Last summer, I went on a trip to Europe with three of my dearest friends. It was by far the biggest trip I’ve ever taken, and it was the craziest, most wonderful, exciting experience I’ve ever had!
We started our trip in the beautiful city of Budapest. At first, I was a little wary of the idea; I wanted to do the more traditional cities like Paris or London. Luckily I was outnumbered in the vote, because Budapest ended up being my hands down favorite city I’ve ever experienced! From the beautiful Hungarian landscapes, to the gorgeous river separating old Buda from old Pest, to the amazing castles and architecture! The public parks had stages for outdoor concerts and plays, public bath houses, zoos, and even a castle with a moat! (I’m always a sucker for a good moat!) The four of us stayed in a gorgeous little apartment in a very affluent part of town, right in the middle of everything. We were able to walk anywhere and everywhere we needed to go, and they had the most adorable little cobblestone streets! It was absolute perfection.
From Budapest, we hopped on a train to Vienna, Austria! Austria has always been on my bucket list, due to the fact that The Sound of Music is one of my favorite things, and I have always dreamt of “running about Salzburg in nothing but some old drapes”, while “having a marvelous time”. Vienna was not what I had expected however; I imagined rolling hills and snowy mountains, but I found it to be rather industrial. However, the Royal Palace of the Hapsburg family was to die for! If you ever get the chance it is a must see! The interior is decorated in a gorgeous baroque style, my personal favorite because it is gold And frilly And fancy And lacy And pretty And ever so elegant and romantic! Not only did Vienna have a gorgeous Royal Palace, but it was also filled with amazing churches. I was absolutely in awe of the churches here. Inside most of them, it was so quiet you could hear a pin drop. The designs inside were breathtaking and awe inspiring like nothing I had ever seen before.
Our last stop on our grand European tour was Prague. Prague will always hold a very dear place in my heart, despite all of the sex museums. While I was in Prague, I got to visit Terezin Concentration Camp. The quaint town in the Czech Republic that was turned into a Nazi run concentration camp in World War II. It was eerily quiet and oddly calm. Knowing what happened here to so many men, women, and children, it was unnervingly peaceful. I prayed for the people who lost their lives here, and I cried for the children who never got the chance to be children. I’m glad I got to experience this because it is important for us to experience history in a way that resonates with us. It should resonate with us in a way that leaves us feeling a desire to help prevent horrendous things from happening in this world and to encourage us to provide hope and promise for the good days and better times.
The flight home was bittersweet. I was headed home to friends and family that I missed terribly when I was away, but I also had a longing to stay with the friends I had made in Europe that I had grown to love over that month and a half. I will most definitely be back again one day.