Travel Diary: Capri

This past weekend, I met up with my friend Victoria from elementary-high school in Capri. We left on Thursday and took the same train to Naples, but it was super crowded, so we weren’t able to sit together. Once we got to Naples, we took the ferry to Capri, which took about an hour. We didn’t get in until late Thursday evening, so we walked around Anacapri, where our hotel was, and found a place to grab dinner, before going back to the hotel to relax a bit.



Sunset night 1


Friday morning, we got up and went to the town of Capri to take a boat tour around the island to see the sights. We were supposed to go to the Blue Grotto, but it was a 3-hour wait, so we decided to pass on that! Once we got back to port, we wanted to go to Capri Centro to walk around the shops and grab a bite to eat. Well, we didn’t realize how far and uphill the center was from the port. By the time we got to the top, we were both panting and sweating. Luckily, waiting at the top was a drink stand that had lemon slush with fresh squeezed orange juice – like he squeezed the oranges in front of me directly into the cup. It was literally the BEST thing I have ever had. It was so fresh and much needed after our killer hike. We also later learned there’s a funicular that you can take up, but we rewarded ourselves with yummy food instead! After we had grabbed a bite, we took a cab back to the hotel to change into our swimsuits to go the beach club. The taxis in Capri are so fun – they are all open air, so it’s like one big convertible, which is really nice in the sun! We spent some time soaking up the rays and then headed back to the hotel to change for dinner. We had read on trip advisor about some places and decided to try one that wasn’t too far away. However, when we got there, it was closed… so we got back on our phones to try and find another place to go, but while doing this, the owner came and, in very broken English, told us to come in… so we did! We were the only people there, for a while anyways, but enjoyed it and I think the sweet owner did too! I think we had some of the best food my whole time in Italy there – we had Caprese salad (with tomatoes and basil from the owners garden – she was very proud of that), Gnocchi Sorrento (with potatoes grown in her garden that had natural soil), and a fresh fish of the day. We didn’t realize when we got the fish that it was the whole fish and that we would have to debone it ourselves. Victoria and I both just stared at each other for a bit, but I told her if she cut off the head, I could do the fish.. and I actually did pretty well for my first time! We finished the night off with a drink at the hotel bar and then passed out.



View from breakfast



Delicous Lemon Slush and Orange Juice


From Kindergarten to Capri 



The deboned fish.. it was a lot better than it looks


Saturday morning we got up early and went to lay by the pool before Victoria had to leave. She was going back a day early, but we forgot to factor in the time of the ferry to get her back, so she left a little earlier than we had anticipated. After she left, I stayed by the pool for a while before cleaning up to grab lunch and shop a little more. After lunch, I went to ride the chairlift to the top of the mountain for beautiful views of the island and the surrounding area. I went back to town to shop a bit before getting dinner and calling it a night.



From the Top of the Chairlift



Sunday I got up and got ready for the big travel day back to Florence. It was such a fun trip and it was really fun to share it with a friend I’ve known for 16 years! We had a great time and I cannot wait to go back to Capri one day! This week is my last week before finals and I cannot believe that was my last trip before the end of the semester.. it has gone by so quickly!



Travel Diary: Geneva

This past weekend I went to Geneva to visit my Aunt and Uncle. What was supposed to be an easy flight out of Florence, direct to Geneva, turned it to a little bit more of a headache? I happened to wake up at 4 am and checked my phone for the time. I noticed that I had a text from a number I didn’t know and read it… It was a message from the airline saying my flight was canceled, and they would be in touch soon with rebooking options. Of course, I freaked out, and because it was 4 am, I couldn’t call to check. Luckily, though, it was only 10 pm at home, so mom was able to help me find a solution. There was another flight on a different airline that was leaving roughly around the time I was supposed to, so I quickly booked that flight and was on my way!

Once I landed, Aunt Lisa and Nate were there to greet me! We drove back to their house and dropped my stuff off and headed out to lunch by the lake! It was a beautiful, sunny day, so we enjoyed yummy bagel sandwiches by the water. We then went back to their house and hung out a bit, and Nate studied, and I worked on papers until Anna and Sam got back from school. We all hung out that evening and had a yummy tapas at their house! Nate, Sam and I then went to the movies to see Batman vs. Superman, while Anna was at another movie with friends. After the movie, we all went back to their house and then Nate, and I went out to the bar down the street to hang for a bit! It was so weird, but it was nice to catch up with him!


