Only in New Orleans does a bike tour shop retrofit several of its cruisers with moveable drink holders— the ones you might find swaying back and forth on a small fishing boat! But there they are, in front of a park in the Marigny, a bunch of shiny fat-tired cruiser bikes gussied up with boat cup-holders and big wire baskets filled with pink helmets, water bottles, and Zapp’s potato chips. This must be the one and only Laissez Le Bon Temps Roulez cocktail bike tour of the city ready to embark for a boozy cruise around the heart of the Quarter.
The friendly and capable Confederacy of Cruisers folks offer this tour during the week; if you don’t drink they have plenty of other bike tours to choose from including a Creole history tour and Ninth Ward Rebirth Bike Tours. If you do drink, and if you are an experienced bike rider, the cocktail cruiser tour is one of the most extraordinary mornings you will spend on a bike, anywhere!
Beginning at Washington Square Park, the very hip tour guide, who is also a bartendress at a hip dive bar, greets you with plastic cups of strong, unblended daiquiris before launching your group on a multi-stop 3-hour rolling tour that is both educational and daring. Your guide —who uncannily rides her bike one-handed with a full cup in the other hand — is both enthusiastic and knowledgeable about booze. She condenses a complicated history starting with audacious French-Caribbean pirates smuggling run, transitioning to New Orleans’ restaurants flagrant disregard for Prohibition, and finishes up discussing the current influx of new cocktail-oriented dining spots making a name for themselves all around town. She weaves her tale as you zigzag your way around the French Quarter drinking on a bike. Pretty awesome!
The tour stops at some iconic local bars (not tourist traps) and you may need to pace yourself: the streets are bumpy and narrow; pedestrians are a bit groggy from the previous night’s adventures; and the pours are generous. You’ll make stops at establishments such as Finnegan’s Easy for local beer, the iconic Napoleon House for classic Pimm’s cups, the classy Roosevelt Hotel Sazerac Bar for a Sazerac or Ramos Gin Fizz, and the popular Erin Rose bar for delicious frozen Irish Coffee.
The tour launches from the Marigny area every Monday, Thursday, and Friday at 10:15 am (no Thursdays during the summer). Call 504-400-5468 to make reservations.