Winter break travel offers welcome rest

Back to Article
Back to Article

Winter break travel offers welcome rest

By Tristan Jacobs, Staff Writer

Throughout December, students at the University worked on final exams and projects to finish off their fall semester on a successful note. The weeks leading up to the semester’s end are notoriously stressful for all majors. In an effort to relieve this stress, many Illini take to traveling over break.

Some traveled to see relatives from across the country, and others traveled with family from home to spend time together in a new location. Students were able to use this break to experience a change of pace from their normal everyday scenery.

Sri Sowmya Panuganti is a junior in Engineering. Once she finished finals, Panuganti returned home to her family in the Chicago suburbs. From there, she and her mother took a trip to Northern Virginia to visit relatives. This trip is a tradition that has taken her many different places over the years.

“We have family over there, and we had other relatives willing to travel there, so we all met up to spend the holiday together,” she said.

Virginia is not the only place she has traveled for the sake of visiting family.

“Usually we go to Texas (or) Virginia, but sometimes we end up staying in the suburbs with people coming to us,” Panuganti said.

Being native to the Chicago suburbs and attending college in the same state, Panuganti noted a difference when traveling out of state.

She said it was more relaxing. She also said it was nice to leave Illinois for a little while. Her time in northern Virginia was mainly spent relaxing with her cousins, while also taking in the sights that the state had to offer, including a few museums.

“I think it’s nice to get that change of scenery away from Illinois, especially at the end of the semester when you’re super stressed out toward the end. It’s good to go somewhere that doesn’t remind you of school,” she said.

Some students have been traveling over winter break since they were young. Other students are used to their lives going at a slower pace while away from school.

Sandra Yamin, junior in ACES, made several journeys over break. First, she traveled to New York in the days after Christmas. Later, she returned to Chicago before flying with her boyfriend to Miami, Florida.

For Yamin, much of her off-campus time was spent with friends from high school. Foregoing the cost of airfare, the group decided to drive to New York on Dec. 26 for their four-day trip. This required more planning over the break than Yamin had done in years past.

“Our trip was fast-paced because we were trying to do as much as we could within the limited time period,” she said.

Her tourist activities sent her all over the city. She and her group went to see The Museum of Modern Art, the Statue of Liberty and Ellis Island.

Upon returning home from New York, Yamin made her way to Miami, Florida, with her boyfriend and his mother for a weekend trip.

“That was the first time I had been to Florida, and I was so happy to be invited,” she said.

Yamin said her previous travels over winter break had never included warmer locations, and she enjoyed the experience. The trip provided more time to relax in the warm climate of Florida with fewer events planned out over the weekend. The only plans she had were a brunch and an outdoor art show.

During the trip, she visited the Wynwood Walls, an urban graffiti art display in Miami where the artwork changes every few months. She enjoyed the powerful messages the artwork communicated and she was interested by the continuous evolution of the walls being repainted over and over again.

“I feel like taking trips during the break is so fun and everyone should try it, especially with friends. It really gives you a different perspective on how things might be in the future when you’re out of college and not living at home,” Yamin said.

[email protected]