Any regrets? Definitely not!

University of Reading student studying abroad in Italy for a Full Academic Year

Savvina is currently studying abroad at the Università Ca’ Foscari in Italy as part of her Henley Business School degree at Reading. Already half way through her year abroad, read on to find out what she’s been up to. 

It is difficult to believe that four months have already passed! Time goes so quickly and I feel like I haven’t experienced anything yet! This of course is not true! I have been to 10 different cities in Italy, including Rome, Milan and Florence. I have met so many people from all around the world such as Mexico, Brazil, Portugal, Russia and Germany.

First things first, I want to mention that the things I do here in Italy, I don’t get to do them in the UK or in Cyprus. This is an interesting fact, since I understood that when you feel that you will be in a place for just a few months, you want to do everything. Literally everything! Visit galleries, architecture events, theatre, cinema etc. I soon realised how little I know Reading, the city I study in the UK. So, my goal for next year is to get to know the city more!

Venice is one of the biggest cultural spots in Europe with lots of events to attend each month. Although I was never interested in art, I realised how many unique opportunities one can have to learn as much as possible and expand his knowledge. La Biennale di Venezia which is a European culture centre, organised a series of events including Time Space Existence and Contested Frontiers (Cyprus Pavilion). Moreover, Peggy Guggenheim Collection is among the most important museums in Italy for European and American art of the 20th century and it is located in Venice. I was also really impressed by the collection of Sigmar Polke in Palazzo Grassi.

University of Reading student studying abroad in Italy for a Full Academic Year

In addition to the above, I had the amazing opportunity to run a Marathon and I was so surprised by the organisation of the event and that is why I signed up for the same event on April. I was also excited to see few of the best Italian movies! The events were organised by ESN Venezia and it was an amazing opportunity to get to know the Italian culture and humour.

One of my favourite places in Italy is Verona, the city of Romeo and Juliet. It is like being a part of a fairy tale. However, I cannot end this post without mentioning my trip to Florence and Pisa with two of my Portuguese friends. I also had the pleasure to celebrate my birthday in Florence too, which I will never forget!

Christmas in Venice is magical! We get to visit Trento market with ESN Venezia, which is one of the biggest Christmas markets in Italy. Moreover, regata dei Babbi Natale is an event which is hosted by Ca’ Foscari University each year on December and it is a unique competition among many Santa Clauses in boats along the Grand Canal.

One of the most frequent questions I get, is if I regret my choice of studying abroad for the whole year instead of for just one semester. The answer comes out so naturally the second after I hear the question: Definitely not! 

Savvina

Already half way through!

University of Reading student studying abroad in Switzerland for a Full Academic Year

Angelina is currently studying abroad at the University of Tubingen with her German and International Relations degree at Reading. Find out about what she’s been up to before the festive period. 

I can’t quite believe that I am over half way through my semester here in Tübingen!

Lectures and seminars have been going well although sometimes they are quite challenging, as a languages student all my lectures and seminars are in German. As with many other things lectures here are also a bit different to lectures in Reading. All of my lectures and seminars are at least two hours long and the earliest time a class can start is 08:00 mornings and one of my classes even finishes at 20:00 in the evening which took some time getting used to. One of the nice things about studying here is that I have no compulsory modules and I could choose modules on subjects that I am interested in. At the end of a lecture or seminar it is common for students to knock their knuckles on the desks which I found really bizarre.

University of Reading student studying abroad in Switzerland for a Full Academic Year

Probably one of the best things about studying in Germany during the Autumn/Winter semester is that Germany is probably one of the best countries to experience during the festive season. As soon as late November hit all anyone could talk about was the ‘Weihnachtsmarkt’, or Christmas market in English. Almost every German town will host a Christmas market of some sort and in Germany especially in the bigger cities they go all out. Christmas decorations and impressive light displays everywhere, lots of stalls and wooden huts selling crafts and German Christmas foods such a roasted sugared almonds, ‘Lebkuchen’ (gingerbread), sausages and of course it wouldn’t be a Christmas market without ‘Glühwein’ (mulled wine). In late November, early December for one week Tübingen is home to Germany’s largest chocolate festival. Chocolatiers and chocolate companies from around the world and Germany present their products and quite a few stalls even offer free samples. I was even able to take part in a chocolate workshop where I could make my own chocolate.  As well as the chocolate market, Waldenbuch a town nearby has a chocolate factory too. If you really like chocolate Tübingen is a great place to spend study abroad. Another town about a 40 minutes train journey away from Tübingen called Esslingen has a really unique Christmas market. The Christmas market has a medieval theme and it is presented really well with fire dancing shows, people dressed up in medieval clothing and they served mulled wine and beer in clay cups. If you end up studying here next year I would definitely recommend it.

