When you live and work in The Czech Republic you are located in the heart of Europe and travel is a must. My first getaway was to Berlin, Germany. My next excursion landed me in Madrid, Spain.
I previously visited Barcelona and it was a beautiful and friendly city but Madrid was different especially in hot July; Madrid was sultry and seductive. The streets were full of color and life, a huge contrast to the conservative atmosphere in The Czech Republic, I fell in love.
Above: Iberia Airlines when you get the whole row to yourself ✈️🎉
Lesson 3: Teaching English in Prague is Challenging but Rewarding!!!
Yep. I found a teaching opportunity in the beautiful city of Prague. It took less than two weeks. I sent my resume to three schools and got responses from two very quickly. I went for the meeting (because it was not an interview) and I was hired at a school in a great location near metro stop Namesti Republiky, basically the center of Old Town in Prague 1.
Lesson 2: Stop and appreciate the beauty surrounding you.
Prague is amazing. The people are conservative and easygoing. The city itself is beautiful and there is never a lack of entertainment options. Even with all the city has to offer, I had to remind myself to enjoy myself!
Fashion Capital of the World!! Going to Milan, from The States, only requires a US passport. The currency is the Euro. We flew into MXP Airport and took the Malpensa Express to the Milano Centrale station. From the Milano Centrale you can get to anywhere in Milan. The monument to see is the Duomo. It is not the Notre Dame of Paris (my fav) but it is an astonishing cathedral
Rome is the Eternal City, full of history and culture.
Passport Needed: Yes
Visa Needed: No
I am an advocate for budget travel, so when I found an inexpensive overnight train tickets to get us from Paris, France to Rome, Italy, I took this idea to J and he agreed. Well… it was an INTERESTING and AWKWARD experience.
A T6-Shared cabin was booked. For those not familiar with this, it is essentially a small room with 6 bunk bed style beds, 3 on each side of the cabin. The two bottom bunks are fold out chairs, until changed into the beds. We shared the cabin with a young teacher, a nun, and an old Italian couple. Although the saving were nice, I am not sure I would try it again.
The small space with strangers, the suspicious nun, and the attendant requesting our passports and not returning them until the morning was stressful for a person who loves her personal space and never likes to part with my passport for several reasonable and unreasonable fears.
Looks like someone slept well
Overall, I was underwhelmed by Rome. Something was missing. I guess my expectations of Rome were different than the reality.
Rome is full of history and impressive structures but in my opinion it lacked charm. I’m not sure exactly what I was expecting but the city felt small, dirty and lackluster beyond the famed landmarks. We did the typical tourist hop-on hop-off bus and took time to view the several of the landmarks.
The landmarks were all very beautiful!!! Overall, the city is a nice place to visit and I would recommend a few days or a long weekend getaway to the city– no longer is needed. I sometimes unfairly judge a place by the food and I will say the food in Rome was great!!!
FYI: There are no free refills on any beverage in Europe!! This is very disheartening for someone who loves free refills.
We stayed at a new modern hotel, the IQ Hotel Roma, located near the Termini. It was very clean and spacious which was appreciated as many European hotels have smaller hotel accommodations than those in the United States.
The food was amazing. The city was loud and crowed but be sure to get lost and find those quiet pieces of bliss in coffee shops or restaurants. You may love it!!!
Paris is absolutely magnificent!! We arrived to Paris by way of the EuroStar Train from London. My best advice is to get your tickets early!! We bought youth tickets on-line in the states about 45 days before departure and got a great deal. If traveling to Paris from the states, you will need a passport but no visa if you’re not planning to stay longer than 90 days. Currency= The Euro *currently worth more than the $dollar$