No plans for holiday? Exchange your apartment!

Really popular way of spending summer is exchange houses. People from totally contrasting countries and habits, are meeting at Internet and decide to stay for couple of weeks in each other apartments. Usually, they don’t know destinate city at all, they don’t know the language, but often friends of host are helping with adaptation. This kind of vacations is mainly popular in Esperanto circles, then speaking barrier is not an issue. Two students of this language, Paweł from Szczecin and Salman of Istanbul switch their houses. Let’s read what each one has to say about staying for 2 weeks in totally different country.

Salman’s story

My name is Salman, I’m thirty-four years old, and I live in Istanbul, Turkey. I was staying at Pawel’s house for two weeks, and it was my first visit to Poland. At the beginning, when I came, I was astonished about the temperature, it was really hot evening in July, and I was ready to wear jacket. I arrived at Gdansk’s airfield and then I take a train to Szczecin. I was a little worried about reaction on my skin color, I was listening few distressing stories about racism of Polish inhabitants, but it was okay. Two colleagues of Pawel pick me up from main railway station , and they assured me to take care of me in time of my visit. They also spoke Esperanto, and very good English, so conversations were easy. Next day, at the morning, I had some polish breakfast, cooked for my by Pawel’s flatmate. It was delicious but very greasy – huge portionof scrambled eggs with bacon and plenty of onion, dressed with white bread and butter. Later, I went to old district to see few of heritages (visit this page). I like European architecture, it so disparate then Turkish one. Szczecin has plenty of building constructed in 19th century, couple Middle-Aged and Gothic churches and nice parks and squares. The most I loved post office edifice, it looks similar like one of Harry Potter film. Rest of my holiday I spend traveling along seaside, tasting local food, meeting new, generally friendly people. I very like my visit in Poland.

plane

Autor: Bernal Saborio
Źródło: http://www.flickr.com

Pawel’s story

Hi, my name is Pawel, I’m from Szczecin, I am thirty years old. I was staying for two weeks in Istanbul, in apartment of my friend, which I met at Esperanto congress. I was very thrilled about my journey, I heard that Turkey is very interesting country. I was living in huge, cozyflat in the middle of old district. I was observing morning bustle, while eating breakfast at balcony. I was charmed by Istanbul. It is very adorable city, with fascinating history, and very friendly people (find out something more). First week I spend discovering the city, not just ancient town with heritages, and spectacular Muslim architecture, but also new town with biggest skyscrapers I have ever seen.

plane

Autor: Phuket@photographer.net
Źródło: http://www.flickr.com

I spend two days at one of city beaches, and it was to much crowd, but the weather was delightful. Second week I was traveling with my backpack trough some small villages, knowing about culture, customs and language of citizens. It was really important experience for me.

Switching houses during holidays is a very good experience, but just for courages ones. Some tourists could be worried about strange person living in their flat, but if you meet your host on special website, you are saved. So select your host smart, and have fun during your vacations.