University of Reading student studying abroad in Switzerland for a Full Academic Year

Since my last blog post I have also had the opportunity to visit some of Germany’s larger cities, Stuttgart, Hamburg and Munich. Tübingen is well connected to the rest of Germany by train via Stuttgart. It is also relatively inexpensive to travel by bus to various cities in and around Germany. Even though the temperatures can drop quite a bit around this time, all the festivities make it worth it and if your wrap up warm it’s really not too bad. At the moment it’s currently snowing here and the town looks even prettier under a white blanket.

Angelina

Missed Angelina’s first blog post? Catch up here: http://bit.ly/2ig8lgl 

Travelling through Scandinavia: Aarhus & Beyond

University of Reading student studying abroad in Denmark for a Semester

Mona studied abroad at Aarhus University in Denmark with her Psychology degree at Reading! Mid-way through her semester abroad she updated us with all her adventures. Read on to find out more!

Aarhus is beautiful. I am now just over half way through my semester abroad in Aarhus, Denmark and I must say, nothing has disappointed. My experience so far has been amazing and I’m now focusing on making the most of my last month or so here before heading back to Reading. So, what have I been doing since my last blog post?

Well I can safely say I’ve fully explored the small, cosy, cute, friendly city that is Aarhus, and some of the surrounding cities and countries! And I must say, I’ve experienced my fair share of hygge. Now hygge doesn’t have a direct translation into English but the closest translation would be a feeling of cosiness, defined by an evening of candles and great company (and often food), but even a city can feel hygge, and Aarhus definitely does, especially now it’s getting colder and Christmas lights are on!

So not too long after my last blog post, I had some friends from home, and not long after, family came to visit which was great, and allowed me to show people around and explore the city even more. Aarhus has everything! It’s a coastal city with incredible sandy beaches, a cosy atmosphere, a city feel and scenic forests surrounding it. What more could you wish for while living abroad? Some of the most beautiful places include Den Gamle By (the cities old town), ARoS (the cities art museum with the famous rainbow panorama) and the deer park which is situated in the forest, by the beach where deer are free roaming and you can feed them! I’ve been 5 times…

University of Reading student studying abroad in Denmark for a Semester

University of Reading student studying abroad in Denmark for a Semester

A couple of weeks after, it was half term and I wanted to make the most of my time living abroad. Having never travelled to Scandinavia before, I was keen to explore the other Scandinavian countries and planned a trip with a group of friends to travel around Norway and Sweden. We started off in Copenhagen which is a beautiful city with so much to see, travelled then to Bergen in Norway (the gateway to the fjords), then on to Oslo, followed by Stockholm and Malmö in Sweden. This trip was incredible! Norway is the most beautiful country I’ve ever visited, with the most incredible scenery, especially the fjords, and Sweden’s capital Stockholm was amazing! Now the highlight of this trip was definitely our adventure in Bergen, Norway, in which we stayed for one night in a cabin in the woods in the tiny village of Odda, to then begin our 11 hour hike up a mountain very early the next morning. The aim of this hike was to reach a point named ‘Trolltunga’ meaning Troll’s tongue in Norwegian, which is a piece of rock jutting horizontally out of a mountain about 700 metres above a lake, and it’s safe to say it was the most breath-taking view you could imagine.

University of Reading student studying abroad in Denmark for a Semester

I think it’s safe to say I am making the most of my time here in Aarhus and now to make the most of the time left!

Mona

Missed Mona’s first post? Catch up here: http://bit.ly/2dysoVG 

The local Danish insight to Aarhus

University of Reading student studying abroad in Denmark for a Full Academic Year

Laurence is studying abroad at Aarhus University in Denmark as part of his Economics degree at Reading. He’ll be adapting to Danish living for the full academic year. Read on to find out how he’s getting on. 

Admittedly before looking to study abroad, I didn’t know too much about Denmark past Copenhagen and their leading happiness ratings, but after the first few weeks living and exploring Aarhus the experience has made me want to learn and see everything the country has to offer!