Saturday morning, we all slept in and took a super lazy day. It was cold and rainy out, so Anna and I watched the first two Captain America movies! We literally just lounged all day, which was so nice! I haven’t really had the opportunity to do that while here, or if I have, it wasn’t in a comfy house, so it was nice! That night Nate, Sam and I went to the movies again and saw Captain America 3, which was WAY better than the movie the night before! Anna was at a sleepover, so she didn’t join!

Sunday morning we all got up and went to Escape Geneva, which was so fun! We did the intermediate level, and it was apocalypse themed. We struggled a bit in the beginning, but managed to get out with 2 minutes to spare! We had lunch at a pub across the street and then went back to the house to drop the boys off! Aunt Lisa, Anna and I then headed to Morges for a fashion, food and art festival. Though the weather wasn’t great, it was so fun to see Morges, and it was beautiful. There were some interesting things at the festival, but Anna found some cute jewelry! We then went back to the house and back to studying and lounging! We finished the night off with some yummy Italian food and called it a night!


Stuck in Escape Geneva

Monday morning I went with Aunt Lisa to drop the kids off at school, before heading to the airport. It was such a fun trip, and I can’t wait to go back in a few weeks since it’ll be my last time at their house in Switzerland! It was a super relaxing weekend with family, and I was sad to see it end!


How much to the Alps weight? Moun-TONS

Travel Diary – Prague

This past weekend, Lizzy, Jenny and I made our way to Prague. We arrived late Friday night and went straight to bed. Saturday morning, we got up and walked over to the Jewish Quarter to explore a bit and grab breakfast. Jenny wanted to see this area, but there wasn’t a whole lot going on since Passover just started. We found a cute place for breakfast and enjoyed the warm food and the heat since it was COLD!!! We then walked over to the Old Town Square to explore a bit and see the Astronomical Clock. We then walked through a cute market and warmed up with Chimney Cakes before finding ourselves inside a special exhibit of Warhol, Dalí, and Mucha. There were so many amazing pieces there, but my favorite was Warhol! We then joined a walking tour of the city and walked all over learning about the history of Prague and the buildings there. It’s a really amazing city and I didn’t know much of its history before, but I definitely learned a lot. We got to see the Old Town Square, the New Town Square, the Jewish Quarter, the Municipal House, Charles Bridge, and the Prague Castle from across the river. We finished the night off at a cute restaurant with yummy food before calling it a night!


Old Town Square


Astronomical Clock


Warhol Exhibit 


Warhol Exhibit


Warhol Exhibit

Sunday morning, we got up and went to a bagel place for breakfast – it was so nice to have a bagel, the Italia’s don’t really have them, so that was a nice treat! We then walked over to the John Lennon wall and took pictures and listened to a guy play Beatles music there. We then walked back over to the Charles Bridge and climbed to the top of it to see all of Prague. It was FREEZING this day – like 40s, so it was a quick trip to the top and then back down to Starbucks! Lizzy and I stopped to get garnet rings since it is the speciality of Prague (and they were super cheap!). We got another Chimney Cake and ate them in the sun, before it went away, before our tour of Prague Castle. For the tour, we met in front of the Rudolfinum, which is a music and art gallery and a really pretty building. We then made the trip to Prague Castle and got to see some of the churches and famous sights there. It is a massive area and when it’s cold, it is not so fun to see. It really was beautiful, but at one point it started to snow, so we called it quits after three hours. Don’t let the pictures fool you – it was COLD! We finished our night off with some goulash and fried cheese, Czech specialties, and hit the hay before our 6am flight.


Lennon Wall


Lennon Wall


Lennon Wall


Lennon Wall


View of Prague Castle from Charles Bridge Tower


View of Prague from Charles Bridge Tower


Chimney Cake


Prague Castle


View from Prague Castle — See it was cold 🙂

I really loved Prague and would love to go back when it’s warmer. It reminded me a lot of Budapest and I really enjoyed my time there!


Travel Diary – Barcelona

Friday night Lizzy, Jenny, Maggie (Jenny’s friend from FIT), Danielle (a friend from NYC) and I arrived in Barcelona. After checking into our AirBNB, we went searching for food. There wasn’t much open around us at midnight, but we found a small bar right next door that was open and had food. We went in and sat down to order only to find out the owner spoke no English and didn’t have a written menu. However, his friend who was having a drink at the bar spoke English, so he translated everything for us. He was the nicest man and was telling us stories of when he travelled to the states – he had been Florida, Georgia, and New York City and loved that he had been to places we lived in. We ended up having some amazing tapas but were all exhausted so we went back to our apartment and to bed.

