Friday, August 30, 2013

Back to Reality

After a week living in hostels, I was excited to come back to the United States. Once the excitement of being home passed, I quickly missed being abroad and the jam packed days I had. I escaped to the beach for the first few days back which was a great (once I conquered the jet lag).

While traveling I learned several things. Here are a few things that I found most important..

Tricks of the Trade, or Travel.
  • It doesn't hurt to have a bunch of locks. Before leaving I bought suitcase locks and a normal lock which was super helpful while staying in hostels, you never know who you'll be living with.
  • Bring medicine. Everyone told me I'd get sick at least once while abroad and I didn't believe it, but I did. Vitamins were what really helped me throughout the trip. 
  • If you have an iPhone or iPad, bring it. Some people thought bringing a phone abroad was silly, but free wifi isn't hard to find and no one wants to be carrying a laptop around with them. 
  • Do research before you go. As a part of the Prague summer program, we were required to take a pre-trip class to learn about the Czech Republic's history and culture. It made the experience much more meaningful for all of us. 
Best of..
  • Architecture. Out of the 4 cities I went to while abroad I found Prague to have the greatest depth and mix of architecture. Prague is the only city to have cubist architecture, and has some of the greatest Art Noveau buildings. 
  • Shopping. London was one of the best places to shop, as expected. Whether you're looking for luxury shops or flea markets in Camden, it's all there. 
  • City Feel. I enjoyed Vienna's cosmopolitan nature the most. It doesn't feel as dense as NYC, but is still full of arts, culture, and various events that keep you busy.
  • Food. I couldn't get enough of Munich's beer gardens. Roasted chicken, potatoes of every kind, pretzels and then a liter of beer on top of it all, it doesn't get better than that. 

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