I am a Vietnamese student. I came to study in Wageningen University, the Netherlands 2 years ago for my MSc degree. My campus is located in a rural area, where ones can expect nothing but cows, sheep, flat meadows and stuff like that. The Wageningen city itself covers an area of only 32 km2 and its nearby villages and towns are also no bigger than that. Everything is within bicycle reach.

Here is my first thought: On the positive side, this location seems to be an ideal place for students to focus on their study (simply because there is nothing else to do). But on the not so positive side, I might get diagnosed with some mental disorder symptoms later due to too much tranquility and also too much study.

However, as time went by, I pleasantly discovered that I was not bored or turned crazy at all. I was, in fact, fascinated with the surrounding nature here just by looking out of my windows, or cycling about 10 or 15 minutes around my dormitory building. I have not been tired of admiring the landscapes in this countryside area for a single second during my last 2 years.

The experiences here helped me realize that sometimes, you don’t need to travel far to search for the beauty of life and nature. It may be right next to you.

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In the autumn, the first thing I do in a day is looking out of my windows

The road to my campus, 5 minutes away by bike

10 minutes cycling to the neighboring town: Bennekom

It is sometimes really convenient to have a forest close to your backyard. You can basically be “into the wild” whenever you want

5 minutes cycling along the forest

This world of reflection is just behind the local hospital

The road from the local hospital back to my dormitory building

Sunset in front of the supermarket

Winter came. The weather was not that tempting to go outside, so another window shot again

First snow of the winter. It was so cold that I could only walk to the bushes in front of my building to take this picture

A cold sunrise. And again, it was impossible for me to get out of my room, that’s why I ended up with this view (Pardon me, I come from a tropical country)

The next snowy day, I gained a little bit more courage and cycled into the forest. Unfortunately, my energy was only enough to build a snowman this size

I came to the hospital quite some times, not for the doctors, but for these line of trees

One morning, the sky suddenly turned pink. I later successfully produced enough profile photo for every cherry blossom trees in town

This huge cloud of white petals was found in the Wageningen Botanical Garden, which is very close to the dental clinic. I also came here quite often, unfortunately not for the flowers, but for the dentists

In the spring, it was difficult for me to walk and look at the road at the same time, because I was always busy looking up to see these shining young leaves

How can anyone refuse to see more of this sight?

Just in front of my favourite ice cream shop in the neighboring town

In the summer, Wageningen city becomes a deserted island, as most of the students run away from the university. Unlike Robinson Crusoe counting days by making scratches on a wooden stick, I instead counted rainbows. The weather in the Netherlands never stop shocking people

The weather here also gave me sunshine just as much as rainbows. And I cycled in the summer a lot

One of the meadows surrounding my campus

In the winter, it was too cold to go into the forest. In the summer, it was too hot to do that. The later reason sounds like a lame excuse, so I decided to pull myself over and took a walk in the woods. I am glad that I did that