Saturday morning, we got up early and walked to a square to meet for a walking tour. Barcelona is extremely spread out, so the tour focused mainly on the old city since it was walkable. It was nice to be able to get background information on what we were looking at and we saw a number of things we wouldn’t have ever seen otherwise. Once we finished the tour we went to grab lunch and then decided to go see some of the Gaudí houses. On our way to see them, we shopped along the way and found some cute stuff that you could only get in Barcelona (or so we’d like to think). We finally made it to two of the houses and they were amazing. The architecture in Barcelona is so different from anything I have ever seen and I really loved seeing it all in person – it’s a nice change from Florence . After we saw two of the houses we were exhausted, so we walked back to the apartment and relaxed and changed before dinner. Jenny’s best friend from home happened to also be in Barcelona, so we met her and her friend for another yummy tapas dinner. We didn’t finish until midnight, so we went back home and to bed.


Barcelona Cathedral


Picasso Art


In front of Gaudí House

Sunday morning Jenny and I got up and got massages at the W – my 21st birthday gift to her. We met up with everyone else on the beach after and enjoyed yummy tapas by the ocean. We then went to Park Güell and wandered around there for a bit to see all the mosaics. It was really beautiful, but a lot smaller than I had expected or anticipated. We then walked from there to Sagrada Família to see the church. It was the most insane church I think I have ever seen. Construction started in 1882 and it is still not yet finished. The church was breathtaking on the inside and had rainbow stain glass all over. Pictures do not do it justice, but it was worth the trip. We finished the night at a restaurant called Brunch & Cake, Jenny had been dying to go, so we had breakfast for dinner. Yet again, it was another amazing meal. While we were at dinner, I got a message from my friend Mallory from high school that she was in Barcelona too, so we met up with her at IceBarcelona – an ice bar. It was so nice to see her and catch up, but we also had a really fun time in the ice. We then said our goodbyes and went our separate ways.


Park Güell


Park Güell


Park Güell


Sagrada Família


Sagrada Família


Sagrada Família 


IceBarcelona with Mallory

This morning we got up and went to the airport to fly back to Florence. It was a short trip, but I definitely want to go back. We got to see the major sites, but there is a lot more that I would love to see!

Travel Diary: Cinque Terre

Yesterday, Kayleigh, Lizzy and I took a day trip to Cinque Terre. We took a 2-hour bus ride to La Spezia where we got on a train that took us to all the different towns of Cinque Terre. We only visited 3 towns, but they were all beautiful. The first town we visited was Manarola and was the picturesque town with colorful houses on the water. The weather was chilly and a little rainy, but it was still a lot of fun. We only spent a bit of time in Manarola before taking the train to Vernazza where we had a delicious lunch. Apparently Cinque Terre is where pesto was created, so they have pesto everything. We had pesto pizza for lunch and it did not disappoint. After lunch in Vernazza, we took a 2-hour hike to Monterosso al Mare. The hike was not too strenuous, just long and there we, as a group, went pretty slow. It was a pretty hike that led us to the beach town of Monterosso al Mare. Once we arrived there, we indulged ourselves in some margarita buckets and fried crab claws. Everything was absolutely delicious. Though it was overcast and a bit cool, it was perfect for the hike and we really got to see the towns. It was a fun day, but we all came home exhausted! Next weekend we head to Barcelona for Jenny’s 21st birthday, which will be really fun!









Our “We’re wearing matching Cinque Terre shirts and just finished a hike to the beach” picture

Travel Diary: Spring Break

We got to Munich nice and early Friday morning (after our 6:45 am flight from Florence) to a cold and drizzling city. Funny story about our lovely journey over to the airport in Florence – as with anything travel related to me and Lizzy, nothing is easy. In Florence, you cannot hail a cab, you either have to call for a cab or go to a taxi stand. Since it was super early, we called the night before to a cab company and scheduled a pickup for 5am. They told us to be down a few minutes early, so Lizzy and I got downstairs around 4:50. At this time, literally no on is around except for a few people from the night before and people walking their dogs. So we waited inside our apartment building with the door cracked so we could see the car come. Well, we waited until 5:10 and no car came and when we called, no one answered, so we assumed they forgot about us and decided to walk to the taxi stand a few blocks away… Well no cabs were there so now we were really screwed… I remembered that there was a hotel down the street from where we were, so we dragged our staircases there and begged the people that worked there to help us call a cab. The guy felt so bad and called us one right away and stayed with us to make sure he actually came.

