This was definitely one of the highlights of our trip to New Orleans! I highly encourage anyone thinking of taking a tour with this group to go ahead and book it. You will not be disappointed!
I had wanted to do this on each of our last few trips to the city, but our traveling friends just weren’t up for it. They SO missed out! About a month before our visit, I made the arrangements for my husband and I to take part in one of the Culinary Bike Tours. From our first email contact to the moment when we waved good-bye at the end of our ride, everything was top notch – professional, yet warm and friendly.
The details – We toured on a Saturday afternoon, meeting in front of Washington Square Park at around 1:00. They provided detailed directions to the spot, and we knew we were in the right place when we saw a whole row of bikes lined up. We were greeted with smiles and felt very comfortable right away. In addition to our guide, there were two other staff members there who checked to see that bikes seats were the right height and helmets fit correctly (you don’t have to wear them, but are strongly encouraged). When all group members arrived (we had a party of 5 join us), we rode around the park just to get the feel of our bikes and our guide gave us a short introduction about what we would be seeing/tasting that day. I am so sorry that I can’t recall her name (I should have written this review much earlier), but she was outstanding…really tried to get a feel for the group and made a real effort to include everyone.
On this particular day, we made four stops – Li'l Dizzy's Café for fried chicken (and etouffe since one of the members of our group asked for it), Liuzza’s Lounge and Grill for an amazing gumbo, Parkway Bakery and Tavern for a Po’ Boy, and finally, a little shop in the Quarter called Melt Down for gourmet popsicles. While your average visitor to NOLA might find their way to Parkway since they are known for their Po’Boys, I doubt that many would visit these other spots without a real insider’s advice. We enjoyed all the stops immensely and appreciated our guide’s knowledge and cheerful personality. It takes a special kind of person to zero in on the interests of the group and make everyone feel a part of the experience, and that’s what this kind of tour is – a real experience, genuine and unique.
A word about money – This 4 hour tour was $85 per person (and worth every penny!) payable in cash or check at the end of the tour. There is no need to worry about money at the various stops; your guide takes care of that. Feel free to order drinks at any of the restaurants, but beware – bike riding on some of these streets can be a bit tricky under the best circumstances. After a few drinks…well, you get the idea! While we did not feel pressured in ANY way, we felt our guide was well-deserving of a generous tip. I don’t think the others in our party did this, but I would think most people would know to do this.
This is an OUTSTANDING company and we look forward to touring with them on our next visit to New Orleans!
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