Guadeloupe is an overseas region of France in the Caribbean’s Lesser Antilles and your French classroom for the next three weeks. It’s actually comprised of two islands — Basse-Terre which boasts towering mountains and lush tropical forests, and Grande-Terre with its white sandy beaches and thriving coral reefs. This is your jumping off point for a language adventure that will ultimately lead to greater proficiency in French and a deeper appreciation of the French Creole culture. Head out on a hiking excursion in Guadeloupe's spectacular jungle terrain. It’s clear why the Carib Indians called this place Karukera or 'Island of Beautiful Waters' as you kayak to your campsite on this tiny palm fringed island. The history of the French West Indies comes alive experientially.
A cultural experience like no other
Sainte Anne grabs hold with its beautiful beaches, swaying palm trees and quaint village. Here begin formal French language studies. Spend your mornings at a language school studying and conversing with experienced language instructors in small groups. In the afternoons take it out into the streets, conversing in real-world settings and soaking up the festive island atmosphere. Visit vibrant local markets where women dressed in colorful Creole attire sell everything from fresh mangoes and papayas to local Caribbean crafts. Spend a weekend living with a local family and participate in 'sorties en famille' - family outings with your hosts. Participate in drumming, traditional art and cooking workshops, and learn the history of the Creole culture through hands-on experience.
Take a study break
Try your hand at surfing in the turquoise blue water off the shores of St. François. Your experienced French surfing instructors teach the art of catching the perfect wave. Each wave carries you deeper into the soul of French Caribbean culture.
Make meaningful connections
Language exploration continues in quiet, beachside town of Le Moule, where host families welcome you into their homes. Use your growing conversation skills to work on an oral history project, engage in community service, spend an afternoon at the beach with your host family, participate in an African drumming workshop and maybe even challenge the locals to a volleyball match. This second homestay experience allows you to compare life in two different communities and gain a deeper understanding of home-life across the island.
À la prochaine fois
For the final adventure of your journey, set sail to the nearby island of Marie-Galante. Dotted with plantations and distilleries, this remote location was historically used for sugar cane farming. As you wander rural roads past ox drawn carts, lazy stalks of cane and sleepy fishing villages, feel a sensation of true discovery - much like the island inhabitants of yore. This is the perfect way to bring your unique French Caribbean experience to a tranquil close.