LONDON! PEOPLE SPEAK ENGLISH HERE!!! London came at the perfect time in my abroad experience. I was getting to a point where I missed America and Keeping Up With the Kardashians and they had both things. I fell in love with the simple lives people led there. On every corner men and women seemed happy and I finally got to take a cool photobooth picture with Big Ben in the background!! Looking back London would be somewhere, I could actually move to in the future (if the price of the pound lowered). I mean who else wouldn’t love passing Platform 9 3/4 every time you caught the Tube at King’s Cross??
The Swiss Alps is actually Narnia if anyone was curious. This being my first trip while abroad I didn’t really know what to expect from traveling but I knew I loved it. It is hard to believe that I jumped off a cliff there and fell 300ft into a canyon of snow. And ENJOYED it. Not only that but my roommates and I also split a whole pot of swiss cheese fondue (tastes better than it smells, I promise). Although I didn’t take the full plunge and go skiing in the Alps, I did go night sledding, where basically I was Yoshi on the Rainbow Road track of Mario Cart and it was awesome.
So Sardinia is this small island off the coast of Italy that basically is a secret oasis and a mere 40euro RyanAir flight from Florence. This was my last trip of abroad and it is the reason why I could possibly have skin cancer at a young age. Just kidding, but it was the most beautiful and colorful place I have ever been. I loved this trip, because we did it right. We bought a 50euro all day boat cruise and just swam, cliff jumped, drank with 55 year old Norwegian women (danced too), fished in the Mediterranean with PASTA as bait, and got hit on by our boat captain, where I am still questioning whether or not he was wasted the whole time. The top picture is my hands down favorite pic from abroad. I think it describes my pure bliss. The bliss you find when you have the chance to travel the world with your best friends.
Prague, Czech Republic
People will tell you before you leave for Europe that Prague is truly the quintessential fairy tale city. Guess what? They are right. The city was magical. From the countless bubbles always floating around to the architectural genius of the Clock Tower, this is a city you can get lost in. My friends and I will say though, that the John Lennon Wall (pictured above) may be the most anti-climatic tourist site ever. My personal favorite memory from this city was paddle boating along the river in the center of the city. My friend Carter and I were signed up to get a boat and out of nowhere a giant swan paddle boat pulls up, and that was ours! Through the points and the laughs, I can’t remember a more relaxing hour on that trip. Well maybe also when we got mojito’s at this incredible rooftop bar over looking the Clock Tower, but girl’s get to let loose every now and then. **If ever traveling there, one of my favorite nights out from abroad was going to the 90’s club Lucerna** (A*Teens 4 dayz)
It’s Carnivale time! Ugh. This day was just pure fun. The Carnivale happens in Italy in many cities but my abroad program offered us a free trip to the one in the sea city Viareggio. Had I ever heard of this place? No. But it redefined the term “darty.” Us American’s clearly didn’t know what to expect when going but whoa, it was a party. Dancing, boxes of wine, silly string, CONFETTI, more wine, some Peroni’s. Not only were the floats incredible (pictured above) but the overall atmosphere was what made the day. Italians of all ages come out for this Carnivale and it was nice to get to sit on the beach to and have a chance to escape the party. In my personal European experiences this Carnivale is 100x better than Venice. (and cheaper)
It took me a whole day to understand how to pronounce the name of this city but Ljbuijana was a city that I no idea what to expect of it. It isn’t like Paris where you know going in you want to see the Eiffel Tower, the Arc de Triumph and the Mona Lisa. This was a self described small town that has gained its footings in the last 20 years. Coming from a small town myself I adored this city. It was full of hipsters…. It was almost a calling place for hipsters around Europe to come congregate. They had the most incredible food market, think Smorgasborg in Brooklyn then think better. On top of that they had tons of animals (cats, dogs) just roaming the streets. I tried to catch a cat but my friends were truly disgusted and told me I wasn’t allowed back in our hostel if I did. Which I agree with looking back! This trip made me happy that I went outside of the box with the cities I traveled to. I didn’t stick with the regular abroad guides and embraced Europe as a whole.
Cinque Terre, Italy
You can’t live in Italy for four months and not go to Cinque Terre, if you don’t believe me then just read this article here. Cinque Terre is Italian for “Five Towns” which is exactly what its is, five towns connected by hiking trails, ferries, or trams. We choose tram because we are skinny and stuff. This was a Sunday day trip my roommate Jill and I took during our last weekend in Italy. It was breathtaking. We also managed to visit all five towns in less than 5 hours, which has to be a record somewhere. The only downfall of this trip was the fact that we made the poorest of weather choices. Not thinking that morning we didn’t remember to check the weather in Cinque Terre and assumed it was going to be smoldering hot so we put on massive sunscreen, only to find OH it’s raining and cold when we got off our train. So I (as you can see) had to buy my first piece of true tourism clothing, a Cinque Terre zip up. I still wear it today!
These were just a couple highlights of my four months abroad. Other places I visited were; Rome, Italy | Amsterdam, Netherlands | Brussels, Belgium | Lake Bled, Slovenia | Krakow, Poland | Capri, Italy | Positano, Italy | Sorrento, Italy | Pompeii, Italy | Venice, Italy | Munich, Germany | Pisa, Italy
If you have any travel questions about the above cities, reach out to me via email or social media!