Endless Bliss | Happy Lifestyle Blog: Be a Tourist in Your Own Town.

Be a Tourist in Your Own Town.

how to be a tourist in your own town
On December 30th, Jon and I celebrated four years together. Some days, I can't believe we've been together that long, and other days, it's so obvious (like when we say the same thing three times in a row). We didn't have a traditional celebration of a fancy dinner or anything like that. Instead, Jon planned the whole day, and he took me to do something that I had been wanting to do for a long time - explore Shreveport! 

I know it's strange that I wanted to explore the city that I've lived in for several years, but there are so many things that I've been wanting to do for a long time that I just haven't had the time to do. Jon took advantage of our free day together, and he planned a day of things to do that have been on my list for awhile. 

One thing that I must admit is that I don't mind being a tourist. Of course, I love to go off the beaten path and discover new things and new places in untraditional ways, but at the same time, if I've never been somewhere before, I love to hit the highlights of the city with my camera around my neck. Even though I've been living in Shreveport for awhile, I still had my tourist shoes on and my camera out. 
Being a tourist in your own town can be a lot of fun! There are always new restaurants and mom and pop shops that shuffle in and out of cities unnoticed. Instead of going to the same places over and over again, explore and discover places that you've never been before. I love going to hole-in-the-wall restaurants and shopping at stores that can't be found in malls. 

The first thing Jon did was feed me. He knows me. He loves me. He knows I have to eat before we do anything. He took me to eat lunch at Herby K's, which is one of the oldest restaurants in Shreveport. It's been around since 1936, and it's the literal definition of a hole-in-the-wall. It's in the middle of nowhere with nothing of substance around it, but apparently, back in the day, the area used to be pretty hoppin'. 

herby k's in shreveport, louisiana
I believe there are two different areas of the restaurant, but the area Jon and I went to was small with just a few booths and a bar area. I have to say that I was a bit disappointed with the service we received. The girl who seated us and took our order wasn't very friendly. Working in the hospitality industry, I guess I expect a little too much. 

We ordered fried pickles for an appetizer, which came with fries. They were really good, albeit a bit salty, and I love salt, so I thought it was strange that I thought it was too salty. 

fried pickles from herby k's in shreveport, louisiana
Jon ordered a burger, and I got a fried oyster sandwich. My sandwich was so good, and Jon pretty much inhaled his burger. Another complaint about the service - I'm an indecisive person, and if I can't decide between two dishes at a restaurant, I'll ask the server for a suggestion. When I ordered my sandwich, she asked if I wanted any sauce. I asked her which one she'd recommend because I didn't see any listed on the menu. All she said was, "It depends on what you like," without giving me any options. It was my first time there, so I didn't know what sauces were available. 

burger from herby k's in shreveport, louisiana

oyster sandwich from herby k's in shreveport, louisiana
With all that being said, the guy who picked up our plates was super nice, and both Jon and I really enjoyed our meals. 

After lunch, we drove to Great Raft Brewing, because we had passed it on the drive to Herby K's, and I had been wanting to take a brewery tour ever since it opened a few years back. While I'm not a beer drinker, I still wanted to take a tour of the brewery. Beer tours are free and are only done on Saturdays. It was interesting to learn about the process of making beer, and how so many different elements and techniques go into it. It was also neat to hear about why locally brewed beers taste completely different from beers made by larger beer manufacturers.

great raft brewery tour in shreveport, louisiana
Another thing I love about Great Raft, is that they have a 5 oz. option. Like I said, I'm not a beer drinker, but it was neat to get a smaller size of beer to taste. They were only $2!

great raft brewery in shreveport, louisiana
After our mini beer tasting, Jon decided we needed a little wine. We drove to the boonies to go to On Cloud Wine, which is this adorable little winery in Shreveport. I've had their wine before, because I bought some at the Farmers' Market, but I had never been to the winery and had been wanting to go so much!

During regular business hours, On Cloud Wine offers tastings at their wine bar. For just $5, we got to sample  eight different wines of our choosing. I love wine tasting, and this was so fun. Our wine connoisseur was so nice, and they even had some popcorn out for us to snack on during our tasting. We ended up going home with two bottles of wine. 

on cloud wine tasting in shreveport, louisiana
on cloud wine tasting in shreveport, louisiana

on cloud wine tasting in shreveport, louisiana

A photo posted by Tiffany Khyla White (@tiffanykhyla) on

The last thing on our Shreveport tourist agenda was to visit the Norsworthy Art Gallery. Too bad it was closed! It was regular business hours, but for some reason, the gate in the front of the building was closed and padlocked. We ended up going to the Norton Art Gallery, which is absolutely gorgeous. I had been to the gallery twice before, once with Jon, but it was still beautiful. They don't allow any picture taking in the building or in the gardens, so I didn't get to take any pictures, but just trust me when I say, it's full of gorgeous paintings. There were many that made me want to go back to Europe (except I always want to go back to Europe). One thing that we got to do that I've never been able to do before is go in the library at the gallery. It was filled with old books that I wish I could've gotten my hands on. It was so neat. 

