PalerMo’ Money, Mo’ Problems

Trip Region: Europe
Country(ies): Malta, Italy
Partners Trek? No
Trip Cost: $2900
Airfare Estimate: $1700
Nightlife: 7   •   Activity: 7

We’re headed to one of the smallest countries in Europe, but it’s filled with stunning coastlines and a ton of UNESCO World Heritage sites for all you cultured folks. This trip has everything your heart desires- from cooking classes + wine tastings, beaches and yacht parties, and also climbing an active volcano. Sounds too good to be true? It’s not, we swear. We’ll start off in Malta where we’ll do some off-roading in jeep tours, explore the beautiful beaches, and visit plenty of islands so you can get some pics for the ‘gram. Want to recreate some scenes from Gladiator, Troy, Game of Thrones, or even Pirates of the Caribbean? Well you’re in luck, because all of those movies have been filmed in picturesque Malta. We’ll then move to Sicily- land of great wine, food, and…more wine. We’ll start off in Palermo where we’ll learn about the city’s history and visit several historical sites. We’ll then have a cooking class and learn how to make a delicious Italian meal. After exploring nature and relaxing at the beach, we’ll end with hiking an active volcano (don’t worry- lots of wine will await you once we finish) and having a choose-your-own-adventure activity day. This trip is a perfect blend of cultural immersion, turning up, outdoor activities, and some zen to balance our raging…all while staying in 4 star hotels. We’ve literally thought of everything. This will honestly be the best 10 days of your life…and you’ll meet your b-school BFFs! What more could you ask for?

Travel Day — Saturday, Aug 18

Feeling overwhelmed by orientation? Thought you were going into Consulting, but got scared by all the talk of having a "Plan B" during Career Action Days? Don't worry, it's time to leave that all behind. You'll have today to finish any last minute packing before the group flies out to Malta this afternoon/evening.

Day 1 — Sunday, Aug 19

Woohooo! Leave Impact Challenge and orientation behind you in Ann Arbor and get ready for the COOLEST trip with 16 strangers (but soon to be BFFs). On this day, you will arrive to the ridiculously gorgeous country of Malta. If you arrive early, feel free to have lunch on our own, but make sure you check into the swanky hotel by the afternoon. Your fearless leaders and the rest of the group will unite at the hotel and walk to a delicious welcome dinner. It may or may not include an unlimited gelato or bar tab….Get ready!

Day 2 — Monday, Aug 20

We hope you’re not hungover from last night’s intro to Malta and if you are - get it together! We have quite the adventure planned for day 2. I hope you don’t easily get sea sick because we will be jumping on a world class yacht...okay, a short ferry ride… and sailing to the calm, picturesque land of Gozo. There we will explore the land in open jeeps - traversing rugged cliffs, steep valleys, and slopes as the warm wind blows in our hair. This excursion will include a nice pre-packed picnic and a dip in the sea - so bring your swimsuits and speedos, ladies and gents! We will also be tasting the sunsweet berries of the earth when we stop at a winery for more delicious fun. After this exciting trip we will board our yacht… I mean ferry... and sail into the sunset back to Malta. Hang out at the hotel rooftop bar/pool or enjoy the rest of the evening on your own. Get some rest, you’ll need it for tomorrow.

Day 3 — Tuesday, Aug 21

You got a taste of being on a boat yesterday, but today is the real deal Holyfield! Have breakfast at the hotel and prepare for a cruise. No not like Diana Cruz but an actual Catamaran Cruise. Enjoy the stress-free, comfortable day at sea, the open bar, and snorkeling! Trust us, you will miss the ocean and warm rays of the sun when you are back in Michigan… “winter is coming.” You’ll have a cold lunch buffet and an awesome time.

Day 4 — Wednesday, Aug 22

Big boats, little boats, we’ve done it all. Today we’ll take it easy - you’ll have an entire free day to explore and wander the city or just relax. There are plenty of historical and cultural attractions in Malta. Enjoy the city, buy some souvenirs, and get ready to party the night away on our last night in Malta.

Day 5 — Thursday, Aug 23

Rise and Shine! Today we’re off to Sicily. We’ll take a quick flight and then check in to our hotel before exploring Palermo for a bit. Welcome to Palermo! Sicily’s capital has a personality all its own – thanks to centuries of invading European and Middle Eastern influences. The historic city center has begun a revitalization process, though bombing scars from WWII are still evident. From architecture to cuisine, Palermo is a uniquely vibrant adventure where gilded high fashion competes with crumbling graffiti concrete.

Day 6 — Friday, Aug 24

With a full-day in Palermo, your five senses will be fully stimulated! From a tour of the city to a tasty Sicilian meal, make sure to wear an outfit that will look good (and get likes) with UNESCO world heritage sites on IG. As quoted on TripAdvisor, “Palermo's nightlife has grown dramatically in recent years.” Get ready to party in one of the hottest (literally!) and growing Sicilian cities with your fellow Trekkers!!!

