Jamie’s update

Continuing her exemplary regular updates, Jamie has shared the very busy June activities in Switzerland and Italy and Venice, and…

What a handful (but heads up July will be too). Started with our Rotary Farewell weekend in Tessin/Tereno- the Italian part of Switzerland. We spent a lot of the first day playing volleyball or soccer but then went swimming for a couple hours which was absolutely beautiful, being pushed off the swim rafts constantly does drain your energy a little 😊 the next day we went for a little walk and checked out the views.

As my birthday is approaching my host family decided to pay for me to go to a bouldering centre with my host cousin.  we had so much fun, it has been awhile since I have climbed so I was quite sore the next day but was so worth it!

I also finished my work experience week at my host Mums, host Aunty and host cousins carpentry. I was fortunate enough to make a letter opener that I can take home with me and I helped with making quite a few other things too.

I had my final German course for the year and said goodbye to all the oldies that arent with rotary that I wont see again ☹ but we had a small picnic in Basel as our final goodbye.

And now for the main event………

Group imageEurotour started by meeting in Zürich and spending the night so we could all be ready to leave first thing in the morning. On our bus there were students from Spain and Italy from an Organisation called STS, and they were all KIWI or Aussie. We had a range of different nationalities on our bus and it was so great to get to know everyone, we also shared our hotel rooms with different people each night so we could meet everyone.

First stop- Italy/Venice

Toured around Venice for the day and for the lunch we had a typical Italian Pizza with Gelato after, we went on a gondola ride for  10 minutes and we got to see the beautiful and not so beautiful parts of Italy, we then took a boat to Murano and saw some awesome glass blowing.

Second stop Slovenia and Budapest

Early wake up and headed to Slovenia to see the Caves in Sloveniahuge caves there, I personally found it amazing and so calming- by far my favourite city- everything was just so chill. Then rode the bus to Budapest Hungary and on arrival at the hotel we found there was another rotary Belo group from Italy which were super cool. The next day in Budapest was gorgeous, toured around and did a little shopping and visited the Hot baths- I didn’t find it that nice with so many people there but was something you need to do as a tourist.

Third stop Vienna

Hopped on the bus early and rode to Austria where when we arrived went straight to a castle and checked out the gardens and searched through a maze and Labyrinth and went to an Amusement park for a couple hours just having some fun with friends 😀  the next day we had a tour and looked around and did a little shopping, that night there was a big group that went to the opera and I was one of the few that didn’t go but we dressed up anyway and assisted getting everyone else ready and they all looked gorgeous.

Fourth Country Slovakia

We toured a little and tried a traditional drink called Kofola, looks a bit like beer but is actually just a soft drink. We had a beautiful night walk too with the whole group, that night I was rooming with one of my closest friends and as you can imagine we didn’t get too much sleep. But we travelled the next day, so we slept on the bus.

Country 5 Czech/Prague

Started travelling to Prague and had a great tour guide for a few hours and tried a touristy food in Czech called a chimney which was brilliant. Checked out a couple churches that were stunning and that night was our washing night and spent a couple hours washing drying and waiting, was long but well needed as we were close to out of clothes. Met with bus 1 and had a great night just catching up, chilling and signing flags

Sixth Stop- Germany

Our tour guide for Germany was really cool, she showed us the best parts or Berlin and cheap places to eat, and an absolutely magnificent graffiti street

Travelling to Amsterdam

On our way to Amsterdam we stopped for a couple hours at the Sachsenhausen memorial and Museum (a concentration camp in Germany). No one talked too much through the tour, I think we were all soaking up all the information. We learnt a lot but had a few hours drive to think more about it on our way to Amsterdam. Arrived with a marvellous welcoming sunset, our rooms were amazing too. Our next touring day of Amsterdam was a blast bike tours in the morning and a picnic for lunch, a boat tour and a little bit of shopping.

Brussels

Only a quick stop in for some cool photos

PARIS!

I was shocked when we got to Paris, I thought it was going to be a lot dirtier and crowded Francebut it was so big and beautiful, we went on a couple tours and learnt a bit about Peris. We visited the Louvre and was luckily enough to see the Mona Lisa however seeing her in person isn’t that much more exciting. We “climbed” the Eiffel tower, took the elevator up even though many of us wanted to walk, but had some amazing views and photo opportunities and luckily was able to climb down the Eiffel tower really soaking the view as we spiraled down.

Our drive back from Paris was still good but I think everyone was getting a little sad as we weren’t going to see half of the group ever again. But our farewell at the train station with the other bus seemed to be the hardest part. I am definitely not looking forward to doing that again in six months.

June was an amazing month and July will be too, much planned and not much time to chill. I think I’m making the most of my exchange while I’m here.

 

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