Spring Semester Study Abroad in France programs offer undergraduates the opportunity to combine learning with discovery of a country that is well-known as being a global center of art, science, and philosophy.[i] As a backdrop, the metropolitan, or European, area of France extends from the Mediterranean Sea, to the English Channel and North Sea as well as from the Rhine to the Atlantic ocean. Bordered by Belgium, Luxembourg, Germany, Switzerland Ital and Monaco, Spain and Andorra, you can only imagine the variety of cultural influences and spectacular geography that helps to make France so unique. In fact, France has the fourth-largest number of cultural UNESCO World Heritage Sites in Europe! [ii]
Why Consider a Spring Semester Study Abroad in France?
Your undergraduate options are open so why consider a Spring Semester Study Abroad in France? Spring Semester Study Abroad in France programs offer undergraduates the opportunity to combine learning with discovery during a time of year where the weather is mild, gardens are blooming, and the outdoor life in the towns and cities can be enjoyed. While studying in France means focus on academics, you still want the option of seeing some of the major attractions, open air markets and outdoor cafes and Spring is usually when France comes alive.
Wherever you land, landscapes!
France has spectacular landscapes. From the vineyards in Burgundy, the fields of lavender in Provence, the mountainous French Alps, to the coastline of the French Riviera. Spring Semester Study Abroad in France programs are offered in a variety of popular cities and towns. Choose your home base and fit in excursions to explore your extended surroundings. In fact, many programs have optional side trips, so while you have a host home for the semester, you can also branch out.
FUN FACT: Spring is known as ‘printemps’ in French, from old French ‘prins’ (first) and ’temps’ (time as in weather).[iii]
If winter has had you cooped up, spring time in France may rejuvenate your soul. Part of the French culture is walking through open air markets. Pick up fresh croissants and a café au lait or a baguette, some fresh Brie, grapes and a bottle of local wine. Or, visit specific towns for the items that are locally made – pottery tiles in Aix-en-Provences, soap in Marseille. Finished shopping? Sit at an outdoor café or Bistro and people-watch.
Paris in Spring
Ah Paris! Iconic city that it is, Paris does come alive in Springtime, with its city fairs, the Paris Marathon, the French Open and Museum Night, where the museums stay open late and let everyone in for free. Choose a spring semester study abroad in Paris, France to have Paris as your home city for a term.
Study during the week and go spring skiing on the weekends? If you are studying in Grenoble, you are already in the Alps, so plan for some great outdoor sports. Weather in March may still be on the chilly side in some parts, and the ski resorts may still be in peak season. On the other hand, France is ranked as the first tourist destination in the world[iv] so if you are there for the museums (the Louvre!), getting to France ahead of the summer tourist season is a great idea, both to avoid long lines and also, it may be easier on the wallet; high season- high prices in some cases.
Festivals in France
If you are choosing a Spring Semester Study Abroad in France, it should be partly for the courses and programming and partly for what the season could have in store for you that pairs with your interests. France has no shortage of exciting festivals especially in Springtime. Visit the salon du livre de Paris (the Paris book fair) in March, the Bourges Music Festival in April, the Cannes International Film Festival in mid-May and the Annency International Animation Film Festival in June[v].
Spring semester is when you are free, so you want to make sure France is a great destination for you academically. Use the site to select a specialty or just browse the sponsored listings. These might include studying French language and culture in Paris or Toulouse. France is known as well for art, business, fashion, architecture, and advances in science, engineering and technology.
Find a Spring Semester Study Abroad in France
Finding a Spring Semester study abroad in France may take a little research on your part, as there are so many choices in terms of programs, providers and locations. Your home base should be a place that excites you as well as answers the practical needs of your undergraduate degree. Make sure to read the details of each listing and contact the tour company to find out more and stay on top of application procedures and the nitty gritty of whether you need a student visa.
[i] en.wikipedia.org/wiki/France |[ii] en.wikipedia.org/wiki/France |[iii] http://frenchmoments.eu/spring-in-france/eu/spring-in-france/ |[iv] en.wikipedia.org/wiki/France|[v] eu/spring-in-france/ | other sources: about.com/od/provence/ss/Markets-In-The-South-Of-France-From-Provence-to-the-Cote-dAzur.htm | parislogue.com/planning-a-trip/spring-in-paris.html |