Birthday Week=Formula 1 Week!

April 20,23,24- This has got to be one of the coolest birthdays I’ve ever had. I managed to get tickets for the Formula 1 race in Imola, only 1 hour away from Modena (how lucky!), which also falls to be my birthday! (double luck!). Of course I am in the land of some of the most luxurious car companies in the entire world, with brands such as Maserati, Lamborghini, Paghani, and of course, Ferrari.

I also happen to be living in the city where Enzo Ferrari, the creator of Ferrari, was born, and only 15 minutes away by bus to Maranello, the now headquarters of the car producer and to the Ferrari Formula 1 team, “la Scuderia Ferrari.” Therefore, I paid the visit a few days before the race to get in the mood. This town is Ferrari only the minute you step it. All shops, streets, and people are in red; you can see Ferrari themed cafes, luxurious car rental places, statues, and souvenir shops. Of course there is also the famous Ferrari museum, the circuit of Fiorano where the Formula 1 team trains, and the factory.

Once I got to Maranello, I went straight to the amazing museum where you can see Ferrari cars from the oldest to the newest, their construction process, history, and Formula 1 history. At the end, I bought a cap for the race, which I am very proud to own.

I had the amazing idea of taking a stroll around the city to see what it had to offer and somehow ended up in the circuit of Fiorano. For my surprise, while I was standing outside the gate, Charles Leclerc, Ferrari’s driver in Formula 1 came out in his car and waved at me! This might have been one of the coolest moments of the entire trip to Italy.

On Saturday the 23rd (my birthday), along with a group of other Erasmus Formula 1 enthusiasts, I went early morning to Imola where the race would be held. This practice day went amazing, although it was exhausting from walking almost the entire track. At the end of the day, my group of friends welcomed me back to Modena with a birthday surprise party! (thank you guys).

Race day on April 24 was quite stressful and exhausting. This time it was raining the entire time and we did not have sits for this event, but even though we were a little miserable, we still had a very good time. At the end we got to go in the track to see the awards ceremony, see the cars, drivers, and team very close up, and take pictures on track. I cherish this experience very much.

Lago di Como

April 16- During Easter brake, my Chilean friend and I decided to travel to Lago di Como, located in the northernmost region of Lombardy, right at the border with Switzerland . Set against the foot hill of the alps, this amazing lake has breathtaking views surrounded by small villages by the lake.

The trip took around 3 and a half hours, having to change trains in Milan. I once again, took the chance to take more pictures.

We first got to Varenna, the quickest way for us to get to Lake Como by train. This town is very small, but visited by thousands for its beautiful laid back culture, houses, music, food, and of course the spectacular view of the lake.

We then took a short ferry to Bellagio, a very elegant town with beautiful architecture and colorful gardens


On April 3, my friend Nicole (who goes to UMass Lowell and coincidentally studying in Barcelona) came to visit, and we made a fun day trip to Venice!

The trip took 3 hours from Modena, but once we got there we walked around almost the entire city (or islands?), ate delicious pastries and pasta for lunch, and I had the opportunity to take my camera out once again to capture some really cool shots of this amazing place. We end took a gondola! (which I must say is very overpriced, but I got very cool pictures so I don’t regret it at all)

Be advised, if you ever go to Venice, go during shoulder season because I can’t imagine this place during summer, take very comfortable shoes, water, A CHARGER (yes, I forgot my charger), and cash.


March 27- I have been living in Italy now for almost 2 months, 30 minutes away by train from Bologna the biggest city in Emilia-Romagna), but yet I have not visited the city. This deserved a tour around the city.

Along with my French friend Holly, we took a stroll around the famous “portici” of Bologna, the cover sidewalks that are just beautiful and fun to be in. We then got some arancini and gelati which felt great since the weather has finally started to get better! Here are some of the pictures:

Skiing in Folgaria!

On March 17, the Erasmus Student Organization took a group of us for an exciting 4 days skiing trip in Folgaria, in the northern Italian region Trentino-Alto Adige/Südtirol.

Safe to say this was my first ever skiing experience, but fortunately we had instructors who took us to speed from day one to learn the basics, and then quit using the baby slopes for a very scary, but enriching, adrenaline driven experience in the very big slopes.

At the end of each day, we would go for some well deserved après-ski with friends and international students from all around the world who are studying in different cities across Italy. Here are some of the best photos I could get when I was not struggling to survive:

Florence, Tuscany

On March 12, a group of my new Erasmus friends and I, visited Florence for the weekend. We got to stroll around visiting the famous Florence Cathedral, Palazzo Vecchio, Boboli Garden, Ponte Vecchio, and finish off at Piazzale Michelangelo, where we headed from to get a delicious pizza.