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Study Abroad France: Midnight in Paris

Upon arriving to Paris I was a bit anxious. News headlines flooded my mind as I anticipated this trip. We arrived to Hotel Novotel and all my worries washed away as we were greeted by friendly concierge and guests— the comfortable beds, cool AC, and Eiffel Tower view out of our window didn’t hurt either! We dumped our bags on the green and white dotted carpet and rushed out of our rooms, eager to explore the city. A gust of wind whipped through my tangled blonde curls as I stood on the edge of the river taking it in. The scene in front of me had been replicated on millions of $1 … [Read more...]

Study Abroad Europe: Toto We’re not in Kansas Anymore

Having spent a couple weeks traveling in Europe now, I’ve quickly picked up on the cultural differences from America. Although London has been most similar to the US, the differences vary from city to city. In my opinion, none of these factors are too limiting or impossible to get around. Plus, half the fun of traveling is submersing yourself in a foreign culture! It was very easy to see why our school chose Imperial College in London as our home base. Imperial has a great location in Chelsea, a nice and very safe district in the city. The streets are clean and relatively all the people … [Read more...]

Study Abroad Prague: To Tour or Not To Tour

Let me start by saying, before this trip abroad I was never very interested in taking tours. I considered myself pretty independent and I’ve always preferred to wander off by myself rather than stay in guided groups of people. When traveling I took notice of famous landmarks, read the information on the plaques, looked around, and thought I saw all there was to see. After this trip abroad with Millennium Tours, I realized I had been traveling the wrong way all this time. One of my favorite parts about London, Rome and Prague have been the guided tours in each place. Along with having … [Read more...]

Study Abroad England: a Trip to Dover

I have been in London for 4 days now and thus far the most foreign thing I’ve done was waking up at 6:30am on a Saturday morning. My alarm went off and instantly sent a painful shock through my exhausted body; it was time to head to Dover. On three jet-lagged hours of sleep and two cups of coffee, I made my way down towards the tube. After an hour and half train ride, and a few delirious conversations with my neighbor, we had arrived. Stepping off of the bus you could immediately tell Dover had a distinctly different feel from London’s crowded streets; it was a quiet, quaint little town … [Read more...]

Studying Abroad London: Trying to be Local

I hate being touristy. I hate looking like a tourist. But I love seeing all the sights. Kind of a problem, isn’t it? My goal is to feel like a local by the end of the trip, and I am easily on my way to that goal. Feeling like a local in a place that you are living in for a month is crucial, and honestly one of the most fun parts of studying abroad. The great thing about our program is that once classes are over for the day, we have so much freedom to do what we want to do, see what we want to see, and live how we want to live. Yet it is still impossible to avoid the word “AMERICAN … [Read more...]

Studying Abroad London: Trying to be Local

The first thing I noticed when I hopped off the plane at London Heathrow was how many people there were. I’m talking thousands upon thousands of people waiting in one line to get their passports stamped. Talk about being claustrophobic-something I will have to get over really quick here. After my group left the airport we had about a 45-minute bus ride to Imperial College, located in South Kensington. South Kensington is only about 3 miles away from the heart of London but you might as well be in another part of the country as it is its own town. This place is incredible. Have you ever … [Read more...]

Study Abroad England: A Home Away From Home

A week ago today, my roommate and I were dragging our oversized suitcases down the hall to our dorm room at Imperial College in London. Our expectations for the room weren't very high, but upon opening the door, we were pleasantly surprised. As we walked into our room, we flopped our jet-lagged selves onto our beds and breathed deep sighs of relief. We'd made it. Our new home for the next five weeks. So much to do. Where to begin? After unpacking, we met up with some friends and strolled down the street in search of a cure for our growling stomachs. We decided on a crowded restaurant, … [Read more...]

Study Abroad: The Magic of Hyde Park

Friends traveling abroad always ask me what my favorite thing about London is.  I could easily say the architecture, or possibly free entry to the most popular museums, but the one thing that always comes to mind is Hyde Park.  Just one block down from my study abroad dorm, Hyde Park spans across 350 acres and houses many famous statues, fountains, and playgrounds.  In a prime location of London, Hyde Park is bordered by Green Park and Kensington Gardens, the latter just on the other side of Serpentine Bridge.  Fun fact: the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge have a house on the edge of Kensington … [Read more...]

Group Travel: In [Stair]case of Emergency

It didn't take long on this student group travel tour to discover I was made to be a Londoner; the transportation system has become my new best friend, and I have yet to be bothered by the cramped, sweaty spaces. It is a beautiful thing to disappear beneath the bustling city streets, snake through tunnels to hop onto the right tube, and find oneself blocks away on a completely different side of the city. I believe it is the closest way to “apparating” you can get, without actually being a wizard. I have yet to get lost on the busy streets of London during my group travel adventures, a … [Read more...]

Group Travel: Traversing the UK

We do a lot of walking in student group travel. Of course it’s understandable that we’d walk most everywhere in London, but something I didn’t consider before our arrival was the amount of pavement pounding I’d be in for in all of the smaller towns we set off to in afternoons after class. Our first encounter with the walking way was on Friday when Dr. Weaver took us on a 5.5 hour walking tour of the city. Down Exhibition Road we went, first to see the Hyde Park Gate closest to our dorms, then all the way down to the end of the road where we were introduced to our local tube stop and the … [Read more...]

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