Aquarium La Rochelle – Just Can’t Wait to Share about it.

Sea life cannot be explained in one world. I was stunned and speechless when I went to the aquarium of La Rochelle.


Looking at its entrance its really awesome when you see the all new world inside it. Entrance was very innovative it looks like you are entering in to a submarine.

Aquarium entrance

official postcard - entrance

The way it has been planned and made its really unique.

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Aquarium of La Rochelle is one of Europe’s largest private aquariums. It displays more than 12,000 animals of 600 different species. It is the most visited aquariums France. I cannot put in all the images that I took but I will share some of it, this is the thing you should not miss if you are in La Rochelle.


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I hope you like it.

Thank you everyone for reading my post 🙂 .

Jay Shah
SHTC Exchange, La Rochelle, France.

Roti disaster!!

If you remember from my previous blog about how we managed to find the adapter for us, this blog has nothing to do with that. However, I will be telling you about how we managed to resolve our food cravings with interesting ideas.

My roommate, Akanksha and I both are from South Asian backgrounds, so we both share similar cuisines. During our second week in La Rochelle, we started to crave for Rotis, round bread cooked in iron griddle.


We needed flour, so we did our grocery and stocked our fridge. Akanksha kneaded the dough and kept it aside. Jay (our friend from Centennial College who is an exchange student as well) and I were both waiting eagerly for “our” Rotis. But then it suddenly struck us that we did not have any rolling pin to roll the roti with. We looked at each others’ blank faces for answers. Well, we had seen people making Romali roti, a unique kind of thin roti, by throwing the dough up in the air and magically flattening when it landed on their hands.

How cool is that!!!

We tried doing that but trust me, it was nothing like roti. Anyways, we made a couple of them and was picturing ourselves the next morning in a lot of pain. Then, like an angel, Akanksha stepped up and she did this amazing thing. You see, she had brought this water bottle with her.

She spread a plastic wrap on the table, sprinkled it with some flour and started to roll the dough with that water bottle.
Why didn’t we think of that before? We were so happy that we could finally have roti and not care about tomorrow.

Look how happy she looks.

You would expect our dinner to be amazing and yes, you are right! We did have an amazing dinner with roti, of course! What I would remember about this night is that whatever type of situation you are stuck in, there is always a solution around the corner. You just have to recognize it and use it creatively!

Bon appetit!
P.S. Our Rotis is at the far right corner covered, we wanted it soft and warm!

La Rochelle – Exchange – New Friends / Awesome People / Best Experience

Exchange Student SHTC
Exchange Student SHTC

Bonjour!! Hello !! This is my third post, my name is Jay Shah from School of Hospitality and its been a little late for this post as I was exploring the new world around me, from January till now I had so much fun and experience in my life at La Rochelle, loving it !!. I have so much to say and I’m confused how to say everything in so less words, but I’ll try my best.

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My home is like the old french house with some old fashioned and upgraded appliances. My landlady she is so sweet and adorable, she doesn’t even know english and struggles with me to make me understand, but never loses her patience with me thanks to god and google translator application (its free mobile app), it has sorted out my life and made it easy being in france. It also helps to learn some french.

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My journey which was started from -20 C temperature to 10 C from snow to rains, it has completely changed me as a person by meeting so many kind and loving people over here, making friends from all diverse culture understanding them in different manner and making them laugh in their way it is so much fun, but make sure if they get hurt by your statement just go to them and say sorry it will work guys. People around the world knows if you are sorry by your heart they will come back to you, “Don’t Worry Be Happy”.Coming back to post if you go anywhere in france and encounter if they are just starting with their meal “Bon appetit” is the word you should know, just tell them its their culture. People in La Rochelle are very nice and kind. They will try to help you, but you have try to understand them and be polite to them greet them and keep smiling.

Being around la rochelle its like you are somewhere in the world which you will never know until you see it. Architecture and construction are still the same since 19th Century.I will have to explore more about the city and will be back with the history and some pictures in my next post.

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Starting our school days we had some great presentation on events management and I’m so much passionate about events planning. I wasn’t sure about the concept what teacher wanted us to do, but one best element in designing the project which I liked is that we should have team mates all from different origins and I was afraid that its just some days in college and no one knows you. Guess what everything was just a matter of few minutes I didn’t knew about the team, but I really got a good team and very good friends indeed. They gave me an opportunity to design the whole concept as they believed in me by looking at my passion for events. Our presentation was awesome and unique compared to others as the concept.Journey started well and after that class we have become a team of six people which everyone knows by now for any project. It’s a learning and fun to work with people from different origins as you will get to know what people are trying to make you understand and viceversa.

