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Browsing: Travel

Choosing to study abroad is like standing at the foot of a diving board for the first time. First, there is apprehension, there’s a combination of fear and adrenaline which is followed by an overall uncertainty of what you’re about to do. You have two options, you can dive head first or walk away and regret it tomorrow. As for me, I stumbled clumsily head first and I never looked back. Choosing to study abroad in Canada was one of the best decisions I have made in my life. Now, prior to my adventure, I had never even heard of…

With Valentine’s day upon us, here’s a sickening look at some of the top romantic getaways around the world. In no particular order, let’s begin. PARIS: Paris is a destination synonymous with romance. A city with plenty to do and a public transport system so simple to figure out that any language barrier is knocked down with the ease of a large bulldozer crashing through it. The City of Love offers boundless opportunities for romance with its candlelit wine bars, perfect gardens and wonderful architecture in the form of Sacré-Cœur Basilica, Arc de Triomphe, Notre Dame and of course, the…

If you’re looking for the perfect time to go skiing, February is probably your best bet. This is one of the best months as it is nowhere near as cold as January,  yet still chilly enough to enjoy a hot chocolate. If you don’t take to the cold too well however, wait until March and you can actually sunbathe whilst skiing. Flying into Innsbruck, Austria is quite spectacular, weaving through huge, stunning mountains, the glistening snow, and rocky peaks look close enough to touch. The Tirol region is known for Austrian folk traditions, historic sites, such as the Imperial…

Despite the long-held scepticism regarding Valentine’s Day and commercialism, I believe that as long as we are devoting a day each year to our mothers, our fathers and our anniversary of birth, we are also entitled to devote one day a year – if not the other 364 – to our significant others, be that romantic partners or best friends… And what better way to celebrate that than by travelling the world. Although a cliché, the Lovelock Bridge in Paris is a classic, as long as you’re not too superstitious: with concerns over the bridge collapsing, your lock may be…

Reykjavik was recently ranked as the number one city destination by Trip Advisor and I can now confirm this to be a very reasonable decision. On arriving at Reykjavik – Keflavik airport, a forty minute bus ride from the city, I was immediately struck by the snow, having missed out on a Yorkshire White Christmas. There was a lot, and what struck me the most was the sheer normality of it. Whilst England would have been halted still, this country seemed to thrive off it, with hunks of snow indicating lanes of traffic and thus forth. This was evident…

What could be more romantic than Rome? Bursting with the idea of love, from the heart-fluttering views of the skyline at Janiculum Hill, to the renaissance architecture and luscious gardens in Villa d’Este. If, like me, you haven’t found a love worth taking there, you can fake it and accept a rose from a true Italian salesman. Visit the 18th Century Trevi Fountain at night and wish for love. Take charge and follow your wish by indulging yourself with an extra scoop of peach ice-cream. Perch on the Spanish Steps and watch love go by: family, friends, food in the…

The country that made me fall in love was Australia: my first solo trip and the trip that taught me about myself – that I was independent, that I could speak to strangers, and book trips myself. I witnessed another way of life, one that revolves around the beach and the sun, not the TV and rain. I tried to surf, I scuba-dived alongside a whale shark, and I kayaked meters from whales and dolphins.I saw the Sydney Opera House, jumped out of a plane at 14,000 ft, and then celebrated surviving the jump by seeing Far East Movement. In…

If you’re looking to head further afield from Bangor, Liverpool is a bustling city that offers lots of ‘Christmassy’ opportunities. In a couple of hours you can be in the heart of the city to do some vital Christmas shopping and make the most of the vast range of shops. From John Lewis, Hollister and Pandora in Liverpool One, to Jack Wills, Kurt Geiger and MAC in the Met Quarter; Liverpool offers something for everyone. Unwind from a busy day of shopping by taking a trip to the Christmas markets situated on Lord Street, Paradise Street and Church Street where…

