Experience the rich cultural diversity of China on a high school study abroad program that will introduce you to remote ethnic minority cultures in China, including Miao, Dong, Buyi, and Zhuang communities. Learn about the history of these cultures and current government policies affecting these minority communities. Spend time in the beautiful and remote rural landscape of southern China. You will be introduced to field plowing and rice production and will learn about traditional crafts and trades such as papermaking, watercolor painting, batik, embroidery, weaving, and blacksmithing. Contrast daily life in rural communities with life in the cities of Beijing, Shanghai, Luoyang, and Xi’an.
Begin your exploration of China’s cultures in the capital city, Beijing, where you’ll see important sites such as Tiananmen Square, the Forbidden City, and the Great Wall. Next, discover the rich history of Luoyang, one of the four great ancient capitals of China. Visit temples and learn about the history of Buddhism in China. Spend time in Xi’an, one of China’s oldest cities. Take Chinese language lessons and see important historical and cultural sites, including the famous Terra-Cotta Warriors. Two homestay experiences—one in a city and one in a rural village—will allow you to experience daily life in China in very different contexts.
Throughout the program, you’ll attend performances of traditional dancing and singing and see stunning natural sites such as Huangguoshu Waterfall National Park and Moon Hill. End your experience in China with three days of exploration and reflection in Shanghai, where you will visit a number of important sites such as Yuyuan Garden, Old City, Longhua Temple, the Museum of Contemporary Art, Nanjing Road, and The Bund. Chinese high school students will accompany you during portion of the program.
Embark on your immersive journey at the southern tip of continental Africa in stunning Cape Town, where you will learn about South Africa’s complex past and explore breathtaking sites, such as Table Mountain and the Cape of Good Hope. You will visit the country’s historical landmarks, such as Robben Island, where Nelson Mandela spent 18 of his 27 years in prison.
From there, continue to either Kranshoek, an Afrikaans-speaking community, or Kwanokuthula, a Xhosaspeaking community, for a homestay with a South African family. During the homestay, you will work on a service project alongside members of the community, take Afrikaans or Xhosa language lessons, and participate in hands-on music and drumming workshops. As you travel north, you will experience the KwaZulu-Natal Midlands, the natural splendor of Mpumalanga, and a two-day safari in Kruger National Park, where you might spot elephants, lions, zebras, and rhinos in their natural habitat.
Your Experiment concludes in Johannesburg, South Africa’s largest city, where you will intensify the focus
on leadership and social change. Visit important historic landmarks and the Apartheid Museum to better understand the country’s transition from apartheid to democracy. Explore the arty and business-forward neighborhoods of modern Johannesburg and complete a project on social or ethical entrepreneurship.
To learn more and view a sample itinerary, visit experiment.org/ZAM.
At the conclusion of this program, each student will earn a community service certificate noting the number of hours of community service completed.
Get to know your group in Mexico City before beginning your journey to La Paz, where you will meet with researchers and work closely with a marine biologist. Snorkel among colorful schools of fish and observe sea lions in their natural habitats on the beautiful island of Espíritu Santo, a UNESCO Biosphere Reserve. During your homestay, live with a Mexican family and experience daily life. Practice your Spanish as you explore the region’s incredible natural wonders and culture with your host family.
As the program moves to the Yucatán Peninsula in southeastern Mexico, you will experience a totally new natural environment. On the island of Cozumel, learn about pearl farming and witness ecosystem restoration efforts through the installation of artificial reefs. Do the night shift of turtle nest patrol to hopefully watch giant sea turtles laying eggs in the sand. See the starfish at El Cielo to learn why they call it “the sky.” Back on land, you will discover the region’s strong Mayan cultural influence through visits to the archaeological ruins at Coba or Tulum.
Your Experiment concludes in Mexico City, where you will deepen your knowledge of Mexico’s culture, history, and cuisine from the vantage point of the country’s expansive capital city. Taste authentic tacos, visit the famous cathedral in el Zócalo, and stroll through the Frida Kahlo Museum.
To learn more about this program, visit experiment.org/MXM.