Cultural Visits and Activities

University Programme
  • The Summer School organizes many cultural and social activities.The Summer School organizes many cultural and social activities.

The Summer School proposes a variety of cultural visits to give participants the opportunity to discover the city of Paris, as well as French history and culture. It also offers a full slate of social events and outings that will allow students to get to know each other outside the classroom. Activities take place after class during the week and also on weekends.

Activities fall into two types:

  • Open activities are available to all students of the programme, at no additional cost. Sign-up is usually not required in advance.
  • Optional activities are available to students on a first-come, first-serve basis. Sign-up is required, as is an additional fee, with Sciences Po students receiving considerable group discounts at major tourist attractions.

The following activities have been offered in past summers:

Open Activities

Seine River Cruise: Discover Paris from its best vantage point, the Seine River. As part of Orientation, all Summer School students will have a chance to take a river cruise with the Vedettes du Pont Neuf. You’ll learn about some of Paris’s most famous landmarks, from the Musée du Louvre to the Eiffel Tower, all while kicking back your feet and working on your suntan.

Speaker Series: The Summer School's Speaker Series is an opportunity for participants from all academic tracks to interact with a variety of public and academic figures from the Sciences Po community and French society. These conferences allow participants to discuss key issues with experts and thus further their understanding of France and Europe.

Apéro Hours: Discover the French traditition of the apéro: a drink and light snacks before dinner.  The Summer School interns will organise evenings out in their favourite cafés and bars in different Parisian neighbourhoods.  This is a great opportunity to meet students from outside your classes and discover the best places to go out in Paris.

Continuing at Sciences Po presentation:  Are you interested in continuing your studies at Sciences Po?  Learn more about the different master’s degrees offered at Sciences Po and get your questions answered by a representative from Sciences Po’s International Office.

Optional Activities

Bike tour in Paris: Paris has introduced more and more cycle lanes, car-free districts and bike-only routes in recent years. From the Pont Neuf and the Palais Royal to the Village St. Paul and Ile St. Louis, students will see the city from a different perspective, cycling under the summer sun around some of Paris’s most famous monuments and charming neighborhoods.

Visit to Claude Monet’s Gardens at Giverny: Claude Monet is one of French impressionism’s most famous painters. This day trip will take students to his world-famous garden, outside of Paris – the place where he painted the waterlilies and so much more!  A visit to the Musée des Impressionnismes at Giverny is also included.

French cooking classes: Discover the secrets behind one of French cuisine’s most iconic and delectable desserts: macarons! In this hands-on pastry class, students will put on the chef’s hat and sculpt their own macarons of all different flavors. And of course, students will get to taste-test their masterpieces during a tasting session following the class and take home a box of their creations.

Visit to Normandy: View Normandy's soaring white cliffs on the beach at Étretat, followed by a visit to the charming seaside village of Honfleur. Discover Parisians' favourite seaside getaway, only a day trip from the capital!

Musical Theatre: "The Tower of Monsieur Eiffel." This lively musical tells the creation story of France’s beloved 300-meter monument: the Eiffel Tower. Students will have the cultural experience of seeing a vraie comédie musicale in Paris, in French with English sur-titles.

Visit to the châteaux of the Loire Valley: Join other students in Paris on this excursion proposed by ToBeErasmus, and make the most of your weekend with a trip to the Loire Valley to visit two of its most famous castles: Chambord and Chenonceau. Take advantage of this opportunity to explore the Loire Valley without the hassle of renting a car.

One Man Show: "How to Become a Parisian in One Hour." After more than an hour of intensive training, you will learn how to act like a true Parisian in shops, restaurants, taxis, subways and nightclubs...  Join international audiences, including a mix of French people and expats, for this interactive comedy show in English that pokes fun at the behavior of residents of the French capital.

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