France is one of the most popular study abroad destinations in the world. Students adorent France, and that's hardly surprising, given the abundance of amazing art, culture, and history–and that's before you even factor Paris into the equation. Keep in mind, however, that your experience in France will vary depending on your ultimate destination.
Study Abroad in France: Aix–en–Provence
Provence is one of the wealthiest regions in France. Bordered by the Mediterranean Sea to the south, Provence offers its inhabitants hot summers and mild winters. You can spend your days walking the twisted cobblestone side streets or exploring the numerous fountain–filled, mansion–lined squares in the town of Aix–en–Provence. A college town full of cafés, clubs, shops, bars, and cinemas, Aix–en–Provence is a place of culture, art, academics, and amazing beauty. Students often meet at one of Aix's restaurants for a fantastic meal and a nice bottle of wine before heading out to a jazz club, to the cinema, or for a stroll in the old part of the city. For those who want something a bit more urban, Marseille, the glamorous capital of Provence, is just a short ride away.
Study Abroad in France: Avignon
A walled city in southern Provence, Avignon is a medieval labyrinth of town squares and cobblestone streets. This city of approximately 100,000 people continues to fulfill its historical role as a mecca for the arts. Widely known for its two summer theater festivals, the Festival d'Avignon and the more avant–garde Festival OFF, Avignon brims with places to hear great music, see wonderful art, or take in theater–even when the festivals are not in full swing. If hitting the big city is more your cup of thé, just hop on the TGV, France's high-speed bullet train, for a weekend trip to Paris.
Study Abroad in France: Grenoble
Are you the mountain type? If so, Grenoble, just three hours southeast of Paris by train, might be the perfect study abroad destination for you. With a population of 400,000, Grenoble is a university city located in the French Alps. Additionally, it is the center of France's high–tech industry and home to two of the country's largest and richest natural parks. For these reasons, Grenoble has earned a reputation as a place that is both rich in natural beauty and a center of intellectual and educational activity.
Grenoble draws students of all ages from around the world who want to experience its history, culture, and natural wonders. The surrounding Alpine landscape provides a nice respite from the city itself. You can take the télépherique (cable car) for an exciting ride up to Fort de la Bastille. Once you've arrived there, you can soak up the panoramic view of Grenoble, hike along the many trails, or adventure into the grottes (caves) that were used as cover during a defense of the city centuries ago.
Looking to study abroad in France? The Princeton Review's study abroad advisors can help you find the best program.
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