Interlaken, Switzerland

Tuesday, February 27, 2018

Ciao! I just got back to Italy from spending the weekend in Switzerland. I left at 9pm on Thursday and got to Interlaken at 6am. We stayed in a hostel that had an amazing view of the mountains. On the first day I went paragliding! To get there, we drove up a mountain and then walked a little to the edge. From there, we ran off the edge to paraglide. The view was amazing but it was very cold and made me very nauseous. However, I got some cool pictures! After paragliding, we got lunch at an Irish pub across from the hostel. The food in Switzerland was very expensive and not all that great. Each meal is 20 to 30 franks.

The next day we walked around Interlaken. I had some friends that went skiing but I wasn’t feeling great this weekend so I didn’t go but it looked like so much fun. We went to the Funky Chocolate Club which is a must see in Interlaken and I got hot chocolate. I bought some Swiss chocolate bars there to bring home. We walked to Lake Brienz and it was such a pretty view, but freezing temps. Interlaken is a resort town so there was not a whole lot to do other than activities like skiing and sledding that were very expensive. Some of my friends signed up to go kayaking in Lake Brienz but it was cancelled because it was too cold.

Overall, Interlaken was not my favorite but it was a cool experience. I think if I had felt better and went skiing I would have enjoyed it more. Early Friday morning I leave for Paris! Paris is the trip I am most excited about out of all of them because I am going for Fashion Week.

Prague, Czech Republic

Thursday, February 22, 2018

Ciao! This weekend I went on my first weekend trip to Prague. We left Thursday night for the 13 hour bus ride. We arrived in our hostel around 10am. I was kind of nervous about staying in a hostel for the first time, but the one we stayed in was very nice. It was a 4 person hostel and I knew the 3 other people, so it was basically like a hotel. When we got there we ate a quick breakfast and went on a walking tour. Our tour guide told us a lot about the history of Prague and showed us all the historic buildings and castles. Me and my friends went to the Czech Beer Museum after the walking tour. I’m usually not a beer person but they gave us 4 different beers to try and they were all soo good. For dessert, we got trdelniks, which is a Czech dessert that is made from rolled dough and grilled with sugar. I got ice cream in mine with chocolate syrup. That night, we went to a bar called U Sudu that was underground. From there we went to Lucerna, which is a big club in Prague that plays 80s and 90s music with the music videos on big TV screens.

The next day, we woke up early to tour the Charles Bridge and the John Lennon Wall. Me and my friends got lunch at The Sad Man’s Tongue. The food was so good! We took a nap after that to prepare for the Clock Tower Bar Crawl that night. If you’re ever in Prague, I so recommend doing this! It was so much fun. For 24 euros, you get 2 1/2 hours of an open bar and then 2 bars after that where you get welcome shots. The first bar we went to was my favorite because there were tables to play beer pong, flip cup, and card games. The last place we went was a club called Duplex that was really fun. However, it was a late, long night and we had to start driving back to Florence at 8am for a 14 hour bus ride (lots of traffic).

Overall, we had so much fun in Prague! The city is beautiful and it was so much different than the scenery we are used to in Italy. Today, I leave for a weekend in Interlaken, Switzerland. Next weekend I will be flying to Paris for Fashion Week!

Turning 20, Bologna, & February Travel Plans

Tuesday, February 13, 2018

Ciao everyone! Officially 3 weeks here in Florence. I have started all of my classes and they are so fun. The classes I’m taking abroad are Mystery of Wine, Yoga & Meditation, Visual Merchandising, Culture to Italy, Retail Management, and working in a boutique as my internship. They meet once a week and last 2 and a half hours. I work in my internship 6.5 hours a week Monday, Wednesday, and Thursday. My favorite class so far is my yoga class. For an hour we spend learning the philosophy of yoga and terminology and the last hour and a half is pretty much attending a yoga class. My goal was to stay active while living abroad, but it’s extremely hard with a very small gym that doesn’t have all the equipment I am used to. Me and one of my friends here attend the workout classes offered Monday’s & Tuesday’s and my yoga class has actually been a pretty good workout. I’m always so shocked the next day when I’m sore from just attending class, lol.

On February 1st I turned 20! It was a Thursday, so it was the start of the weekend for most of us. My friends and I went to a club in Florence called Bamboo and it was so much fun. Before coming here I didn’t expect Florence to have as much nightlife as it does but it has been one of the best parts of the experience so far. The day after me and some friends went to Gucci Garden, the new Gucci museum in Florence. Being a fashion merchandising major, I have done so much research on Gucci for school and it is my favorite designer. Gucci started in Florence and the museum was free for students and was so cool inside.

That Sunday, we took a bus to Bologna for the day and explored the city and the World of Eataly. The city was really pretty and similar to Florence. I’ve been to the Eataly in Boston but the Bologna location was 5 times the size and was more like a mall of food. Our tour guide actually described it to us as the “Disney World of food”. While it was semi-overpriced, the food was delicious. That night was the Super Bowl and we went to an Irish pub to watch the game. It started at midnight in Italy but it was really cool to feel like we were back in America for a night, even though there were no Super Bowl commercials in Italy!

Last week, I pretty much just ate a lot of food. Literally, me and my friends taste tested our way around Florence! We found a couple brunch spots, maybe too many gelato stops, heart shaped pizza, frozen margs, and whiskey milkshakes for brunch. On Sunday, we woke up early and took the time to explore Florence. I went to the Salvatore Ferragamo museum which was very important to see as a fashion merchandiser. I bought a Gucci belt (!!!) which I’ve been planning on doing for a while here in Italy. We climbed up to the Pizzale Michelangelo to watch the sunset and the view was amazing. We ended the night at a restaurant that served free, unlimited wine to college students.

Up until now, I have pretty much stayed in Tuscany since living abroad. This weekend I am going on my first weekend trip to Prague, Czech Republic. I leave Thursday night for the 13 hour bus ride and I can’t wait! I am excited to check out the John Lennon Wall and attend a bar crawl on Saturday. Next weekend I am taking a 7 hour bus to Interlaken, Switzerland for a long weekend. I am deciding between kayaking or skiing in the Swiss Alps.