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International Dinner, just a small dinner organized by some friends. We had food from France, Spain, Mexican, Indian and Chinese it was delicious. We had loads of fun talking about their culture and understanding them, it helps you as a person to know more and helps to develop your interpersonal skills which will be useful in future.

la rochelle

– Jay Shah

Arrival La Rochelle, France !!

All tired with journey and facing winter in Toronto I was so much happy to see weather which was 10 Degree Celsius WOW !!!, coming back to the journey from france airport to La Rochelle, It was tough because people speak french. Only thing that helped me is WIFI on france airport and I can use VIBER (Internet Calling App for Mobile phone), I called up my friend Sudikshya who was also coming to france for same program. She helped to put me back on track and teaching me some french words and guess what I got a new friend on airport who can speak english and french both. That feeling was like getting myself back into the senses. If you want go La Rochelle, France it is easy now as our google search before coming to france was different and when I came the france airport have services exactly at their airport to la rochelle. Train services in Paris, France which takes you to La Rochelle is SNCF/TGV. They have their platforms and ticket hubs exactly at the exit point of Gate C terminal airport, but you can follow the signs towards the train station 10 minutes walking don’t worry you can carry your luggage cart till train. After flight 6 hours of train journey and knowing the fact you don’t know where you will go from the station at evening 8:00PM, make friends !! Centennial College three angels do you remember, they are awesome their communication with school at La Rochelle helped me to connect with so many students at La Rochelle. As usual I had no expectation that anyone will show up knowing the fact it was vacations for them, but one of the student and now friend showed up and took me to his place and saved my some money for overnight stay. Life is full of opportunities and challeges you just have to wait and be positive that you will find some solutions. Don’t Panic it will not help, be cool and calm as it helps. What happened next college starts the next day

SNCF - Paris Airport

La Rochelle, Train Station

Enroute de La Rochelle, France

Arrival – Week 1Image

Woah !! Looking to the endless opportunity and faith in god, I started my journey to upgrade my career to next level. Centennial College, Canada; I have never thought in my dreams that it will provide me such a golden opportunity to build my career goals and objectives in such a unique way by allowing me to go La Rochelle, France for my studies!! When I got approved for this opportunity, I had never thought that I will get support and help after getting approved, But wait there are three angels that helps every student to smoothen up their travel plans, medicals, accommodation, and what not. Its been 2 weeks in La Rochelle and the way we were prepared by the angels I never felt like I have to face any speed breakers in my tasks at La Rochelle. Who are the three angels ? Stay tuned till I end this Journey because I want to thank them all and others who have helped me till I complete this journey.

The city of La Rochelle- A dream come true!

A couple of months ago I had not even dreamt about being in France and today I am here sitting in my apartment in La Rochelle (France) and writing a blog. To be in the city of La Rochelle is a dream come true as its beauty lies in its simplicity and old architecture. It seems like this city will never grow old it looks so young that with everyday that passes by this city manages to grow more beautiful. The city is known for its two towers at the port.

The two towers at the port- Vieux Por


The university I am enrolled in is called Sup De Co and its about 20 minutes walk and its not a bad walk as I walk with my friend and we explore the city in the mornings while walking to school. One day my friend and I  managed to get lost but a class mate of ours saved us, you can say that we got lucky. I have managed to make a few friends in the first week some of them are French and others are exchange student.

Here are some photos of the apartment


Isn’t the apartment beautiful… My apartment is in the middle of the city its also called city centre and everything is walking distance from my house be it a grocery store, a clothing store or the harbour. At nights sometimes me and my room mate just go and sit near the towers and just unwind ourselves. it gives us such inner peace and joy which is hard to explain in words.

Today I took a bus to the supermarket called Hyper U to get an adapter as the plug is not cylindrical and not flat, are you thinking how I survived with out my laptop for the whole week? The answer to that is, that some how I managed to survive as finding an adapter was not an easy task but luckily I found one today. The bus ride was for 1.30 euro’s and the bus service is called “yelo” and the buses are really pretty, they are much better than TTC.


In the end I would like to say “Certainly, travel is more than the seeing of sights; it is a change that goes on, deep and permanent, in the ideas of living.” by Mary Ritter Beard

Thank you for reading and I hope you have a great day ahead 🙂

My voyage through France

I must apologize for the lack of updates throughout August, however, I was too busy seeing the wonders of France! And what amazing voyages they were… Travelling throughout Northern France, I saw the beauty of Normandy, the gorgeous seaside of Brittany, the picturesque scenes of the Seine winding through to Paris, and the rolling hills of the Champagne region! It has been quite the journey over the past few weeks, and I have come to love the beauty and simplicity that is rural France.


