I am coming to the end of my study abroad program and my feelings are extremely conflicted. There is a part of me that is so sad to be leaving my host family and this amazing country, but there is another part of me that cannot wait to see my family and friends again (and be done with my classes). However, I’ve decided to use this time to talk about the amazing excursions I’ve taken part in over the past weeks.
The first, and longest, was our first weekend in France spent in Paris. Ever since I was a little girl I have been obsessed with Parisian culture, and honestly the city did not disappoint. Everything was as beautiful as I imagined. We visited all the Classique tourist locations, my personal favorite was, of course, the Eiffel tower. There are few things I’ve seen that are as beautiful as the Eiffel tower lit up at night under a clear French sky (However, the view of Pittsburgh from Mt. Washington is a close second). Our next excursion was to « les chateaux de la Loire » which are a series of castles along the La Loire which is the longest river in France. We visited two castles; Ambroise and Chenonceau. I’m a big history nerd so I loved the history of the areas and reading about the monarchs who lived there. Also, the architecture and gardens are so beautiful one cannot help but be awe struck and suddenly want to be a medieval princess. The castles were located in Bretagne which is a region of France where the crêpe was invented, so of course we had to have crêpes for lunch. One of my favorite things about creperies in France is that they all of a special which is usually around 12 euros where you get a savory crepe, a dessert crepe, a drink, and a coffee. It is the best deal and I’ve taken full advantage of it multiple times. Our third excursion was to the cities Saint-Malo and Mont-Saint-Michel. Saint-Malo is a fortified city along the coast of France. They had amazing sea food and beautiful views from the top of the wall that surrounds the city. Mont-Saint-Michel is famous for it’s architecture. It is an abbey that was originally built in 709 built on the top of this island and the city is built around it down the hill. The village and the Abbey were breathtaking. I loved learning about the history of France and exploring with my new friends and I have decided that the US needs more castles and more crêpes!