Arriving in Aarhus for the first time was a great first experience for me, the city has just been appointed the European culture capital for 2017, and it really shows with the mix of modern and old on each street. Walking around aimlessly with new flatmates and figuring out where to go was great fun, although you’ll quickly find out that cycling is the way forward here! All the main roads have dedicated cycle paths which are very safe to use, and the lanes leading into the city centre have displays to show how many people have cycled into town this year and on the day. It’s a cool thing to see and makes you feel a little better each time you don’t cheat by using the bus! The first place we explored as a group was the ARoS art museum, featuring a wide variety of art pieces and types across the floors and topped off with the ‘rainbow panorama’ installed on the roof. It was as good as any of the bug museums in London, and the panorama gave a colourful view of the beautiful city I’d be staying in for the year.

University of Reading student studying abroad in Denmark for a Full Academic Year

The university put on a welcoming week of activities and information giving which was incredibly useful and reassuring, I felt a lot more confident in what I was doing when people and professors from the local community share their experience and tips to making the most of the city and also helped to fill out the necessary paperwork making the process really easy and making sure there would be no problems during the stay. I knew that the university had a big international population, and I could really see this when we were split into groups of students from all other the world stretching from Japan to Canada! The mentors who worked with our group were two former students who were honestly amazing at creating a friendly atmosphere for all of us to get to know each other and would show us their own personal favourite places around Aarhus. It was a great way to start to get friendly with people having their own unique adventure, and between this and welcoming flatmates you can feel like you already know a great group of people even before the first lecture.

So far all the small differences have been my favourite thing to experience such as learning Danish, cycling everywhere or even just seeing England as the subject of holiday ads, and it feels exciting! I am surrounded by stuff that is new to me; a journey in any direction from my residence could mean finding something that keeps my time here fresh, and I don’t think this will stop any time soon.

Laurence

 

Hello Aarhus Denmark!

University of Reading student studying abroad in Denmark for a Full Academic Year
Gracia is currently studying abroad at Aarhus University with Chemistry degree at Reading. Already coming to the end of her first semester in Denmark, read on to find out how she settled into the social and academic side of her year abroad. 

So it’s now been 15 weeks since I moved to Denmark and it’s typically me writing a welcome to my study abroad experience so late, but better late than never! So what can I say I’ve enjoyed about my trip so far.

Let’s start from the beginning, I arrived on August 24th 2016. I flew straight to Aarhus from London, which was surprisingly not long at all. Here’s me thinking I would have time on the plane to cry, reflect, get excited and prepare myself for the year to come. But no! The flight was 1 hour and 40 minutes and in a blink of an eye. Hello, Aarhus Denmark.

University of Reading student studying abroad in Denmark for a Full Academic Year

So the next few days were the intro days and I used these days to explore the town, meet new other exchange students and get familiar with the University. Each international student were assigned a mentor to help them settle in which was great help because I had a ton of questions. Luckily for me the weather was beautiful which was shocking because prior to coming everyone had warned me about how cold it was going to be but for the first few months it was sunny everyday so I saw Aarhus in its true form. I managed to buy a bike during my first few weeks because it’s definitely the most practical way of travelling around Denmark and the great thing was that we were able to go to the beach practically every day and also visit some amazing Danish landscapes. All the houses are brightly coloured (at one point I felt like I was in an episode of Balamory), but I loved how unique and quirky the houses were. Everyone that I met were super nice and friendly they don’t lie when the say Denmark is the happiest country in the world. Which made me comfortable and excited for this new chapter in my life.

University of Reading student studying abroad in Denmark for a Full Academic Year

 

It wasn’t long before I was introduced to the famous concept of “Friday bars”. Each Friday from afternoon to late evening each academic departments set up bars in a big room, canteen or even classroom in the building and sell beer, soft drinks and a never ending game of beer pong (I never realised how competitive this game was until saw Danes play against each other). They are really cool bars because both students and lecturers from that department are able to socialise, the prices are inexpensive, thanks to the student volunteers. But on the 9th of September, Denmark’s largest Friday bar was held in the University Park, with special themed bars, activities and 2 massive stages with popular Danish music artist it was definitely one of my highlights so far.

University of Reading student studying abroad in Denmark for a Full Academic Year

Regarding my education, I am now well into my Chemistry Project in the Group of Prof. Troels Skrydstrup working on synthesising metal-salen derivatives. At first I was a bit overwhelmed but I am now so happy and comfortable working in the lab and learning a lot from the other students around me.

