Around the world in only two months

Yabi Bereket, Internationals Editor

To summarize senior Zain Ghul’s trip around Europe and the Middle East during this summer, it mainly consisted of: living in Airbnb’s, riding on trains and visiting family.
Ghul originally planned to backpack around Europe with alumni sister, Serene Ghul, before heading off to a fellowship in Italy. They made a last minute decision to make this a trip with the whole family after their original plans fell through.
“My sister wanted us to travel across Europe all the way to Italy, where I would drop her off and fly home,” Ghul said.
“She ended up not going, but we already bought the tickets; so, we went on the trip- and went with our parents,” Ghul said.
This was her first time getting to visit all of these European countries and getting to see er homeland Jordan.
This family vacation consisted of visiting nine countries in the Middle East and all across Europe in the span of a month and a half.
Her trip started on June 14, and first brought her to Jordan, which is located in the Middle East. The flight lasted for about ten hours, and stopped in London for layover. It then continued from there for another four hours.
“I spent two and a half weeks in Jordan and I stayed with my grandparents at their house” Ghul said.
From there, Ghul left with her family to Paris on June 29 to begin her trip of backpacking across Europe. That flight from Jordan to Paris only lasted roughly four hours, giving them an advantage to start their trip a bit early.
While in France, Ghul stayed in a hotel in Paris, rather than a hostel or an Airbnb, which is what most of her trip consisted of.
“This trip was a fun opportunity for me and my family to bond over the low quality hotels we stayed at, especially the one in Paris,” Ghul said.
Despite having stayed in an inadequate hotel, Ghul had an amazing experience. She visited many of the well-known sights, such as the Eiffel Tower in Paris, and also got to see the Arc de Triomphe, the Louvre, and the Notre Dame Cathedral. All of these places are well known landmarks in France, and a common tourist attraction.
After staying in Paris for two days, she and her family took a train to continue their trip into Belgium, which is north of France.
Once in Belgium, she got to visit Grand Place in Brussels, which is the central square, and also visited the Manneken Pis.
Onwards, she then left Belgium, and headed out to the Netherlands by train. The Netherlands is located north of Belgium.
From the Netherlands, she headed to Germany, which was least of her favorite places to visit while on the trip.
“My least favorite place to visit was Berlin. I did not like it mainly because it looked a lot like D.C. Architecturally, there was nothing special about it,” Ghul said.
Though the setup of Berlin may not have reached her expectations, the history tracked behind Germany definitely did catch her attention.
“However, it was very cool to walk through the Berlin wall, which once separated east and west Germany in the 60’s,” Ghul said.
While in Germany, she also got to go into a university which included an observatory, which was something she was looking forward to.
Continuing on her journey, Zain Ghul also got to go to the Czech Republic, which was her favorite place to visit out of all the countries she went to during the trip.
“Prague was my favorite place to get to see during the trip. It was so beautiful and everything was cheap there” said Ghul.
“The architecture was stunning, and when walking across the Charles Bridge, you are able to see most of the city,” said Ghul.
Her trip then took her to Austria, Hungary, then lastly to Italy, were she spent five days with her family.
Since Italy was the most amount of days, she was able to see more sights than any other place, these tourist hot spots included the Colosseum, St. Mark’s Basilica, the Rialto Bridge, and much more.
“I had a lot of fun with my family which I will never forget. This trip brought me and my family much closer together which was great” Ghul said.
Ghul hopes to be able to go back again next summer, so she can experience the sights once more.