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First travel weekend: Learning the ropes August 14, 2011

Posted by Allie Del Giorno in Travel Log.
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Looking back at all the places I could have visited (Amsterdam, Germany, Southern France), I must admit that it seems a little disappointing that I didn’t travel farther my first weekend.  I ended up going with friends to Luxembourg on a day trip that we probably could have accomplished in a few day trips after classes.  However, I am still glad I did not travel far that weekend because the transition to a European lifestyle with the trains, diet, and language can be a relatively tough one, and taking it slow definitely helped with the transition.  Here is my account from our first weekend in Europe:

Sunday, May 22, 2011

Weekend[0]: Luxembourg

This weekend, we decided to go to Luxembourg City for a day trip on Saturday. It only takes 45 minutes to get there (!!). We can usually go for free on Eurail passes without reservations, but all of us have the 2 months and want to activate it next weekend so it will last the rest of the trip. The trains leave about every half hour, so it’s basically like an inter-country bus system. This is the city that has movies in English (yes!!!) so if we ever want to see a movie on a weeknight, this is a quick and easy way to do it. Of course, Pirates of the Caribbean is on the list for some other day. For this Saturday, we just wanted to explore the city.

 

 

 

 

 

The city is absolutely gorgeous. As we were exploring, everyone thought of a different movie (or videogame) it looked like, it was so picturesque. Here, Steffan is trying to convince us that the sundial-type-thing just needs to be pressed in the right order to unlock a secret passage. Mariel and Layla don’t look so convinced…

We also got incredibly lucky because there happened to be a huge market going on at the same time. They had a lot of clothes and shoes (apparently shoes are huge here), and, of course, SpongeBob and Patrick balloons, and American music playing.

 

We visitied these things called casemates, which are basically tunnels in the cliffsides used for defense. That was definitely my favorite part. We spent a solid 3 or so hours exploring them.

 

 

 

 

 
The most beautiful part about the city was the layers and gardens. Most of the city is flat, but there is a stretch near the main river where gardens, parks, and forests form ‘steps’ in a valley through the city. It was beautiful!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

We did some sight-seeing of the Duke’s Palace and some cathedrals, but the most amazing part was the American Cemetary for WWII veterans. They had about 5000 people buried there and it was an absolutely beautiful, modern-looking cemetary despite the fact that it was made over 50 years ago.

All in all, the trip was awesome. We got some good food, beautiful sights, and a chance to figure out the trains. I think we will be ready for our trip to Paris next weekend. This ‘mini’ trip was good for getting used to travel, but I imagine that coordinating hostels, splitting up big groups, and navigating a huge city will present some challenges. Can’t wait, though!

Sunday, May 22, 2011

Weekend[0]: Luxembourg

This weekend, we decided to go to Luxembourg City for a day trip on Saturday. It only takes 45 minutes to get there (!!). We can usually go for free on Eurail passes without reservations, but all of us have the 2 months and want to activate it next weekend so it will last the rest of the trip. The trains leave about every half hour, so it’s basically like an inter-country bus system. This is the city that has movies in English (yes!!!) so if we ever want to see a movie on a weeknight, this is a quick and easy way to do it. Of course, Pirates of the Caribbean is on the list for some other day. For this Saturday, we just wanted to explore the city.

The city is absolutely gorgeous. As we were exploring, everyone thought of a different movie (or videogame) it looked like, it was so picturesque. Here, Steffan is trying to convince us that the sundial-type-thing just needs to be pressed in the right order to unlock a secret passage. Mariel and Layla don’t look so convinced…

We also got incredibly lucky because there happened to be a huge market going on at the same time. They had a lot of clothes and shoes (apparently shoes are huge here), and, of course, SpongeBob and Patrick balloons, and American music playing.

We visitied these things called casemates, which are basically tunnels in the cliffsides used for defense. That was definitely my favorite part. We spent a solid 3 or so hours exploring them.


The most beautiful part about the city was the layers and gardens. Most of the city is flat, but there is a stretch near the main river where gardens, parks, and forests form ‘steps’ in a valley through the city. It was beautiful!



We did some sight-seeing of the Duke’s Palace and some cathedrals, but the most amazing part was the American Cemetary for WWII veterans. They had about 5000 people buried there and it was an absolutely beautiful, modern-looking cemetary despite the fact that it was made over 50 years ago.

All in all, the trip was awesome. We got some good food, beautiful sights, and a chance to figure out the trains. I think we will be ready for our trip to Paris next weekend. This ‘mini’ trip was good for getting used to travel, but I imagine that coordinating hostels, splitting up big groups, and navigating a huge city will present some challenges. Can’t wait, though!

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