Finally, so far I have met some amazing people and have had such an good time in Aarhus and I am excited to do more exploring and see what the next few months has in store for me!

Gracia

Developing an addiction to cinnamon buns..

University of Reading student studying abroad in Sweden for a Full Academic Year

Lucy is currently studying abroad in Uppsala University in Sweden as part of his Law degree at Reading! Read on to find out how she’s adjusting to life in Sweden for the next academic year.  

Waking up at 1AM to get on a plane destined for Sweden was definitely one of the most scary things I’ve ever done, but equally one of the more rewarding. I craved adventure and my study abroad experience has definitely delivered!

Uppsala is the fourth largest city in Sweden and as such there is something foreign and beautiful to be entranced by wherever you look in the city centre and even on the outskirts where my accommodation resides, Uppsala Cathedral is my personal favourite to date.

A couple of days after I arrived and had explored a little, the University put on a welcome day for the international students where we were given information, signed any outstanding contracts and had the opportunity to buy tickets for the International Student Gasque (a type of event put on by the University, or one of the twelve Student Nations which centres around a formal dinner with speeches and singing, often followed by an informal after party).

University of Reading student studying abroad in Sweden for a Full Academic Year

We were then given a week to mingle with the fellow international students and join in with social events put on by different Student Nations (each Nation being modelled after a different area of Sweden). I used the week to explore Uppsala and make some friends.

The following week I began my first module- Criminal Law Theory, I chose the course because of my great interest in Criminal Law and hoped to gain more insight into the subject. The module certainly gave me that, I was provided with a new way to look at Criminal Law and got a better idea about the differences in Law between countries, during the first half of the module I also had the pleasure of being taught by a Mr A. Simester, who’s work I have followed throughout my study of Criminal Law. The teaching style in Sweden is heavily reliant on group discussion, which took some getting used to, however it has been interesting to see the differing opinions of students from around the world, which made up the class.

Between studying and making new friends, I have tried to explore not just Uppsala, but the surrounding area. The obvious first stop was Stockholm being the countries’ capital. On my first visit, I accompanied a friend to Skansen, which is aptly described as an open air museum, I would thoroughly recommend it for a fun day out, where you get to learn more about Sweden’s history in an interactive and fun way, we were particularly spoilt by being shown an English printing press once one of the displayers learnt where we were from. I have also taken advantage of the Study Abroad experience to travel, my first trip was to Copenhagen in Denmark.

The Swedes are warm and friendly once you get to know them, and I have quickly discovered that the language barrier is virtually non-existent.

So far my study abroad experience has been brilliant, though I am developing an alarming addiction to the cinnamon buns!

Lucy

The Myth of German Efficiency

University of Reading student studying abroad in Switzerland for a Full Academic Year

Josef is currently studying abroad at the University of Tubingen with his Henley Business School degree at Reading. Read on to find out how he settled into German life for his third year abroad.

Around one month ago now, I packed my case and woke up at 3.30am for my flight. Once on the flight, in between attempting to catch up on some much needed sleep, I was full of mixed emotions from excited to straight up scared. Then after a long day of travelling, I finally arrived at my flat… only to be greeted by nobody. Unlike Uni at home students don’t have to move out of their rooms at the end of each year, this means that many stay in the same rooms for their full degree. This also means that there is no specific moving in date like at home.

A few very unhelpful emails with the accommodation team here in Tübingen followed where I was told most students would be arriving from the start of September to the middle of October. I decided to arrive bang in the middle of those dates. Big mistake. Over a third of the population of Tübingen are students, so when those students aren’t here the place turns into a bit of a ghost town.

However, I thought I’d make the most of the quietness and enrol at the university and open a bank account. But this leads me on to the second thing they don’t tell you about moving to Germany and that is that German efficiency is largely a myth. Where as in Reading, you receive your university card within 5 minutes of arrival on moving in day; here it required going to 6 or 7 different buildings and to make that even more complicated it has to be done in a specific order and most of those buildings are only open between 9 and 11.30am.

My first three weeks here could be described as unremarkable, dull and very lonely as I only had one flat mate who would occasionally be in Tübingen to do something with and get some much needed social contact.

Then it all changed. The students arrived. On the first official day of university in October, I attended a Meet and Greet for other internationals and a few German students too. An awkward event to begin with, but the awkwardness soon left and the event ended with a group of us going out for drinks afterwards. Since that day, study abroad has genuinely lived up to all expectations.

