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Group Travel Germany: Cologne, or Koln?

Cologne, or Koln? Did you know that the first colognes actually originated in a city in Germany called Cologne? And that this same city is home to the largest cathedral in all of Northern Europe? Well neither did I until we took a day trip there while studying abroad! It was a pretty spontaneous trip, and we didn’t really know going into it what exactly there was to do in the city. There is something extremely interesting and exciting about travelling to a new place without any expectations or preconceived notions about what to do there. Sometimes, your expectations can get in the way and … [Read more...]

Group Travel Netherlands: Hallo Mijn Familie!

Hallo Mijn Familie! This was probably the weekend that I was most excited about so far. Why? Because I finally got to see my family! No, it wasn’t my immediate family, but I have some cousins who live in Holland, up in The Hague, that I have been meaning to visit since I got here. We have been so busy here in the last couple of weeks with the group trip and all of our tests and projects that I haven’t gotten a chance to see them even though we live so close to each other. So this weekend, partly because I was so tired of travelling from the group trip and was craving some comforts of home, … [Read more...]

Group Travel Italy: I Lost My Heart in Porto Venere

When it comes to Italy I am not sure where to begin. The quest from Venice to Rome and all the stops in between had with it many expectations, which to say the least were fully met. One place in particular, however, filled me with awe unlike any other place in the world. We pulled up to the train station that took us from La Spezia to the first of the five cities of Cinque Terre, called Monterosso. Although slightly less vibrant than the pictures, the red, yellow, and green box buildings were tucked into the hilly coast of Italy, randomly stacked around and on top of each other. We took the … [Read more...]

Group Travel: Italy

Ciao Bella!This week marks both the end and beginning of something. After this week, we only have two more months of our stay in Europe, and after this week we start midterm exams. Thankfully, we have a week of group travel in Italy to make us feel a little bit better!   Group travel in Italy is all that I imagined and more! We have only seen Padua and Venice so far, but I am extremely impressed. Venice is like nothing I've ever seen before: it is literally a city on water. There are no cars, no buses, and even bikes are nowhere to be seen. The streets are narrow and winding and … [Read more...]

Group Travel Europe: B is for Brussels

This weekend we decided to take it easy and only go on a day trip. Brussels, Belgium is about two hours away from Maastricht, where we are studying abroad, so we thought it would be the perfect place to visit just for a day and then hit the books. The theme of the Maastricht Pre-Med study abroad trip—or what I have gathered so far—is “work hard, play hard.” This week we had a ton of studying to do, so it was good to stay at home and chill. It’s funny how readily I call Maastricht “home” now. After only three weeks, I find comfort in the familiarity of the city and the warm, kind Dutch … [Read more...]

Group Travel Europe: All About Metros!

Our trip to Brussels was a short one, because we had two study abroad midterms the following week (gross, I know.) The day started off pretty badly, considering that we missed 4 trains AND I got hit by a bus while riding my bike (I wasn't injured thankfully). So after all of those shenanigans we finally made it into the city around 2-3PM. We checked into the hostels and set off for the Cantillon brewery, which is, according to a beer fanatic that we met on the tour, one of the best breweries in the world. After that we walked around the city, eating waffles and Belgian chocolate every chance … [Read more...]

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