Four weeks went by between my trip to France and my next big trip. During those weekend some of my most fond memories of Maastricht were made–lots of exploring little cafes I hadn’t been to, riding my bike around, relaxing with friends.

Also, my study abroad program (CES) took us on a weekend trip to Antwerp and Ghent, Belgium! Both of these little cities were so pleasant and just confirmed my love for Belgium. I could feel the fashion-mindedness in Antwerp as we roamed around the streets, went to a museum, an old cathedral, toured a brewery and watched the sunset on a rooftop.

Ghent was one of my absolute favorite cities I have visited this semester. It has an old-school charm with its sweet canals and adorable buildings. There were many flea markets going on at the time because we were so fortunate with the weather, and we got ice cream which has been A LONG TIME COMING! Our program set us up with a canal boat tour which was so much fun, then we explored an old medieval castle and headed back to good old Maas.

The next weekend was a really relaxing one. I didn’t have much homework thankfully, so I hung out with friends in new cafes. We went to a clothing swap where you take any old clothes you don’t want anymore, pay 2 euros and then for each item you bring, you can choose a new one of what people have already brought in! It was a really cool event and fun to be a part of it. Sunday, my friends Mary-Brent and Cora and I took a 30 minute bus ride to Aachen, Germany for the day. We walked around the town center and came upon a beautiful cathedral with a string quartet playing outside. It felt truly magical and it was one of those moments that it really sunk in that I am in Europe living out a dream I’ve had for so long. Aachen is known for having hot baths, which we went to in the afternoon and it was heavenly.

The next week had amazing weather and I lounged around outside–which is really unusual for Maastricht! The warmest it ever gets here is usually around 68*F, and it was in the mid-70s that week.

The following weekend a few friends and I went up to Keukenhof! Keukenhof is the very famous tulip garden of the Netherlands–its 79 acres! Our trip was really great, we had great people, good food, beautiful sights.

We spent the evening having dinner in Amsterdam, where there was a carnival in the middle of Dam Square that we had no idea was happening!

The Netherlands is such an amazing place and I am so happy that this is where I’ve chosen to study abroad–it is such a good fit for me. Sustainable, full of flowers, and just so cute in general.

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