Culture and gorillas in Leipzig

Hello, fellow exchange students!

The first weeks of my study exchange in Leipzig have been absolutely amazing! I have totally fell in love with the beautiful city with its to-some-extent-visible characteristics reflecting the history of DDR. My studies in the University of Music and Theater have started off well as well and I have had the honor to get to know many talented fellow students and, of course, staff members, too. Because Leipzig is the city of J. S. Bach (among other significant musical characters) and the university is the oldest University of Music in Germany, the historical atmosphere is truly inspiring and the importance of culture can be sensed everywhere.

Gewandhaus zu Leipzig
Gewandhaus zu Leipzig

The concert hall in Leipzig is called Gewandhaus zu Leipzig and a couple of weeks ago I visited it for the first time. It actually reminds me of Musiikkitalo in Helsinki quite a lot! The concert itself was fantastic, with Radu Lupu as piano soloist. The tickets for students are very affordable for all the concerts here, so I really have to enjoy this chance and make the best of it!

View over the city
View over the city

Leipzig is flat, but rather green, with the White Elster, Pleisse, and Parthe rivers in the south-western side of the city. Even though the city is almost as big as Helsinki, the city centre is very compact and almost every destination can be reached by bike or on foot in a couple of minutes. There are a lot of parks located around the city too, where one can easily spend a couple of hours just wandering around.

Gorillas im Zoo!
Gorillas im Zoo!

During the autumn break in Finland, my boyfriend visited me and with him we spent some time as tourists, as my regular daily schedule consists mostly of practicing piano and some lectures. I am not usually a big fan of zoos, but this one was actually really cool and the animals seemed pretty happy! My favourites above and below.

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Völkerschlachtdenkmal (Monument of the Battle of Leipzig)
Völkerschlachtdenkmal (Monument of the Battle of Leipzig)

The view above was taken on top of this monument, which was built in remembrance of the Battle of Leipzig in the 1800s. Of that I am not going to tell more, so feel free to google it yourselves 🙂

All in all, my experiences of my studies and the city have been great so far. However, knowing the language (that is, German) is absolutely necessary for getting the best out of everything and dealing with different offices and older people. Luckily my German skills are rather good, but still, there is so much to learn!

Liebe Grüsse,

Outi

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