Posts Tagged 'Study Abroad'

Hit up the Beach this Fall!

Not ready to settle into the cool winter months? Then don’t! Enjoy warm, crisp temperatures year round at the most beautiful beaches in the world. Whether you’re studying abroad or just taking a quick break, these spectacular beaches heat up the fall season!

Long Bay Beach, Providenciales, Turks & Caicos

Long Bay Beach offers plenty of charm, with two miles of white sand fronting a beaming coastline that makes Turks & Caicos famous. Located a good distance from the big city, this quieter side of Provo provides a great escape from work or the chilly winter. Visitors can also check out the more frequented Sapodilla Bay and Grace Bay beaches.

Englishman’s Bay, Tobago

Paradise Awaits

Paradise Awaits

If you seek a picture perfect atmosphere, then revel in the soothing sand, turquoise waters, and tropical forest that engulf Englishman’s Bay. This hidden gem is far removed from tourism and offers great snorkeling. The area is relatively isolated, so pack food, water, and maybe a good book. You might even want a hammock and a pillow.

Port Antonio, Jamaica

Located on Jamaica’s northeast coast, Port Antonio is surrounded by coves of buttery sand and sapphire seas, flourishing vegetation and steep hills. You won’t have trouble finding housing at one of the funky lodges or stately villas. There is also a multitude of restaurants, water sports, hiking trails, and even a growing ecotourism movement.

Las Penitas & The Corn Islands, Nicaragua

Nicaragua offers plenty of spectacular beaches: La Flor, Los Cardones, Masachapa, and Montelimar (near Managua). Most beach-goers rave about Las Penitas and The Corn Islands. Not far from Leon, Las Penitas offers a quaint fishing village on the Pacific rim. Enjoy great sunsets and tasty seafood! Others are drawn to the tropical paradise of the Corn Islands off the Caribbean coast of Nicaragua. Picnic Center Beach on Big Corn is the most popular swimming beach, with soft sand and mesmerizing water. The tantalizing Long Beach is a bit rougher and has fewer bars and restaurants. Watch out when venturing North, the island can get very windy.

Relax Along the Zanzibar Coast

Relax Along the Zanzibar Coast

Zanzibar Coast, Tanzania

Zanzibar offers some of the most sought after beaches with Pemba and Mafia and Bagamoyo and Pangani on the mainland. Make these your final destinations for relaxation, spectacular marine-life and water sports. The lesser known beaches of Pangani are virtually unspoilt. You might even find yourself mystified by Tanzania’s whimsical Tinga Tinga art, which originated in Zanzibar.

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International Film Festival Season

When I studied abroad in Europe I spent several days in Pordenone, Italy. This beautiful town, about an hour train ride north of Venice, hosts a silent film festival each October. My college film professor encouraged me to attend. It quickly became a highlight of my trip. These festivals not only introduce you to the creative minds of international filmmakers, but also give you the chance to explore new and fascinating cities. Here are a few to keep in mind:

Le Giornate Del Cinema Muto

Creativity Knows No Boundaries

Creativity Knows No Boundaries

Pordenone’s silent film festival brings you back in time, to the early stages of filmmaking.  No, you don’t shoot a silent film, but you do watch classics from D.W. Griffith,  the Lumière brothers, Erich von Stroheim, Mary Pickford, Harold Lloyd and other international silent stars before the 1930s. For a week every October, film professionals, preservationists, scholars and enthusiasts watch rare footage not available to most. For 30 Euro you receive unlimited access to a full line-up of classic silent films- many of which have recently been restored. While you’re there, explore the small town of Pordenone; take a day trip to Venice; enjoy a homely Italian lunch or savor a creamy gelato. It’s an unforgettable week!

Festival de Cannes

Since 1946, the Festival International du Film in Cannes, France has been one of the world’s premiere film festivals. Today it draws tens of thousands of film professionals from around the world. The festival gives novice and seasoned independent filmmakers a chance to showcase their work before their peers. Check out films by Quentin Tarantino, Michael Haneke, Steven Soderbergh, and Park Chan-Wook. See the work of your favorite stars or expose yourself to a bigger film culture. Located in southern France along the French Riviera- it’s hard to go wrong!

