Since my last blog I have been quite the travel bug! I had the absolute pleasure of visiting the beautiful cities of Rome and Barcelona. Rome was my very first excursion from Florence but it was quite an easy transition because of the parallel language and food (obviously a main concern of traveling). This excursion was through my program, API, so luckily we were provided with a tour guide for the majority of the weekend. Rome is HUGE compared to Florence so it was a bit overwhelming when we first arrived. I definitely recommend getting a tour guide if you ever decide to visit. It was incredible seeing the historical monuments in Rome-definitely a memorable experience! We would be walking down a busy city street, and turn the corner to find the Pantheon and turn another corner to find the Trevi Fountain. I know it sounds cliché but it honestly was like opening a page in an old history book-I promise this is much more exciting in person. We also saw the Vatican and Sistine Chapel. The Sistine Chapel was quite possibly the most stunning thing that I have ever see- a definite check off of my bucket list! On our last day we had the grand tour of the Colosseum. I was even able to snap a picture representing my wildcats!
My second trip was to Barcelona. Two of my fellow Alpha Phi’s are studying there-hey Mack and Sam! I was absolutely thrilled to be able to spend an entire weekend in a different country with two of my best friends. This was my roommate’s and my first trip on our own but we surprisingly made it all in one piece. Luckily my roommate Caroline knows a few phrases in Spanish so she was able to navigate us to the center of the city. Barcelona was certainly very different from both Rome and Florence but I absolutely loved it. It’s a big and absolutely gorgeous city that reminded me of Manhattan in some ways with its tall buildings and beautiful architecture. It was certainly an adjustment taking the metro to get places-we walk everywhere in Florence! However, with the help of Mack and Sam (and my map for the most part) we were eventually comfortable finding our way around the city. My favorite part of Barcelona was Park Güell. We ended up spending hours exploring this incredible park and it was one of the most beautiful and peaceful places that I have ever been. The food in Barcelona was a huge change as well. We decided to take advantage of our time there and try some local dishes. My favorite was a seafood and meat paella-we even scraped the bowl clean after!
Although I had two incredible weekends away, I am happy to be back in my city. My roommates and I headed straight to our favorite restaurant Gusta Pizza once we were off the train from Barcelona! Florence is becoming more and more like home to me and I cannot believe that I have been here for a month already. I know that my journey has just begun and I cannot wait to see what the next few weeks have in store!
Until next time! Arrivederci <3