Early July - Mid August, 2023
Early July - Early August, 2023
*Program dates include online sessions to prepare students prior to travel and synchronous interviews to complete final assessments after travel. Dates are subject to change.
- Costa Brava
- The Algarve
9:1 Student to Staff Ratio
Why Take this Program?
Exploring the shores of the Balearic Sea in Barcelona and the edges of the Atlantic coast of Lisbon, we travel across this diverse land of art and culture. From the romantic writings of Miguel de Cervantes in Don Quixote to the magical realism of Gabriel García Márquez’s, One Hundred Years of Solitude, you will be mesmerized by the genius and depth of human creativity. Whether inspired by a glorious sunset in the Algarve or enjoying an afternoon in Gaudi’s Park Güell, this program is sure to engage and leave a profound impression on your life.
What People Are Saying
Every morning I woke up with a zest for life because I know each day will bring something incredible. This trip has completely redefined the way I feel about education. MEI is "school" in the most epic way possible.
Student, Term 3 Europe: Kingdoms, 2019
Explore this program's detailed itinerary for a sense of the journey ahead!
Online Foundation Work
Reading lists will be posted on your program site in early May. Online pre-departure sessions with your teachers and classmates begin one week prior to departure. These virtual sessions are designed to introduce you to your classmates, teachers, and course work. Our goal is to prepare you to hit the ground running and reduce your workload onsite.
Day 1: On the day of departure, we meet at Toronto's Pearson International Airport. Here, we unite as a group to distribute coursepacks, T-shirts and MEI Journals. After a meet and greet, we board a flight to our first location.
Days 2-6: We continue our travels with a stay in Spain's beautiful capital—Madrid. Cervantes' Don Quixote is our literary backdrop as we discuss the development of the modern novel. Whether wandering its elegant boulevards, exploring the Prado museum, or admiring the city's golden glow as the sun sets, this Spanish metropolis captures the imagination and is a perfect location to start our English program.
Days 6-11: Barcelona has been an inspiration for writers and artists for over two thousand years with its vibrant colours, unmatched architecture, and Catalan cuisine. Here, we develop our writing skills and practice character development along Las Ramblas, poetry in Gaudi’s Park Güell, and travel writing in La Sagrada Familia, all between lunches along the Mediterranean and dinners in the Gothic quarter. If we’re lucky, we may even catch a glimpse of the world famous soccer team.
Days 11-15: The deep blue of the Mediterranean affords us a respite from the energy of Barcelona as we settle into our hotel along Spain’s rugged coast. Sunrises along the beach and an afternoon climb through coves and hills that dot the coastline make for an excellent location to focus on academic analysis of our primary summer readings. Masterclasses on essay writing and one-on-one editing sessions allow for tailored feedback that help hone our skills in finding literary meaning. The coastline provides the ideal backdrop for our final family dinner as we share stories about our summer adventure.
Days 15-20: Next, we depart for Portugal and arrive in its illustrious capital—Lisbon. Here, students refine the branding of their blog sites and continue to post advanced social media content. Performing artists fill the streets, and Portugal’s famed Fado music can be heard each night in this ancient port city. Our classes vary between finding and capturing hidden gems with various lenses and developing students’ ‘Carpe Deim’ projects.
Days 20-25: The Algarve provides us with a beachside village where we balance our time between completing academic work and exploring the footpaths and caves along the coast. This southernmost region of Portugal sees almost 3000 hours of sunshine a year, making this an ideal location to settle into writing workshops, presentations, and evening podcasts on the beach.
Departure from Lisbon Airport on Day 25
Online Final Evaluation Week
Upon your return, you have time to complete additional research and pull your work together before your final one-on-one online assessment. This week allows you to reflect on your travel experiences and integrate them into the course material. MEI staff have found this style of evaluation enjoyable and the most authentic way for students to demonstrate their knowledge and academic skills.
- Ministry-approved credit(s) upon successful completion of the course(s)
- Custom course pack
- Student Login
- MEI journal
- MEI T-Shirt
- Digital yearbook
- Hotels and accommodations
- Breakfast and dinner daily
- Entrance fees to all course-specific sites
- Return airfare from Toronto's Pearson International Airport
- Approximate airline departure taxes, surcharges and fees
- Airfare between countries
- Transportation between hotel locations via private coach
- Transportation for all listed program excursions
Program Fee Does Not Include
- Local Transportation
- Course texts
- Medical Insurance and Cancellation Protection†
- Non-refundable $95 Registration Fee
† All students travelling with MEI Academy are required to purchase Medical Insurance.
**Program cost does not include non-refundable $95 registration fee or any airline taxes or fees. Please note the possibility of increases in airfares and land costs prior to departure. Any increase must be borne by the individual participant.