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France: City of Light to Coastal Delight

France: City of Light to Coastal Delight

Join this reimagined tour of France that will inspire you with timeless charm, while immersing you in the dynamic modern culture of change. Get hands-on with a French cooking class, shop in the vibrant open air markets and luxury brand boutiques. Go deeper and learn how people in the cities and in the countryside are working to make a more sustainable France, how women are using art to carve out greater equality, how immigrants are expanding and enriching what it means to be French. You will collaborate with local experts to understand sustainable food practices on land and in the sea.

Explore Montmartre as an artist and learn to paint famous scenes of Paris. Sit in sidewalk cafes and watch the city unfold around you. Journey through the French countryside to the picturesque cities of Bordeaux, Arcachon, and Biarritz. From ordering a macaron at a boulangerie to buying fromage at a local market, you’ll use your French skills everywhere you go. Gain invaluable insight into the soul of France on this  journey that will stay with you long after you have returned home.

2023 Departure Dates

June 20 – July 4, 2023 Limited Start Here
July 6 – July 20, 2023 Limited Start Here
Program Profile
  • Country:
  • Department:
    Students
  • Duration:
    15 Days
  • Ages:
    14-17
  • Cost:
    $5,995 plus Airfare
  • Service Hours:
    12
  • At-A-Glance:

    Accomodation Amenities

    Adventure/Physicality

    Educational Activities

    On-Program Travel

Program Profile
  • Country:
  • Department:
    Students
  • Duration:
    15 Days
  • Ages:
    14-17
  • Cost:
    $5,995 plus Airfare
  • Service Hours:
    12
  • At-A-Glance:

    Accomodation Amenities

    Adventure/Physicality

    Educational Activities

    On-Program Travel

Paris

The City of Light, Paris, is the perfect place to get to know your travel companions. From the famous River Seine, to the iconic Eiffel Tower, and the numerous museums, cafés and restaurants, the city of Paris will enchant you as you start your journey. Settle into your lodgings for four nights in the city and get the chance to relax and enjoy the wonders of Paris.
We’ll tour a sustainable city garden and then tie on aprons to cook with fresh ingredients from the garden. While exploring the famous Montmartre district, we’ll join an art class and paint postcards we can send home. Our walking tour of the heart of the city will reveal hidden sides of famous sites like the Tuileries, Île de la Cité & Île Saint-Louis. There will be music, cafes, boutiques, and a film screening at one of Paris’ oldest cinemas before we leave the city.

Versailles

A visit to Versailles is a must for anyone looking to explore the history of the French Revolution. Spend a day here to understand the revolutionary period and the impact it had on France. As night falls, the beauty of the Palace of Versailles comes to life with the Royal Serenade, a musical stroll through the King’s apartments and the Hall of Mirrors. Take a relaxing walk through the palace gardens as the fountains come to life with enchanting lighting effects and music. All of these elements combine to make a truly magical experience, perfect for those looking to take a step back into history.

Bordeaux

Exploring the beautiful city of Bordeaux is an experience that many visitors will never forget. We’ll opt for an even more unique experience, taking a bike tour of the UNESCO World Heritage Site Centre Urbain and get up close with an inspiring, alternative urban experience. Expert guides provide an extra layer of insight and knowledge about the city’s past and present. From the bustling city center to the lush greenery of the parklands, you will experience the beauty and history of Bordeaux up close.

Arcachon

Enjoy a two night stay in this amazing setting between the forest and the ocean. Arcachon, located on the Atlantic Ocean, is a mesmerizing destination. Its crystal clear beaches, and delicious seafood are just some of the reasons why visitors flock to this breathtaking destination. We’ll climb the highest sand dune in Europe, the Dune of Pilat. From the top we’ll be rewarded with a panoramic view of the Bassin d’Arcachon, the ocean, and the sprawling pine forest. We’ll join oyster farmers in the Bay to learn how they are preserving their centuries old practice and protecting the natural environment. The biggest perk is getting to enjoy your fresh catch (if you’re willing!). We’ll spend time enjoying the water and sand, and exploring the coastal town by bicycle to immerse ourselves in this unique French community.

Saint Emilion

We’ll spend a day exploring the small village of Saint Emilion in southwest France. Its historical and architectural splendor has made it a UNESCO heritage site. For centuries, it has been a place of pilgrimage, drawing visitors from across the world. One of the most recognizable monuments of Saint Emilion is the 12th-century Monolithic church, carved from a single stone. As you wander through the largest Monolithic church in Europe, you’ll be overwhelmed by the skill and talent of ancient engineers.

Biarritz and Pays Basque

Next we head further south to Biarritz and the Pays Basque, or Basque Country. We’ll begin by connecting with the local Surfrider Foundation for some time in the water and some service on the beach protecting this beautiful marine ecosystem.
Then, we head up into the rugged Pyrenees to immerse ourselves in Basque villages. Basque Country stands out as an independent nation with a unique history and culture. We’ll learn hands-on about one of the most famous local products – cheese. Stretch your legs on a hike up into the Pyrenees with a trek to the top of La Rhune for a famous 360-degree view of the Basque Country. The warm, vibrant communities of the Pays Basque will stay with us as we return for a final farewell to Paris.

Paris

We’ll spend our last night back in Paris in the most memorable way possible. Soak up the beautiful sights and sounds of the city as you drift along the River Seine on a night cruise. Marvel at the sights of the Eiffel Tower, Notre Dame Cathedral, and other iconic landmarks.
The next day you’ll say au revoir to this French adventure. But, you’ll keep your memories and your new friends with you forever.