Your Experiment begins in the northern mountain city of Chiang Mai, home to hundreds of ancient temples. You will visit the city’s famous sites, explore lively street markets, and discover Buddhist temples as you get to know your group. A cooking instructor will help you shop for the freshest ingredients at a local market, then teach you how to whip up traditional Thai dishes with the items you buy. You will stay overnight at a Buddhist temple and learn about the cultural importance of the art of meditation. Introductory Thai language lessons will prepare you to communicate with your host family during your homestays.
As your Thai journey continues, you will live with a Kon Muang family in a lowland northern village in Chiang Mai province, and then with a Lisu family in a hill tribe in Chiang Rai province. Together, you will work on a community service project, such as teaching English to young children, helping build a natural water dam, or assisting with reforestation work. You will continue to develop your Thai language skills as you interact with locals.
The northern region’s lush tropical valleys and highlands will be your backdrop as you embark on outdoor activities such as trekking, zip lining, and visiting an elephant park. You will also visit Sukhothai, the first capital of Siam and a UNESCO World Heritage Site, before traveling to the seaside town of Hua Hin to explore the breathtaking beaches. Your Thailand exploration wraps up in Bangkok, where you will visit sites of cultural and historical importance, such as the Grand Palace and the Temple of the Emerald Buddha.
To learn more and view a sample itinerary, visit experiment.org/THS.
At the conclusion of this program, each student will earn a language 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.
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.