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How a study abroad semester in Hawaii changed my life

Oh, adventurous, tropical and relaxing Hawaii – You changed the game for me! A group of female travel bloggers prompted me to write up about a life-changing experience while traveling and here I go. Hawaii changed my life completely. I never mentioned this before on my blog, so I am glad to write it up within one hour – yes, you heard right, it’s a speed writing prompt.

My study abroad semester in Hawaii changed my life

I always wanted to study abroad and when I saw that I could study in Hawaii, I decided pretty quickly. It turned out to be the best 5 months of my life.

Sunrise is a symbol for the beginning - Hawaii changed my life
Sunrise over the clouds was a special moment

Hawaii is a paradise, no questions asked, and I could discover and explore Oahu to the fullest within these months. Although the HPU loves giving a crap-load of homework and papers to write, I was able to hike the beautiful mountains, relax at tropical beaches, and embrace the hang loose spirit.

Hawaii changed my life because it activated my passion to travel and explore. It connected me to nature. I couldn’t get enough of hiking. When I climbed the stunning mountains in Hawaii, I was full of dopamine so that I wanted to hug bushes and trees in my weird happiness. I had a much higher activity level than ever before in my life.

View of the cascaded mountains in Hawaii
A life-changing event: The naive adventure of climbing the Haiku Stairs on Oahu

Daily activities became normal

Every minute I had, I wanted to spend active – swimming, snorkeling, walking, hiking, or exploring. I even started scuba diving there. I completed around 20 hikes in total while I was there.

Compared to my life in Germany, it was way different. In Berlin, I’d think twice if I had to go to the 24/7 store because we were running out of something to eat or drink and nobody else would go. I was a lazy butt, a couch potato if you prefer this word.

In Hawaii, I sometimes walked down the Waikiki promenade just to do something and seize the day after a long day in school.

Relaxing at the beach - Hawaii changed my life
Not Waikiki, but my favorite beach in Hawaii

The hang loose spirit changed my life

The time in Hawaii moves differently. It is more relaxed and this is how I felt the whole time I was there. Even with 3 exams and 5 papers coming up, I didn’t feel stressed. I knew I can handle it and rock it through as quick as possible so that I can enjoy the rest of my time in nature.

I started admiring adventure travelers

During the semester, I got more and more interested in adventure travel and by the end, I knew, I needed to travel more. Hawaii made me a true adventure seeker. I guess it actually made me start thinking about the digital nomad lifestyle and getting into blogging.

I have been a digital nomad for one year now, and I am glad I could write up this story because it connected the events in my life again.

What travel experiences changed your life?

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Curious who writes here?

Curious who writes here?

Adventurer, digital nomad, and freedom seeker - that's me, Nate the Nomad!
In October 2016, I packed my bags in Berlin and been roaming the world with my husband ever since.
We are slow travelers, who enjoy the freedom of the location-independent life! We love to go on little adventures and to learn about new cultures everywhere we go.

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