By Kate Arnold
In early March next year I’ll be embarking on my first extended trip. I still don’t have all he details worked out yet but the main plan is to go to Peru where I will be teaching English for three months and then hopping over the States to revisit New York and LA. I’ll be gone from the beginning of March until mid August.
The Plan So Far
I’ll arrive in Lima (after a 30 hour journey!) and stay in a hostel for two days, which I’ll probably spend getting over jet lag but hopefully I can spend a bit of time exploring Lima as well. Then I’ll fly to Zorritos where I’ll meet the Teach Peru team that I’m staying with. The next four weeks I’ll undertake an intensive course of Teaching English as a Foreign Language (TEFL). Zorritos is a costal town in the Tumbes region, sometimes called the Land of Eternal Summer, with beaches and hot springs. During the course I will turn 25 and hope that I can celebrate on a beach with some new friends.
The TEFL course will finish around the second week of April but because schools don’t take on new teachers until the beginning of every month I need to wait until the start of May to begin teaching. I’ve decided to use these two weeks in April to go to Cusco and take a trip to Machu Picchu.
May, June, July
Teaching! I’m not sure where in Peru I’ll be teaching yet, I’ll find out where teachers are needed when I get there. I’ll be teaching for around 30 hours per week, which won’t leave me with a lot of time to explore during the week but I’m planning on spending the weekends getting in as much experiences as I can. I can’t plan much of this because I don’t know where I’ll be located but I’m happy to go with the flow for this part of the trip. I want to experience living in Peru like a local.
When I’m finished teaching I’m going to get on a flight to New York where I’ll spend about a week. I’ve previously spent 10 days in New York City and I got to do almost everything on my list. This time I really want to see Hamilton, Frozen and Mean Girls on Broadway (and a few others if I can afford it). Check out my article about how I saved money on Broadway tickets last time I went to New York. This time I’d like to go to the Empire State Building and walk across the Brooklyn Bridge, which I ran out of time to do last year and I’m dying to go back to my favourite bookstore in the world, The Strand. From New York I’m going back to Los Angeles, where I’m hoping to go back to Universal Studios for a day or two. I love rollercoasters and I’m dying to go back to the Wizarding World of Harry Potter. If you’re going to Universal Studios make sure to read Laura’s article about using the Single Rider Line and how it will save you tonnes of time, without paying for express passes. It would be a fun way to end a great trip.
The nerves are definitely starting to set in. I’ve never been away from my family for this long. I’ve travelled alone before (and loved it) but only for a maximum of four weeks. Living abroad and teaching English abroad have both been massive goals of mine and I’m so excited to experience these things. Have you been to Peru, taught a language abroad or done extended travel? Let me know all your tips and tricks in the comments.