Italy has long been high on my list of places to visit, so when the International Students House in London offered a trip to Sicily, I was quick to apply! The International Students House offers discounted trips for students from all across the world studying in London. I was excited when I got accepted, especially because Sicily is somewhere that will be harder to travel to later in life, as it is a bit out of the way compared to the rest of Europe.
On Friday morning, we left London bright and early and flew to Milan. We flew over the Alps, which were absolutely gorgeous!
We arrived in Sicily just as the sun was setting, making the sky a brilliant pink and red. Sicily looked different than I was expecting. There were lots of Roman ruins, streets made out of volcanic rock, tons of churches, buildings built around or using part of toppled ruins, and graffiti everywhere. It was like no where else I've ever been! After checking into the hostel, we went on a walking tour of the city. We stopped for gelato, which I of course was extremely excited about!
Then, we went on a group dinner to a restaurant where underground volcanic springs flowed right through the bottom floor of the restaurant! They served us a quite a few appetizers (included fried pumpkin!), pasta, and more gelato for dessert. I think I ate my weight in pasta, pizza, and gelato each day I was in Italy!
The next morning, we went on a hike of Mt. Etna, past areas destroyed in previous lava flows.
The volcano was gorgeous! Much to my surprise, there was a lot of snow at the top and it was much colder than the city. The view was so pretty!
On our way down the volcano, we stopped at the lava tubes that were made in a prior eruption. With helmets and flashlights, we climbed down a ladder and through the tubes. Before long, there was a blocked off passage and a massive drop off, where we weren't allowed to go. It was such a neat experience.
We stopped an organic farm that uses volcanic soil and sampled their honey, olive oil, olives, and wines. They had a Mt. Etna lava liquor that was 70% alcohol, but I wasn't brave enough to try it!
On Sunday, we went to the beach! The weather was totally different than on the volcano! We explored one of the towns on the mountain and spent some time on the pebbly beach. We waded across the ocean to a smaller island to check out a former house. The house was like a castle!
We spent the evening indulging in pasta, pizza, and gelato. I think I ate my weight in all three each day I was there!
We left early Monday morning. I didn't want to leave! I had so much fun exploring Sicily and meeting fellow London students!
Thanks for reading!
Hi, I’m Crystal! Just like you, I love to travel. You’ll get all the best tips and insights from my experiences as a former ice-skating coach in Iceland and former study abroad student. Of the 24 countries I have visited, a type 1 diabetes diagnosis has been the strangest land yet. Type 1 has not slowed down my travels and you'll learn how to take type 1 with you on the road! You can connect with me further on Instagram @CrystalChilcott, or send me ideas of where I should travel next via email: firstname.lastname@example.orgHappy Travels, Crystal
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