Once we finally made it to Munich, we checked in to our room and relaxed for a bit before going to Starbucks and meeting at Marienplatz for a walking tour of the city. It started by the New and Old Town Halls and the Glockenspiel. We then wandered over to the Viktualienmarkt, which is a big market full of fruits, veggies, meats, etc. and a Biergarten. Unfortunately, it was Good Friday, which Germans take VERY seriously and everything was closed. We then walked over to the opera house and the Munich Residenz, which was a palace in the city where King Ludwig and other Kings of the city resided. The focus of the tour was not on the Nazi party, but there is one street in Munich that has gold in the cobblestone that showed an area where anti-Nazis would walk to avoid have to do the “Heil Hitler” to a plaque. After the tour ended, Lizzy and I were exhausted and cold, so we grabbed a quick bite to eat and headed back to the hotel for a nap. We woke up hungry and to it really raining, so we decided to just eat dinner at the hotel. We enjoyed some yummy sushi, a hot shower, and a nice long sleep!


Anti-Nazi Walk






Saturday morning we got up and met Lizzy’s friend Connie and her boyfriend to go to Neuschwanstein for the day. They were nice enough to drive us there and back, which was a fun way to see the countryside of Munich. However, all but one road was closed, including the one leading to the castle, so we got stuck in a pretty big traffic jam and missed our ticket time to they castle. Luckily, Connie called and was able to get us a later ticket time and we made it just in time! We climbed the exhausting mile walk up to the castle and spent all of probably 5 minutes in the castle on the tour… It was kind of lame, but we got to see the inside. We then wanted to get good pictures of the castle, but the bridge to do that was closed due to maintenance and some snow. But, the way up was still accessible and people were going, so we decided to climb it too! It was the steepest uphill climb, but it gave pretty good views. However, the actual bridge was further up the hill, so we climbed up to see what that view was like, which meant we had to climb up the mud in the trees to get the view. It was definitely worth it, but you just couldn’t look down once you got to the edge – it was a straight drop down! We grabbed a snack after and headed back to Munich on the autobahn, which was really fun. Germans really do know how to drive! We said our goodbyes and Lizzy and I finished the night off with Starbucks and Dirty Dancing!



Sunday was Easter and literally everything in Munich was closed… Except the art museums, which is exactly what Lizzy and I decided to do! We started at the Alte Pinakothek which had a lot of Renaissance art, so we got our fill of Jesus paintings on Easter. We then went to the Neue Pinakothek which has more romanticism and realism paintings including some Van Gogh and Monet! After that, we strolled over to Odeonsplatz to Tambosi which is an Italian café that is known for their cakes, so we obviously had to have one. After relaxing in the sun for a bit, we walked over to the English Gardens to stroll around. Literally everyone was out and about, and it was nice to enjoy some fresh air. At the park there is an area where there is a major current and people surf there, so we stood and watched them surf for quite a while. We then walked back over towards Odeonsplatz and decided that it would be fun to go to the Munich Residenz. It was amazing! It’s very similar to Versailles and is massive; 131 rooms in total! After a while, they all started to blend together, but the place was beautiful! We were exhausted after this big day out, so we came back to the hotel to take a rest and just relax for a bit before dinner. We enjoyed the traditional Easter dinner of hamburgers, French fries, and a cocktail before heading off to bed!

Monday is also celebrated in Munich and literally everything is closed. So we decided to take a day trip to Dachau. It was probably one of the most emotionally intense things I’ve witnessed and being there was really tough, but I enjoyed learning the history and seeing what I learned throughout high school in person. After a draining 5 hour tour, Lizzy and I were ready for some fun and food. We headed to the Hofbrauhaus for some beer and Wiener schnitzel. It was delicious and just what we needed. We decided to walk around for a bit after our big meal and then went back to the hotel to relax for a bit. We ended up going to a pizza place near our hotel for dinner – we weren’t starving but wanted something to hold us over till morning. We went back to the room and packed up before going to sleep.