Internationalen Filmfestspiele Berlin

Berlin Comes Alive at Night

Berlin Comes Alive at Night

The Berlin International Film Festival will celebrate its 60th anniversary in 2010.  Selling more than 200,000 tickets each year, “Berlinale” hosts the largest audience of any film festival in the world. The festival in Berlin, Germany showcases more than 400 films over a two-week period each February. Prestigious awards include: the Golden and Silver Bears, the International Jury Award (Alfred Bauer Prize), as well as awards for top Feature, Actor, and Director. Located in one of the world’s most historical cities, attendees can visit unforgettable landmarks, taste delicious food, and explore memorable locals.

Other notable festivals:

Whisk Yourself Away to the Galapagos Islands!

Looking for a rewarding trip or study abroad adventure this fall? Imagine protecting endangered species while interacting with some of the world’s most vibrant wildlife. Intrigued? Then South America, more specifically, Ecuador, is right up your alley. The Galapagos Islands. The Amazon. The Andes. The list goes on.

Galapagos Islands

Watch Out for the Friendly Sea Lions!

Watch Out for the Friendly Sea Lions!

Become close friends with sea lions. The wildlife owns this UNESCO World Heritage site. You’ll find huge sea turtles, a few spotted eagle rays and various other deep-sea creatures. The friendly Galapagos penguins may join you for a swim. Prefer land? You’ll be in good company with flamingos, mockingbirds, warblers, hawks, blue-footed boobies, herons and other shorebirds. The 19 islands also offer great hiking, from easy to strenuous. Pick your poison.

Amazon

The Amazon provides endless entertainment for fans of rafting, kayaking, hiking, or mountain biking. Explore the jungles around Calluacocha Lake, in the heart of the Ecuadorian Amazon. This wildlife sanctuary is home to several hundred species of birds, 13 species of monkeys, 1, 000 species of butterflies, and 1, 500 species of trees, as well as caimans, jaguars, ocelots, otters, and millions of insects.  Mountain bike through the  Bellavista Cloud Forest and tropical rainforest; go whitewater jungle rafting down the Blanco and Toachi rivers; or explore the tropical dry forest ecosystem in Machalilla National Park.

Andes

Quito Offers Unrivaled Beauty

Quito Offers Unrivaled Beauty

More adventures await you in the Andes. Explore the capital city and UNESCO cultural heritage site of Quito. This unique city is known for its architecture and features colonial buildings, which display its baroque history. As you cross the Equator line, check out the indigenous market at Otavalo, explore the Avenue of the volcanoes south of Quito, take a train ride through the “The Devil’s Nose,” and visit the Ingapirca and Cuenca UNESCO heritage city. There’s a lot to do!

Volcano Trekking

Another adventure you won’t find anywhere else: Volcano trekking! Witness gorgeous sunsets and amazing wildlife amid towering volcanoes! Ecuador Trekking Tours offers a variety of adventures for travelers. The Cotopaxi National Park is a 36,000-hectare nature and wildlife sanctuary surrounding the highest active volcano in the world. Or check out the Guagua Pichincha Volcano. Standing at 4,874 meters, it’s a spectacular place to hike.

Offseason Travel: Exploring the Ruins of Sicily

Studying abroad or traveling through Europe this fall? Escape the crowds in France and mainland Italy and head south to Sicily. Blending Roman and Greek culture, Sicily is a jewel of the Mediterranean. Avoids the crowds and visit during the offseason. I went to Sicily during the winter and found it the warmest destination on my Europe trip. As a San Francisco native, sunny skies and 55 degrees weather feels perfect. To my Sicilian relatives, it’s “freezing!” You’ll quickly discover many kind-natured Sicilians as well as hundreds of historical landmarks. Here are a few places to consider:

Segesta

Sicily is Surrounded by Ancient Treasures

Sicily is Surrounded by Ancient Treasures

Set amid a backdrop of rolling hills, Segesta is a well-preserved Doric temple in northwest Sicily. It’s lies on the outskirts of Palermo, in Trapani. Dating to the 5th century B.C., Segesta existed for 1,800 years under successive waves of Greeks, Romans, Muslims, and Normans. In his Aeneid, Virgil refers to Segesta as a prosperous city, but by the thirteenth century the city had all but been abandoned.

