During the Cork Writing Workshop study abroad program there will be small weekend trips. Due to the program only being a month long, I highly recommend these weekend excursions as they can fulfill both the desire to travel while studying abroad and to engage and learn about different parts of the culture in which you are studying abroad. Weekend trips can be fun however it gets difficult to know what to pack. The first thing to think about is what you may need to take versus what you want to take with you. Packing light would be the best recommendation since there is constant traveling, especially with the western Ireland weekend excursion. A small carry on or a backpack is the best use of luggage for these types of excursions.
Clothing wise, the destination and the itinerary definitely determine what should be packed. Due to the Dublin weekend excursion being in a city, packing clothing such as jeans and sandals are acceptable because there wouldn’t be as much intense walking as on the western Ireland excursion. The western Ireland excursion consists of hiking, interacting or being close to animals, and traveling on a bus to different destinations which suggests that comfortable clothes and shoes should be packed. I’d definitely suggest packing a pair of supportive sneakers or trainers before leaving for the study abroad program due to the amount of walking around Cork, but especially around Western Ireland. Personally, I think that it is more unsafe not wearing proper shoes during the western Ireland weekend excursion due to the long amounts of walking in more natural surroundings. Along with supportive shoes, comfortable clothes may also be a better travel option especially if the itinerary describes there will be a lot of walking. One item that is a necessity not just for the weekend excursions, but for every day traveling is a rain jacket/windbreaker. The weather is unpredictable. Although you can dry off after being rained on, you can also catch a cold which could ruin the whole excursion in general. Taking a rain jacket on the excursions is a must because while on campus you can easily run back to your dorm, however, while on the excursions there is a set itinerary that won’t always allow you to run back to get things that you may need.
Although they are weekend excursions away from campus, it doesn’t hurt to pack schoolwork. The program is only a month which means that everything is fast paced and there is a limit on time so packing schoolwork and having that option to get some of it done on your free time can help tremendously. The long bus rides are especially a good place to get reading done and essays typed.