Tuesday morning we got up and walked around the market since it was finally open. We then ventured into the different department stores and other stores to browse and in search of Christmas ornaments. Once we checked those items off our list, we headed back to the hotel for check out and to go to Dubrovnik. The flight from Munich to Dubrovnik was really easy and beautiful! We landed around 4 and made it to the hotel in time for dinner and a walk around with Kayleigh. Since it’s the low season, many of the restaurants at the hotel are not open, so we ended up eating at the hotel and were the only people in the restaurant for the majority of the night. We all crashed early after big days of traveling.

Wednesday morning we got up and took the bus to Old Town Dubrovnik where we walked around the city walls. You get beautiful views of the city and the ocean from the walls. It ended up warming up a lot more than we expected so we grabbed “take away mojitos” and wandered around the town for lunch. We decided to grab lunch up on the hill by the water and some yummy hamburgers and French fries. We then walked back through town, grabbing another mojito, before getting on the bus to go back and tan. That night we walked 550 meters from our hotel to Restaurant Eden. It was a lot longer of a walk than we had anticipated, but it was a cute little restaurant with yummy food. After our big adventure, we were exhausted and called it a day.


Thursday we spent the whole day laying by the pool and catching some rays. It was so nice to just unwind and have no agenda. We ate lunch at a pub we found in walking distance and then returned to tan some more. For dinner, we went back into town and ate at Restaurant 360. It has beautiful views of the city, but it was too cold and windy to sit outside and enjoy them, so we sat inside. They had, probably,  of the best food we ate the whole trip and it was really nice to treat ourselves to a nice dinner. We were again all exhausted and called it a night after dinner.

Friday we got up early and took the ferry from town to the island of Lorkum, about 10 minutes away. There is a monastery there as well as gardens, roaming peacocks, and rabbits. It was a beautiful island and we spent the day exploring. There were beautiful ponds and all sorts of fun trails to explore. We finished there around 2 and took the ferry back to town and go sushi. It was the cutest restaurant that was family owned and it was delish. After lunch, we, of course, had to grab another mojito before shopping around a bit more. Once done, we headed back to the hotel for Kayleigh to register for classes for the fall and then relaxed a bit. We decided to go back to town for dinner and ate at a yummy Italian place. After another big day out, we called it quits after dinner.


Saturday we got up and tanned again. Since it was our last full day, we were determined to get as much sun as we could. We lounged by the pool all day and while it started off cloudy, it eventually led to some pretty good sun. We stayed out all day and then went bald to town one last time for dinner. We found a cute restaurant right by the water where we enjoyed our last Croatian meal – though we didn’t have any “typical” Croatian food – not really sure what that actually consists of. But dinner was good. We bid adieu to town and went back to the hotel to pack up and enjoy one more night of comfy sleep.

Sunday morning we got up and finished packing before getting breakfast. Kayleigh had an early flight so we said goodbye to her and Lizzy and I went to lounge by the pool again. We both had scheduled massages, so we took turns going – which was the most interesting massage I’ve ever had. At one point he masseuse was laying down on top of me. It was very odd, but at least, it was something to do. We spent the rest of the afternoon in the sun before saying goodbye to Croatia and catching a flight to Frankfurt before heading back to Florence.

I can’t believe spring break is over… That just means I’m that much closer to being done abroad, and I’m not ready… Yet anyways.


Travel Diary: London

Last weekend, Lizzy and I went to London to meet her mom and my mom and dad for a long weekend! Our trip started out a little unlike how we wanted… We were flying out of Florence to London City Airport. Unfortunately, Florence often has high winds and a short runway, so not everyone can get on the plane. Well, the gate agent came and asked if anyone wanted to volunteer to get on another flight and no one did. So they had to get a list and call people. OF COURSE Lizzy and I were on the list. After a very stressful hour, we learned that we were getting transported to Bologna and then flying out of there to London Heathrow. What should have been a 2-hour journey to London, turned into a much longer journey. But, we made it!

Thursday night, we freshened up after the hotel once we made it. We then met up with Mrs. Brownell and headed to dinner. It ended up being a really late dinner, and it would have been super delicious if I hadn’t been recovering from the stomach bug :(. We called it a night and I enjoyed a nice, deep sleep in a big bed all to myself!

