3 September 2021

Austria has opened my eyes

Lydia Cope spent her Third Year Abroad in Austria as part of her BAMLC (German, Dutch) degree. She reports on how she embraced the linguistic and cultural richness to the full.

German students on Year Abroad with Austrian cityscape in background
Lydia Cope (left) here with Maddie Cove in Austria

"Grüß Gott! Moving to Austria was a truly wonderful experience: the mountains, the lakes and the incredible architecture are only the beginning.

I loved the European feeling of living in such a place, hearing German and having the freedom to explore the beautiful country. From Schnitzels and Sachertorte to St. Stephens Cathedral and Schönbrunn Palace, there is so much culture and history in Austria. It is also a great location for travelling in Europe, I was able to take the train to Germany, Czech Republic, and Italy.

I wanted to be immersed in not only the language but also the culture and lifestyle. Without this, I would not have gained this newfound confidence.

Lydia Cope

BA Modern Languages (German, Dutch)

Next level

The year abroad has been so important. I found that I had reached a point in my language learning where I needed to live in the country of my target language to reach the next level. I wanted to be immersed in not only the language but also the culture and lifestyle. Without this, I would not have gained this newfound confidence.

I loved meeting people from all over Europe and learning about their cultures and traditions. I also discovered that Austrians are very friendly, funny people. They made me feel at home and happily spoke German with me. My favourite experience was going to Vienna. The city is so decadent, clean, and lively. I felt so in awe. I was lucky to have met my flatmate who is from Vienna, and she happily acted as my tour guide, introducing me to Sachertorte and showing me the best ice cream in Vienna!

Whilst at first the various Austrian accents were a little confusing, I have grown to love them. I also love the Austrian dedication to desserts and cakes, even as the main course; this is something I will miss! Austria has really opened my eyes to the possibilities out there in Europe. I can’t wait to go back."

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