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Mother/daughter first trip - need suggestions

Caroline | Mar 7, 200403:36 PM

My 77 year old mother and I are booked 4 nights on the American Queen and 3 nights in New Orleans. I've never been. She's been, and loved it. The package that we're on gives us vouchers for food and attractions. The attractions that sound good are the Royal Carriage Tours (is that horse-drawn, if so how long is trip?) and there's a couple cooking school tours. They have 30 attractions to choose from. Are the ones I mentioned good ones? I'm also interested in doing a jet boat to the swamps. Any other suggestions would be greatly appreciated.
The choices for restaurants are:
Antoines, Arnaud's, Broussard's, GW Fins, Dickie Brennan's Steakhouse, Bourbon House Seafood, Palace Cafe, Mr. B's Bistro, Court of Two Sisters, Emeril's, Emeril's Delmonico, NOLA, Palm Court Jazz Cafe, Muriel's Jackson Square, Restaurant August, Mulate's Original Cajun Restaurant, Michaul's Live Cajun Music Restaurant, Copeland's Cheesecake Bistro, Copeland's of New Orleans, Tujague's, Gray Line Crescent City Dinner Tour.
Okay, so if you're still with me - What would be the top 3 best choices for restaurants? Looking for local cuisine and terrific atmosphere (jazz music?).
My mother says it's not safe to be out at night (she says, "Everybody's drunk!" - Ahhh... she loves it). My husband (who's been), say's night time is the best time to be out. I'm leaning towards his advice.
The other thing I'm curious about is this soft-shelled crab thing. We live in the Pacific Northwest, and we take the shell off our crabs. Eating the shell sounds... well... crazy, but I'm willing to give anything a try.
Thanks in advance for any suggestions and advice!
WA state

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