And I should say the dead of night. Thing is, St Andrews is truly a quiet town — us students, generally, bring the party. But at some point even the most late-night partiers crash, inebriated and overfull with toasties or cheesy chips or doner kebabs, into the soporific safe haven of what may or may not be their own bed. Once they’re out like a sack of rocks, the world pauses: they’re gone, as are the cyclists, cars, delivery trucks and vans, coffee shop go-getters, pub crawlers, red robes, beach-dwellers, hikers, dogs, old Scotsmen, seagulls (sometimes), wind. And all those places, the coffee shops, pubs, restaurants, Market Street shops, even the toastie bar and library and Empire, are shut down for the night.
This past Spring Break, the dates aligned perfectly for this tourist-y American to finally go to Ireland for St. Patty’s Day! (I say Patty’s and others say Paddy’s, but who knows the right way to spell it…) Because I had never been to Ireland before, my friends and I wanted a few days before and after the trip to see this beautiful country. Even if you can’t make it this semester, any time of year is perfect. I’ve written out my suggestions to have the best holiday in the east coast of Ireland!
Just like going to the cinema or eating alone, traveling alone is still seen as taboo; and I really don’t understand why! I love traveling with my family and friends when I can, but there is something so special about traveling alone. I recently took a solo train-trip through Switzerland and had a great time. If you follow my six tips when planning your next trip alone, you’ll be sure to have the best time.
In the past two years or so, the rate of tourists packing their bags and flying toward the beautiful rocky beaches and tall pine trees of Croatia has skyrocketed. The blue skied country has moved from almost criminally underrated to crawling with college students craving a good time and retired couples in their 60’s alike.
Boots scurry through volcanic gravel. A sliding door slams. The engine rumbles, the van lurches forward – and so the journey begins. Before me I see scrubland worming up through black volcanic fields, mountain ranges wildly stripped of green, waterfalls gushing from stunted valleys, lagoons littered with sky-blue chunks of ice, and ponds so still and so clear that they are mirrors to an inverted world – one where the sky or a mountain crag hangs upside-down.
Whether you are reading this at your desk, slowly disappearing beneath a pile of aesthetically pleasing yet functionally useless revision notes, or frantically clutching a coffee cup in some uninhabitable, oxygen-starved corner of the library – allow me to provide some momentary relief.
For the 2016 New Year’s Eve countdown, my family and I traveled to Tokyo, Japan! The people were so kind and welcoming, there was inspiring art everywhere and the fashion was gorgeous; but, there was one stand out night that I’ll always remember.
Summer is on the horizon, and for those of you struggling to decide where you want to spend your precious vacation time, let me help. Cape Town in South Africa offers it all: pristine beaches, breathtaking mountains, vibrant neighbourhoods, a melting pot of cultures and cuisines, and open savannahs filled with an incredible array of wild animals.
A small boat pulls up alongside a stone jetty. It bobs up and down in the waves, as suitcases and passengers are precariously unloaded. A walk up a sloping grassy hill looms above them and they start regretting all the unnecessary items they packed in their heavy cases. Seagulls call and carelessly soar above the boat. They have no such things to weigh them down.
I visited Budapest for the first time last May, and it is the type of place I can see myself returning to again and again. Think cool museums, vintage shopping, excellent coffee and vibrant, alternative nightlife – exactly the escape I needed during last year’s exam period, and exactly the escape I am craving as I write this!