Friday morning, I was woken up to the phone ringing saying mom and dad were about 5 minutes away! They finally made it and we relaxed a bit, before taking a walk to Harrods to look around. Mom, Dad, and I ended up eating at the burger bar there before mom and I left to go meet Lizzy and Mrs. Brownell at Sketch for tea. It was the most interesting place to have tea, but it was delish. We enjoyed some finger sandwiches, desserts, and many other goodies. It was a fun place to unwind and enjoy some yummy food. We then walked around Piccadilly Circus a bit before saying our goodbyes for the night! Mom, Dad and I finished the night off at Nobu with some sushi before calling it an early night to sleep and enjoy!


Saturday morning we got up and went to the Portobello Road Market in Notting Hill. It was the cutest area and they had all sorts of amazing antiques, food, and so much more! I was eager to seek out the Notting Hill Bookshop aka the store Hugh Grant worked at in the movie Notting Hill. It looked just the same, as it should, but there was a number of tourists around. Of course, we had to get a picture, though! We finished the afternoon off on a bus tour of London that took us to all the major sites in the city. From Westminster Abbey to the actual city of London and of course to Buckingham Palace, we saw it all! It was a fun way to see the city and all it has to offer. We got off the bus at Buckingham Palace and went to the gift shop to see the commemorative china for the Queen’s 90th birthday before going back to the hotel to freshen up before dinner. We met back up with Lizzy and her mom and went to dinner at Bumpkin. A restaurant that is owned by one of the women on Ladies of London – a show Lizzy and I love. It was actually really yummy and we had a good time!


Sunday morning we got up and went to Liberty and walked around Oxford Circus before going to lunch in Chelsea with the brother of a man that works for mom. We had a traditional “Sunday Roast” and it was so much fun and the food was surprisingly really good. We then walked over to Kensington Palace and waved to Will and Kate and George and Charlotte before going back to the hotel to rest up after our big meal and then take a walk around Hyde Park. We finished the night off with some tapas at a restaurant in Oxford Circus.


Monday morning we enjoyed breakfast and a few last minute errands and a walk before saying our goodbyes and going to the airport. It was such a fun weekend and we hated to see it come to an end. London will always have my heart, but we had to head back to Florence for midterms.


Travel Diary: Budapest

Last weekend Lizzy, Kayleigh, Jenny, and I went to Budapest, Hungary, which I learned is actually pronounced Budapes(ch)t. We stayed at two different places, so Jenny and I took a different car to our hotel and Lizzy and Kayleigh took one to their hostel with a few other girls from FIT. Our driver somehow mixed up where Jenny and I were going and he took us to some random apartment. He spoke no English, so when we got there, he just said “come come” and so we followed… When we realized it wasn’t the right place, we told him the name of the hotel and he realized his mistake and took us there. We got to our hotel about the same time as the others got to their hostel, so once we got settled, the four of us met up for dinner at a really yummy place below our rooms (our hotel and hostel were right next to one another). After a quick bite, it was off to dinner for us; we were all exhausted.

Saturday morning we got up and did a walking tour of the city. It was not only a nice way to see all of the city but a fun way to get the history of the city itself. We started on the Pest side of the city and finished the tour on the Buda side. Once we were done, we decided to grab some traditional Hungarian food and had goulash for lunch. It was actually a lot better than I had expected and I really liked it. We then toured around the city a little more, saw parliament and the Shoes on the Danube – a memorial to the Jews who were taken from Budapest in WWII. Lizzy, Jenny, and I then met back up and went to dinner at another Hungarian restaurant that was close by, but we all tried other food rather than the traditional Hungarian food :). Lizzy, Kayleigh and I ended the night at a Ruin Bar, which is a bar in was an abandoned house in the Jewish Ghetto and is decorated with items that were left there. It was really a fun place and we had a good time.



Tate Girls in Budapest




Buda Castle


Shoes on the Danube


Sunday morning we went to the House of Terror. It is a museum that is in an old Nazi Police station that had a prison underneath it. I never realized how involved Hungary was in the war or how affected they were by it. We learned a lot of history, but seeing the actual prison was hard to look at. After a little morbid morning, we decided to go to one of the baths for some relaxation. OMG, it was amazing. There were so many indoor baths and 3 outdoor, which is where we spent most of our time. They were so warm and a nice way just to enjoy each other’s company! We finished the night with a dinner cruise on the Danube. It was a fun way to see the city and eat some more Hungarian food.


