New home. New culture. New lifestyle.
While adjusting to a new life in a new city can seem like a daunting task, there are a few things that can help you make Florence feel more like home.
Explore the new city
Getting to know your new neighborhood and city will help you figure out a routine. Find the closest grocery store or market so you can cook a meal at home or research where to find the best gelato. Visit museums and landmarks to learn about the history of Florence. By becoming more familiar with your surroundings you’ll feel less homesick during your time abroad.
Don’t change all of your habits
Just because you are living abroad doesn’t mean you need to change every one of your everyday habits. You can transform habits from back home to fit your new lifestyle in Florence. Research where to find sports and activities in your new city. Whether it’s a yoga class, a cooking class, or hiking, staying active mentally and physically while living abroad will lower your stress level and help combat any homesickness you might be feeling.
Relax in a quiet spot
Florence is a crowded city full of tourists but that doesn’t mean you can’t find a quiet place to relax and unwind. Between gardens, parks and the riverside there are plenty of options that get you outside of the hustle and bustle of the city.
Try the local food
While it might seem more comfortable to order whatever seems familiar on the menu by trying something new you will be connecting to your new home. Some classic Florentine dishes include bistecca alla fiorentina, trippa alla fiorentina and schiacciata alla fiorentina. Food is a large part of the Italian culture and by trying local food you will begin to understand your new city.
Decorate…But not too much
Whether you’re staying with a host family or in an apartment, creating a small space that is your own will help you settle into your new home quicker. Print out a few photos of family and friends to stick in the mirror to smile at when you get ready in the morning. Even better, look for art from local artists that can serve as souvenirs when you go home. In Florence, it’s easy to find artists beside the Duomo or the Uffizi with reasonably priced pieces of art. By adding little details your apartment will feel more like a home, just don’t get too comfortable and get stuck watching Netflix!