**These are in no particular order**
1. Argyll National Forest Park (Scotland)
Through her program, Alexis Regopoulos, ’18, was able to take a guided hike through the Argyll National Forest Park in Scotland. She said, “From the parking lot, it just looks like any old forest. This was a bit disappointing since it was pouring rain and I was about to hike several miles. However, once you get hiking, you realize how truly beautiful this area is. Everything was covered in a dense layer of fog, giving it an eerie feel.” As she reminisced about her three-four hour long hike through the mystical forest, she mentioned that “one particular spot on the hike, known as Puck’s Glen, is a small trail that followed small waterfalls through a narrow valley where everything was covered in vibrant green moss.”
2. Bergen (Norway)
Visit Norway’s second largest city and step into a different realm and time period. The “Hanseatic Wharf” is a remnant of what once was, as the wharf has been a staple of trade since the 14th century. Or explore one of the seven mountains that surround the city via the famous Flåm railway, biking down to Flåm, or the fjord safari to Gudvangen, where you’ll feel like you’re stepping back to a time where Vikings roamed the mountains. Grab your camera and get lost in Bergen’s fjords!
3. Amsterdam (Netherlands)
Travel to the place where there are just as many bikes as people! Over the last couple of years, Amsterdam has turned into a tourist hotspot. From the Anne Frank House, to the Van Gogh Museum, to the Heineken experience, Amsterdam has something for everyone. Just remember, if you venture into the Red Light District, be careful that you don’t take pictures of the ladies in the window, or you will get in trouble!
4. Helsingør (Denmark)
While Copenhagen is an amazing city, the place you want to go visit in Denmark is Helsingør. While you may not recognize the Danish name, you might be able to recognize the English translation: Elsinore. Still haven’t gotten it? This city is where Shakespeare’s play Hamlet is set. While the city is now modern, Kronborg Castle still stands. For the English literature enthusiast or Shakespeare junkie, this city is the perfect place to go. The Kenneth Branagh adaptation of Hamlet was even filmed at the castle. The city is a charming, cozy place with cobblestone streets and friendly people. Overall, if you are looking for a place that isn’t filled with tourists, but is still accessible, go and explore Helsingør–you’ll thank me later.
5. Neuschwanstein Castle, Hohenschwangau (Germany)
If you’re a Disney fan, then you need to come here! This castle appeared in movies like Chitty Chitty Bang Bang, The Great Escape, and provided the inspiration for the Sleeping Beauty Castle in Disneyland. The castle is nestled on a hill above a cute little village that looks like something out of a fairytale. So buy your ticket and feel like a Disney princess for a little bit before chowing down on a bratwurst.
6. Cliffs of Moher, County Clare (Ireland)
Want to feel like you’re on the edge of the world? Head to County Clare, Ireland. These cliffs are a popular location in cinema. They served as “The Cliffs of Insanity” in The Princess Bride (1987), and were also seen in Harry Potter and the Half Blood Prince (2009). The Cliffs of Moher is a place where you will encounter nature in its purest form. You’ll feel invincible against the ocean and be one with the land.
7. Edinburgh (Scotland)
Scotland makes its second appearance on this list and for good reason. Edinburgh is filled with magic. From The Elephant House, a tea and coffee house where J.K. Rowling created the wizarding world of Harry Potter, to Arthur’s Seat, a possible location of Camelot, Edinburgh will steal your heart. If you are interested in something a little spooky, head to Mary King’s Close, an area swathed in myths, urban legends, and tales of hauntings. There is something to do every hour in Edinburgh!
8. Santorini (Greece)
We’ve all seen the pictures: stark white buildings with bright blue tops, azure waters sparkling in the sunlight, shades of orange glowing against the old unique buildings as the sun sets. Santorini is a place of wonderment. Find peace and tranquility as you walk on the black sand beaches or become like the Greek god Bacchus and partake in a wine tour, in which you will literally be able to taste the experience.
9. Kiruna (Sweden)
While abroad, Ashley Aylward, ’18, was given the opportunity to take part in an once-in-a-lifetime experience. As she found herself surrounded by miles and miles of white snow, all she could think was that “it was a magical feeling like you had stepped into a story book.” To Ashley, the experience was like Freud’s “oceanic feeling,” where she learned and came to appreciate the lifestyle and culture of the Samis and Northern Swedes. “It was just an unbelievable trip. I would love to take my friends and family to show them the beauty” of the Arctic Circle.
10 . A Tie between Florence, Rome, and Verona (Italy)
Italy is a country filled with culture. Each city has been an integral location in history: Florence saw the start of the Renaissance, Rome saw the power of the Roman Empire, and Verona inspired one of the most well-known tragedies ever written. With that in mind, it’s nearly impossible to just choose just one city to visit. So why not visit all three? See the work of Michelangelo and da Vinci, throw a coin in the Trevi Fountain (maybe a Paolo will appear when you open your eyes), and go to the Arena di Verona — a first century Roman amphitheater.
No matter where you go, you will make memories that will last forever! So buy that plane ticket, get that passport stamp, and experience a culture unlike your own.