Széchenyi Thermal Bath


Monday morning we walked around the city some more and enjoyed a warm day by the water! We were sad to leave Budapest and really all fell in love with the city! It was quite Americanized – there was a KFC, Burger King, TGI Fridays, Office Depot, and Starbucks, but it was a really fun place that I would love to go back to!



Florence for the Weekend

This past weekend, we stayed in Florence, which was nice to just have time to relax and enjoy the city! We started Friday off by climbing to the top of the Duomo and the Bell Tower, visiting the church museum and the Baptistery! It was such a beautiful day and crystal blue skies, so it was completely worth the 463 steps (for the Duomo) and 414 steps (for the Bell Tower). We enjoyed some gelato afterwards to treat ourselves. We then made our way to the Church Museum, where we were able to see the real golden doors from the Baptistry – they were BEAUTIFUL! I then met up with three friends from high school who were visiting for dinner and we had a lot of fun catching up and reconnecting!


Saturday I spent the day playing tour guide to my friends. We went all over Florence in the pouring down rain and managed to take absolutely no photos  But we had a great time and I’m so happy I got to see them! That night, Lizzy, Kayleigh and I finally made it to a “secret bakery.” It’s where the bakeries start baking late at night for the next day and you go to the back door of them and can buy fresh pastries! We all got chocolate croissants for $1 each and they were delicious!


Today, we went to see the David at the Accademia since in Florence state museums are free the first Sunday of every month! It was a bit crowded, but so much fun and we really enjoyed seeing David and the other art around the museum. It has been a gross, cold, rainy day here, so we are all now in comfy clothes and relaxing!


Florence Days 1-3

I have finally made it to Florence and to say that I am excited is way understated. Lizzy and I arrived after a pit stop in Amsterdam to a rainy Florence, with all our luggage in tow. Though we were insanely exhausted, we decided to explore a bit so we could get comfortable with our new home and try not fall asleep! After a delicious lunch in one of the piazzas, we went on a mission to find shampoo and conditioner at Sephora and after visiting 2 Sephoras, I was finally successful! Who knew that it was that hard to find shampoo? We then decided to venture over to the area of our new apartment and see what it was like. When we finally arrived we looked around and there were very few people in sight and not many places to eat or shop at and while we were skeptical (don’t worry mom, that changed quickly), we decided to go back to the hotel and rest since it decided to rain harder. With one more go on the town for dinner, we both crawled into bed at 8:30 and slept fabulously! Monday morning, we woke up well rested and enjoyed a nice croissant at a little café.


Yesterday, I was determined to find a curling iron or hair straighter. After many visits to department stores and pharmacies, I was about to give up, when I saw an electronic store (I had read that they carried them), only to find it was closed. However, the sweet man that owned it came running up after us and opened it for us. Praise the lord! Lizzy and I then ventured across the Ponte Vecchio and grabbed a slice of pizza before climbing to the top of Piazza Michelangelo. Don’t let the photo below fool you, it took us 3 breaks on the steep steps up to get to the top, but the view was well worth it! After our trek, we thought we’d go explore the area around our apartment since it was a beautiful sunny day. And much to our surprise, the area was packed with people (see mom, it’s going to be okay!) We finished our night off with dinner with Jenny and it was so much fun to see her!



Stairs to the Top


View from the Top

Today, Tuesday, we went to orientation for our apartment and finally got our room keys. Lizzy and I packed up our suitcases and took a taxi to our new home. It only took us using 4 of the 6 keys to finally get into the front door to then have to figure out the next key to use to open the next door. 3 trips later, we finally made it with all our stuff to our door on the 3rd floor, which uses two keys to get in. Our apartment is perfect! There’s a decent sized kitchen with a fridge, oven, microwave, and even a dishwasher. Off that we have a little living area with a TV. Lizzy and I share the first room and there are 3 other rooms for the 4 other girls, plus 2 bathrooms. The ceilings are high, so it makes it feel a lot bigger and it’s IKEA furniture, so it’s pretty modern for such an old city. The window in my room is across the street from a music school, so we hear the piano and other instruments, which is fun to hear. Orientation starts tomorrow and I’m excited to meet more people and get everything ready, but, for now, it’s nice to finally be unpacked and organized! I’ll try to write and post pictures as much as possible!


Our bedroom


The Kitchen


Living Room