Teaching + Road trip around ITALY

Teaching in Italy was one of the best experiences of my life! I went in completely blind and came out with new knowledge and amazing, lifelong memories. I had the privilege to teach high school students in Sulmona and travel to other gorgeous cities of Italy.

One of the best perks of this teaching experience was going with a bunch of young teaching partners from Nipissing University. There were some people that I had never interacted with and others that had been my classmates, but since we were able to share this experience, we knew there would be a bond that we would always cherish.

I could go on and on about the late nights lesson planning with a team, the super chill work days with lots of napping time, and all the welcoming students/teachers/administrators we met but I want to keep this relatively short so I’ll mention one of the most challenging adjustments I had to make as an educator there.

In Ontario, we are used to make lessons plans to the minute; we want to deliver information and give students the time they need to understand it in the amount of time we have, so when I walked into the Sulmona classroom and noticed that there was no clock there, I was a bit puzzled. 

I came to realize my OCD with timing the more I taught because the whole work and study environment there was a lot more relaxed than what I was used to. When the bell would ring, students would chat freely while slowly packing up and then stroll off to their next class, which meant that the students coming INTO the class were already behind by a lot more time than I had accounted for in my lesson planning! 

This was a pretty difficult adjustment during the first couple of lessons but I quickly embraced the refreshing feeling of just relaxing and going with the flow! Apart from that amazing experience, traveling to Italy was a trip full of breathtaking moments. I was so lucky to have my parents join me on the trip after my teaching time was done. Here are a list of places I went and things I did, all while GELATO HOPPING!! 

ROME

  • Watched a US Open tennis match on May 15

  • Took a guided tour through the Colosseum

  • Visited the Roman Forum 

  • Made a wish at the Trevi Fountain

  • Went to the Spanish Steps

  • Got a beautiful view of the city from Campo Marzio

  • Went to the Pantheon

 

          

 


VATICAN CITY

  • Took a guided tour through the Vatican museums in the smallest country in the world! 

  • Enjoyed viewing some of the most gorgeous architecture at the St. Peters Square & Basilica

     

 

VENICE

  • A gondola ride is mandatory in Venice! I did this twice and was pretty disappointed by the customer service. I felt as though the tourists are taken advantage of because the gondoliers know that no matter what, people will want a ride. This meant they can treat a tourist however they want & that’s not always nicely. 

  • Went to all the picturesque places like St. Mark’s Square, Saint Mark’s Basilica, Doge’s Palace. Went up the St. Mark’s Campanile and saw some beautiful views of Venice. 

  • Saw a proposal happen on the famous Bridge of Sighs 

  • Walking through Venice was one of my favourite parts of this trip; navigating through small alleyways, listening to people yelling from boat to boat, and trying to sneak a peek into the variety of houses

  

 

FLORENCE

  • Bought a Mario Valentino, pure Italian leather, handbag!

  • Visited the Baptistery of St. John

                        

 


MILAN

  • went up the Milan cathedral

  • Hung around the beautiful gardens of the Sforzesco Castle

    

 

POMPEII

  • took a guided tour through Pompei and had chills throughout!! This place shouldn't be missed.

  


CAPRI

  • one of the most beautiful places I have ever been!

  • Used the Monte Solaro chairlift to go 2000 ft up & get a gorgeous panoramic view of the island

  • Had some Italian style cappuccino while feeling like I’m on top of the world!

  • Took a tour to the stunning Blue Grotto

  

 

NAPLES

  • Visited what is believed to be the first pizzeria in the WORLD! Antica Pizzeria Port'Alba

  

VERONA

  • Went to the Verona arena and main square

  • Wrote a letter to Juliet and went on her balcony!

 

    

CINQUE TERRE

  • Took a boat from Monterosso to Riomaggiore 

  • Enjoyed the day walking around, eating good food & taking in the breathtaking beauty of the village

  

 

PISA

  • Saw the Leaning Tower of Pisa during the night & day!

  • Had a photoshoot with & took a guided tour of the Tower

 

    

 

TREVISO

  • Visited this cute little city & had my first authentic Italian pizza from Pizzeria Restorante da Pino

  


SULMONA

  • Taught high school students in Istituto d'Istruzione Superiore Ovidio

  • Bought some adorable clothes from street vendors during a weekend fair

  • Attempted to eat mozzarella cheese balls + salad for 2 weeks straight & finally finished an entire meal of that!

  • Bought a lot of “confetti”, a Sulmona specialty of chocolates arranged in special ways 

    


 

SCANNO

  • Had the most thrilling mountain ride with a bold driver to get to Scanno from Sulmona

  • Climbed the mountain there for a spectacular view 

  • Hung out around Lago di Scanno

 

    


 

 

SORRENTO

  • Walked the streets of this beautiful city which had great views of the Amalfi coast

  


 

 

PESCARA

  • Spent a lovely day at the Pescara beach & found an American restaurant!!

  


My family and I rented a car when they came, here is a breakdown of our road trip: