A Travellerspoint blog

Audubon's Fish

Aquarium of the Americas

semi-overcast 1 °C
View Summer, 9-11-2001 - and then the 2nd time down the ICW & Bermuda on greatgrandmaR's travel map.

Tuesday 14 December 2004 - A Cold Day at the Aquarium

I'm certainly glad we got most of the boat stuff done yesterday because it is really cold today. We are in no hurry to go out. I spend the morning on administrative matters. We found that old folks (i.e. with a Medicare card) can ride the streetcars and buses for 40 cents with a free transfer. So we decided not to get another 3 day pass (we didn't use ours at all yesterday on our 3rd day)
Street Car Conductor Bundled Up Against Cold

Street Car Conductor Bundled Up Against Cold


We get the streetcar down to the water front and went to the Aquarium - I figure it will be warm in there.
Aquarium from the River

Aquarium from the River


The Aquarium in New Orleans is part of the Audubon Nature Institute which includes the Audubon Zoo, Audubon Aquarium of the Americas and Audubon Butterfly Garden and Insectarium. The Aquarium is down on the river at the end of Canal Street in the Woldenberg Riverfront Park, but the Zoo is 20 minutes away up in the Garden District. The J.J. Audubon boat that we saw on the river on the way to Chalmette goes from the Aquarium area to the Zoo.
J. J. Audubon on the way to the zoo from the River Boat

J. J. Audubon on the way to the zoo from the River Boat


It is about 11 and Bob is thinking about lunch, but I've just had breakfast (raisin cinnamon bread and cranberry juice from the market).
Woldenberg Riverfront Park and Imax Sign on the waterfront

Woldenberg Riverfront Park and Imax Sign on the waterfront


This park surrounds the aquarium. It was named for Malcolm Woldenberg and his bronze statue is one exhibit in what has grown into an informal sculpture garden. The park is a nice place to stroll or jog along the river in nice weather. It was way to cold when we were there to do that.

We went to the IMAX first and see a movie about dolphins. Bob says it is a very expensive movie - it's $6 each and takes about 40 minutes. It was mostly about wild dolphins. They talked about the dolphins relationship with humans, including a guy who visits with a wild dolphin every day in the Bahamas. They didn't emphasize the abuses that dolphins are subjected to in the dolphin swim places as much as I thought they might have done.

I've been to several IMAX shows in different places. Generally, I think the IMAX is kind of a waste of money unless you want to sit down somewhere inside. I also think the shows are not appropriate (in length or content) for pre-school children.

In one of the reviews of the aquarium that I read it said that there was a gift shop around every corner, but I actually only saw two - one was at the IMAX theatre and the other one at the aquarium proper. Normally you can go into the gift shop WITHOUT going to the attraction, and that is the case here as well. The items on display include cookbooks, stuffed toys and other children's play items.
gift shop

gift shop

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When we enter the aquarium and it is almost 1 p.m. There was a large metal sculpture at the entrance with water running down it - I'm sure it was meant to represent fish scales, but it looked more like breasts to me because there was a kind of round bolt type thing at the bottom of each one.Fish scales or breasts?

Fish scales or breasts?


We went through the Caribbean sea tunnel to get to the elevator rather than walk up the stairs to go up to the food court.
Papa John's counter

Papa John's counter


The food court has ice cream, Papa Johns and Burger King. We ate looking out over the river which was very muddy looking with whitecaps and the current whorls.
Muddy River

Muddy River


There were some homeless-looking men sitting on the benches outside taking their shoes off an inspecting their feet.
Homeless or Vagrants Huddled in the Sun

Homeless or Vagrants Huddled in the Sun


There's no map of this place except on the wall.
Map on the wall

Map on the wall


There are several places in New Orleans where the photographer has to deal with reflections off of glass. One is the Aquarium, where you can't use flash without getting hot spots in the picture. In first Aquarium picture, I tried to avoid the reflections in the glass by shooting from over the top of the tank, and I still got reflections on top of the water.
Sea Turtle in Aquarium

Sea Turtle in Aquarium


In the last one, I got my own reflection in the tank.
Accidental reflection of me in the tank side

Accidental reflection of me in the tank side


Coral

Coral

coral and fish

coral and fish


large_677134562187278-Battling_Ref..ew_Orleans.jpglarge_486391442187276-Battling_Ref..ew_Orleans.jpg
fish among weeds

fish among weeds

Sea Anenomes

Sea Anenomes

Sea urchins

Sea urchins

Basket Stars

Basket Stars


They had a lot of nice sea horses,
Seahorse Exhibit

Seahorse Exhibit

seahorse

seahorse

leaf fish

leaf fish

Sargasso seahorse

Sargasso seahorse


a large collection of jellyfish,
Jellyfish

Jellyfish

jellyfish

jellyfish


and a shark pool which included a sawfish.
Model sharks

Model sharks

Shark tank

Shark tank


Shark

Shark

Sharks

Sharks


Sawfish

Sawfish


Bob in front of the Gulf tank

Bob in front of the Gulf tank


Spotted sting ray

Spotted sting ray

Sting Ray

Sting Ray


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There were also some huge catfish.
large_n100_3945.JPGCatfish

Catfish


I saw penguin try repeatedly to swim out the side of the tank just kept butting his head into the glass.
Penguin tank

Penguin tank


penguin

penguin


There was a place you could touch a shark skin (live nurse shark),
Nurse shark

Nurse shark


and sea otters in a pacific coast area. There was also a Mississippi delta area with their famous white alligator (cream with blue eyes so not albino).
White Alligator

White Alligator


The Amazon Rainforest area was hot and they had a lot of steam/mist machines making it very humid.
Humidity

