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Backpacking Trip around Europe

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1: Michigan Airport | And we're off...

3: England Scotland Ireland France Italy

5: Hyde Park

6: We were lucky enough to have a perfect place to stay in London. This is at our friend's flat. They live like 5 minutes from Buckingham Palace. They were nice enough to let us stay there even though they were in Belgium at the time.

7: Wicked was amazing. We were bummed when they came to Salt Lake and we weren't able to go because we were saving up for our trip. We were stoked when we walked by the Wicked theater and saw that it was playing. We got good seats for a pretty good price. We loved it and loved the English accents that all the actors had :)

8: Ceremonies before the changing of the guards

10: Buckingham Palace

11: Changing of the Guards Ceremony

12: St. Paul's Cathedral

13: Bus Tour around London! | London Eye

14: The London Bridge

15: The London Jail

16: "Public Speaking Corner" Hyde Park

17: This guy was our favorite! | This is the area people go if they want to be heard. There is only one stipulation, you must be 6 inches above the ground. That way you are not on English ground and you can say anything you want. Some topics were: religion, why there is starvation in Africa, the war in Afghanistan and Iraq, pure random chatter, and one guy was there to tell people to think for themselves and to not listen to what anyone else was saying, including himself. :) It was very interesting & entertaining!

18: Kensington Palace | Opera House

19: The Parliament Building | Big Ben

20: Edinburgh, Scotland

23: So this is Edinburgh, Scotland!!! The most beautiful place we've ever seen in our whole lives!!! We decided to take the bus from London to Edinburgh which was great because not only was it a lot cheaper than flying but the scenery throughout the trip was amazing! Pictures don't hardly show it but it truly is amazing! The Gothic chapels were beautiful!

24: Edinburgh Castle

26: St. Giles Church & Central Square

27: The museum of Scotland is one of the largest museums in the world! It's 7 stories! We're not big on museums but this one was pretty cool!

28: So...Scotland is supposed to be the "spookiest" country in the world! So they have haunted houses and haunted graveyards open all year round!

29: Things we don't see everyday :)

30: So this was our very first experience with couch surfing! All we did is make a profile on couchsurfing.com then looked at people who might lend us their couch and we found Gemmi. So we wrote him and asked if we could stay with him. He said he would love to have us stay...so we showed up at his door a couple weeks later! He was so nice and gave us a key and said I have to go to work but go in and out as you please. So in this picture: obviously on the left is Matt then Marie, Gemmi, and Aurelia. Marie and Aurelia were also couch surfing and they are from Germany! Two fun and very sweet girls. This was their senior trip actually! :) I wish I could have gone to Scotland on my senior trip! There are really a lot of benefits to couch surfing. You get to meet locals and learn all about everything. We learned what TV shows were hip, what the culture is like, what's sports are most popular....etc. Gemmi also told us all about the government situation between England and how they have a small partial govt that is controlling part of Scotland. Also in this case we were able to meet fellow travelers. They made us some German cuisine and we had a picnic in the living room and hung out and watched Scotland's most famous soap opera :) It was really fun getting to know them all! They were awesome!!! We loved it!

31: We went hiking up to "Arthur's Seat" to overlook the city! The view was totally worth it! | on top of | the world | seeing the city from above

32: Dublin

33: Ireland

34: THE DOORS OF IRELAND | These are the ladies we stayed with in Ireland.! Natalie is on the left and Leah is on the right. David is Leah's husband and he was cool too but he was at work when we took this picture! :( They were spunky and really fun to hang out with.! They were very helpful with making sure we saw the best of Ireland. We had a really good time and they were so nice. They made us dinner and everything! We barely got any sleep though cause we stayed up talkin the nights away.! Good times! | This is their place. All the doors in Ireland are different colors! They are really proud of it. Their are post cards everywhere that say "the Doors of Ireland" and then show all different color doors. Their door was red.

35: Randomness of Ireland | Most random things we saw on our trip | Check that hair, random!!! Ha ha It usually just falls into place perfectly! :) P.S. Can you tell I'm half asleep? :)

37: This is just a small city that we stopped in on our tour through Ireland

38: One of the coolest things we did was tour the Jail. The history of Ireland's fight for Independence is very intriguing. I won't tell you the whole story but I'll just tell you this... they have only been a free and independent country since 1922. | A symbol of the last man executed for fighting for independence in 1916! | The newer section of the jail. | The older section of the jail.

39: Saint Patrick's Cathedral

40: Bar hopping! My favorite part of Ireland was the music! I bought a bunch of CD's but it's just not the same! I love Irish music, so it was a sweet experience to listening to traditional Irish music in Ireland!

