adios aarhus

I’m going on hour 8 of my 10 hour flight home from London to Dallas & I can’t believe that this day actually is here. It feels like I was just stressing out like a crazy person thing to figure out what to pack & how I was going to manage being away from home for almost 6 months. Yet, here I am. In two hours I will walk through those arrival gates at DFW & see my family who I have missed like crazy! & you know I am headed STRAIGHT to Chuy’s to get chips & queso (which I might have missed just as much, maybe more than my family).

My emotions have been all over the place these past two days of traveling. I am so excited to see my family & friends but extremely sad to leave Aarhus which became like home to me. I didn’t realize how hard it was going to be to say goodbye to that place. But, I know I’ll be back. I can’t wait to show Aarhus to my family someday. 🙂

I feel like it’s impossible to sum up studying abroad into words on a piece of paper (well more like text on a screen) but all I can say is this has been the best experience of my life. I have had some of the most incredible opportunities to travel the world with the most amazing people. I’ve seen places I’ve only dreamed about and met lifelong friends from all over the world. Going into this experience I had no idea what to expect. I wasn’t sure if I was going to be able to do all the traveling I wanted to do or if I was going to make a solid friend group like some of my friends who have studied abroad in the past were lucky enough to have. I was blessed with both! I traveled to 2 continents, 12 countries (15 if we count layovers….so. many. layovers.) and over 25 cities this past semester. I still can’t believe that. But seeing the world is only half the fun of studying abroad. The people you meet while on exchange are the real game changers. To my Denmates-I love y’all to death. What’s that saying? How lucky I am to have something so hard to say goodbye to? I think it’s something like that….I’m not very poetic but you understand. I can’t imagine my time in Denmark without each of y’all. Can’t wait for our cruise reunion 😉 

just missing Alastair, still love ya tho

Oh also, for all those concerned: no I did not learn to ride a bike while in Denmark. I know this may be a disappointment but I had a bus pass & also two legs so I managed to get around town just fine. Maybe next trip to Europe. 

Only a few more hours until I am melted by that Texas heat I’ve been lucky enough to escape for half the summer. Good thing I’m dressed in leggings & a sweater!  

Next stop, Dallas! 

Advertisements

morocckin’ me crazy!

I refuse to believe that I just took my last trip of exchange. WHERE DID THE PAST 5 MONTHS GO?! Someone please tell me because I just can’t wrap my head around the fact that I’m going home in 3 days. So, what better way to finish off the semester than with a trip to AFRICA. Never in my life did I think I would get the opportunity to get to go to Africa so when the chance to go to Morocco arose, we jumped at it.

 

We always travel the cheapest way possible, and a majority of the time that means sleeping on airport floors and taking the absolute longest routes possible to reach our destination. This trip of course was no different. We flew to London at around 10pm and had a 7 hour layover ALLLLLLL NIGHT. Shout out to Costa Coffee, your couches and outlets saved us. Of course I missed the the Brexit by just a few days…I could have been rich and bought everything in the airport!!

That next morning we finally were able to fly into Marrakesh. The city was so busy with people walking around everywhere, donkeys carrying carts of supplies around, and vendors trying to sell you everything under the sun.

We headed straight to our hostel and let me tell you, it was cool (not literally though because it was actually 105 degrees out. Around 40 for all my celsius pals). Every morning they served us free breakfast which consisted of traditional Moroccan pastries with honey. YUM.

IMG_6614
Riad Dia Hostel in Marrakesh

 

We spent our first full day exploring Marrakesh. We went to the Souks which are the traditional markets and they are massive. You can get lost inside weaving your way through all of the booths. Shop owners are yelling at you from every direction trying to get you to come into their booth and sell you something. If they saw you even making the slightest eye contact with one of their products, say a bracelet, within 2 seconds that bracelet was on your wrist and they told you they would give you a very special price for today only and just for you. We had tons of fun bartering with the shop owners. They would always price something insanely high and we would see how cheap we could get them to come down to.

IMG_6378
Inside the Souks

 

At night, the market turned into restaurants, each offering Moroccan food for insanely cheap. The waiters from each restaurant would come up to us and literally try to drag us to their restaurant so we had fun trying to see what they could offer us for free to make us come eat at theirs over someone else’s. If you offered us free bread, olives and drinks, then there was a good chance that we would come sit at your table.