For me, the best places to travel to over Christmas are ski resorts. My favourite spots have been Val Thorens and Andorra, but there are so many more places for non-skiers. St Moritz in Switzerland has a beautiful lake, the perfect site for winter walks. It also has a bobsleigh track for those interested in lessons. Zermatt in Switzerland also has a winter walking trail, and, with the highest cable car in Europe at 3883 m, it’s got amazing views over Mont Blanc and Monte Rosa. For those interested in culture, the town of Kitzbühel in Austria dates back to…

1.       Visit Sydney for the infamous Opera House or try the bridge climb over Harbour Bridge. A cheaper option is to climb the south-eastern pylon—only $13 and you’re allowed to bring your camera. Have a barbeque on Bondi Beach or try the Bondi to Coogee cliff walk. Less than an hour out of Sydney are the breath-taking Blue Mountains, perfect for a weekend hike. 2.       Byron Bay is the perfect hippie spot, full of weed smokin’ and tightrope walkin’. Visit the Main Beach and walk along to the lookout point, or go to the unofficial…

Vienna, an unusual city. Full of grandeur and tradition with modernity melding from every vicinage. I remember thinking – after I dived into Cafe Phil escaping a snow storm, sat on reclaimed art-deco furniture, surrounded by an array of literature, jazz and gentle tapping on laptops – that it’s my favourite cafe in Vienna. Outside the window it looked like a typical Viennese snow globe, especially when two women ran past in swirling ball gowns. Of course Vienna is famous for its Ball Season, hosting over 450 balls per year with 2,000 hours of dancing, the tradition still thrives in…

As university comes to an end and everyone starts to leave students residence to go back home for the summer, I now know how it feels to be that international student who lives on campus throughout summer. Nonetheless, spring is here and temperatures are hitting as high as 35 degrees along with the swarm of flies that constantly follow you wherever you go, and after six months here I have finally seen my first spider: a huntsman, extremely big and venomous looking, but completely harmless. You’re bound to find them everywhere, from the kitchen to one casually crawling along the dashboard…

All main cities in the UK have a Christmas market. From experience, Manchester and Leeds are great and offer lots of bratwurst and cheesy garlic breads. For the real deal though, hop over to Germany. Berlin is known to offer about 50 Christmas markets per year, while Nuremberg is famous for its 180 stalls. On the Saturday before the second Sunday in Advent, visit Dresden, where a massive Christmas fruit cake is paraded through the city and then cut up and distributed to the bystanders  Make the most of ice this winter. Go to an ice bar in Prague or…

This summer was awesomely insane. Can you imagine eating curry 3 times a day for 12 weeks with your hands? Or riding buses with no windows or doors? Have you ever tried walking in a Sari? I got dressed up to go to a wedding ceremony at 6am but spent most of the time wondering how women did their day-to-day activities like hand washing and cooking in a Sari when I was struggling to just walk. India is unlike any other place I have been. I went out to Tamil Nadu with Restless Development for 3 months as part of…

This Summer I did the old rite of passage Interrail-around-Europe thing. Starting in Amsterdam and making my way round to Paris via Brussels, Berlin, Prague, Slovenia, Venice, Milan, Switzerland, and Nice. As you can guess my Summer involved a lot of pizza, pasta, wine and peach flavoured ice-cream. I also did Switzerland proud and ate copious amounts of their speciality cheese fondue. It was faultless. My sunbathing days were unfortunately few and far between – Nice however was dedicated to acquiring the brown skin that had become the aim of our summer. Nice’s beaches were rocky – which can work…

Meet Ana, an English Language with Creative Writing Undergrad at Bangor, currently on a study abroad in the land down under. We’ll be hearing from her every issue as she fights with spiders, wild roos and tries to get to grips with the Aussie lingo. G’day… 28 hours and exactly 10.551 miles away from home, with no friends and family and with my whole life packed into 30kg, I set off for my year long adventure to the land down under. I held back my tears saying goodbye to my parents and friends at the airport as the realisation that I wouldn’t…