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City of London

School for girls

Exploring Central Europe

At the beginning of half term, a group of Year 11s and Sixth Formers had the amazing opportunity to explore Central Europe. Three cities in three different countries was no mean feat, but our enthusiasm for history meant the brilliant experiences we had were many.

We arrived in Budapest and quickly got to exploring the wonderful city made of two halves (Buda and Pest). Our local guide told us lots about the darker history of Hungary, as we visited the House of Terror and the Holocaust memorial. One of the highlights of Budapest was when we visited a traditional Ottoman bathhouse, where with little warning we were told to remove our shoes and were led through knee-deep pools in the humid baths, much to the amusement of unsuspecting bathing locals. Our tour of Budapest concluded in a beautiful evening river cruise and a sad farewell to the wonderfully cheap prices we took advantage of in Hungary.

Next, we had a short stay in the Austrian city of Vienna, a chance for German students to get some speaking practice. We were led round palaces and vaults by our charismatic and funny local guide Matthias who seemed determined to tell us as many weird and wonderful facts as he could. We were also treated to a concert and dinner next to the stunning Schoenbrunn palace, before we saw Klimt paintings at the Belvedere the next morning. The next morning, we arrived in Czech Republic and travelled to Terezin, a former military fortress used as a military prison and model concentration camp. Back in Prague, we explored the Old City and the Jewish Quarter.The highlight of Prague was, for me, the ghost tour on our final evening. With low expectations, we were led round the inner city by tour guides, who told us stories of Prague’s gory and spooky past. This was surprisingly huge fun and the two hours flew by. 

Our trip to Central Europe was packed with history and culture, a lot was squeezed into those six days and it is definitely not a trip any of us will be forgetting anytime soon. Huge thanks to Mr Murray and Frau Humphreys for organising this brilliant trip, as well as Mrs Brice and Miss Wright for accompanying us! 

Alice, Year 13