The next day we booked a trip to the Sahara Desert. We did absolutely no research about this trip, we just saw that our hostel offered a trip where you got to spend the night in the desert and ride camels and we were sold. Little did we know that the desert was 7 HOURS AWAY. 7 hours in the back of a hot, un-air conditioned van. *cue motion sickness*.  After the day long journey we arrived- but not to the campsite. We arrived at the spot where we got on the camels and had to ride another hour and a half in the desert to get to where the tents were. I was not good at riding camels. Shocking, I know. If there is a wrong way to ride a camel, I did it. I literally could not walk for the next 3 days after the ride, but it was soooo cool to see the sunset in the Sahara while on a camel. Thats a once in a lifetime thing I won’t ever forget. Even if I felt like I broke my butt. We saw the sun rise the next morning, rode the camels again out of the desert, and enjoyed that ~lovely~ 7 hour drive back to Marrakesh.

IMG_6574
Me, looking graceful as ever on the back of my camel
13535699_10157088535015427_420761599_n
Dinner in a tent in the Sahara Desert

After two very hot and sandy days, it was time to cool off so we headed to the water!! The Ouzoud Falls are about 150 km away from Marrakesh so again we hopped in the van (for another 3 hour adventure omg) and we were off. The falls were so incredible. It was so nice to go swimming and cool off for a change!

IMG_6600IMG_6606

For my last trip of exchange, I think I managed to have a pretty decent time…..Morocco is such a beautiful country and it was so nice to go somewhere completely different than anywhere else I had ever gone before. Even though we were dYiNg in the heat, I know it was only a preview of what is to come when I step off my plane in Texas in 3 days- wearing a puffer coat and boots because I of course overpacked and have no room in my suitcase for them 🙂

Now its time for me to pack up my room that I’ve called home for the past 5 months. I’m not ready for this…

 

exams are approaching……

So instead of studying, I am choosing to procrastinate and blog instead 🙂 Obviously my time management skills have not improved since being abroad. So far, I’ve already submitted one exam out of the 4 that I have. I had to write a lengthy (for my standards) essay about the “Danish Mind-set”. If you are curious, this basically explains why Danes are okay with leaving their babies outside of cafes while they drink a cup of coffee. Seems illegal right? Totally a normal thing here. My next exam is tomorrow afternoon so any prayers/good vibes sent my way would be greatly appreciated. Exams here are all case-based. You read a case study then answer a couple of questions after. Seems easy but you have to defend and argue EVERYTHING you know to prove your answer is right. No multiple choice or true false here. Bye Bye scantrons. So again, wish me luck.

Now, lets talk about something HAPPY AND ENJOYABLE. About two weeks ago, my bestestest friend from 6th grade came and visited me all the way from Texas! Rachel (ily) and her mom (ily too!!!) met me in Munich, Germany where we spent 4 days. It was SO nice to see faces from home. They even brought me gum (in stick form- an American luxury). My mom sent them over with a giant box of goldfish and my favorite candy-strawberry sour belts. I’m telling you- it’s the little things. So after I cried over my snacks and got control of my life again, our trip could begin.

We caught a train the first morning to Salzburg, Austria. Austria is beautiful!! It is also home of Mozart and the filming of the Sound of Music. We visited the birthplace and childhood home of Mozart, both of which have been turned into museums. Pretty cool that he composed all that he did all in just his 35 years on Earth. Next we went on a Sound of Music tour. We visited multiple locations where the movie was shot and I would go into greater detail about this but unfortunately, I have never seen the movie so I have no idea what those places were..They were very pretty though!! If you have any further inquiries please direct them to my red headed friend Rachel. She is a big fan. Knows all the words. And can quote the entire movie.

IMG_5974
The hills were alive with the sound of music!!

After a lovely musical day in Salzburg, we went back to Munich and then took a train to Dachau, the first concentration camp opened in Germany. Visiting these camps has been a truly eye opening experience for me.  Seeing first hand what these people were forced to endure is absolutely heartbreaking and is something everyone should see so that something like that never happens again.

