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EF Stories: Hellen from Belgium at EF Vancouver

Ever since I was young, I have been fascinated by the world! I love nature and am eager to discover all kinds of new places! Traveling is a must for me and I enjoy every second of it! (Except the jetlags, haha) But when I'm back home in Belgium, I like to be on horseback or with my friends in a bar.
EF Stories: Hellen from Belgium at EF Vancouver

Hi! My name is Hellen and I am 17 years old. This summer I went to beautiful Vancouver for a month with EF! This was best the experience of my life: I made friends for life from all over the world and of course I learned a lot too! 😉

Vancouver, located in beautiful British Columbia is a very diverse city. You are never far from any of the famous parks or mountains while also actually being in a city that is very modern. That is exactly why I chose this great location!

The start of my adventure in Vancouver

After waiting impatiently for almost a year for the trip of a lifetime, I suddenly found myself in the car on my way to Schiphol Airport. I was well prepared, but still I was stressing enormously about the unknown. Through the My EF app, I already knew some people who were on the same flight, but what if things went wrong there? In the end, it was all unnecessary stress! Because soon the initial nerves were gone and I was already on the long flight to Vancouver with a small group of friends. I was officially on my way to an adventure I would never forget!

Once I arrived in Vancouver, things soon ran smoothly. I made friends right away on the first day of school and many friendships would follow during the rest of my stay! I was immediately taken through the city because my friends wanted to show me everything! So we went from the cozy Gastown to 'the commercial district' with all the impressive skyscrapers! After all this, my day ended at English bay, where the EF students party every Thursday and Friday! I let the initial busyness pass over me a bit (largely due to jet lag), because all I wanted to do was enjoy myself.

EF activities in Vancouver

I immediately booked a 4-day trip to the world famous Rocky Mountains the first weekend. I knew I could recharge here after my tough journey and busy first week and man was I right! After some sleep on the bus I woke up and immediately my eyes were wide open! The mountains and nature are SO much more impressive than I had ever dreamed. The only word that came out of my mouth was "WOW!".

And that was just the beginning ... We went from an area that was way too hot -where there were forest fires- to the colder part, where we found the glaciers and the beautiful blue lakes. There we got the chance to do a polar bear swim! If you get the chance really don't let the cold stop you, just jump in! You'll really feel reborn, haha! But I recommend you also take a moment to appreciate the beauty and #NoFilter content of this enchanting place!

The two weekends that followed, I went to Whistler and Tofino. Again, these two excursions were quite an experience on their own. A very long, unsupported gondola between the mountains in Whistler and the surf town of Tofino on Vancouver Island where big chains like McDonalds are not welcome! These places I really highly recommend as it will make you have another rich experience.

A day of class during an EF language trip

During the week, I enjoyed each of my classes, where I learned a lot each time. The classes were not filled with boring grammar but we discussed interesting topics with funny, helpful teachers. After that, my schedule varied from just wandering around the city and enjoying the beach to a fully booked day where I visited Science World or went biking around Stanley Park. There is such a wide range of activities, so there is something for everyone that they will enjoy doing.

Finally, I just want to let you know that I am so extremely happy that I chose to leave on this adventure! It takes some courage to leave your parents and friends behind and to decide to throw yourself into the unknown, but I recommend it to everyone. I learned so much: not only in terms of language, but I also learned, among other things, to take care of myself, make my own plan and solve any problems by myself without the help of mom and dad. This adventure definitely made me more mature and responsible. On top of that, of course, my English also improved tremendously and I went up to language level C2!

I already miss all my friends and I would love to go back to this amazing place so I can relive all the wonderful memories again!

Do you want to discover more about my wonderful journey? Or do you have a question about EF? Then don't hesitate to send me a message on Instagram: @hellenbruyndonckx or on my EF: http://my.ef.com/Hellen24

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