About This Study Abroad Program
What better way to fall in love with France than to sample all it has to offer, with jaunts to Paris, the Mediterranean, and the French countryside?
To get a real feel for the traditional French way of life, one must begin with an exploration of Aix-en-Provence, the capital of countryside culture. The cobbled main streets, fascinating shops and splendid cafés offer the perfect environment for studies. History is rich in this area, with many Roman ruins dotting the landscape, including the Roman aqueduct at Pont du Gard, where visitors can swim under huge stone archways, and Nîmes, an outpost of the Roman Empire.
Head south to the glamorous Côte d’Azur (French Riviera) for some celebrity gazing, yacht-watching, and relaxing on fabulous beaches that see upward of 310 days of sunshine each year. One of the first modern resort areas, France’s Mediterranean coastline plays host to over half of the world’s superyacht fleet, and one of the most famous film festivals, Cannes. But the area isn’t just a playground for the well-heeled—the French Riviera is also home to 35,000 post-secondary students at the University of Nice Sophia Antipolis, 25 percent of whom are working toward doctorates.
With a palette suitably calibrated to French culture, you’re prepared to enter picturesque Paris, the City of Light and an epicentre of fashion, art, and cuisine. It also boasts some incredible landmarks: the Eiffel Tower, Sacré-Coeur Basilica, Louvre, Notre-Dame and Arc de Triomphe, among many others. Develop an ear for the language while picnicking on the banks of the Seine and people-watching from the sidewalk cafés of the Champs Élysées, or opt to take in even more history with an excursion to the Palace of Versailles or a day trip to Vimy Ridge.
A veritable feast of food, fashion, philosophy, and more, a thousand years of fantastic culture awaits you in France.
SPECIAL PROGRAM NOTE: Make sure to bring comfortable walking shoes! Many of the places we visit in France will be discovered on foot.
Included in your program
Banquet at French Chateau
Other Inclusions of this Program:
- Round-trip group airfare from Toronto, arranged by Blyth Academy
- Group airport transfers at location
- Transportation for moves between cities with the group
- Breakfast and dinner daily
- Farewell Banquet
- Pre-departure briefing and materials
- Designated outings and activities
- City orientation tours
- Use of free Internet, where available*
- Access to Blyth Academy Travel Academy Journal
- Access to Vidigami photo sharing
- And much more!
* Most hotels have Wi-Fi in common areas. Please note Internet access may not be available in bedrooms.
Groups are required to meet at the airport 3 hours prior to departure
Please note: Flights are subject to change by the airline.
Are you flying into Toronto Pearson International Airport to join the group?
Blyth Academy airport staff will meet students flying into Toronto Pearson International Airport from any city with same-day connections to Blyth Academy group flights at no additional charge. Once your student is registered, please complete the Airport Meet-and-Greet application. Applications must be received by June 1st and will be fulfilled as available.
*The following are examples of optional excursions our students went on in 2018, and are subject to change. Please take a look and don’t forget to check back soon for the final list of excursions, and your chance to register!
Grasse, French Perfume & Saint Paul de Vence
We’ll set off into the Provençal countryside to explore pretty mountainside villages and a perfumery in Grasse.
Considered the world capital of perfume, Grasse is home to Fragonard, Galimard and Molinard perfumeries. Perfume production began here in the 16th century. Learn how the fragrant flowers of Provence are turned into perfume.
Onwards, we’ll stop to see the Loup Gorge, with sheer cliffs of granite and a picturesque waterfall, and St. Paul de Vence, a picture-postcard perfectly preserved medieval village, with expansive views across the countryside to the Mediterranean Sea, cobbled streets and ramparts. This beautiful village is full of galleries, art studios and shops.
A perfect day to collect some souvenirs. We will return to our hotel for dinner.
Diving in the South of France
(diving certification not required)
This half-day adventure will take us on our private boat from the harbour at Mandelieu-la-Napoule out to the Esterel and the Lerrins Islands near Cannes. We will experience an underwater dive with a highly trained instructor who will teach you the basics of scuba diving on a shallow one-tank dive in the Mediterranean Sea.
Palace of Versailles
While Paris has always been the official capital city of France, in practice it was Versailles where government affairs were conducted and political decisions were made.
The major features of the Palace were built between 1682 and 1710 and are truly a sight to be seen. Aside from its amazing architecture, Versailles’ history also makes the trip a must on anyone’s to do list while in France. As the seat of political power, Versailles naturally became the cradle of the French Revolution.
