Thursday, September 2, 2010


Being abroad is a great opportunity to travel. So much so in fact, that there is actually a lot of pressure to go to as many countries as you can. One thing every abroad student must realize is that you can’t go everywhere and you can’t see everything. Finding tickets, mode of transport and places to stay can quickly add up, so most likely you won’t be leaving England every weekend.

Even when you are in London, there are a lot a great day trips you can take that won’t break the bank. A bunch of us went down to Brighton Beach the other day, which is only about an hour train ride from the London Bridge tube stop. A round trip ticket was about nine pounds I believe. It took us straight into the little seaside town of Brighton, which has a main high street the leads directly to the beach. We were able to find the beach without any maps or sense of general directions just by following the crowd that we exited the train with. We spent most of the day just lying out on the beach, which has stones instead of sand. The water was too cold for us to go in, but a lot of people were swimming. I think if we had waited until August to go, it would have been warm enough. There are tons of outdoor cafes, bars and restaurants as well as clothing and souvenir shops. There also is a Brighton Pier along the beach, which is just like a carnival or fair back home. We got back to Metrogate in time to have dinner and go out.

Honestly, you don’t even have to go as far as Brighton to feel as if you’ve experienced a different atmosphere. Going to different parts of London, even tube stops within Zones One and Two, can be a day trip even within itself. My roommate and I often pick a random tube stop that we haven’t been to yet and just go to it, get off and see what we see. I actually really recommend doing this. The unlimited Oyster Card (Metro Card) that FIE provides us with is really one of the greatest benefits so far.

The other day, my roommate and I randomly got off at the King’s Cross tube stop and ended up finding the British Library completely by chance. The actually had a free Ancient Map exhibit going on, which is how we spent our afternoon that day. London is such a huge city and I’m coming to find that there really is something interesting to see everywhere you go.

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