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The Trip Of A Lifetime

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This summer I went on the vacation of a lifetime. My family and I spent the first three weeks of the summer in Europe. We were there to visit family on my dad’s side, but got the chance to do a lot of sightseeing while we were there. The ten hour flight was extremely long, but I’d say it was definitely worth every minute. We went to Germany and Switzerland and while there made side trips to Paris, France and Luxembourg.

The countries we went to were amazing and the countryside was beautiful. The countries of Europe are a lot different than America. The buildings for the most part are all very old, made of stone, and intricately designed. The towns were small with the buildings close together. Between towns there was rolling green countryside. Towns are not as spread out as America and streets are much more narrow. You could tell a town was coming from a mile away by the church’s steeple found in almost every town.

Our first day trip was to the two thousand year old town of Trier, Germany. Trier was a remarkably beautiful city. Every building in the town square had some kind of history. Every windowsill had beautiful bright red baskets of flowers hanging from them. Some of the buildings had marvelous carvings on the sides. The cathedrals were amazing too. It seemed as if every inch had some kind of intricate carving, including the ceilings. While there we also saw the Porta Nigra (Black Port), a small section of a former gateway to the city. The city was founded around 16 B.C. by the Romans.

The food there was excellent and was always more than enough.
They have their dinner at noon and if you want to eat between two and five you are out of luck, except for a few places that serve cake. Anything you need from a store must be gotten before nine o’ clock because there are no twenty four hour stores and nearly all stores are closed on Sunday.

Our next day trip was to the towns of Bernkastel and Cochem. Bernkastel was a cool town with lots of interesting looking buildings and these too were very historic. Just a few kilometers away was the town of Cochem which has a castle that we got to go inside of. The castle was amazing and the views were breathtaking. For miles you could see small villages surrounded by grape vines. Afterwards we had an amazing meal at a restaurant in a town called Morshels.

That first weekend we got to go on an overnight trip to Paris. Paris was amazing and was nothing like I imagined. We saw the Eiffel Tower, Arc de Triumph, Louvre museum, and the famous Ritz hotel. We also got to take a boat ride on the river there. We took a walk on the Champs Elysees and toured the amazing Notre Dame during a Sunday Mass. Paris was also very loud, crazy, and busy.

On another day we went to the town of Idar Oberstein, a jewelry making town. They are famous for making jewelry from rocks in the mountainside. There is a castle there too and a church built right into the side of the mountain.

We spent our last full day there in the country of Luxembourg. Luxembourg is very different from what we saw in Germany. Luxembourg still has a palace with a Duke and Duchess and it has a guard out front.

After a tearful goodbye in Germany we left for Switzerland. Our time there while shorter was also amazing. We took a train ride to Zurich and spent our first day there shopping in all the big city shops. Then we got to drive through the mountains over the Susten pass. The weather was not that great, but it was still wonderful. In my grandpa’s home town we went inside two castles that he used to go in as a child.

Our last full day we went to the city of Lucerne and looked out over the lake and river there and spent nearly the whole day buying souvenirs before we had to return for a big family dinner where there were four generations of my family.

Even though the weather was not the best while we were there, we had the best time we could’ve possibly had and I hope one day very soon I can go back to the wonderful sights and people.



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