Five Unusual Things to do in New Orleans

In Louisiana, New Orleans is the place to go to experience a city that truly captures the essence of Louisiana’s culture and history. You’ll find jazz music at the corner of every street, epic gumbo festivals, tons of museums, haunted cemeteries, and of course, Mardi Gras.

But not everyone wants to check out the usual spots, or maybe they aren’t a fan of the crowds that usually populate local favorites. Thanks to Louisiana Travel, here is a list of unusual things to do in New Orleans.

Located in one of New Orleans’ oldest neighborhoods, you’ll find an arrangement of artist shacks and tiny homes, all built with recycled materials. If you go inside one of these shacks, you’ll find an assortment of handmade musical instruments built into the building themselves.

Their website states “The Music Box Village is a place where play, imagination, experimentation, collaboration, community and hard work come together as a whimsical village of artist-made interactive “musical houses.” Each installation is inspired by the unique musical and architectural culture of our home city of New Orleans, and represents a collaborative process between artists based here and abroad. Our one-of-a-kind art site hosts intensive artist residencies, performances, panels, and welcomes visitors for exploration and play.”

Established in 1772, this shop is named for Pierre Lafitte, a blacksmith and a brother of Jean Lafitte, a pirate, and hero of the Battle of New Orleans. The brothers used their shop to plan their many exploits. In the 1940s, the shop became a popular cafe with local artists.

Their website claims Lafitte’s Blacksmith Shop to be “a gumbo of truth and French, Spanish, African, Cajun and American embellishments.”

So make sure to stop by and soak up some history when you’re in the French Quarter.

Have you ever been curious about Voodoo and its roots? If so, make sure to stop by this museum!

At the Historic Voodoo Museum, you will learn about the real history of Voodoo and experience Voodoo related artifacts and objects. The museum was founded in 1972 as a designated place for all things Voodoo to live. They claim they took “all the mysteries, the secrets, the history, and the folklores of rituals, zombies, of gris-gris, of Voodoo Queens and all that jazz, and put it all in one place at the heart of the New Orleans French Quarter.”

This warehouse-converted-art gallery features 35,000 feet of gallery space and is home to the up-and-coming artist Brandan “Bmike” Odums. Contrary to tradtional canvases, Odums paints powerful and hopeful murals on exterior and interior walls.

“Studio Be features “Ephemeral Eternal,” his first solo exhibition that includes over a dozen original murals, several room-sized installations, and reconstructed murals salvaged from #ProjectBe before the Florida Housing Development’s demolition in 2014. The studio is open to the public 4 days a week, and welcomes hundreds of visitors from near and far weekly.”

Located in the historic Tremé neighborhood, this museum is the only one of its kind in the world. Dedicated to the contributions of the city’s African Americans to New Orleans culture, the museum has become a collection of priceless artifacts from Mardi Gras Indians and jazz funerals, and has archived images of more than 500 related cultural events.

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Museums With Intriguing Architecture

Museums are known for the treasures they hold within, but what about the outside? The saying is, “Don’t judge a book by its cover” but what if the outside is what draws you in. However, designing an architectural pleasing building can be quite difficult, especially when it is a museum. There needs to be space to preserve artwork, space for the public, space for staff members, and of course places to store archives. National Geographic has put together a slideshow of Modern Marvels: Museums with Spectacular Architecture.

Guggenheim Museum, Spain

The Guggenheim Bilbao Museum located in Spain, and known for its intriguing architecture, consists of three different levels. All containing contemporary and modern art. Curtain walls that are made up of glass connects the inside space to the outside space. Designed by the architect Frank Gehry, the building is mostly made up of curves that define the way it is shaped.  The building was built using titanium and the way it is curved, it catches the light in a unique way. Making it not only a place that houses art, but art itself.

Heydar Aliyev Center, Azerbaijan

Zaha Hadid, the Iraqi-British architect, designed the Heydar Aliyev Center. The building itself holds an auditorium, a museum, nine floors of exhibition halls, and is an exquisite example of beautiful architecture. This museum was created to help preserve the work and life of the nation’s former president Heydar Aliyev. It was also created to help preserve Azerbaijan’s history. The three floor, interactive museum gives visitors an amazing view into its’ heritage.

