One Last Adventure In Torino



After flying back to the US and getting back in the swing of life in California, I have completely fallen behind on my last couple blog posts from my summer abroad! So to catch up where I left off..

After me and my dad flew back to Torino from Croatia, we had one more full day left in Italy until we were scheduled to fly home. We decided to take a train about 30 minutes out of Torino to an incredible monastery on top of a mountain known as Saint Michael’s Abbey. The grueling hike to the top of the mountain took an hour and a half. After we reached the top we met a new friend named Fillipo. Meeting Filipo was the highlight of our day. He loved practicing his English with me and my dad so he gave us a personal tour of the monastery and another castle down the hill. He shared  history behind the building and all kinds of fun random facts about living in Torino. Meeting Fillipo is a memory I will never forget!

IMG_4513{The beginnging of our climb}
IMG_4428{Trails}IMG_4439{Absolutely incredible views!}IMG_4434 {Ruins of the monastary}IMG_4457{One last adventure in Torino}IMG_4466{One last adventure in Torino}
IMG_4472{Zodiac Arch}IMG_4444{Saint Michael’s Abbey}IMG_4460 {Wanderlust}IMG_4471 {Zodiac Arch}IMGP0401{My Dad and I}IMG_4481{Butterfly arches}IMG_4487{The ruins of St. Michaels Abbey}IMG_4494{My dad and Fillipo pointing to where we will visit next time we visit!}IMG_4505{St. Micheal’s Abbey}IMGP0409


Weekly Highlights

IMG_6674{The only perk of having a flight scheduled at 6 am is getting to watch the sun rise}

Forgive me for posting last week’s, Weekly Highlights so late! The lack of  wifi in Italy/ everywhere in Europe is really affecting the time I get to spend working on this blog!  Also I was in Munich, Germany this past weekend.. so that might have something to do with it too 😉 I can’t wait to share my pictures from Germany with you! But in the meantime here are some highlights from the third week of July. I can’t believe the month is almost over! Summer, slow down please!

IMG_2893{Amazing Louis Vuitton scarf!}IMG_6701{What to do?// Installation at the Gallery of Modern Art}IMG_6703{All you can eat sushi!}IMG_6634{A fishy pedicure in Budapest}IMG_6718{Making Tiramisu in my Italian Cuisine class }IMG_6021

Weekly Highlights

IMG_6233{Beautiful roses in Lake Maggiore}

This week went by in a flash! Maybe that’s because I had a full weekend of traveling around Italy, and am currently taking a long weekend to check out the city of Budapest. 🙂 Oh the life of a study abroad student! I can’t wait to show you what I have been up to these past couple days in Hungary! But in the meantime, here are some highlights from the second week of July. Have a great weekend!

IMG_2925{A typical Italian water fountain}IMG_6330{Enjoying an expresso while working on my last blog post}IMG_3079{Found a little bit of Torino in Milan}IMG_4719{The River Po}
IMG_6321{Walking under the Olympic arch from the 2006 Winter Olympics in Torino}IMG_3691{Art installation from the GAM- Gallery Of Modern Art}IMG_3083{Street view of the Mole Antonelliana}


Milan In A Day

IMG_6291{“Milan, Fashion Capital of the world!” –Tyra Banks}

Sunday afternoon me, my roommate Taylor and her three European friends who had came to visit, embarked on a fulfilling day trip to the fashion capital of the world: MILANO! It was such a fun day! Michelle, Manchester and LA had rented a car to get from San Tropez to Torino, so we stuffed 5 people into our 4 person clown car, a red Fiat 500, and began our journey! It took us a little over an hour and thirty minutes to get from Torino to Milan on the motorway. When we arrived we stopped to check out all the top fashion houses and payed a visit to the infamous Duomo di Milano. We even decided to be “fancy” like the fashionable citizens of Milan and buy overpriced coffees (4.50 Euros for Cappuccino?! Absolutely outrageous, but only in Milan would I pay that much to be fashionable). It was a successful day! We saw everything we wanted to see and made it back to Torino in one piece. My favorite part of the day though was spending time with Taylor’s European friends and learning more about their country, culture, and the funny words they use. They were a fun “crack!” (aka a fun time in Irish).

Thanks for reading  🙂 Ciao!

IMG_3082{Navigating the streets of Italy} {Duomo di Milano}IMG_3055{The entrance to the Galeria Vittorio Emanuel II}IMG_6296{Wanderlust}
IMG_3058{Galeria Vittorio Emanuel II}IMG_3076{Galeria Vittorio Emanuel II}IMG_6283{My 4 euro cappuccino}10353646_10152605061732728_8985684315578627557_n{Window shopping at all the top fashion houses}IMG_3072{Another pretty arch}IMG_3075{Bank of Milan}IMG_3050 {Taylor, Manchester, Michelle, LA, and me!}IMG_3078{Until next time, Milano!}

Lake Maggiore

IMG_3009{Welcome to Lago Maggiore!}

Our USAC Session 2 group took a day trip to a beautiful lake in northern Italy called Lago Maggiore. As you know, I love when our USAC advisors plan trips for us because they always to take us to beautiful areas around Italy that we wouldn’t have thought to visit on our own. The lake is located at the south side of the Swiss Alps and it was absolutely stunning! The whole town was covered in hydrangeas, colorful buildings, and adorable cafes. What makes Lago Maggiore special is that it has two islands or should I say gigantic villas, right in the middle of the lake! We had the chance to visit one of the islands, Isola Bella (the beautiful island), and tour the interiors of the villa and its stunning renaissance inspired gardens. It was a wonderful way to spend a Saturday! 🙂

