I am currently on my 5th week of my 6 weeks studying abroad in Florence, Italy, with 29 other Purdue Students. I thought 6 weeks would be a long time, but I feel like I just arrived last week and can’t believe I’ll be on a plane heading back to the United States in just 12 days. I am currently taking two courses, Italian Society and Art History which will give me six credits transferred directly to Purdue when I return in the fall. The Italian Society course teaches us about modern day Italy, mainly focusing on Florence, and having group discussions on these topics. The Art course teaches us about ancient art and the importance of Florence on the Renaissance time, and a majority of classes we take field trips to the many museums and churches around Florence. These classes meet Monday-Thursday allowing us a long weekend to travel as well as time throughout the week to go to the many museums, churches, and shops in Florence. So far I have visited Siena, San Gimignano, Venice, Verona, the Amalfi Coast, Pisa, Luca, and Cinque Terre. I am currently in the processes planning my final destination to Rome and couldn’t be more excited.
My favorite trip so far was this past weekend where myself and eight other Purdue students headed to Cinque Terre, Italy. Cinque Terre is known for its five small towns, Riomaggiore, Manarola, Cornigia, Vernazza, and Monterosso that are all connected by hiking paths. The first hike is a simple 20 minute hike on a paved road called the Via Dell’ Amore, which was quite a simple hike. This hike had many places where we could climb down on cliffs which were so much fun and had an incredible view. However, between the next two towns we had to take a detour, because the usual hiking trail was closed due to landslides, and it took us about 3 hours of very intense hiking. It seemed that a majority of this hike was uphill, but once we finally reached the top the scenery was absolutely stunning and worth the hike. After about 7 hours total worth of hiking, we headed down to the beach in the final town and rested our feet for a while before we found a place to eat and headed back to Florence.
Ciao from Italy!
–Amy Eckerley, Financial Counseling & Planning