Day by day, the St. Charles Streetcar whirrs and clanks down the tracks, pervading the soundscape of Uptown New Orleans just steps from Southern Comfort Bed & Breakfast. Like the New York City subway, the streetcar’s distinct rumble and brakes can be heard from several blocks away. The oldest operating rail system in the country, this line of historic, green streetcars is an iconic piece of New Orleans’ colorful backdrop.
The line begins at S. Carrollton and Claiborne avenues at the front of Palmer Park, home of the monthly Arts Market. Traveling up Carrollton’s tree-lined neutral ground, streetcar riders pass a number of large, classic homes. Carrollton Station, a streetcar barn where the “Green Ladies” go to rest, is nestled just passed the crisscrossed tracks at Willow St. Beyond Willow stretches a more commercially condensed strip of shops and restaurants, with menu fare from all corners of the globe—Mexican, Lebanese, Thai, Vietnamese, Japanese, Italian, Creole, classic American, and everything in between.
At the edge of Carrollton, the streetcar line turns onto St. Charles Ave in a neighborhood known as the Riverbend, named for its curvature parallel to the Mississippi River levee. More beautiful, oak-lined streets give way to the stoic, historical structures of Tulane and Loyola Universities, with the luscious, inviting greenery of Audubon Park across the street.