Humidity

sign about piranhas

sign about piranhas


Bob said it was an imitation of the National Aquarium in Baltimore. I don't know why the fish in the water would care if it was humid. The only birds I saw were a seagull,
shore bird

shore bird


steps in aviary

steps in aviary


a great horned owl, and a two scarlet macaws and some blue ones.
Macaws

Macaws

Macaws

Macaws


When we got out of the aquarium, it was about 3.
Train next to Streetcar Track

Train next to Streetcar Track


A real train went by. It whistled so loud I thought it would make me deaf.
Train by the Aquarium

Train by the Aquarium


I wanted to take the Vieux Carre loop bus around the French Quarter, so we went over and stood opposite Harrah's where it was supposed to stop, but we waited 45 minutes in the cold and it never came.
Harrah's from across the street

Harrah's from across the street


So we went back to the Riverfront streetcar (using our free transfers), and went over to Jackson Square to the visitor's center.
Balcony with flowers

Balcony with flowers

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Mule carriage

Mule carriage


This carriage was being used for some kind of movie or video. There are a line of people across the street standing by the wall just visible on the right. The traffic is being held up while they are filming. They are filming where a guy and a girl go running across to get in the carriage. It apparently is supposed to be hot weather (although it was QUITE cold), and the boy was wearing a jacket when he did it the first time, so he had to remove the jacket and they had to shoot it all over again.
Mule drawn carriage near Jackson Square

Mule drawn carriage near Jackson Square


Film crew

Film crew


The Presbytere, matches the Cabildo (Town Hall) on the other side of the St. Louis Cathedral. Originally it was called the Casa Curial (Ecclesiastical House) because it was built on the site of the residence, or "presbytere", of the Capuchin monks c 1791. In 1834, it became a courthouse and the mansard roof was added in 1847. The Prebytere was used as a courthouse until 1911 when it became part of the Louisiana State Museum. The Museum operates five properties in the famous French Quarter: the Cabildo, Presbytere, 1850 House, Old U.S. Mint and Madame John's Legacy. We only saw these museums from the outside. I understand that inside, is exibited the story of the Mardi Gras - told in a high-tech, interactive, permanent exhibition including the five major themes of the celebration: History, Masking, Parades, Balls, and the Courir du Mardi Gras.
Presbytere

Presbytere


At the Visitor's Center we got a map to Louisiana (I've got one of New Orleans but I neglected to get one of Louisiana), and then we walked around Jackson Square (I wanted to go in the Cathedral, but Bob did not)
Fence around the square

Fence around the square

The front of St. Louis Cathedral near evening

The front of St. Louis Cathedral near evening

St. Louis Cathedral and Jackson Square

St. Louis Cathedral and Jackson Square


Iron Gates to Jackson Statue

Iron Gates to Jackson Statue


Street in the French Quarter

Street in the French Quarter


to the National Jean Lafitte National Historic Park - French Quarter Unit visitor's center and I got my National Park passport stamped - I didn't have it with me for the Battlefield tour because I didn't realize that it was a Federal site. We took the streetcar back (another 40 cents each)
Courtyard of the headquarters - Jean Lafitte National Historic Park - French Quarter Unit

Courtyard of the headquarters - Jean Lafitte National Historic Park - French Quarter Unit


There are six parts to the Jean Lafitte National Park. Five of the parts are outside New Orleans, but the sixth part is right in the French Quarter. They have exhibits there including a video tape and offer Special Programs - Such as
9:30 a.m. French Quarter Tour: 25 person limit, first-come, first-served. Passes, limited to one per person, must be picked up in person on day of the tour. 90 minutes in length. One mile of walking.
11:30 a.m. History of New Orleans Stroll: This 45-minute ranger led lesson in local history visits the Mississippi River and Jackson Square. Beginning at 9:00 a.m., 25 free tickets available on a first-come, first served basis; each person wanting a ticket must be present. One of the things that the Visitor's Center has is a place to sit down and watch a film on New Orleans history. It is a place to rest your feet out of the weather - in our case, the weather was cold, but it would work if the weather was hot also.
de Bienville Statue

de Bienville Statue

Cigar Factory Sign on the street

Cigar Factory Sign on the street

Street Scene

Street Scene


It was freezing, so we couldn't go very far to get dinner.
Neutral Ground at night

Neutral Ground at night


Billboards opposite our hotel at night

Billboards opposite our hotel at night

Roosevelt Bar sign (former name of Fairmont)

Roosevelt Bar sign (former name of Fairmont)


We walked into the Fairmont, which was all decorated for Xmas (including a Santa station, and a bear's house),
Bob walking under the Fairmont's decorated ceiling

Bob walking under the Fairmont's decorated ceiling

Bears gingerbread house display

Bears gingerbread house display


but it was too fancy for us with Bob in a stained old blue jacket. So we went across the street to the Indian restaurant.
entrance to Indian restaurant

entrance to Indian restaurant


Lunch specials listed on the wall

Lunch specials listed on the wall

Inside of the restaurant

Inside of the restaurant


I had chicken and spinach curry - it was a bit too hot because I forgot to tell them mild, and nan bread, which was good.
blurred photo of nan bread

blurred photo of nan bread


Bob had the Tandori chicken. We both had chaii tea to drink. I had an Indian rice pudding (more milky than normal rice pudding, but good)
Indian Rice Pudding

Indian Rice Pudding


and Bob had a dessert which he described as like hush puppies in sweet sauce.
Bob's desert

Bob's desert


It was $39.74 before the tip. Bob doesn't really like Indian cooking, although he had liked it in England. (We neither of us could remember what we had in England.)
Indian restaurant bill

Indian restaurant bill

Posted by greatgrandmaR 05:27 Archived in USA

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