42: Glendalough

43: An ancient Monastery

46: Paris was amazing! We had heard a lot of things about it that made us really nervous like -people are very rude and nobody will even attempt speaking English to you until you try to speak French. So we ended up buying a French language book and I studied it hard core on the plane! And the girl I was sitting next to was headed home to Paris...so she spent the whole flight giving us phrases that we could use for different situations. | Paris | France

47: She was a very nice girl. She told us not to worry because the French are really nice people and they would help us out. She was right. The French were so nice. We would try and say something in French but they would be quick to speak English to us and answer our questions. We loved Paris and consider it one of our favorite places in the world!!! - Shauna Maylin

48: Arc de Triumph | & the tomb of the Unknown Soldier

49: La basilique du Sacre-Coeur de Montmartre

50: Notre Dame

52: Traveling | byFOOT | Paris has a great metro system but we wanted to see everything; so we walked every inch of Paris to make sure that we didn't miss a thing! The other days we were too sore to walk so we took the metro. :)

54: The Louvre

56: The Eiffel Tower

57: All the movies and pictures in the world do not do this thing justice. It is absolutely amazing! We could've stayed there all day and all night. We actually did go there every night and just sat there in amazement! I loved it when the lights turned on! It was my favorite!!!

58: Chateau de Vincennes

59: Place de la Concorde

60: This was a hilarious show! The guy doing the show used people from the audience and only used sound effects to tell the story, so everyone could understand. He was very hands on and bold, if you couldn't tell from the picture! :)

61: Buildings of Paris

62: Road Trip!!! | 1st rental car, before it got a flat tire | 2nd car! Thank heavens it was a little bigger. This thing was also our accommodations for 3 nights.

63: From Venice | to Cinque Terre | to Florence | to Sienna | to Rome

64: Venice, Italy | Venice was absolutely amazing! We loved every bit of it. We only got to stay there for a day but we would definitely go back. It is one place that we would love to live. It was nice not to have any cars. It was a totally different place. It was easily one of our favorite places.

66: Our Gondola trip was unreal. It was almost surreal, it was so movie like! We tried to so hard to get a picture of us with the whole boat, but it was a little hard to explain to the Italians, so these are the best we got!! This is definitely one thing that every one should do!!!

69: San Marcos Square

70: Cinque Terre

71: Cinque Terre was one of the coolest places that we went to! It kind of happened on accident. Shauna saw it on her e-mail one day and thought it looked amazing. So after leaving Venice we found it on the map and decided that it was a must see. We absolutely loved it there. It was basically a city on the side of the mountain right next to the ocean! It had 5 beaches on it each with it's own city, hence the cinque. We spent our time on the beach and ate at a local pizza place. A vacation isn't a real vacation until you've hit the beach!



75: We started off on the wrong foot in Florence. We had made arrangements to sleep in an ancient convent, which is basically an old monastery. We arrived in Florence at about 10:30pm and continued to drive around until 1 am looking for the place. We ended up figuring that the only way there was to drive up a one way street! Luckily it wasn't out of the ordinary. We finally arrived. We went to leave the next morning We had a flat tire! So we spent the next couple hours dealing with that! After that all panned out we had a blast. :)

76: One of the funnest things in Florence had to be dancing with the Italians. In the convent we were staying in they hosted a dance night every week. We happen to be there the night they were holding it. We spent the night learning Italian line dances and other dances. All the guys loved dancing with Shauna, as soon as a song came on that involved a partner an Italian would jump up and ask Shauna to dance.! I wasn't jealous, Italian stallions ain't got nothin on me JK -Matt

78: We only spent an afternoon in Sienna but it was an amazing little city. Walking through the narrow streets lined with buildings was a dreamy feeling.! The cobble stone walk ways didn't help any. ! It was all such a great experience. | Sienna


81: R O M E

83: St. Peter's Basilica Vatican City

84: The Vatican Museum

85: Michelangelo's Paintings: The Last Judgment & The Sistine Chapel Ceiling

86: The Pantheon | Built in about 126 AD

87: Colosseum | Completed in the year 80AD

89: The Roman Empire | What the Roman Empire once was | What's left of the Roman Empire: ROME

91: Our nights in the piazza's | We found a lady originally from Russia that was a"jaw dropping" good artist. We just had to have our portrait done by her. It was 1am when she got done. It was well worth the wait. You can see our unfinished portrait in these pictures. Sadly on our way home we lost it! We realized while sitting in the Paris airport that we didn't have it any more. I ran all over the Paris airport looking for it, almost missing the flight back to Salt Lake. That was the saddest part of the trip. Guess we'll have to go back :) | Magicians, Puppeteers, Artists, Musicians & Dancers



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  • By: Shauna M.
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  • Title: Backpacking Trip around Europe
  • England, Scotland, Ireland, France, Italy
  • Tags: www.mattandshauna.blogspot.com
  • Published: over 6 years ago

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