Traveling Around Europe Before Program Starts!

Elizabeth Wang
June 16, 2019

Hi everyone! I am so excited to be an IES Abroad Correspondent this summer. I am doing the Tradition & Cuisine in Tuscany program in Siena this summer! It will be my first time in Italy and my first time learning Italian. Why did I choose Siena? I chose Siena because I wanted to avoid more crowded and touristy cities and study abroad in a place that would allow me to have a truly authentic Italian experience. Not being a major city, it will be a little harder to travel during the program, but it doesn’t bother me much because I intend to discover all of the charm Siena has to offer!

Since the end of May, I have actually been traveling all around Europe, which is why I have not written this blog post until now! I traveled to four countries, including Switzerland, France, Portugal, and Spain, and 10+ cities. For about ⅓ of the trip I was traveling with my boyfriend, and the rest of the time I was solo traveling. I stayed in a mix of hostels and hotels, meeting a lot of people along the way. It was lonely being on my own sometimes, but I also had the freedom to do whatever I wanted to (take naps whenever and go at my own pace). So why did I travel to Europe three weeks before my program in Siena actually began? Hint: I got a really cheap flight to Switzerland (around $600) that was too good to pass up! It did cost more to book accommodations and travel for the three weeks, but I feel that it was cheaper overall to fly to Europe 3 weeks earlier than to fly there mid-june. The experiences and memories I have gained from my trip have also been unforgettable. So if you are a future IES Abroad student who is interested in traveling before your program, use Google Flights price watch to help you find good deals!

I am now waiting for my flight to Florence at the Alfonso Suarez Madrid Airport. My time traveling alone has come to an end for now, but I can’t wait to update everyone on my time in Siena. Some things I am looking forward to are meeting the others who are in my program and learning Italian.

If anyone has any questions, please don’t hesitate to email me at !

Elizabeth Wang

<p>Currently I am an International Relations and Global Studies major at The University of Texas at Austin. In my free time I enjoy exploring Austin with my corgi or curling up in bed with a good book. I am a very active person and I like to take advantage of school breaks to travel and explore the unknown. In the past year, I have been to Mexico, Thailand, Canada, and Turks and Caicos. When I graduate, my dream is to find a job which will allow me to travel and explore the world.</p>

2019 Summer 1, 2019 Summer 2
Home University:
University of Texas - Austin
Katy, TX
International Relations
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