This is a post that was originally published on Grass Route Adventures about my study abroad adventure in London. If you’re planning on studying abroad in London or studying abroad in general in the future, I hope this post can be helpful!
- Country/place of origin: The United States, grew up in Idaho, lived in San Francisco for 5 years, traveled the world full-time, and moved back to Boise, Idaho.
- Where you studied abroad: London, UK
- When you studied abroad: Summer 2009
- College/university that you studied abroad with: American Intercontinental University
- Describe your study abroad experience in 3 words: Eye-opening, exciting, too short!
- Instagram handle: Let’s be friends! @Travelingspud
Studying Abroad in London: An Interview
Why did you decide to study abroad in London?
In college, I had a strong passion for fashion and even started my own fashion blog. Unfortunately, my university didn’t have a strong fashion school so I opted to study marketing instead. Because I was so passionate about fashion at the time, I ended up finding a course in London through a friend. The course was all about fashion marketing and I knew I had to go! Not only did I get to study fashion, but I also got to study abroad in London, one of the world’s fashion capitals.
Where was your favorite travel destination while studying abroad in London?
For the most part, I stuck around London since it’s such a huge city! There is so much to do just in London alone that I could see a different side of the city every single weekend. See my 4-day London itinerary to get the most of the city. However, some of my favorite side-trips from London were a weekend in Paris, a weekend to meet up with my dad in Dublin, Ireland, and a side trip to Stratford-Upon-Avon, Bath, and Stonehenge.
What is your most embarrassing/craziest study abroad moment?
The craziest thing has got to be lightly “stalking” Prince Harry. My friends and I researched what bars he frequented and tried to find him! We actually ended up getting to see him, Prince William, Prince Charles, and the Queen and King at the Queen’s Jubilee in June. So our prayers of at least seeing him were answered.
What was the best thing you ate while studying abroad in London?
I’d have to say it was hands down, fish and chips at the Camden Lock Market and cream tea. I scouted the city and nearby English countryside for the best cream tea (tea with scones and this special English clotted cream on top). I crave it to this day!
What did you miss most about home when studying abroad?
I weirdly missed the mountains! While studying abroad, getting out of the city wasn’t very easy, and seeing the countryside was rare. When I got back to Idaho I told my family the first thing I wanted to do was go on a hike. Apparently, I missed the mountains more than anything!
What was the biggest challenge you faced while studying abroad?
Feeling like I was missing out on things from home. Now, looking back I can’t believe how crazy I was to have the fear of missing out (FOMO). Studying abroad in London is way more fun than being at home! After traveling the world for a year, I’ve realized that this is just a natural thought when you’re gone for a long period of time. Changing your thoughts and realizing you’re probably doing cooler stuff than people at home helps a lot!
What is your fondest memory from studying abroad?
So many things! First and foremost were the memories I made with my study abroad friends and roommates. We had so much fun during our nights out in Camden and exploring all of the parts of London. Plus, we got to see the Queen, which was a highlight.
My fashion class and my British theatre class were also so much fun. If I could give any advice it would be to enroll in classes that sound the most fun to you! My theatre class was outside of my major but was such a blast because we got to go to West End Theatre all the time.
How has your study abroad experience impacted your life?
Let’s just say it gave me the travel bug and I haven’t been able to shake it since. I quit my corporate marketing job, started my blog, The Traveling Spud, and have been traveling as much as possible ever since! So, I’d say it impacted my life more than I realized at the time.
Any last words of advice for people planning to study abroad?
DO IT. Don’t even think about backing out. I remember my experience like it was yesterday! It opened my eyes to new cultures, made me a more open and accepting person, and gave me confidence in myself. Nowadays all my friends that didn’t study abroad majorly regret it. So, my advice to you is don’t live with regrets…just do it!
Best Things to Do in London (notes from my Anglophile friend)
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