IMG_6003
Dachau

In Munich, we also saw the Olympic Park, infamously known for the 1972 massacre of Israeli olympic team members during the summer games. So far this sounds like a depressing trip but I promise it was not!! The park was beautiful, and it was very cool to see where an olympic games was played. ALSO. While we were at the park, it just so happened that one of my favorite bands, 5 Seconds of Summer was also there playing a concert. So completely by accident, or FATE as I would like to call it, I was able to hear them soundcheck one of my favorite songs and I also might have cried. Sometimes life just goes your way.

While in Germany you OBVIOUSLY have to go to a Hofbrauhaus and enjoy a few liters and giant pretzels while sitting at huge tables getting to know locals. I tried schnitzel for the first time and I’ll tell you it won’t be my last! Germany has my heart.

IMG_6027

I was so sad to say bye to two of my favorite Texans because I felt like a piece of home was leaving me behind. And I knew as soon as I got back to Aarhus, it was time to hit the books. For the past week I don’t even think I’ve seen the sunlight or my roommates because my head has been buried in my laptop. So yesterday, it was finally time for a much needed study break- in Herning, Denmark to see 5 Seconds of Summer in concert!!!!

Kelsey and I bought these tickets back in October and the day FINALLY arrived. We left our house at 5:45am and we were in Herning by 7. From then on, we waited in line at the arena until 2. We had VIP tickets which meant that we got to see the band perform a soundcheck and do a Q&A. During soundcheck I literally thought I was going to die. If you know me at all, you know my band obsession and it has not gone away. Not in the slightest. After soundcheck we waited a bit longer then got to go back into the arena where we were led into the pit. WE WERE FRONT ROW. LITERALLY FRONT ROW AGAINST THE GATE. FOR 5 SECONDS OF SUMMER. The concert was amazing. I might even say life changing. I could go on forever, but like I said I’m supposed to be studying right now so I should probably control myself.

IMG_6109

IMG_6110
Possibly the highlight of my life

Okay, I’ve attempted to regain some chill. After I finish my exams, another bff from home, Anna, is coming to visit me and then we are off to Morocco-so lets finish these tests because Africa is calling!!

 

the 18 hour travel day.

Well it’s noon & I’ve already been awake for over 7 hours. One of the many perks of traveling the cheapest routes possible. As I type this, I still have 4 and a half hours until my bus to Aarhus leaves from Copenhagen & I’ve already been waiting for 4 hours. But, I woke up in Prague this morning so I really have nothing to complain about! I’ve spent the last week traveling around Berlin, Germany & Prague, Czech Republic: two very different countries that I was dying to visit. Let’s start with Berlin.
After visiting Auschwitz just days before going to Germany, I knew this was going to be a very interesting trip. I had just seen what the Nazis had done to millions of Jews and now I was going to their headquarters to see where it all began. The most satisfying thing was the fact that we were able to see Hitler’s bunker where he committed suicide because he knew he was going to get captured towards the end of World War II. Just days before, I had seen a place where he caused so much pain and suffering for so many innocent people, and then to be able to see where he was finally in a sense defeated…that was one of the most incredible things.

Hitler’s bunker

By the way: in every city I’ve visited, I’ve always done a free walking tour. These tours are completely free and at the end you just tip your guide based off of how well you think they did or how much you enjoyed the tour. I’ve learned so much on these tours & highly recommend them to anyone traveling around Europe. Without these tours, I would literally just be looking at cool buildings & being like “oh ok that looks nice, no idea what it is but I’ll take a picture of it”. But with these tours, the guides give you an in depth history of what happened at the major buildings and sites of the city. They’re awesome. I especially recommend a guided tour in Berlin. We waited until the last day to take the tour which in hindsight I feel was a mistake. Up until the tour I was enjoying the city, but I felt as if the city was too large and modern. I wasn’t getting that German feel that I was really looking for. We visited the East Side Gallery, where artists have created beautiful portraits on pierces of the Berlin Wall. This was so cool because people were able to turn the wall, which was something so horrible, into something completely beautiful.

East Side Gallery
East Side Gallery

When we finally decided to be smart and take the tour around the city, I was amazed at how much history was right under my nose. I learned that the Berlin Wall was actually not a straight wall, but actually a circle that closed off West Berlin. This was weird though, because West Berlin was the free half of the city. West Berlin was the only free section of all of Eastern Europe. There was a wall to keep Easterners out, but the West Berlin citizens were allowed to leave freely. The wall was literally put up over night, and if you had someone you knew on the other side of the wall, it would be another 28 years until you saw them again. Isn’t that insane. WOW I am ranting but I found all of this so interesting. Also, the reason Berlin is so modern is because the entire city was destroyed in WWII. There was almost nothing left. The buildings and churches that look old are made to look that way to remind people what the city used to look like. And still to this day, Berlin is still rebuilding from the damage it suffered from the war. (fun fact: I got to see the hotel where Michel Jackson was seen hanging his baby out the window. Just when you think you have seen it all….)

