One of the best things you can do while abroad is experience the local culture of the city and country you’re living in. Each country has its own unique culture and it’s not just fun, but also important to experience and see how people from other countries live their day-to-day life. There are numerous ways to experience another country’s culture in a respectful manner. Here are a few:
1. Try to connect with a host family.
Whether it’s through your school or an outside program, one of the best things you can do is connect with a local family. Not only will the family show you the best and warmest parts of their culture, but they’re probably excited to learn about your culture as well. This exchange is a wonderful experience.
2. Meet the locals.
Odds are you’ll have local students in some of your courses, so it might benefit you to befriend them. They can give you an insider’s view of how your host university’s classes work and show you the best local spots to hang out. Invite your local friends to hang out with the international friends you’ve made and they can help you explore.
3. Go to local events.
Whether it’s a sporting event, a play, a festival or something else, local events are the best way to interact with non-study-abroad students and get a feel for what locals do for fun. Getting out to local events shows you’re interested in expanding your horizons and shows your support for your host city. One of the best things I did while abroad was attend a hockey game. It gave me insight into Finnish culture, especially because winter sports are so popular and important in Finland.
These are just a few ways you can experience local culture. There are many more things you can do to experience your host country in new ways. Study abroad is a unique opportunity and it’s important that you see as much as you can while you’re abroad and experience culture for everything it’s worth. This gives you stories to tell when you return from your study abroad experience and also helps you feel more at home while abroad.
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