Jon and I had a blast being tourists in our own town, and so can you! Here are some ways that you can be a tourist where you live:

// Try a restaurant you've never been to.
// Visit a museum or art gallery in your area.
// Stay at a local hotel. Sleeping in a bed that isn't yours always feels like a vacation.
// Attend a local event or festival.
// Go out on the town and only visit places you've never been to before. 
// Take a walk or hike at a park.
// Go to your local CVB's or tourist bureau's website, and visit some of the attractions listed there that you haven't been to. 

Get out of your routine of eating at the same restaurants, going to the same attractions, and visiting the same places. There is so much to explore in your little area of the world. Take advantage of it.

What's something fun that you like (or would like) to do in the city you live in?


  1. I'm getting ready to stay at a hotel in Tampa since we're doing Gasparilla which is a pretty big drinking event and didn't want to have to worry about driving...plus when would i ever need to stay in that specific hotel. I love that they had small portions of the beer to taste and winery tastings are oh so fun!

  2. This is such a cute date day! I love the idea of being a tourist in your own town and exploring new things :)

  3. John and I have done this before. We love to explore new things in our city that we've never done. You can't complain about a city being boring and lame when you haven't even done all the typical touristy things yet! I love brewery tours. I'm definitely a beer drinker. They're always fun. That burger looks so.good. Congrats on four years!

  4. It looks like you had a great time. Since my husband and I got our first "fancy" camera, I've been thinking we should go on Photo Dates around town, revisiting places we pass all the time. I love the idea of being a tourist in your own town.

  5. The only thing exciting to do in my town is go to the movie theater and that's closed right now! Haha. I've been basically everywhere in my town at least once. :)

  6. Haha I'd be sad if that was the only thing to do in my town! I guess you've explored all there is to explore. I have some friends from college who have to drive an hour from their hometown to get to anything exciting. I don't know if I could do that!

  7. That sounds like a grand idea! I think I need to convince my boyfriend to go on photo dates with me too! I really want to be a travel blogger one day, but until I can get out and explore the world, I'm trying to make due with what I have in the town I live in. You gotta start somewhere.

  8. That's so awesome! I'm sure there's so many more exciting things to do where you live. I completely agree with what you said about not complaining. After getting the job I have, I realized that there's more to do here than I thought. I'd still rather live somewhere else, but I'm making due with what we have for now! I wish I was a beer drinker just because drinking beer is so much cheaper than drinking anything else haha. I did enjoy the brewery tour though. It was my first! I'd love to go to a bigger brewery and have a tour. And yes, that burger was divine! I got to try a bite before Jon devoured it.

  9. It was so fun to explore, especially since Jon hasn't been living here that long. I love that he took me to do things that neither of had done.

  10. That's so awesome! I love staycations. I had one with a few friends of mine awhile back, and we had a blast. I love when hotels have shuttle busses so you don't have to worry about driving at all. And I completely agree - wine tastings are definitely fun. I love them!

  11. I lovelovelove the fact that you said you "drove to the boonies". Thank you.

  12. Yeah I definitely want to live in a bigger city sometime soon!

  13. I am a big proponent of this concept and am always promoting the notion of getting out in your own city and explore! It is pretty easy for me being in San Francisco, but no matter where I have lived, I have always made it a priority.

  14. That's so awesome! I was never fond of history in school, but I actually love going to museums and galleries and experiencing history hands-on. I hope you get to do some more touristy things in your town!

  15. Hahahaha it's so relevant. Boonies all around.

  16. I'm so glad you're on board with this! That's awesome that you live in San Francisco. I'm sure there's always fun stuff to do. I definitely have a bit of a challenge living in a city with just 200,000 people, but there's so much history around here, and so many hidden gems. I'm hoping to explore more of my city soon!

  17. Fantastic way to celebrate and I would love to do this in my new city as well as my home city in the UK. All the time I say I want to see or do something locally but we never get round to it. I need to stop thinking and get doing I think!

  18. Yes! I completely agree. Just go out and do it! All of these things had been on my list for so long, and now I want to go back and do them again. It's a fun way to get to know the city you're living in.

  19. This is actually one of my goals this year. I've done most of the big touristy stuff (I live outside of Salt Lake and the touristy stuff also correlates with my religion--LDS)...but I want to do the local stuff, especially the local historic stuff!


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