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New Orleans: A Travel Guide for Darklings

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New Orleans is a city famous for its exuberant nightlife and breathtaking architecture, however it also has a rich history steeped in the macabre and supernatural. The French Quarter is the city’s oldest section, and it has a long-standing reputation for being haunted by ghosts, vampires, and witches alike. Anyone drawn to the darkness will find something to satisfy their morbid tastes in the Crescent City. Here is a list of the top selections for darkling visitors to this bewitching location in Louisiana!

Museums

Museum of Death

Photo by Museum of Death

Fans of the macabre can relish in the delights of seeing antique mortuary equipment, graphic crime scene photos, and other death paraphernalia at the Museum of Death seven days a week! From displays of cannibalism to John Wayne Gacy’s artwork, this museum’s got everything that your little black heart may desire – provided that you can handle that intense level of gore. Admission is $15 per person, and the museum is run as a self-guided tour. Museum of Death // 227 Dauphine St.

Historic Voodoo Museum

Photo by Jennifer Boyer

Located in the heart of the beautiful French Quarter, the Historic Voodoo Museum is the place to be for those interested in learning more about New Orleans’ magical history and voodoo culture. It is open seven days a week and crammed into a tiny space consisting of only two rooms. The museum has a large plethora of offerings and activities to choose from, including cemetery tours plus on-site readings by a voodoo priest. Historic Voodoo Museum // 724 Dumaine St.

Shops

Reverend Zombie’s House of Voodoo

Photo by Nick Sherman

This quirky shop caters to curious tourists looking for fun souvenirs as well as to advanced occult practitioners. Reverend Zombie’s House of Voodoo has a large assortment of talismans, potions, and magical herbs available for sale, but the best part is their selection of voodoo dolls to suit your every need. The shop also has a variety of memorabilia and artifacts related to Marie Laveau as well as some altars dedicated to Voodoo deities. Reverend Zombie’s House of Voodoo // 723 St Peter St.

Erzulie’s Authentic Voodoo

Photo by Erzulie’s

This shop, named after the Voodoo goddess of passion and prosperity, has a number of working altars throughout its space. Erzulie’s is the place to go if you are in need of spiritual guidance or are looking for a potion to add a little spice to your love life! The staff is specially trained in assisting customers with their problems and are happy to help you in selecting the right spell for your needs. Erzulie’s // 807 Rue Royal

Boutique du Vampyre

Children of the Night ought to feel right at home here! Boutique du Vampyre is the ideal location for all bloodsucking fiends and mortals as well. This little store is tucked away behind a very unassuming door in the French Quarter; inside you will find many vampiric relics and books dedicated to the undead along with a great selection of wines. Anne Rice has even been known to auction off signed copies of her work at this boutique to support the owner’s canine rescue organization. Boutique du Vampyre // 709 St Ann St.

Cemeteries

St. Louis #1 Cemetery

Photo by Sara Kelly

Established in 1789, St. Louis No. 1 is the oldest and best-known cemetery in the Crescent City. This lovely location has been the designated resting place for many notable families over the centuries and houses thousands of other graves. Known as the City of the Dead, the whole cemetery only takes up one city block! Famed Voodoo queen Marie Laveau is rumored to also be interred at this cemetery; visitors from across the world come to see her alleged plot and bring offerings in hopes she will grant their wishes from the beyond. Unfortunately, the cemetery is no longer open to the public after repeated acts of vandalism, but nonprofit organization Save Our Cemeteries frequently offers walking tours of the site. Save Our Cemeteries Organization // 425 Basin St.

Lafayette Cemetery

Photo by Peyton Stanton

Found in the historic Garden District, Lafayette Cemetery is one of New Orleans’ largest cemeteries. However, the location is best known for having been featured in films and television shows like The Originals, as well as having influenced Anne Rice’s work. The writer even staged a jazz funeral for herself to coincide with the release of one of her novels. Here you can also find the cast iron tomb that inspired the creation of Lestat’s tomb for the Interview With a Vampire film adaptation. Save Our Cemeteries Organization // 1416-1498 Washington Ave.

Haunts

Jean Lafitte’s Old Absinthe House

Photo by Martin Pilát

Standing on the corner of Rue Bourbon and Rue Bienville is Jean Lafitte’s Old Absinthe House, one of the oldest bars in New Orleans. This bar is known for having the best absinthe frappes around, yet it also is notorious for having been frequented by many famous people over the centuries. Stepping into this bar feels like traveling back in time to the 19th century thanks to its well-preserved nature and clustered, dark feel. Rue Bourbon, LLC // 240 Bourbon St.

The Séance Lounge

Photo by Muriel’s

The Séance Lounge can be found on the second floor of Muriel’s in Jackson Square. This is a room specially allocated for interacting with the spirits that reside at this property. The restaurant sets aside a table every night for the ghost of Mr. Jourdan and welcomes patrons to dine with the dead. Elaborately decorated in rich fabrics and deep hues of red, the lounge itself evokes a strong Victorian vibe. Despite its frequently reported ghost activity, the restaurant assures visitors that they mean no harm. Muriel’s Jackson Square // 801 Chartres St.

Featured image via Lee Adlaf.

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About The Author

Delie Kapetanovic is a strange woman with a deep passion for the macabre and unusual. She is an avid book collector and fancies herself a witch. When her nose isn’t buried in a book, she spends her time speaking in tongues, casting spells and worshipping the moon with her kitten, Villain.

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