Day 7 — Saturday, Aug 25

Get ready for your day-trip to the enchanting village on the sea - Cefalu!? Suggested packing list includes: shorts, t-shirt, swimwear, cap, water shoes, change of clothes, a water bottle, and selfie stick. If you love nature and adventure, this is the day for you!? Cefalu population: 14k + 16 Rossers

Day 8 — Sunday, Aug 26

Today, we’ll wake up early to get our hike on- we’ll be climbing Europe’s largest active volcano, Mt. Etna. Don’t tell your mom about this! Don’t worry, the hike won’t be strenuous. That afternoon, we’ll have a wine-down by stopping at a local winery. We’ll have a tasting and you’ll get to learn from some local winemakers. Last year, Jasmine won “Most Likely to make her millions by importing Croatian Rosé.” She’s ready to expand her empire by importing aka drinking alllll of the Sicilian wine this year.

Day 9 — Monday, Aug 27

Choose your own adventure! Remember those books from when we were kids? Today you actually get to do that- in real life! You can choose from a tour of the Alcantra Gorges or the Aoelian Islands. Both tours are optional- if you want, you can also choose to relax and plan your own activities. #TreatYoSelf. We’ll all come back together that evening for our final family dinner and final turn up, before we’re back in AA. Don’t cry, bbs- you’ll have the memories of the past 9 days to reflect on foreverrrrr. Tonight may feel like the last day of summer camp, but unlike your childhood, you’ll actually say: “KIT, LYLAS” (“keep in touch, love ya like a sis” for all you old fogeys) and mean it!

Departure Day — Tuesday, Aug 28

It’s time to say goodbye to your new least for a few days. We’ll head to the airport and fly back to Ann Arbor today. Having survived the last 10 days, you’ll be ready to handle anything Fall A throws at you...Stats, Skeeps...ok maybe not Stats, but you’ll definitely be prepared for Skeeps! Your fearless leaders are already planning reunions to get the gang back together once we’re stateside. Trust us, you’ll need it.

Diana Cruz

Diana hails from San Francisco – a fact she will tell you about 5 times a day, unsolicited. Before taking her talents to Ann Arbor, Diana single-handedly kept the Bay Area powered through her courageous and groundbreaking work at PG&E. She lived in Italy years ago so you can count on her bringing out her broken-Italian when she has too many glasses of wine (a common occurrence). Cin Cin! Gelato will be eaten on the daily! Yass to food and wine! This summer, she will be doing nerdy tech stuff at a small start-up called Google.

Dheerabhan (Mark) Buakaew

Although he grew up in the jungles of Thailand, Mark is a passionate traveler having visited 20 countries. His favorite hobby is poker and he will gladly take your money during MTrek. During the night, you could possibly find Mark raging at an EDM music festival. Ask him about Tomorrowland in Belgium. Other nights, Mark enjoys drinking a glass of Jack Single Barrel. Before coming to Ann Arbor, Mark was an entrepreneur starting his own ERP software company which he currently still runs. If you end up graduating without a job, working for Mark can be your Plan “C”. Most of all, you can count on him to make sure you get back home when you’re LIT.

Jasmine Knowles

Jasmine is the trek’s recovering management consultant, which means she has spreadsheets and decks for every day of the trip (just kidding…kinda). Hailing from Orlando, Florida (yes, there are folks who live there other than tourists), in high school, she was voted “Most Talented” alongside her best friend. He went on to become the runner up on So You Think You Can Dance and now stars in CATS on Broadway…and Jasmine…well, has just channeled her creative talents into being able to rap every word of Bodak Yellow. Affectionately christened Mama Knowles on her MTrek last year, she’ll make sure the group stays fed + she’ll definitely have some Pedialyte on deck to cure those hangovers. Her famous last name just might get the group some extra perks at bars…and help with avoiding extra baggage fees if you decide to bring back hella bottles of Italian wine.

Kalina Newmark

Kalina is a marketing enthusiast hailing from the Canadian Arctic. If you’ve ever watched the second season of Ice Road Truckers, you’ve probably seen Kalina’s hometown of Tuktoyaktuk (google it!). Fun fact: Kalina couldn’t go to school one day because there was a polar bear outside her house. After 6 years at Dartmouth College, 4 years as an undergrad and 2 years as an employee, Kalina moved from the metropolis of Hanover, NH to the tropical Minneapolis, MN to work for a family-owned company before heading to Ross. Some of Kalina’s favorite things include: her Italian grandmother’s lasagna, playing soccer, and the citrus defender at Starbucks. Don’t let Kalina’s smile fool you, she’s super competitive and doesn’t like losing!!