University of Reading student studying abroad in Germany for a Full Academic Year

 

A lot of fun has followed with the most diverse, if not random, friendship group I have ever been part of, including Germans, Australians, New Zealanders, Russians, Danes and Americans. Since meeting we have explored this beautiful university town by day, but mainly by night. Thanks to all the students, Tübingen has the youngest average age of anywhere in Germany and so it’s fair to say we aren’t short of bars or clubs. The second bonus to going out here is that most regular bars have prices more similar to that of the Union at home and the uni-owned bars here are usually about half that price. So win win all round.

When it comes to the academic side of things, it’s more difficult to say what it’s going to be like as lectures only started last week. Although I have noticed a few things they do differently here already. After my first lecture last week I began packing my things away, only to be given the fright of my life when all the other students started bashing on their desk. I later found out they do this as a way of showing their appreciation to the lecturer; but when you’re not expecting it, it sure does make you jump! Another thing is if you find 9am lectures too early at home, try an 8am start where you sit in class and watch the sunrise.

All in all, after a difficult first 3 weeks here, the last 2 weeks have made up for it. The main things I’ve taken from the experience so far is to take the rough with the smooth as any negative experiences are soon outweighed by the many positive ones.

Joe

It’s all about the Hygge

University of Reading student studying abroad in Denmark for a Semester

Simon is  studying abroad at Aarhus University in Denmark as part of his Psychology degree at Reading. Find out how he foundDanish life just a few weeks into his semester studying abroad. 

On the evening of the 18th of August I arrived in Aarhus for my exchange semester. My extremely helpful mentor picked me up from the bus station and took me to my apartment…then the non-stop action began. I dropped my stuff off, had a shower and went out to a party at my mentors’ house. It felt like a bit of a blur, but everyone was very welcoming and friendly. It was great to meet lots of Danish people on my first night, be able to ask them questions about their culture and what I must do during my time here. I didn’t know then and I’m not sure I do now, but I think that was my first experience of Hygge.

The next day came and with it brought more names, more faces and more exciting opportunities. The only difficulties I were having involved remembering people’s names and being unsure if I was spending lots of money or not much at all, it being Denmark I figured a lot. Each day seemed to bring with it a new event, always with more great people and more names to remember. I assumed that this would settle down after the first week but if anything it continued even more so. The Aarhus festival began, this happens every year and it was an amazing time to be in the city, as all over there are events happening. Music, art, dance, food… in all different venues, that could be easily located using the festival app. You downloaded this and all the English events could be searched for easily along with their location and price. Most of the events were free and it created an incredible atmosphere in the city as there were so many people out and about having a great time.

University of Reading student studying abroad in Denmark for a Semester

By my third week, I had properly learnt some names, classes had begun and I thought that maybe things would be settling down a bit. I was wrong again, yet more events followed, the equivalent of our Reading Student fair in Aarhus turned out to be the equivalent of a small music festival. There were stages set up with music going on (lots of Danish rap) and an extremely organised tournament of beer bowling took place. In Aarhus they take their drinking games seriously, the tournament was even streamed onto a big screen. A lot of practice goes into preparing for them and they had umpires! Overall, it was a remarkable event completely run by students on the University grounds.

Finally, I could catch a breath, four weeks in and I felt like I was here. This was when I fully appreciated what a city Aarhus is, full of life and interesting architecture. I visited Aros, the Moesgaard museum and the deer park during this week, each unique and wonderful. I had begun to find my way around Aarhus now, but I still couldn’t remember everyone’s name!

Simon

In the Happiest Place in the World

University of Reading student studying abroad in Denmark for a Semester

Ellis is currently studying abroad at Aarhus University in Denmark as part of his Psychology degree at Reading. Read on to find out how he is settling into his new home in Denmark for his study abroad semester. 

After hearing that Denmark was ranked one of the happiest places to live in the world, my decision to study there for my term abroad became an easy choice; and my experiences so far have not disappointed.

I arrived in the late summer, and was greeted warmly by my mentor and, somewhat surprisingly, the climate – as I was told it was normally a lot colder for the time of year. After being shown to my dorm, I met the Danes I would be living with for the next 4 months and I instantly felt welcomed.