The view of Arromanche, in Normandy. The things you see on the beach are relics from WWII, part of the sea fortifications the Germans constructed before D-Day.


Me in front of the Mumm vineyards near Riems. The river Mumm is visible in the back!


The Cathedral in Bayeux, one of the few remaining intact Medieval towns in France.


Another photo of Bayeux, to the right is the Museum of the Bayeux Tapestry.


Mont St. Michel is almost too beautiful for words… And a impenetrable fortress which protected the French royal family during the Hundred Years War with England.

And now during my last few weeks at IIEP, I cannot help but reflect upon the previous few months I spent with a great group of co-workers whom I am happy to call my friends. We shared many laughs and great times together, discovering the beauty of Paris as a group. I felt so lucky and blessed to have met such a great group of people who all supported and helped each other in living in a foreign city. Here is a photo of a shared birthday between myself and a co-worker.


A Parisian Summer

Hot and beautiful are probably the two best descriptors of the summer so far in Paris. I have found myself spending increasing amounts of my leisure time in parks all over the city with fellow co-workers from the IIEP. Luckily, the IIEP employs a small army of students every summer to assist with research, databases and in my case, internal projects. Students from all over the globe come in to assist with this work, and it has been a fantastic opportunity to meet new people from different cultures and backgrounds. We have formed a great little group who celebrate events together such as, Canada Day, Le Fete du St. Jean Baptiste, Bastille Day and for our sole American friend, Independence Day.

Found a little piece of home in Paris for Canada Day!
A big turn-out for Quebec’s Saint Jean Baptiste Day!
The Eiffel Tower lit up for Bastille Day!

Last weekend I was also lucky enough to travel to Munich in order to visit my cousins completing their own internship in southern Germany. We spent quite a bit of time traveling across Bavaria, venturing up every mountain we could for the spectacular views.

Talk about a view…From the summit of Germany’s highest peak, the Zugspitze.
Stuck in the clouds with my two cousins. Behind us, the 300 meter rock climb to the very peak of the Zugspitze.

Apart from all the fun and travel, there has been quite a bit of work as the ETICO Website Project has transitioned from the initiation phase, and into the planning and execution phase. My days are filled with project team meetings, tasking and problem solving. However, I am glad for the hands on experience and cannot be more grateful to be working with such a fantastic international organization.

Until next time!


Paris, je t’aime


So let me begin by issuing a quick apology.

I was SUPPOSED to post last weekend, however I found life quite difficult as I was indisposed with a lung infection. A nice parting gift from my family, I must admit. So- onto the crux of this blog, Paris.

What can be said about this city that has not already been said? I think perhaps, to express my utter wonder and veneration for this completely magical city, I draw upon the wisdom of a man much wiser than I,

“If you are lucky enough to have lived in Paris as a young man, then wherever you go for the rest of your life, it stays with you, for Paris is a moveable feast.”
― Ernest Hemingway, A Moveable Feast


It is indeed a feast. For the eyes, the ears, the stomach and the soul. I often catch myself bumping into rather exquisite lamp posts as my gaze wanders upwards, towards the soaring white walls of Parisian buildings, their crenelations offering the viewer a new perspective of beauty, block by block. And of course, there is the Eiffel. Towering above the city in its romantic Victorian majesty for the whole city to admire. The gravity of my situation came crashing into realization once I made the pilgrimage to the very top last Sunday evening. Even through fits of coughing and wheezing, I was awe struck by the sheer size and wonder of the city.

By far and away, my favorite sound of Paris is the pitter patter of rain in the courtyard of my mid 19th century apartment building. There is something very romantic about the silence in Paris during a rainfall. And by sheer dumb luck, there is a concert pianist across from my apartment, so the sounds of Chopin and Beethoven waft through the sleepy Parisian evenings.

And the food…well, what can be said about the food? Fresh baguettes, warm buttery croissants and creamy soft brie have been just some of the delights I have enjoyed so far. I think it is safe to say I am enjoying myself quite thoroughly so far in this wonderful city. And apart from some minor drawbacks (taking the metro during rush hours does give one a true sense of what it feels like to be a sardine), I am settling myself well into this city for my four month stay.

Thank you for reading my ramblings, and I do promise to post again soon.

Au revoir mes amis.