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### Embarking on a Cultural Adventure: LSE Study Abroad Crew Explores Amsterdam and Paris

The LSE General Course sends out weekly emails promoting various weekend getaways featured on the SomewhereNew platform. These trips are made available to LSE General Course students at discounted rates, offering a fantastic opportunity to explore London, socialize with other international students, and partake in exciting activities. Personally, I thoroughly enjoyed bonding with fellow LSE General Course students during the international weekend excursions, particularly the enriching trips to Amsterdam and Paris.

Exploring the Van Gogh Museum in Amsterdam

A definite highlight of our Amsterdam trip was the visit to the renowned Van Gogh Museum. As an avid museum enthusiast, I found this experience truly exceptional, given that it houses the largest collection of Van Gogh’s artworks globally, including masterpieces like “Sunflowers,” “The Bedroom,” and numerous self-portraits. The museum also features insightful exhibitions that delve into various facets of Van Gogh’s artistry and its profound impact on his life. During my museum visit, I immersed myself in Van Gogh’s artistic repertoire, uncovering the narratives behind his iconic creations. An intriguing tidbit is that the museum had to withdraw a limited edition Pokémon card for security reasons. Moreover, the scarcity of this edition restricted visitors to purchasing only one Pokémon-themed item from the gift shop.

Captivating Evening Canal Cruise in Amsterdam

No trip to Amsterdam is complete without a leisurely cruise along its picturesque canals. The evening canal cruise not only offers a charming introduction to the city but also provides a unique vantage point for sightseeing. However, I advise against embarking on a rainy night when the windows tend to fog up easily. As part of the SomewhereNew package, our group of LSE General Course students embarked on several tours, where we learned intriguing facts such as the staggering number of bicycles—ranging from 12,000 to 15,000—that find their way into the Amsterdam canals annually. The canal cruise was a delightful experience, allowing us to savor delectable cheeses while immersing ourselves in the history, architecture, and cultural anecdotes of Amsterdam.

Tranquil Seine River Cruise in Paris

Similarly, our itinerary included a serene river cruise in Paris, offering a panoramic view of the city’s iconic landmarks, from the majestic Eiffel Tower to the artistic haven of Musée d’Orsay. A knowledgeable guide accompanied us, providing insightful commentary on the architectural marvels and historic bridges dotting the Seine River. Despite encountering rainy weather throughout the weekend, our group savored delectable pastries and made the most of our explorations. While the trip was organized in collaboration with SomewhereNew, ample free time was allocated for independent city exploration. The riverboat cruise left a lasting impression, providing a unique perspective on the enchanting beauty of Paris.

Immersing in Art at the Louvre Museum in Paris

A visit to the Louvre Museum was an absolute must. Besides the iconic Eiffel Tower, the museum is synonymous with the enigmatic Mona Lisa—a quintessential Parisian masterpiece. During our visit with fellow LSE General Course students, we took advantage of the complimentary public entry at 6 pm, albeit after a 1.5-hour wait in line. This allowed us to engage with a diverse array of individuals and appreciate the rich history of the Louvre, originally constructed as a fortress in the 12th century before transforming into a royal palace and eventually a museum during the French Revolution. As one of the world’s most frequented museums, the Louvre provided a profound cultural immersion, showcasing diverse art movements and historical narratives from across the globe.

In summary, these weekend getaways organized by the LSE General Course offer a perfect blend of cultural enrichment, social engagement, and memorable experiences, making them an ideal way to make the most of your study abroad journey.