A Captain aboard: traveling while traveling

Just as our Captain Abroad gets comfortable, she needs to spread her wings

The words grazie and ciao have already become a major part of my vocabulary. Only four weeks in and I am already adapting to life and Florence and loving every second of it. Which means, of course for the Captain Abroad that I am, that it is time to travel again. 

Travel is something almost every study abroad student plans on doing, and it can be difficult to narrow it down. About a week ago I walked into a student travel agency to book a trip, and I left having booked three. Although the stress of booking and planning three trips is extreme, as a student studying abroad I know it is well worth it. 

This past weekend I went on my first trip to the Amalfi Coast of Italy.

Sinking my feet into the black sand beaches of Positano, I fulfilled every Pinterest-ers dreams. Images of Positano Beach litter Pinterest boards, and for good reason. Stepping off of the bus into the view, I was amazed. That said, I was more amazed I was able to walk up the flight of 700 steps that was needed to get back up from the beach to the cliff where the bus would pick us up. 

The beach was more than just its views. At Positano, my friends and I rented kayaks, went cliff jumping, and enjoyed fresh paninis.

The next day was trip number two. Destination: the island of Capri. The white buildings and clear and bright blue water provided an unreal contrast, an impeccable view. Looking out at the view, my friends and I enjoyed the local island drink, a granita. Made with fresh orange and lemon juice, the slushy drink is as beautiful and refreshing as the views. 

The island of Capri is a popular destination for the famous. TARYN HANNAM-ZATZ/ THE CAPTAIN’S LOG

Given the beauty of the island it is no wonder the famous, and infamous, flock their to build vacation homes. Taking a private boat tour around the island we saw the homes of Michael Jackson, Beyonce, and Mussolini, their homes nestled among the natural architecture of the island. Massive rocks rose out of the water creating beautiful caves and grottos. Anchoring in the Mediterranean, we swam in the sparkling water that surrounds the island.

We ended our long day on the water with calzones and then headed back to our cliffside hotel in Sorrento to attend a local beach party, complete with a fireworks display. We ate, danced, immersed ourselves in the local culture.

Taryn stands among the ancient ruins of Pompeii. COURTESY OF TARYN HANNAM-ZATZ/ THE CAPTAIN’S LOG

Our final day, our final trip: Leaving our hotel in Sorrento we left for the direction of Pompeii. With a traditional Italian lunch of pizza, salad, and pastries to fuel us, we entered into the ancient city of ruins. The once thriving hilltop civilization was collected into memories of a past time. Seeing the preserved bodies of victims, the uncovered rocks that provided the foundation for the city that was destroyed over 2,000 years ago, was incredible.

Sadly, the trip had to come to an end. Less sadly, the end of this trip meant returning to Florence. That said, the itch to travel will not leave me. Italy has so much to offer and I have only seen a fraction of it. I cannot wait to explore the rest of the country and onward into Europe. 


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