Viva Espana! - My Family Travels



            Spain had always been the one place I dreamed of visiting. This country intrigued me with its rich culture and beautiful countryside. I finally got my chance with Spanish club. To even go on this trip we had to do fundraisers for two years, like selling candy bars and selling Advent calendars. Finally, after fundraising and saving my own money , in June of 2008, I was able to go on my dream trip.

            To get there it took almost 24 hours and because of the 9 hour time difference that first day was very tiring. We had to take a bus to our hotel and from then on we had the rest of the day to do whatever we wanted. Thankfully, our hotel was right along a main road so we got to see a lot in the first day. The very first thing we got to see was the Palacio Real. I had never seen anything like that. From there we walked a bit farther and visited the famous Plaza Mayor. After walking all day to visit some sights, I was exhausted and fell asleep at 8 o’clock their time. The next day we got a more formal tour of Madrid. For our final day in the area we took a bus for a day trip to Toledo, one of the most diverse cities in Spain. From Madrid, we travelled south to Seville on bus and on the way we stopped in Cordoba. Cordoba has the second largest mosque in the world behind the one in Mecca. In the mosque you could see the different influences of different countries in there. There were the red striped archways from the Moorish influence and then in the center of the mosque were pews and an altar from when the Christians converted the mosque.

After the couple hours in Cordoba we set back on the road again to Seville. In Seville we had a great hotel. The hotel had a pool on the roof and you could see all of Seville around you including the gothic style cathedral where one of the supposed tombs of Christopher Columbus is. After two days in Seville our next stop was to Granada. This was my favorite city of them all even though we were there the shortest. Along one of the roads to our hotel was beautiful murals and from there the road led to the more down town area. That night was the Euro-Cup finals and the Spanish soccer team was playing in it. We went to a local pub and watched the match. Spain had won! It was the first time Spain had won a big game in many years so the country went crazy. People were dancing in public fountains and singing everywhere. The celebrations lasted all night.

            Our final destination was on the Costa del Sol. For our last two days here we got to do nothing but shop and relax in the sun. We were partnered with two other schools from the United States and really got to know some of them really well, so our farewell in the Malaga airport was sad.

            I got so much out of this trip. I learned more about the Spanish culture than I ever would have from a textbook and it gave me the desire to travel again. So, when I am in college I want to study abroad in Spain because of this trip. This trip only got me a tiny taste of Spain and that tiny taste left me wanting more.

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