Let's venture north

Benjamin Streeter
September 21, 2015

You know how there are those things that you just can’t do justice to with a photo or video? Maybe it’s the smile of your little cousin on his 6th birthday. Or the feeling of seeing a friend after a very long time. Or the sunset view from your favorite park that you’ve photographed a million times but never gotten a satisfactory shot. We’ll I’m starting to realize that you get a whole lot of each kind of those moments while studying abroad with a program like IES Abroad.

But of course that doesn’t mean I won’t try and capture the incidences of light on a two-dimensional sensor as passed through a series of glasses. And so on our trip to the north of Spain, I snagged some pictures which, as you could guess, don’t quite do it justice. But they’re still pretty cool…

A group of us had class on the Friday we were all supposed to travel, but IES Abroad provided another bus that left later so we were still able to go on the trip! (Though we obviously missed the majority of the first day.) On the way, we stopped in a very small town to eat, but the two restaurants were 1) out of bread or 2) not serving food at the moment, so we just ended up munching at the one gas station.

'Felices Fiestas'

We arrived at our destination at midnight, a 6 hour drive, and weren’t able to see our surroundings because night. But in the morning, we were welcomed by this

Step out the front door and you're welcomed by this sight

The sunrise just touches the tip of the mountain

After a typical Spanish breakfast of bread, sweet bread, really sweet bread, and coffee, we went on a 9km hike through the Picos de Europa which was breathtaking the whole way.

Views like this surrouned us during the entire hike

Wes enjoys the view from a little overlook

Selfie time!

Hiking through the sunrise meant for some dramatic lighting

Selfies for everyone!

The hike finished up in a small town called Cain where we took a taxi back to the hostel and the bus waiting to continue our journey.

Cain was a small mountain village and a turnaround place for many hikers

Alex takes a breath of the fresh morning air

After a winding bus ride across the mountains, we arrived at the third (or basically second for the late group) and final location: the coastal town of Llanes.

Llanes featured a canal through the town

An art installation of painted cement cubes decorated the port


Known for seafood (including fish pudding, which was a great cracker/chip dipper), old architecture, and of course the sea, the town was a mix of Spanish tourists and locals, with a spattering of foreigners. Which included our great group of IES Abroad students in both the engineering and language arts.

The seaweed covered beach was a cool place to venture through

Justin finds a rocky relaxation place overlooking the beach

Though it may not seem like it, the weather was pretty perfect, in the low 70's F

Yeah, we definitely all had a great time

Flowers and a pre-sunset break in the clouds

A beach pretty much necessitates a frolic


We made a sad goodbye from Llanes the next day around noon and settled in for the 8 hour ride back to Madrid, where I caught a final sunset over the local commuter train on the walk back home.

Cercanías is the go-to for getting to Madrid's suburbs- where Uni. Carlos III is located

You can probably imagine how this sort of things doesn’t really translate into a photo album on Facebook or a video on YouTube, and that’s when you know how awesome it really is. That being said, it really is amazing how much a phone can capture on multiple levels…

A long arm and a wide lens The best people make for the best selfies

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Benjamin Streeter

<p>Hey all you humans, my name&#39;s Ben, and I just happen to be living in Madrid, Spain! I&#39;ll be here total for 6 months (I came early for an internship), and I&#39;ll be sharing my explorations, the city, travels, school, highs, lows, I&#39;m-not-quitesure- what&#39;s, friends, random people who I&#39;ve never seen, and more! I&#39;ve moved around a lot back home in the states, but currently I live around the corner from Milwaukee, WI, and go to Vanderbilt in Nashville, TN where I study Mechanical Engineering and (for now at least) Communications Studies and anything else that&#39;s interesting. Now I&#39;ve gotta go and try and contain my excitement... I typically take headshots for other people, so a selfie will have to do...</p>

2015 Fall
Home University:
Vanderbilt University
Engineering - General
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