Hotel Aldon, where Michael Jackson infamously dangled his son, Blanket, out a window

After 3 days in Berlin, we took a reaaaally early bus to Prague! This bus was LAVISH. It only cost 15 euros and we were waited on hand and foot. We were given coffee, hot chocolate, tea, literally anything we wanted. There were movie screens on the back of all the seats (which were leather btw) & there was wifi hallelujah. Back to Prague, though. (another fun fact sort or relating to my rant above: the reason Prague was so well preserved during World War II was because Hitler loved the city so much. He was planning on vacationing there after the war so he didn’t want any damage to be done there. Interesting right. And also kind of twisted. What a terrible guy).

In Prague we did another walking tour where we learned all about the history of the Czechs and the Slovaks, how the country of Czechoslovakia came to be, and how the counties because two separate republics. We toured old town and saw the Astronomical clock move (sort of underwhelming but something you have to see).

Astronomical Clock

We saw the Jewish quarter and the Jewish cemetery. Back in the 15th century, every Jewish person in Prague had to be buried in this cemetery which was not very big. At certain points, the graves in this cemetery are 12 graves deep. Some people say that this gave inspiration for the Memorial to the Murdered Jews of Europe located in Berlin, which we were able to see just the day before. In this memorial, there are many rectangular stones that are different heights across an uneven ground. Again, the timing of my trips and seeing these sights has been incredible.

Memorial to the Murdered Jews of Europe (located in Berlin)

Later in the day we crossed the famous Charles bridge which gives beautiful views of Prague from either sides of the river. Across Charles bridge lies Prague Castle. You can see it from miles away and it is breathtaking. On the same side of the river is the John Lennon Peace Wall. Here, people are free to spray paint messages of whatever they want. There are paintings of John Lennon himself, his lyrics, and inspirational quotes. We spent almost an hour reading everything on the wall. Easily one of the coolest things I’ve ever seen.

John Lennon Peace Wall

One of the nights we were there we went to the Prague Ice Bar!!!! I’ve always wanted to go to one of those so I was stoked. They decked us out in parkas and gloves and we were ready. We got inside the actual ice room and literally everything was made of ice. The walls, countertops, the tables, the glasses, everything. They only let you stay inside for 20 minutes but after the first 10 I thought I was going to die of hypothermia. I lasted the full 20 though and after needed about two liters of hot chocolate. Oh wow I just said liters & not gallons. I am so metric system….

inside the ice bar

Now I know it doesn’t seem like I am actually enrolled in school but I promise I am and I do attend class! I have two presentations this week so it’s time to get back to real life. Exams are starting at the end of May so as shocking as this sounds, I will be spending this next month in the library buried in text books.

currently studying in starbucks waiting for my bus…i’m not a total bum I swear

That is until I see a cheap flight that catches my eye…….

On a more serious note.

This post will be relatively short, but the main reason for my trip to Poland was to fulfill a lifelong dream of visiting Auschwitz in person. I have always been so interested in learning about World War II and Nazi Germany that I could not leave Europe without visiting the concentration camp in person. Poland seemed so far away though so I didn’t think I would actually make it there. I had watched countless documentaries about Auschwitz and Birkenau and read many books about what had happened at that horrible place and I never imagined that I would be able to walk the same paths as those who were so cruelly placed into camps and sentenced to death. Nothing could have ever prepared me for what I saw during my tour of Auschwitz and Birkenau. I can’t even put into words the emotions that I felt during my time there. It is something that I think you need to experience in order to understand. No TV program or textbook can ever do it justice.  What happened inside those gates all those years ago will never be forgotten. We cannot let it be forgotten.

buda buda buda buda rockin everywhere.

Hello again! I’m back after almost a week of traveling around Eastern Europe.  I spent time in Budapest, Hungary and Krakow, Poland. Both are cities and counties that had never crossed my radar before going on exchange. I had friends that went to Budapest and RAVED about it for weeks so I obviously had to go and see what all the hype was about.

