On a recent road trip traveling from Texas Hill Country to Vero Beach, Florida, Eddie (my husband) and I broke up our drive by spending a night in Baton Rouge, Louisiana. I was eager to see the Louisiana state capitol as well as explore the local culture in this college town.
We arrived at the Hotel Indigo Baton Rouge Downtown Riverfront, which is in the best part of town at the corner of Convention and Lafayette Street. The Hotel Indigo offered valet parking, which I highly recommend due to the congested streets and traffic. Our check-in was quick, easy, and we were welcomed by incredibly friendly staff. Hotel Indigo’s lobby was beautiful and King Bar and Bistro, their onsite farm-to-table restaurant, was bustling with patrons. I immediately liked this hotel! Best of all, the Hotel Indigo is pet-friendly to those with pets under 75 pounds.
Our room was tastefully decorated with nice fabrics and a contemporary style. Though the room was small, it fit our needs perfectly. Hardwood floors and colorful rugs were nice choices to highlight the furniture and decor. Our bed was comfortable and fitted with several pillows, a big plus in my book. The room also provided a nice view of Baton Rouge.
Exploring Downtown Baton Rouge
Eddie and I strolled around town a bit and checked out the local sites. We came upon a weekend street party that featured live entertainment by Mingo Fishtrap. A large crowd was gathered there, enjoying the music and festivities. Open containers are allowed on the streets of Baton Rouge, so that added to our enjoyment as we tried frozen Bushwhacker and Pineapple Painkiller cocktails from Lucy’s Retired Surfers Bar & Restaurant. Another cool thing was seeing kids splashing in fountains outside of Repentance Park, Baton Rouge’s first step in linking open green space between the city’s neighborhoods and the Mississippi River.
For dinner, Eddie and I took a local’s restaurant recommendation, which turned out to be uneventful. We ended up at the Capital City Grill and dined outside for optimal people watching. Our service left a lot to be desired and the food was average at best; perhaps it was just the dishes that we chose. I could have kicked myself for not selecting a traditional Louisiana dish, something like shrimp and grits or red beans and rice. Eddie had the Hushpuppies for a starter and the Pecan Chicken Salad, which was much tastier than my Southwestern Pasta.
After dinner, we walked the moss covered, tree-lined streets to the gorgeous gothic inspired castle known as Old State Capitol. The Old State Capitol sits atop a bright green hill and looks like a stately mini-castle. It is so pretty! We also passed the River Center and USS Kidd along the way. Baton Rouge definitely has some interesting and unique architecture.
Breakfast Dishes and Doses of History
The next morning, Eddie and I awoke with an appetite, and this time I was trusting my travel blogger skills to pick our breakfast location. My instinct paid off as we had what will probably be one of the best meals I ate in 2016 at a little place called Christina’s. Christina’s Restaurant was in walking distance, but it is a jaunt. Be sure to walk in the shade as much as possible because Baton Rouge is freaking hot!
We arrived at Christina’s and entered a typical looking retro cafe serving home style cooking. The daily specials are written on a dry erase board; do not miss these options. I chose the Shrimp and Cream Cheese Omelet, which sounded so interring with sautéed shrimp, green onions, and a fantastic house cream cheese sauce. Oh my, it was epic! The green onions and the rich cream sauce really dazzled my palate.
Eddie chose a Pancake, Scrambled Eggs, Bacon, and Grits. He loved every bit and raved about their homemade biscuits. Christina’s lunch menu looked just as wonderful and attractive as the breakfast menu. Bonus: Breakfast is served all day.
Baton Rouge Checked Off the Bucket List
Before saying adieu to this awesome city, we drove over to the Louisiana State Capitol to admire its art, architecture, and impressive sculptures. If you have not visited the state capitol, I encourage you to stop by and pay homage to this jewel.
My next trip to Baton Rouge will definitely include a trip to the Louisiana Art & Science Museum, Planetarium, and a walk through LSU would be amazing. For now, I leave the city happy that I got to explore something new and beautiful. Have you ever been to Baton Rouge?
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