Museo De La Memoria De Andalucía, Spain

The museum offers its visitors the opportunity to understand the history of Spain, going as far as prehistoric times. This museum, designed by Alberto Campo Baeza, has a circular courtyard that the museum circles. Made up of three floors, a ramp connects all of them together. Beautiful and sleek, the perfect building to display Spain’s history.

Guggenheim Museum, U.S.

Solomon R, Guggenheim Museum located in New York was designed by Frank Lloyd Wright and was opened in 1959. Sadly, he died six months before the grand opening. This museum is actually the oldest one that was placed on the list. This building was one of the first museums to be built in an artistic style. Becoming the spearhead for all of the modern day museums to follow. Even though it has had to close a few times for repairs, this museums us still on of the best architectural museums out there.

Heart Herning Museum of Contemporary Art, Denmark

This Demark museum was actually designed by an American, Steven Holl. Using music and visual art, this museum strives to present contemporary art. The museum opened its’ doors in 2009 and houses: a restaurant, an auditorium, exhibition galleries, and even a media library. The roof actually looks like shirt sleeves if you are viewing it from above. What an interesting display of architecture for visitors to experience.

Click here to view all of the amazing museums that are just as breathtaking on the outside as they are on the inside.

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The Best Museums in Each State

Trying to escape the summer heat? Museums are the perfect go to for day trips or even for a whole vacation. What about a road trip that stops at the coolest ones in eachstate? The Discoverer Blog has a list of the Coolest Museum in Each State. We are here to share 8 of them!

Colorado

Located in Denver, the Denver Art Museum is one of the largest in the west. The outside alone is enough to draw visitors. However, the inside is filled with traveling collections, Western art, and contemporary pieces. The Denver Art Museum could be classified as an encyclopedia that holds many different types of artistic expression. They even have hand-dyed Native American blankets.

Georgia

World of Coca-Cola is located in Atlanta and is interactive. Not only does the museum contain the vault that holds Coke’s famous secret formula, but there is a tasting room where its visitors can try samples of Coca-Cola. Over 100 different samples! There is a 4D theatre and there is even a pop culture gallery.

Kansas

Wichita’s museum, the Museum of World Treasures, is the perfect museum to spend an entire day at. There are three floors of over 30,000 different artifacts. There is a little something for everyone. There is a Sea Creatures of the Plains exhibit that displays a giant prehistoric sea creature called the Xiphactinus fish.

Minnesota

Taking a huge leap and being the “leading exhibition of modern art”, the Walker Art Center is located in Minneapolis. This museum is also known for its architecture. The array of modern art exhibits located within the museum is amazing. The sculpture garden holds the “Spoonbridge and Cherry” sculpture.

Montana

The Museum of the Rockies is actually a Smithsonian affiliate. Located in Bozeman, this museum is famous for its Siebel DInosaur Complex, which holds the most fossils of T. Rex in the world. If you are looking for a Museum that explores the Montana Landscape, this is the perfect stop. Learn about the history of Yellowstone and geysers.

Ohio

What about a music museum? The Rock & Roll Hall of Fame, located in Cleveland, is perfect for those rock and roll lovers. Multiple exhibits display the rock legends who have helped create music to be what it is today. David Bowie, Elvis and the Beatles are just a few. Visit to see artifacts and costumes from artist who have truly made rock and roll what it is.

South Dakota

The Mammoth Site and Museum was discovered when a housing development was leveling the grounds. In 1974, a 7-foot tusk was found and the excavation began. The museum was created a year after the original find. There are 3 wooly mammoths that have been uncovered and visitors can actually watch the excavation happen. It is believed that there could still be over 1,000 bones and fragments that actually are still buried in the sink hole.

Tennessee

Located in Memphis, the National Civil Rights Museum is housed in the Lorraine Motel, which was where Martin Luther KIng Jr. was shot. It includes personal accounts of people who experienced the movement and there are even exhibits that focus on Jim Crow laws. Visitors can even tour a bus, a vintage one, and listen to the interaction between Rosa Parks and a public transit worker.

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