Studying Abroad in Europe: A Guide to the Coolest Cities

As my sophomore year and first half of college is coming to an end, I am beginning to think about all that I have accomplished and plan on accomplishing in the next two years. I know that I have matured a good amount, I have become more sociable, I have stepped out of my comfort zone more than I ever have before, and I have become a more independent individual. I feel as though the first two years of college have prepared me for my term abroad next spring in Copenhagen, Denmark. Living in another country will be a whole new experience full of less comfortable situations at times, meeting many new faces, and familiarizing myself with various aspects of European society. While I am extremely excited to be living in Copenhagen, the aspect of studying abroad that excites me the most is traveling around Europe on the weekends. Europe is so fascinating because you can take a two hour train ride and all of a sudden you are immersed in a completely different culture, complete with a different language and different geography. In my impatient excitement, I consulted my brothers who studied abroad in European cities as well as my father who has done immense amounts of traveling and I compiled an initial list of cities that I hope I will be fortunate enough to travel to:

 

1) Lisbon, Portugal

I have always wanted to visit Lisbon, mainly because it is a city on the coast and it looks absolutely beautiful. Also, being one of the oldest cities in the world, Lisbon is chock-full of history and art that cannot be found anywhere else in the world.

Photo by Tom Byrom on Unsplash  

2) Florence, Italy

Although I have already been to Florence, I am absolutely in love with this city. The delicious pasta, pizza, and gelato, along with the amazing museums and piazzas make Florence a city I am dying to return to.

Photo by Jonathan Körner on Unsplash

3) Interloken, Switzerland

I am a huge outdoorsy person. I love to hike and go on nature walks, exploring the natural world any way I can. Interloken seems like such a majestic and naturally beautiful spot.

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4) Berlin, Germany

I have family from Germany and have heard many wonderful stories about the culture and food in Germany. It has always been a place I have wanted to visit because of its deeply intense history and its historic beauty.

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5) Dublin, Ireland

A European city that speaks English! Ireland’s music, culture, and natural beauty are extremely appealing to me and I intend on exploring Dublin while expanding my English language horizons.

Photo by Diogo Palhais on Unsplash

6) Paris, France

I feel like if I am studying in Europe I need to go to Paris and see the Eiffel Tower and the Arc de Triomphe. They are landmarks that are known by just about everyone, and I would love to get the chance to see them for myself. Not to mention the croissants!

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7) Barcelona, Spain

A beautiful city on the coast of Spain- who wouldn’t want to go there? Barcelona is full of music, culture, shops, and beaches. It is a city that I know I would have a blast in and I’d get to use some of my Spanish.

Photo by Benjamín Gremler on Unsplash

8) Vienna, Austria

My mom studied abroad in Vienna and had an amazing time. From the wine, to the unique cuisine, to the culture, Vienna has it all.

Photo by Jacek Dylag on Unsplash

9) Prague, Czech Republic

My brother studied abroad in Prague just last year and by the looks of his experience, he did not regret it. The cheap commodities, the beautiful architecture, and the historically significant museums make Prague an appealing city to visit.

Photo by Dmitry Goykolov on Unsplash

If I’m lucky, I will hopefully extend my stay in Europe after my semester wraps up and I will travel to the islands of Croatia and Greece. These countries seem like absolute paradise, and I will want more than just a weekend to explore them.

Photo by Tom Grimbert on Unsplash

The hardest part of studying abroad will be balancing my time between exploring Copenhagen and traveling throughout Europe! I know, it’s a tough problem to have...