IMG_2944{Still dreaming of this seafood macaroni}IMG_2945{Pastel-colored buildings}IMG_2954{The thing I loved most about Lake Maggiore was it’s abundance of hydrangeas}
IMG_2982{On our boat ride to Isola Bella}IMG_2997{The prettiest of flowers}IMG_3002{My roommate Billie and I}IMG_3007{Before we were asked not to take pictures of the inside of the villa…}IMG_3032{A quick glimpse before leaving}IMG_3029{Isola Bella}IMG_3035{The Renaissance inspired gardens}IMG_3026{Fantastic gardens on the tier below}IMG_3024{Hydrangeas were everywhere!}IMG_3037{This image is a good representation of  the 5 different tiers that make up the garden} IMG_3038

Weekly Highlights

IMG_5968{Discovering new places to explore around the city}

June went by in a blur! I cannot believe I have already been living in Torino for seven weeks! It has been so fun for me to document my travel experiences here on my blog. It really puts the big and little moments into perspective for me. I have decided to start a weekly highlights section here to show more of the day to day things I do here in Torino (which will most likely be a lot of pictures of pasta and gelato). Here are some highlights from the first week of July:

IMG_5925{Matching my wines to my accessories 😉 }IMG_5183{The closest thing to the fourth of July I will have here! Fireworks to celebrate the Patron Saint of Torino, San Giovani}IMG_2827{Getting cappuccinos at my favorite cafe downtown}IMG_6045{Getting Aperitivo in Piazza Victorio}

*Apertivo: all you can eat appetizers, all for the price of one alcoholic drink. This is a concept that america needs to get ASAP.Processed with VSCOcam with c1 preset{Wandering the streets of Giorgio Bidone}

IMG_5962{A gelato a day 🙂 }IMG_5977{Our favorite restaurant in Torino: Pasta E Basta}IMG_5951{A night out with my new roommates for session two: Taylor, Rachel, and Billie!}

Exploring Florence

IMG_2517{The view of the Duomo from the top of the bell tower)

Exploring Florence was amazing.. Do I need to say more?

Our first full day in Florence was spent wandering around, discovering the San Lorenzo leather market, and eating gelato before our guided tour of the Tuscany region. We had a blast at the leather market! They had a huge selection of leather purses, wallets and accessories for great prices! My favorite part of my trip was practicing my bartering skills. The key is to act like you really don’t care for it at all and just when you’re about to leave they will offer you a price you can’t refuse! That’s how I snatched up some of my best items: I bought a great black leather bag with the Florentine symbol and a grey floppy hat, which I haven’t taken off since!

Saturday afternoon we bought tickets for the “Taste of Tuscany Tour.” It was a tour that had great reviews on Trip Advisor and it was a wonderful experience! We visited 2 different towns inside the Tuscan region with about 14 other travelers from all around the world. We endured beautiful, yet an insanely scary car ride from the medieval town of Monteriggioni to a winery in the Chianti region to the quaint town of Siena. We stopped at each city, learned a little bit about the history and were free to explore! We ended our tour with a home cooked meal by an Italian named Johnny. It was incredible! It might have been the best pasta I have had on this trip 🙂

Our final day in Florence was spent visiting the David. It is mind-blowing to me that Michelangelo carved the David sculpture from ONE piece of marble. Seriously amazing. Afterwards we climbed to the top of the Duomo (one of the most important churches in Florence) where I have about a hundred photos overlooking the whole city! We spent the rest of the day wandering the city, enjoying the food, and seeing all of the main attractions Florence had to offer.

Side Note: Session 1 of my summer abroad has officially ended! I cannot believe 5 weeks flew by so fast! I am so grateful to have met so many amazing people from all over the world and have had the opportunity to travel and grow with them these past weeks. I will miss my Session 1 family so much, but like everything else in life, it’s not a goodbye, it’s an ”I’ll see you later.” (A trip to Las Vegas is already in the works! J) Tomorrow morning I leave for 5 days in Ireland with my close friend, and roommate Nicole for a weeklong adventure. Ariverdeci 🙂

IMG_2503{Views of Florence from the bell tower!}IMG_2337{The front of the Florence Cathedral}IMG_2348{Exploring the medieval town of Monteriggioni} IMG_2383{Chianti Classico}IMG_2362{Barrels on Barrels on Barrels!}IMG_2389{Welcome to Siena!}IMG_2410{Siena has a flag for everything- births, deaths, regions,  you name it}IMG_2433{Dinner at Johnny’s}{Side note: Johnny also makes homemade Limoncello!}IMG_2442{Still dreaming of this mountain of spaghetti}IMG_2463{The infamous David!}IMG_5411{Don’t let the signs fool you- selfies with David are totally allowed!}IMG_2478{Inside the Galleria dell’Accademia}IMG_2495{Me, Nicole and Kelly}IMG_2542{Ponte Vecchio}IMG_2547{Basilica of Santa Croce}IMG_2534{Pasta for lunch again..  How am I not 500 pounds yet!?}IMG_5489{I don’t think I will ever get tired of Gelato}IMG_2314{Firenze at night}