Agrigento and the Valley of Temples

Agrigento’s Valley of Temples is nearly deserted, save a small collection of loyal Japanese tourists. The crown jewels include the Temple of Juno, the Temple of Hercules, and the Temple of Concordia. The 5th century B.C. Temple of Concordia was preserved after being converted into a church in the 6th century A.D.  Gnarled olive trees also blanket the site. If you have time, catch the majestic Temples lit up at night. A couple other finds: the 13th-century church, Abbazia di Santo Spirito, and the Museo Regionale Archeologico.

Syracuse

Over 2,700 years old, Syracuse once served as the capital of Sicily. Roman philosopher and statesman, Cicero called Syracuse “the greatest Greek city and the most beautiful of them all.” Don’t miss the Parco Archeologico della Neapolis. One of Italy’s greatest archaeological gardens, it offers the Teatro Greco, Latomia del Paradiso, and Anfiteatro Romano. Check out the Museo Archeologico Regionale Paolo Orsi as well. You’ll quickly discover why Syracuse rivaled Athens in cultural importance. Mathematician and philosopher Archimedes, playwright Aeschylus, and poet Sappho all lived in Syracuse. Plato also frequented the town.

Want to Study Abroad? Start Now!

With the new school year almost in full swing, it’s time to start investigating study abroad programs at your college or university. This can be daunting. You’ll need to consider where you want to go; what you want to study; how long you want to go abroad; how you’ll fund your trip; and whether you’ll be able to transfer credit. It might seem overwhelming at first, but there are plenty of resources to make the process go smoothly.

Advisors

Talk to your campus advisors. If you’re serious about going abroad, learn how your travel will impact your major. See if you can transfer credit back to your home institution. If there are problems with going abroad during the school year, consider a summer abroad or short term program during the fall or winter. Short term programs often consist of a month abroad in September, January, or May.

Study Abroad and Experience a New Life

Study Abroad and Expand Your Horizon

Study Abroad Fair

Attend your campus study abroad fairs. Obviously you’re not going abroad this fall, but check out winter, spring, and summer programs. Get an idea of what programs are offered. Check out the brochures and put together a list of questions- if you can’t ask them on the spot then visit your campus study abroad center.

Study Abroad Center

Every campus has some type of Center for International Studies or Study Abroad Office. It might consist of one person or a myriad of consultants. It’s worth checking out. You’ll find pamphlets on prospective programs, receive information on housing, funding options, and programs offered by your major or school.

Gulliver

If you haven’t already figured out, Gulliver is a one-stop site for everything related to study abroad. Want to study film in Prague? Check out these programs. Want to go to Australia? Ireland? China? We cover programs in more than 70 countries. Search programs offered by providers like CIEE (Center for International Educational Exchange), CEA (Center for Education Abroad), or IFSA- Butler. You can also search by your own university, area of study, language, and time of year. Find out information on any program by selecting the “get info” tab and filling out a free registration card. Search as much as you want. Don’t commit until you find the right program for you! When you do select your program, check out our Prepare to Go section for all the information you need about funding, housing, travel, and money for the country of your choice.

Choosing to study abroad is the hard part… planning the trip should be fun and easy!

Summer Adventures: International Sports Culture

One thing you’ll discover while studying abroad or traveling: sports is a way of life.  This weekend I joined thousands of people in San Francisco, California to watch the AVP beach volleyball championships. Although it does not attract the following of say baseball or football, it does get the adrenaline flowing. As you travel through different countries you’ll discover a wide range of sports that excite locals. Here are a few to keep in mind.

England/Cricket

We all know football/soccer is the biggest sport in England, along with rugby, golf, and tennis (ever heard of Wimbledon?).  If you really want to know the British culture, however, learn the ethics of Cricket. The sport is played on village greens and in towns/cities most Sundays from April to August. In Britain, sports are not only a popular leisure activity, but also an important part of life.

