What image does the word “Europe” evoke? Do you see images of princesses and castles and little sidewalk cafes?
True, Europe includes those things, yet there is much more to this awesome and impossibly diverse continent. But besides being able to check it off of your passport, why should you travel to Europe for a summer, especially in your teenage years?
Here are five good reasons (as if you needed more than one!):
You read about history in textbooks, but you actually learn about history by experiencing and visualizing it. Even if you’re not a history buff, there is some cool and very accessible history that is centered in Europe. From learning about Roman gladiators and walking where the Beatles strolled to exploring ancient architecture, history practically radiates out of Europe. You’ll walk down cobblestone streets and wonder about the hundreds of other people from the past who have traveled on those roads. You’ll stand on sites like Pompeii or places where bombs were dropped during the World Wars, and you’ll feel the emotion emanating from the few artifacts left behind. Seeing the history of Europe will not only help you remember it, but also feel it.
In addition to history, you’ll get to taste (sometimes literally!) Europe’s intricate culture. Just because some Europeans speak English does not mean their culture is the same as ours. The art, the food, the markets, the designs all combine to create an experience like no other. From antique libraries to museums you’ll want to spend hours walking through, Europe’s culture is pretty amazing. I dare you to try and get bored in Europe; you’ll find it difficult! And if you don’t know where to start, Global Leadership Adventures can help with that. They offer an awesome trip to Spain where you will not only experience the rich culture, but you will also spend time getting to know immigrants in Spain and learning about their situation. Travel and serve? Yes, please!
Do you think Photoshop creates all of those cool postcards you see of Europe? Wrong! That’s just the way Europe looks! Europe has it all, whether you want to see giant, snowy mountains, emerald valleys, crystal beaches, or vivid cities. And if you can’t decide whether you want to explore the countryside or the city, GLA has you covered. With the United Kingdom trip, you’ll get to travel through all kinds of scenery, both city and country; plus, you will become more aware of questions in the UK that need solutions, such as how to decrease poverty.
Thinking ahead? To potential employers, travel looks impressive on a resume. It makes you stand out in a sea of other applicants, and travel helps you grow and develop in skill and as a person. So why not have fun gaining work experience? Go to Europe.
Finally, life is an adventure. It’s meant for exploring and discovering people, places, and cultures. So make sure you are doing just that. Live an adventure, and explore Europe. Meet some amazing people; hear words that are foreign to your ears; see sights you’ve only seen in pictures; taste some real European cuisine; take some selfies in a coffee shop besides Starbucks. You may not get the opportunity again, so go travel Europe and have an adventure.
So, think you can handle a summer in Europe? Now’s the time to start planning. Look through GLA’s destinations and choose a program! And if you have any personal stories about your experience in Europe, share them below. We’d love to hear from you!
Contributed by Addie Davis