It was there that Marie–Antoinette was famously alleged to have said, in response to the fact that the French people were starving, “let them eat cake”. Whether or not this was true, the comment was indicative of how the French viewed their King and Queen. During the days of October 5th and 6th, 1789, throngs of people made their way from Paris to Versailles, invading the Palace and forcing the royal family out. Both the King and the Queen were later executed and on August 4th, 1789, the National Constituent Assembly abolished feudalism in France for good.
We will leave our residence in Paris after lunch, and travel by coach to Versailles. Once at the Palace, we will enjoy a guided tour while taking in the gardens and the spectacular fountains, learning about its history and the people of the time. We will return to the residence in time for dinner.
Claude Monet's House & Garden
The charming village of Giverny, just beyond the official limits of the Ile-de-France, has become a place of pilgrimage for art lovers and artists alike. It was here that Claude Monet lived for 43 years, until his death in 1926 at the age of 86. After decades of neglect, Monet’s house, with its pretty pink walls, green shutters, spectacular garden and famous lily pond, has been lovingly restored. Rooms have been restored to Monet’s original designs; the kitchen with its blue tiles, the buttercup-yellow dining room, and Monet’s bedroom on the second floor. You can see reproductions of his personal works, and some of the Japanese prints that Monet avidly collected, displayed around the house. His studios are also open for viewing.
The Garden, with flowers spilling out across the paths, is as cheerful and natural as the house – quite unlike formal French gardens. The enchanting water garden, with its lilies, bridges, mighty willow, and rhododendrons, is across the lane that runs to the side of the house, and can be reached through a tunnel.
We will leave the residence before lunch and travel by coach to Giverny. Upon arrival, we will explore Monet’s fabulous garden and take a tour of his house. We will be back at the residence in Paris in time for dinner.
Vimy Ridge & Arras
We will depart from Paris after breakfast and travel just under two hours to the site of the Canadian National Vimy Memorial, one of Canada’s most important overseas war memorials to those Canadians who gave their lives in the First World War. It was constructed as the National Memorial for the 60,000 Canadians who died and is located on the site of the Battle of Vimy Ridge fought 100 years ago.
The Memorial was designed by Canadian sculptor Walter Seymour Allward after his proposal was selected from 160 other submissions by Canadians who participated in a competition held in the early 1920s. Construction of the memorial commenced in 1925 and took 11 years. The official unveiling was on July 26, 1936, by Edward VIII during his short reign as King of Canada. In attendance at the unveiling were French President Albert Lebrun and over 50,000 Canadian and French veterans and their families. In 2007, the Memorial was completely restored and unveiled again.
At the base of the Memorial, these words appear in French and English:
To the valour of their countrymen in the Great War
And in the memory of their sixty thousand dead
this monument is raised by the people of Canada
In the afternoon we will drive to the town Arras home to famous architects, composers and scientists. In Arras you will take a tour of the town, as you walk through the square you can take a moment to appreciate the beautiful bell tower, as well as the local market at Place des Heros. Then it is off to the catacombs, and the famous WWI Underground. We will return to our residence in Paris in time for dinner.
Whether you’re a ride-loving thrill seeker or looking to take a picture with your favourite character, you’re never too old for a day at Disneyland Paris.
Roller coaster lovers make sure to experience Big Thunder Mountain or Space Mountain or take in Disneyland Paris’ latest creation Ratatouille, the 3D adventure ride in the dark!
We will depart from our residence in Paris by private coach and travel approximately 45 km to Disneyland. We will return in the early evening. Our tickets include 2 parks, Disneyland Park and Walt Disney Studios.
July 29th – August 23rd, 2019*
(Flights, Accommodation, Meals, etc.)
|Taxes & Fees||$800|
|Tuition & Supervision||$3,050|
Courses, Choose One
- English (ENG3U)
- Core French (FSF3U)
- Extended French (FEF3U)
- French Immersion (FIF3U)
- Visual Arts: Photography (AWQ3M)
- English (ENG4U)
- Core French (FSF4U)
- Extended French (FEF4U)
- French Immersion (FIF4U)
- Classical Civilizations (LVV4U)
- Visual Arts: Photography (AWQ4M)
- Aix en Provence: 4 days
- South of France 7 days
- Paris: 13 days
A final list of Accommodations for 2019 will be updated closer to the program date.
*All dates are subject to change.
**Plus $195 registration fee. Includes group airfare arranged by Blyth Academy and an estimated $800 in airline and departure taxes, local taxes and fees. Please visit www.blythsummers.com/fees for an explanation of our departure taxes, fees, and surcharges, and when these fees will be invoiced. All itineraries, excursions, dates, departure taxes, fees, and surcharges are subject to change.
***Please visit www.blythpoints.com for more details on funding your program through Aeroplan points.