Siena, Italy - historic, enchanting, touristy, gorgeous and friendly
Siena's quite a small city which works out well for Erasmus students because everyone goes to the same places, so you get to meet everyone and get to know them quite quickly. Some of my favourite places were: the live pub Barrone Rosso, L'Incontro, Cafe Diacceto, Cafe del Corso and il Cambio. There's also a really cool Cuban bar which serves great mojitos, on via Porrione. The most challenging moments were trying to find accommodation, getting information about courses at the university, enrolling on them and dealing with all the bureaucracy - getting all your Erasmus papers stamped, turning up with the right documents for the right people etc. I wanted to get to know Italy really well while I was there, so I went to Florence often, Rome, most places in Tuscany, Sicily, Perugia and Venice; there's a really good bus system which does cheap online offers.
Useful local words: 'Tutto bene', 'figo'.
What not to pack: High heels...
What to pack: A good camera.
Couldn't have done without: Skype.
Word of advice: Make sure you sort out your accommodation before you go (or at least have some flat viewings arranged) and throw yourself into everything, be really proactive in discovering your city, and talk to everyone.
AT, French and Italian, Bristol University
Read an insider's guide to Siena written by our Mole on the scene.