I cannot even begin to describe how much I fell in love with the city of Budapest. Everything about the city was just so cool. For those of you who don’t know (myself included before this trip) Budapest is split into two parts; Buda and Pest, divided by the Danube River. Buda is the older, hilly side of the river with landmarks such as the Citadella and the Buda Castle. Pest is the younger side of the city. It is flatter and is home to Heroes Square and St. Stevens Basilica.  We stayed on the Pest side for the majority of our stay. We stayed at the Carpe Noctem Vitae Party Hostel in Budapest and I hands down believe that is the best hostel in the world. If you are planning a trip to Budapest, do not stay anywhere else.  Everyone that works and stays there is just looking to have a good time.

overlooking Buda

 

St. Stephens Basilica

We went on a walking tour around the city the first day in Budapest and saw both sides of the river. We went into on the famous markets and I tried Hungarian Goulash for the first time. It was soooo good.

Hungarian market

Of course we had to have dessert, so we tried another traditional Hungarian food, langos. Again, amazing.

munchin on that cinnamon sugar langos

That night we went on a river cruise down the Danube with people from our hostel. So much fun. And seeing the city at night was beautiful!

Budapest from the river cruise

The next day we spent the entire day at the Szechenyi Thermal Baths, which is the largest medicinal bath in Europe.  Talk about relaxing.  We were literal prunes before we forced ourselves to get out.

best day ever

After the baths then we walked to this festival near a castle and ate dinner on the lawn. Perfect weather, sitting in the park with music playing in the background, surrounded by your friends; those are the moments I am going to remember the most.

Festival at a castle we passed by 

After a few amazing days in Budapest, we caught a 7 hour bus to Poland. Fun fact: I can now say I’ve gone to the bathroom in Slovakia (we had to drive through there to get to Poland).  I was very unsure what to expect from Krakow. I had an image in my head of what I thought Poland would be- kind of run down, dirty, old. It was NONE of those things. Krakow was one of the cleanest cities I have been to. Our hostel was in the heart of Old Town and we were so close to many beautiful buildings, markets and churches. Krakow is very small and totally walkable. We were able to visit the Jewish Quarter one afternoon and go inside the oldest synagog in Poland.

the market square in Krakow

We stayed at Greg and Tom’s Beer House and again if you ever find yourself in Krakow, I wouldn’t stay anywhere else. For $15 a night, we were given free dinner, free breakfast, and free snacks all day…hellllo why wouldn’t you stay there. And it was super clean. Can’t beat it.

FREE breakfast at our hostel

My trips around Europe keep getting better and better. Just when I think one can’t top the next, it does. Tomorrow I leave for Berlin, Germany and then Prague, Czech Republic so we will see how this trip falls in the ranks. I have high hopes…

spring breaaaaaak.

I have been back in Aarhus for a week now after my whirlwind 12 day spring break vacation and have finally caught up on my sleep and laundry.  I think I slept for 32 hours straight once I got off the last bus home! All of our travels were more than worth it though. Over the course of 12 days I was able to visit 5 breathtaking cities and make memories that I will never forget. Italy of course was amazing. All that gelato oh my. And pizza. Can’t forget about the pizza. After Italy we headed for Spain. We spent 3 wonderful days in Barcelona.

We spent our first day sightseeing all across the city. We visited the Barcelona Cathedral, walked down the famous Las Ramblas (which was actually disappointing in my opinion but oh well), saw the Sagrada Familia (under a ton of construction but apparently it always is and will never be finished…) and spent the afternoon in Parc Guell overlooking the city.

IMG_4573
Barcelona Cathedral
IMG_4560
Cute outdoor patio near our Airbnb
IMG_4593
Sagrada Familia
IMG_9068
Me being dramatic overlooking Barcelona at Parc Guell 

The next 2 days were spent how I like to spend my vacations…at the beach. We all just hung out and had such a chill time. And I of course couldn’t leave the beach without being obnoxious and getting cornrows.

IMG_5141
who let Anna and I get in the water 4 times… it was still March..
IMG_4759
The gals on the beach in Barcelona (thankfully clothed this time)

The last night in Barcelona we went out for traditional Spanish tapas, or appetizers. We went with a tour group and got to try food from many different restaurants around the city. Had to show off the new hair at as many fine establishments as possible.

