Students and staff recently returned from the Tour of Greece and Italy, which took place at the end of Term 3 until early Term 4. Senior students Charlie Vandenburg and Tegan Tawton compiled the following report on their time away:
On 18 September, 30 students, four amazing teachers, and Spot the dog embarked on an adventure to Greece and Italy.
The first stop of the tour was in Athens, Greece, a beautiful city full of ancient ruins. In Athens, we spent three days visiting sites such as the Acropolis, Parthenon, and the Ancient Agora. All the sites were absolutely incredible. Throughout Athens, we were able to explore the local beauties of their churches, markets, and restaurants in small groups, testing our ability to navigate a foreign country. On our fifth day, we travelled by bus to the gorgeous city of Delphi. As a group, we explored the Temple of Apollo and had a guided tour of an archaeological museum close by. Delphi was a highlight for a large number of us as we were able to return to our hotel, dress up, and then head out into the town in small groups for dinner. We finished off our time in Delphi with breakfast as a group, surrounded by the stunning mountain range our hotel overlooked.
Next on the agenda was Olympia, the home of the first-ever Olympics. We embarked on a guided tour of Ancient Olympia and participated in an intense Olympic-style race which ended with Mr Larkin claiming the victory. Our seventh day involved a journey back to Athens through the site of Mycenae and Epidaurus, renowned for the amphitheatre famous for its amazing acoustics, something that our guide helped us experience, leaving us in awe. The numerous bus rides we experienced throughout our trip, travelling from city to city, led us to get creative in order to pass the time. It was then that Mr Larkin revealed his incredible speaking ability and began to bless us each day with our daily horoscopes. We would like to give a special thanks to Vogue India for providing our daily horoscopes, and to Mr Larkin for his excellent execution. It was from these horoscopes that our group decided to adopt the team name “Soul Crew”.
Following an incredible seven days in Greece, we headed through airport security once again and flew over to Naples, Italy. We travelled down to the beautiful city of Sorrento, home to some of the best lemons in Italy. We were able to experience the wonders of the ancient ruins of Pompeii, a city frozen in time following a massive volcanic eruption. Following Pompeii, we were able to cool off with a traditional Italian gelato lesson.
After two days in Sorrento, it was time to move on to the capital city of Italy, Rome. We were able to experience the Trevi Fountain, Colosseum, the Vatican, Spanish Steps, and the Pantheon. We spent three days in Rome on guided tours, had free time, and faced the difficult decision of choosing what we wanted to eat for lunch and dinner. Making choices about dinner and lunch, alongside what gelato flavour to get, was the hardest decision any of us had to make on the tour. Our final two days before our homestay were spent in Florence. These were also the last days we had to spend with our amazing tour guide, Mama, who spent the entire first two weeks guiding us. Mama offered us her amazing knowledge of travel and endless energy.
Next was the homestay. We spent a whole week living in Padova, learning the heart of Italian culture and experiencing lasting family traditions. We attended their classes and showcased our own Australian sporting ability through a loud and intense match of basketball and volleyball. Although we have no trophy to show for it, we did return feeling as though we embraced our school motto and values of Faith and Courage. Our final day as a Soul Crew was spent with one final bus ride before exploring Milan.
We would like to thank the teachers who helped support us during the trip and made it all possible. The Soul Crew would be nothing without the four Soul Crew leaders – Ms Williams, Ms Tsaknis, Mrs White, and Mr Larkin – who gave up three weeks to deal with 30 students who never managed to stick to one side of the path. We all know that we will keep the memories of this tour forever!
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