Judo Attracts Adults and Youth Alike

Judo Attracts Adults and Youth Alike

Japan/Martial Arts

An increasing number of Major League Baseball players today come from Japan. One of the countries most cherished sports, however, is Martial arts. Traditional practices include judo, kendo, karate-do, and aikido, which thrive in modern Japan. Judo, which literally means “the gentle way,” officially established itself as an Olympic event in the 1964 Games. Kendo (Japanese fencing) also attracts a loyal following.

Australia/Rowing

Australians love rugby, cricket, and Martial arts. Secondary sports include soccer, swimming, and cycling. Surrounded by a beautiful coast, water sports, like rowing have risen in popularity. Rowers use carbon boats of all styles and sizes. Rowing has grown both recreationally and competitively on the Gold Coast and in other Australian cities. The Australian Rowing Team is currently in Poland, preparing for the 2009 World Rowing Championships from August 23rd-30th.

Hurling Attracts Most Irish Faithful

Hurling is Not a Dainty Sport

Ireland/Hurling

Although Gaelic football and polo have gained notoriety around the world, hurling remains one of Ireland’s most traditional sports. Hurling started as a rivalry between neighbouring clans and villages over 2,000 years ago. The object of the game: players use a wooden stick called a “hurley” (pronounced “camán” in Gaelic) to hit a small ball (“sliotar“) between the opponents’ goalposts.  The game is mentioned in ancient folklore about Irish giants and heroes and is today considered the world’s fastest field team sport in terms of game play.

What are some other ‘can’t miss’ sporting events?

Study Abroad in Turkey!

Imagine exploring the site of the famous Trojan Wars in Western Turkey or seeing the oldest human settlement in Catalhoyuk.  Here at Gulliver we encourage you to spice up your study abroad experience and take your travels to Turkey! Blending ancient ruins, exotic markets, and European and Asian cultures, Turkey is a can’t miss for any adventurer. Although it means trekking into unfamiliar territory, you’ll soon discover Turkey offers a world of unrivaled beauty, history, and cuisine.

Istanbul

Bosphorus Strait Offers Beautiful Views

Bosphorus Strait Offers Beautiful Views

Turkey’s financial, economic and cultural center, Istanbul is one of the most fascinating cities in the world. From the ruins and remnants of the Byzantine and Ottoman Empires to the hustle and bustle of modern-day Istanbul, it is the perfect city to enrich your college education. While exploring Istanbul, check out the historical Sirkeci Train Station. This was the last stop of the Simplon-Orient Express between Paris and Constantinople (Istanbul) from 1883 to 1977.  For other stunning views, catch a ferry heading up the Bosphorus Strait. Enjoy a tasty fish lunch at one of the riverside villages. At Anadolu Hisari you can climb up to the castle and gaze out toward the Black Sea.

Cappadocia

Whether you experience it by air, foot, or horseback, get up close and personal with the beautiful Cappadocian landscape. Riding horseback around these carved rocks lets you check out all the crazy formations. Look for the abandoned pigeon house. Apparently monks kept pigeons for their soil-fertilizing manure. You’ll also see frescoed churches cut right into the rocks. Don’t be surprised to find treacherous paths and unmarked trails.  You can hire a horse at the stables in Goreme, Avanos, or Urgup.

Ancient Ephesus

Temple of Artemis in Ephesus

Temple of Artemis in Ephesus

One of Turkey’s greatest sites, the extensive Roman ruins of Ephesus are easily accessible on foot along a two-mile tree-shaded path from nearby Selcuk.  Besides the church of St. John, don’t miss the Temple of Artemis. One of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World, the Temple was originally built during the 8th c. B.C. It was destroyed, however, and reconstructed by the citizens of Ephesus. Avid walkers could combine a visit to the ruins with a stiff six-mile walk up Mount Bulbul to see Meryemana (Mary’s House), where some people believe the Mother of God lived out the last years of her life.

A word to the wise: When visiting Ephesus, enter through the Lower Gate in the morning, explore the ruins, and then continue out through the Upper Gate and onto the mountain road toward Meryemana as the sun starts to set.

Other fun excursions:

Gap Adventures offers a great travel guides and tips for getting around.


the blog of www.gullivergo.com

Gulliver helps students Study Abroad. Our blog covers: current issues in Study Abroad; featured posts by Study Abroad students; and Gulliver updates, news, and behind-the-scenes peaks. Thanks for reading!