IMG_4814
obligatory selfie before tapas 

After a few days in Barcelona it was time to hop on a plane and head for IBIZA. It was the off season so it wasn’t as live as I know you’re thinking but it was still a great time. Our Airbnb was literally right on the beach so we just had to walk out the door and we were on the sand. It was incredible.

IMG_4875
basically our private beach

We spent most of our time at the beach but one of our days in Ibiza we explored the older part of the city and found the most amazing views from the top of some cliffs. IMG_4905

So naturally, we had to have a photoshoot on top of it.

IMG_9602

IMG_5144

We had such a fabulous week in sunny Spain that we thought…what better way to top off the trip than in rainy, dreary London!! On the real though, London is my favorite city of all time. I went when I was a senior in high school and absolutely fell in love with everything about it and knew I had to come back. The sights, the accents, everything. I swear I’ll move there one day. Since we basically only had one full day in London we took advantage of it by booking a hop on hop off tour and rode around all day on a double decker red bus. You don’t get any more British than that.

We were in London on Easter Sunday so I had the privilege to attend Easter service at Westminister Abbey. That is something I will never forget for the rest of my life. We saw Big Ben, The London Eye, Parliament, Hyde Park, The Tower Bridge, Piccadilly Circus (not an actual circus to my surprise, more like a square), Trafalgar Square and Buckingham Palace.

IMG_5076
Taken moments before we got hailed on 🙂
IMG_5108
One Direction shot a music video on top of that bridge fun fact

Our Airbnb was right along the Thames River and one night we were able to visit the oldest riverside pub in London, The Prospect of Whitby, which opened in 1520. It was such a neat place and I highly recommend it to anyone traveling through London!

After many busses, planes, and trains, our journey finally came to an end. The memories I made throughout those days will last a lifetime and I am so grateful that I have been given the opportunity to be able to travel to so many places so far with such great people.

Next stop..Budapest, Hungary and Krakow, Poland!

 

ciao italy. 

The past three days have been packed full of pizza, pasta & gelato & I am 100% sure I am leaving Italy 10 pounds heavier (obviously I’m nailing the spring break beach bod). The Italian leg of our spring break trip began in Milan. We began our first day with Italian cappuccinos at a cafe by the Vila we stayed in which was soo cute. Then of course we had to have gelato before lunch.  
Then it was time for some real authentic pizza from the birthplace of pizza. I think I died and went to heaven. 

  
Then it was time for gelato again because once is just not enough. Already a perfect day. We visited the Duomo which was absolutely breathtaking. The detail that went into building that cathedral is unreal. 

  
Milan is known for their fashion & the city did not disappoint. There were so many high fashion shops everywhere & we would just stand & drool while looking at the window displays. 

After a quick 2 nights there we took a 2 and a half hour train to Venice. Holy moly I’ve never been to a more beautiful place in my entire life. The canals & the little alleys were literally picture perfect. Sitting on the docks overlooking the sea with my besties in Venice…it’s the dream!!! (until the pigeons try to attack you for your sandwich). We rode in a gondola through the canals & that is something I’ll never ever get over. I LOVE VENICE.

   
   
So yesterday I woke up & had breakfast in Venice, took a train & had dinner in Milan, & went to sleep in Barcelona, where we will spend the next 3 days. This is the life. Now time for the Spanish leg of our adventure! 

the luck of the irish.

I’m typing my next riveting entry as I’m on a 4 hour bus to Copenhagen from Aarhus. Every time we have to take a flight somewhere we have to bus or train to Copenhagen first because flights are so much cheaper than flying from Aarhus. A one way bus ticket only costs 50 Krones which is about $7. Its really affordable just a little inconvenient when all you want to do is to get your trip started. This is my third bus to and from Copenhagen in a week so I am getting to know this journey very well.

I spent the last couple of days in Dublin, Ireland, a place I had only ever dreamed of visiting.  We found super cheap flights and were like “why not!?” and went for 3 nights. The first full day in Dublin we saw all the sights in the city. We visited St. Patricks Cathedral, Trinity College, The Spire, and many other churches and castle looking things that I have no idea what they were called but they were very pretty. We toured the Guinness brewery and saw how they pour their perfect pints. That night we had a traditional Irish dinner at a local pub called O’Niells and it was SO GOOD. The Irish know how to do it right. We went on a pub crawl that night with a bunch of other backpackers staying at the surrounding hostels. We got to meet tons of cool travelers from all over the world.

