Once You Have Traveled, The Voyage Never Ends

The other weekend I embarked on my final trips as a study abroad student in Barcelona, during which I ventured to Paris and Versailles, followed by Prague. I’m going to start off by clearing up a major misconception about Paris—you don’t have to go with a significant other in order to have fun in Paris and enjoy the experience as a whole. I almost didn’t end up going to Paris because of this assumption made about one of the most popular cities in the world. I did, however, end up traveling to Paris for the experience. Looking back on my trip, I can easily say that Paris was one of my favorite cities to which I’ve traveled. I mean how can you not fall in love with Paris after just one glance at the Eiffel Tower?

Among my favorite places in Paris was the Museu Louvre, one of the largest museums in the world, where you are able to view everything from French sculptures to Islamic art to paintings—such as the original Mona Lisa. The best part is that you’re actually able to take pictures of anything you want in the museum, so of course I had to snap a quick shot of the Mona Lisa upon overcoming initial shock (is it possible to get star struck by a painting?).

The famous painting is kept in a glass case on its own wall. Well done, Da Vinci.

The famous painting is kept in a glass case on its own wall. Well done, Da Vinci.

Study abroad students who have a visa should be sure to bring their passports with them in order to gain free entrance into the museum and save 16 euros. This rule goes for all EU citizens between the ages of 18 and 25, so definitely do not pass up the opportunity to go here. This is coming from someone who normally avoids museums so seriously—go.

During my weekend in Paris, I decided to take a day trip to Versailles to see what the Chateau de Versailles and Marie Antoinette had to offer. Another plus side of going there is that study abroad and other EU citizens from the ages of 18 to 26 can gain free entrance and thus keep the 25 euros you would’ve had to pay for entrance and spend it on as many crepes and macaroons as your heart desires instead.

The chapel in the Chateau de Versailles is, in fact, heavenly.

The chapel in the Chateau de Versailles is, in fact, heavenly.

I ended my last night in Paris by climbing to the top of the Arc de Triomphe to take in a view of the entire city of Paris.

Paris

Prague was one of the two countries I traveled to where I had no remote understanding of the language (the other being Amsterdam) yet I still had the best time there last weekend. I normally take day trips when I travel to a new city but I was having so much fun in Prague that I preferred to spend the day there. I ended up going to this really big music festival in Prague on that Friday I was there with some friends I made at my hostel, which was so much fun to experience.

Having a great time with one of my friends at the festival in Prague!

Having a great time with one of my friends at the festival in Prague!

Another one of my favorite things I did in Prague was when I climbed up the Petřín Lookout Tower. Check out this VIEW:

Being at the top has never felt so great.

Being at the top has never felt so great.

To prove that you don’t have to climb up to incredibly high altitudes in order to see a great view, here’s (most of) the Charles Bridge, which has been standing tall since it was built in the 15th century.

view

view

I also of course had to Czech out the infamous John Lennon wall. He insisted that we take a picture together, which you can find below.

wall

I’ll be ending this blog the same way I left Prague—with seeing the Astronomical Clock Tower.

clock tower

Once you have traveled, the voyage never ends, but is played out over and over again in the quietest chambers. The mind can never break off from the journey. –Pat Conroy

Kendall Keefer is a student at Virginia Commonwealth University and an official API Student Blogger. Kendall is studying abroad with API in Barcelona, Spain.

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