1998. Though Elizabeth’s is not within walking distance of campus, it’s the perfect place to have Sunday brunch. Southern staples include praline bacon, fried green tomato benedict, and pecan waffles. Elizabeth’s is by far my favorite breakfast spot in NOLA!

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Shopping

Shop Shake Your Bon Bon—Located on Magazine Street, this boutique offers high-quality women’s clothing including, on-trend apparel, shoes, and accessories. Bon Bon features bohemian brands like For Love and Lemons, Love Shack Fancy, and Free the Roses. My favorites are their lightweight knits and their flirty two-piece sets that are perfect for the Fly!  

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Freda—Located beneath the Ace Hotel, Freda is a lifestyle boutique originally founded in Marfa, Texas. Freda collaborates with makers from Louisiana and beyond on everything from handmade jewelry and clothing to quirky greeting cards. My favorite part about Freda is their aesthetic—whimsical and free-spirited, yet minimalistic at the same time. Freda is the perfect place to window shop or splurge on a Saturday afternoon.

Jean Therapy—Jean Therapy is a specialty clothing boutique well-known for their jean selection and NOLA-inspired apparel. It’s the perfect place to get your game day gear! The store has a carefully curated selection of both local designers and mainstream national brands. In addition to clothing, Jean Therapy offers a wide variety of shoes and accessories at an affordable price. The chain has three locations throughout New Orleans; two of which are on Magazine Street, and one at the Lakeside Mall.

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Activities

The Ace Hotel—Last weekend, my friends and I ventured to the Ace Hotel to swim at the rooftop pool and eat at Alto. Although the Ace, which is located in the Central Business District, is a twenty-minute Uber ride from campus, it was totally worth it. We took advantage of all that the hotel has to offer and spent the whole afternoon soaking up the sun. Disclaimer: there is a $25 access fee for non-hotel guests during the weekend, but weekdays are free!

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Fried Chicken Festival—One of my favorite nights so far was spent at the Fried Chicken Festival, which was held in Woldenberg Park. My friends and I indulged in Southern specialties like chicken and waffles, mac and cheese, and bread pudding. I’m from New York, so I loved trying new Southern foods that I don’t often eat at home. Though the Fried Chicken Festival is no longer running, I can’t wait to scope out the Beignet Festival, which is held in early October, as well as Mac n’ Cheese Fest later on in the month!

Although it’s great to get involved in on-campus clubs and organizations, it’s essential to explore New Orleans and all it has to offer. There are so many fun restaurants, shops, and activities to take advantage of off campus!

COVER PHOTO: Nicole Kaufman

ALL PHOTOS: Facebook

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