Posted in Paris, France

Paris: Food

Sure I eat my feelings, but I save the emotional roller coaster for dessert. — Josh Stern

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In the slideshow above are photos of the macarons I tried while in Paris. While on a walking tour of the Le Marais neighborhood in Paris, the tour guide made a stop at Pierre Herme, which is known for having the best macarons in Paris. Upon walking inside, I was greeted a cute little shop decorated with macarons. Directly in front of me was the order counter, where dozens of macarons were on display. There were three categories of flavors: summer selection, best sellers, and classics. Deciding to try one from each category, I chose a chocolate macaron from the classics, a jasmine macaron from the best sellers, and a pomegranate-lychee-rose macaron from the summer selection. This last flavor was my favorite by far. Although all of them were light and fluffy with a creamy filling, the pomegranate one had a delightful balance between fruity and floral.

If you would like to read more about French desserts, click here to visit Kimberly’s blog!

Posted in Brugge, Belgium

Brugge: 5 Things to Do

Nine out of ten people like chocolate. The tenth person always lies. – John Q. Tullius

1. Take a boat ride.


There are tons of boat companies around Brugge that take you around the canals and give you a tour of your surroundings. However, lines can get long.

2. Eat some Belgian and/or Liege waffles.


I went to Chez Albert to try one of Belgium’s famous liege waffles. It tasted all right (a bit dense for my tastes), but the chocolate on top was absolutely amazing! I also tried a Belgian waffle, which I liked a lot better because it was fluffy, airy, and light.

3. Go on a carriage ride.

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You can find a whole group of carriages by the statue in the market square, but there are lots of people waiting for them and no real line. I recommend going in the morning before the day-trippers arrive. The carriages will be lounging around waiting for people. It’ll also be easier to see the sights (better photo opportunities!) since Brugge in general isn’t as crowded in the morning.

4. Take pictures of the scenery and architecture.


Brugge has unique buildings (one of the buildings is gold!) and canals that create the perfect backdrop for pictures.

5. Buy lots of chocolate!


Fun fact: The first Godiva store is located in Brussels, which isn’t too far from Brugge! However, if you don’t feel like going all the way to Brussels, there are still many chocolatiers to choose from as you walk around Brugge’s streets.

If you want some travel tips, click here to visit Samantha Wharton’s blog!

Posted in Amsterdam, Netherlands

Amsterdam: 5 Packing Tips

Amsterdam is like the rings of a tree: It gets older as you get to the center. — John Green

1. Bring snacks for the plane ride.

It’s a long flight (seven hours!), and I think we can all agree that plane food is gross.

2. Pack a sweater.


Amsterdam can get chilly — even in the summer.

3. Bring an extra suitcase.

You’ll probably buy lots of souvenirs while you’re away, and you don’t want to find out while you’re packing the night before your return flight that your belongings can no longer fit. Rather than buy an extra suitcase in Amsterdam, bring an extra one from home!

4. Bring loose clothes.

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You should avoid packing only skin-tight clothes because you’ll find cafes on every corner serving everything from meals to desserts to snacks. You WILL eat a lot…

Just to give you an idea, my days in Amsterdam consisted of:

  1. Eating
  2. Walking to another cafe
  3. Eating (again)
  4. Repeat

5. Don’t forget to not tip restaurants!

European restaurants don’t expect tips and might even look at you weirdly or think you’re being foolish if you do. Save that money for extra souvenirs!

If you would like to find places to visit in Amsterdam, check out Hannah’s blog here.