IMG_0054
The Spire (looks like a giant toothpick in the sky to me but idk)
IMG_0058
St. Patricks Cathedral (you can thank him for your favorite upcoming holiday)
IMG_0034
Trinity College Dublin (kind of looks like Arkansas, right?)
IMG_0065
You can’t go to Dublin and not go to the Guinness brewery

The next day, we booked a tour using Wild Rover Tours to take us to the complete opposite coast of the country to see the famous Cliffs of Moher. After getting maybe 45 minutes of sleep, we hopped on an extremely early bus and headed to the cliffs. I had seen photos before but I was completely in awe when got off the bus. The photos don’t even do the view justice.

We were able to spend a little over 2 hours at the cliffs and luckily no one was blown over the edge 🙂 We drove along the Wild Atlantic Way for a few hours, which is beautiful coastline stretching for miles along the west coast of Ireland. We stopped for lunch in Galway, which was a really nice city on the water. The best part, though, was for lunch we had burritos that literally rivaled Chipotle. I have been having serious withdrawals since I’ve been in Europe and this place was exactly like it, down to the lime seasoned chips. Honestly Chipotle should be concerned someone is copying them exactly but I was unaffected. That guac thoooooo. So good.

Ireland was incredible and if you haven’t been I HIGHLY recommend going. The people are so nice and helpful and want you to have a good time in their country. Everywhere we went was getting ready for St. Patricks day and let me tell you, Dublin goes all out.  We were there a week before the actual holiday and people were already decked out in shamrocks and beads. I can’t even imagine how insane the city is going to be on the 17th.

After getting distracted a few times and getting past a few technical difficulties, I now only have 3 hours left on this bus!! Yay! We are flying to Milan tonight- the first stop on our spring break adventure. I fit 12 days worth of clothes in a carry-on. I don’t even recognize myself anymore.

Brussel Sprouts.

A month. I’ve been living in Denmark for almost a month now and I still can’t believe this is real life. I’ve only had 2 classes so it still feels like I’m on a huge vacation with a ton of friends. I still don’t have wifi in my house so it kind of feels like I’m living in the Stone Age, but I am managing. I haven’t had to ride a bike yet, but when (if) the time comes I promise I will post photos.

This past weekend, my friends and I took our first trip of the semester and headed to Belgium! To be honest, I hadn’t even seen a picture of Belgium before so I didn’t know what to expect. We took a train to Copenhagen and spent the night in the cutest Airbnb right on the canal and the next morning headed to the airport to board our flight to Brussels. We flew Ryan Air, which is honestly the sketchiest airline in the entire world, but it’s cheap so you get what you pay for. Once we landed in Brussels, we went straight to our hostel. The 6 of us shared a room with 6 bunk beds that were built by hand and if you looked close, you could see the nails coming out of them.

hostle
Hostel or prison cell? You decide. 

Cozy. But it was all the space we needed and a short walk from the city center. We visited the Grand Place, the Royal Palace, Manneken Pis, and many other cathedrals and cool buildings.

grand place
The Grand Place in Brussels
the royal palace
The Royal Palace 

The buildings and monuments were great and all but my favorite thing about Brussels was obviously the waffles. They SLAYED. Something about eating Belgium waffles in Belgium is something else.

waffle

One of the days of our trip we took a train to Brugge. It was a nice little sleepy town that I bought some really good chocolate in (I’m sensing a very unhealthy theme here….). We spent the last day of the long weekend in Copenhagen. I loooooved Copenhagen. We finally got to see the city in the daylight this time and it was beautiful. The canal with all the colorful buildings looks like an actual postcard. And the best part? IT WAS SUNNY. Sunny days in Denmark are hard to come by so we really lucked out. Overall it was a really good trip with great people.

copenhagen
Nyhavn- New Harbour Copenhagen

I can’t end this post without updating the world on the latest tragedy in my life. I seem to have broken my big toe by dropping a bottle of soy sauce on it. Is that not typical or what. Please keep me and my toe in your thoughts with every step you take (only slightly kidding).