Part 2: It’s Only Up From Here

Welcome back! I can finally say that I have settled into Edinburgh, and have had an amazing first two weeks. On one hand, I feel like I have been here much longer considering all the things I was able to pack in so far, but at the same time, these fourteen days have been such a blur.

Without a doubt, Edinburgh is definitely as breathtaking as they say. As much as I wanted to instantly resemble a full-time student, my inner tourist couldn’t resist snapping pictures and panoramas of every monument, and cobble stone street I could. I was inundated with such stunning views, and gothic buildings that I couldn’t help but try to capture them all. Now, it is finally sinking in that there is no rush, and I will have plenty of time to explore the city this year.

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A view of Edinburgh Castle from the historic Grassmarket.

Everything is so charming, and stunning here that you have to blink twice to really process what you’re seeing. I don’t think walking below Edinburgh castle, or staring at the panoramic views from Calton Hill will ever get old. All the pictures I have seen of the city are now in front of my eyes, which can still be hard to fully comprehend. I still walk along the streets reminding myself that I am actually here.

While it was challenging the first day to arrive at my flat, and immediately take to Princes Street to find bedding and towels for the night, I am starting to accumulate more than just a suitcase full of my belongings, and everything is really starting to feel like home. I am also so pleased to have such lovely flat mates, and I have already met so many amazing people.

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Me and my two flatmates climbing Arthur’s Seat.
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View from the top of the Scott Monument overlooking the castle and the Old Town.
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Visiting Holyrood Palace – the Queen’s royal residence when in Edinburgh.

My highlights from the first week were climbing the Scott Monument, climbing Arthur’s Seat, touring Holyrood Palace, going on a ghost tour into the vaults below South Bridge, and taking a day trip to Loch Lomond and Oban, and another to Stonehaven and Aberdeen.

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Day Trip to Oban
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Day trip to Stonehaven. Dunnottar castle is a must see.

Besides those highlights, I am seeing new and exciting parts of the city every day. There are so many restaurants, cafés, and pubs to try here, and there is always something going on at the university.

Classes have started this week, so the reality of school work is starting to hit, but my courses seem very interesting, and I’ll be sure to update you soon on the academic structure of the UK, and any differences from the US system. This semester, I am taking an international business course, an investment course, and an English course called Edinburgh in Fiction.

Before too much work piles up, I will be exploring Inverness and the Scottish highlands this weekend. I am trying to see as much as I can of Scotland before it gets too cold, and so far, the weather has been surprisingly so nice and sunny here.

All in all, moving abroad for the first time was a bit daunting, but has been so rewarding and so amazing. I still can’t believe I actually did it, and have already fallen in love with this city and my new home. I am so excited to see where this first semester takes me. Thanks for following along so far!

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