The next week was ‘introductory week’, 5 days filled with an array of activities which would get me to grips with Danes, Danish culture and academic life. During this week I met people from all over the world, and I can now say I have friends from France, Germany, Spain, Belgium, Canada, USA and Australia. I learnt a lot about what it means to be Danish, and their fondness for the term ‘hygge’ (something which roughly translates to ‘cosiness’ or ‘good-times’). Without a doubt my first week involved a lot of ‘hygge’ – celebrations galore, I attended some fabulous parties, held by the university and friends alike. Soon after I became aware of the Danish fondness for beer – you could literally get beer anywhere (even on campus there are beer taps) and at a very affordable price!

University of Reading student studying abroad in Denmark for a Semester

However, my time in Denmark hasn’t solely been partying and drinking beer. The week after introductory week, was festival week – a vibrant event taking over the city centre with art, entertainment, music, food and culture. I attended free concerts in the park, tried some of the finest Scandinavian cuisine and even watched an extravagant African dance show. During the week I also managed to squeeze in a trip to ARoS, Aarhus’ Art Museum, which showcased some famous artists work, and not forgetting the breathtaking rainbow panorama at the top – which had the most spectacular views of the city. It truly was an emotive experience, and I could’ve spent hours staring out of each coloured-glass panel. To sum up the week, there was something for everyone, whatever the interest.

After the excitement of the first couple of weeks, class began to start and I was somewhat dubious about what to expect from an international institution. However, my doubts soon faded away as I noticed the relaxed teaching style: classes involved teacher led-discussions based on set texts, which were broken up by cake-breaks – yep, each week one person was responsible for bringing in cakes for all the class to eat (a strong motivator to attend class to say the least).

So overall, I can confidently say I am having the most amazing time with the most interesting group of friends – and I’m looking forward to what the rest of this experience has in store!

Ellis

Picturesque town of Tübingen

University of Reading student studying abroad in Switzerland for a Full Academic Year

Angelina is currently studying abroad at the University of Tubingen with her German and International Relations degree at Reading. Read on to find out how she’s adjusting to life in Germany!

I have been in Tübingen now for three weeks and it has already been an experience and a half to say the least. The journey to Tübingen itself went very well. I flew from London to Stuttgart, and then took a direct bus from the airport to Tübingen which was very handy. Once in Tübingen I made my way by bus to the housing office which is right on the top of a big hill. This is where you sign your housing contract and pay your deposit. As soon as that was done I had to get a bus all the way back down the hill to my halls of residence which are on the outskirts of town to pick up the keys to my room from the housemaster. The halls where I live are very different to halls in Reading. In a way they are more like residential flats, with the building consisting of 3 and 4 bedroom flats (I only have two ‘flatmates’) and even a Kindergarten. They are also much more into recycling here, the flat has four different bins, one each for paper, glass, metal & plastic and then one for food waste and things that aren’t recycled.

My first impressions of Tübingen were very positive, it’s a picturesque town in the German ‘Bundesland’ of Baden-Württemberg in the south of Germany and it even has its own castle. One third of the people here are students which it makes it a pretty student friendly place with lots of places to have lunch or go for a drink. When you matriculate here you have to do a lot of paperwork which takes you all around the town to do. The University of Tübingen does not really have a campus, hwever there is one road where most of the important university buildings are located which makes finding your way around much easier.

University of Reading student studying abroad in Switzerland for a Full Academic Year

Colourful houses seen from the ‘Neckarbrücke’ , Tübingen (left image)
Main university building, the new Aula, Tübingen (right image)

For international and Erasmus students the university hosts a welcome week unfortunately however due to illness I was not able to participate. There is a really great student organisation here called StudIT which organises and offers trips and experiences for international students. Since I have been here I have already participated in two of their activities. The first one was a Swabian dinner, or ‘Schwäbisches Abendessen’ as they would say in German, where they served a local dish called ‘Maultaschen’ with fried onions and potato salad. ‘Maultaschen’ resemble ravioli except that they are a bit bigger and filled with meat. The story behind them is that Cistercian monks weren’t allowed to eat meat during lent and so in order to hide the meat from God they created these ‘Maultaschen’. Then more recently StudIT organised a trip to Heidelberg. Heidelberg is about a two hours drive away from Tübingen and is famous for having the oldest university in Germany, its castle and baroque architecture. We had a tour around the city, had some lunch and then made our way up the castle which is located on a hill, once at the top the views were amazing. I’ve settled well in Germany, I’ve met lots of really nice people and have had many opportunities to practice my German. Lectures are starting this week so I’m looking forward to seeing what they’re like. I’ll let you know about them in my next blog post.

Angelina