Raíces: Weekend Trip to Valencia

Qué tal amigos,

I had a great weekend at Valencia this past weekend! Like I mentioned in my last post, the trip was coordinated through City Life Madrid, which is an organization for students in and around Madrid, especially international students, and includes trips, events and activities that come at a relatively low cost. The trip to Valencia was €79 and included: transportation to and from the hotel, beach and Madrid, a room at a hotel with Sunday morning breakfast and free entry to the Umbracle touristic attraction. The trip was about 4 hours each way, which included a 30-minute stop at a restaurant halfway there. The buses were comfortable though, so the rides were enjoyable.

On Saturday, we went straight to the beach after we unpacked at our hotel room. There were almost 200 students in total and everyone had a roommate, but I was lucky enough to room alone! By the time we got to the beach, I was super hungry, so I got this amazing paella at one of the beachside restaurants:


Valencia is the birthplace of paellas, so I just had to try it! I highly recommend.

Afterwards, it was time to get in the water. The sun hid behind a huge cloud for most of the day, so it wasn’t as photogenic as I had hoped, but the water still felt great. Not as cold as the beaches I’ve been to at the Jersey Shore, but (obviously) not as warm/clear as the beaches I’ve been to in the DR. Here are some pictures of the beachfront:

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We left back to the hotel at 6:00. After relaxing at the hotel for a while, I got some gourmet pizza for dinner at a nearby restaurant:


Cena estupenda! Great dinner!

Afterwards, I spent some time meeting some of the other students from the trip. I would say that at least 90% of the students on the trip were international. I met students from all over the world: United States, United Kingdom, Sweden, France, Germany, you name it. Most of them actually spoke Spanish and English decently, so that was interesting. After hanging out for a couple of hours, we all met up at Umbracle and had a great time there. I only took one nice picture of the scene, which I regret, but here’s what it looked like:


On Sunday, we just spent the day back at the beach again. My biggest regret was not exploring the city at all on Sunday. I should have, but overall, it was great experience. I met other friendly international students, got to experience the beach and another Spanish city, all at an affordable price. I would definitely go on a trip with City Life again.

Classes finally started this week. I had to get three classes approved last-minute out of the four that I am taking, but I’m relieved that I got that that done. Three classes are counting toward my Spanish minor, so I’m really happy about that. Next post will be about how my first week of classes went. Stay tuned!