Activities included in the ESA Program

Museum Visits

ESA arranges for you to visit a number of museums and monuments as part of its Civilization program. This year's group visits include: Ste. Chapelle, Notre Dame, the Louvre, the Musée d'Orsay and more!

Walking Tours

ESA offers two options with most of its walking tours: a visit in French or a visit in English. Feeling adventurous? You may want to do the French walk and see how much your ability to speak the language is improving!


During these tours, we'll explore a variety of different neighborhoods: St. Germain-des-Prés, the Latin Quarter and the Marais. Watch the bulletin boards, too, for impromptu tours offered by ESA faculty for those interested in exploring new quartiers de Paris!

walking tour

Cultural Events and Activities

ESA participants will participate in several cultural enrichment activities: an evening at the opera, a choice between a visit to the Picasso Museum or a Street Art Tour and dinner in a local restaurans.


  • Cultural evening at the Bastille Opera house:
    • Opera (La Cerentola, Cinderella): This classic French fairy tale is set to music by Rossini. Click on the link above to see a short video from an older production of the opera. OR see the romantic Ballet, La Sylphide at the beautiful Paris Garnier Operahouse.
  • Gourmet Dinner
    • We will dine in a wonderfully French bistro. Que c'est bon!
  • Art & culture for everyone
    • You'll visit the exceptional Musée du Louvre, as well as the Musée d'Orsay.
    • We're working on getting reservations for the Musée des Arts Foraines-- a carnival museum in Paris. Hope you're good at pedaling-- our carousel turns by participant pedal power! And, don't worry! our visit will be in English!
  • Day-long Excursions:
    • Passport to see the sites at Versailles. Includes admission to all the chateaux, an audioguide visit to the main apartments and admission to the extensive gardens.
    • Excursion to Meaux to visit the Musée de la Grande Guerre, then off to the beautiful private chateau of Vaux-le-Vicomte, where you can enjoy a leisurely lunch, explore the grounds and visit the beautiful castle.
    • We'll spend a morning in Giverny, visiting Monet's home and gardens then head to Rouen where, after a lovely lunch in an auberge, we'll see the beautiful Rouen cathedral and wander the medieval streets.