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WHS Students Travel Abroad to Spain By hope jordan

On Friday, April 13, thirteen Walpole High School (WHS) students, along with WHS Spanish teachers Kate Bacon and Richard Sturges, began their trip to Madrid and Barcelona.

Students smile as they arrive in Toronto to catch a connecting flight to Germany. (Photo/ Kate Bacon)

Once arriving in Madrid, the group was immediately immersed into Spanish culture. Students explored two plazas—La Plaza Mayor and La Puerta de Sol. For dinner, students were served a common dish known as paella, consisting of rice, seafood and various vegetables. Below, the paella is featured.

"The biggest difference in Spain from life in the US was the food," WHS senior Justin Andre said.

Bacon and Sturges smile while exploring La Puerta de Sol. (Photo/ Hope Jordan)

The following day, students explored more of what Madrid had to offer. Tour guides provided historical and cultural information about Spain's past and what a typical life looks like from day to day in Madrid.

"The biggest difference in Spain from life in the US was the food," WHS senior Justin Andre said.

"I think we experienced and saw many cool things on the trip, but really my favorite part was the encounters and social interactions we all had in the trip," Sturges said. "It was great to meet, converse and spend time traveling with others, both Spaniards and Americans."

Students and chaperones pose for a photo after learning about ancient folktales in Spain. (Photo/ Kate Bacon)
"It was great to meet, converse and spend time traveling with others, both Spaniards and Americans," Sturges said.

During the week, students also visited the town of Toledo. Within Toledo, students participated in a guided bus and walking tour including places like Cristo de la Luz Mosque and the Toledo Cathedral.

Students explore the ancient architecture of Toledo.

After spending part of the week in Madrid, the group then headed to Barcelona via train.

"My favorite part of the trip was trying new foods and interacting with Spanish-speaking people," junior Mairead Morgan said.

Featured behind is one of Barcelona's more tropical plazas throughout the city. (Photo/ Hope Jordan)

The Cathedral of Barcelona, pictured here, was one of many ancient churches students saw during the week. (Photo/ Hope Jordan)

"I will remember the difference between vibes in Madrid versus Barcelona because they are both relatively close to each other, but Barcelona had much more of a Mediterranean or beach feel, where Madrid was mostly city and architecture," freshman Juliana Cerullo said.

After watching a flamenco dance, students head back to the hotel utilizing the metro system. (Photo/ Kate Bacon)

In the later half of the week, students explored Park Güell, an ancient town filled with gardens and artistic homes. Artist Antoni Gaudí began construction on the town in the early 1900's, and now the area is open to visitors year round.

Students grab a bite to eat while inside the park, while taking in the panoramic views. (Photo on left/ Kate Bacon, right/ Hope Jordan)
Students enjoy part of their last day in Spain on a rooftop overlooking Barcelona. (Photo/ Kate Bacon)
"Overall, I think the trip was a great success. The WHS students we traveled with were wonderful ambassadors of our school," Bacon said. "They never complained; they immersed themselves in the culture by communicating in Spanish with the teachers, locals and guides and were always very attentive."

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