Global High School Travel Journal
Below are a collection of travel journal entries from the program managers and activity coordinators about the students personal and experiential education and travels.
This past week has been filled with the perfect mix of adventure and academics. For starters, our amazing teachers led all of our students on a 45 min hike to Double Bay Beach for afternoon classes on Thursday. We’ve also had classes in the rooftop pool of our hostel, cafes in the neighbourhood, and the private conference room available to us at Sydney Central YHA. Students have been doing a phenomenal job juggling excursions, jet lag, and assignments. They have already become very close with one another in such a short time!read more
Well…we did it! After passing through a few different time zones and spending many hours in the air, we finally touched down in Sydney. The flights couldn’t have been more seamless. We went from plane to plane with ease and everyone got at least a little bit of sleep on the flights (or stayed awake and binge watched movies!)
We were picked up at the Sydney airport by our private coach, which took us directly to Sydney Central Youth Hostel.
Thank you all for being with us on this incredible journey. Having your support – through emails, phone calls, and even some facetime chats – means a lot to the staff and myself. Your kids have now expanded their professional network.read more
This past week in Firenze has been so wonderful. From buying apple cider at the Christmas Market in front of the Basilica di Santa Croce, to visiting THE statue of David himself at Galleria Accademia, we have seen a lot. This city has effortlessly become home, with the ability to walk everywhere, the safe streets, and our new favourite cafes at which the students study. We’ve also taken some pretty incredible (and bucket list location) day trips: we’ve seen the leaning tower in Pisa, walked along the canal in Venice, and sat in Piazza del Campo, where they hold the famous Palio races in Siena!read more
Today after classes we had a wonderful walking tour with our North Carolina-born tour guide, Sally, who has been living in Florence for the past three years. She was wonderful with the students and showed us the Christmas market, the famous Ponte Vecchio, and the gorgeous Duomo in the heart of the city. We visited the best places for leather shopping (moms and dads – send in your requests now!) and finished the tour giving the students some time to explore the markets with their friends.read more
After our quick one-hour train ride to Naples, we met our guide Giuseppe who led us onto the local train to Sorrento. Sorrento is a beautiful, safe, and small city that is currently covered in Christmas decorations and lined with cobble stoned roads – a big difference from bustling Rome.
Next stop was Pompeii on Sunday morning where we visited the famous archaeological site of the once-large city that was completely covered by ash from the eruption of Mount Vesuvius in 79 AD.
As finals approach, the students have been working very hard in their classes and during study hall with the teachers. Classes are held at our hotel, in local cafes, and on experiential tours such as the Colosseum! It is now Sunday, and I write to you after having spent the weekend in Sorrento and the Amalfi Coast with 11 of our students.read more
In the blink of an eye, we have arrived in Rome! Our hotel is situation on the grounds of a beautiful restored Monastery, just steps from cafes, basilicas, and the metro.
Our two flights to Rome were extremely quick and painless, as was our transfer from Fiumicino Airport to the hotel.
After a quick bite to eat, we are currently settling into our rooms. The students have some time now to nap, shower, unpack, and most importantly, start studying for some upcoming tests in English and Philosophy.
This past week has been so great; classes are running smoothly and the students were quick to orient themselves in the small downtown area where our hotel is situated. The port, lined with fishermen and sailboats, is a stone’s throw away. We saw some beautiful old churches on our walking tour a few days ago, and strolled through the ‘market street’ where the narrow road was lined with tiny shops housing Cretan olive oil, Greek herbs and spices, honey, teas, and more.read more
Our excursion and short climb to Mystras castle on Thursday gave us some of the most beautiful views of the area. A short bus ride later, we found ourselves in Sparta where we had a lovely lunch and took some photos in front of King Leonidas’ statue, before heading back to Kalamata.read more
After breakfast, we took our coach bus to Olympia where we saw the training stadiums, the ruins of Zeus’ temple, and even some leftover architecture of what was once the ‘VIP hotel’. This is where spectators stayed as they flocked from all over Greece to watch the athletes showcase their prowess. A few of our students showed their skills as well when they raced on the original Olympic track.read more
Here we are safe and sound in Kalamata. Our quick 3-hour bus ride was easy and relaxing. Here in the Peloponnese, the sun is hot, the clouds are few, and the sea is a stone’s throw away. The incredible staff at our beautiful Elite City Resort has welcomed us with open arms as we settle into our spacious villas. I’ve already heard a few people say that they will never be ready to leave this place.read more
We’ve had quite the successful few days here in Athens. From starting classes to seeing the major sites of Greece’s capital, we can say that our time has already been memorable.
We visited the Acropolis on a cloudy, dreary, rainy Thursday. Sounds awful right?… NOPE! It was quite the opposite. After the acropolis, our wonderful tour guide Daphne showed us around the most exciting and popular spots in Athens: Plaka and Monastiraki.read more
We have arrived safe and sound in Athens after an emotional farewell to our Term 1 students at the airport.
We now have a brand new group to call our family. Some new additions (8, to be exact) who have joined us for Term 2 have settled in nicely as we all get to know each other.read more
As we put the Spanish tapas down and get ready to pick up our Greek yogurt, we bid farewell to our final stop on Term 1. This past week in Barcelona has been filled with studying, writing exams, and getting our last minute things out of the way. One last stop at the...read more