The students at Melbourne Girls’ College have the opportunity to be involved in a range of international study tours to Asia, Europe and America. Our Languages Department offers an alternating program of overseas study tours to France and China. These study tours are open to all Melbourne Girls’ College students with priority given to those students who are studying the language at the time of the tour. The tours take place in the final week of term 3 and the first week of the September holidays.
The aim of the tours is to provide students with unique in-country cultural experiences and language learning opportunities. They get to visit many iconic places, improve their language skills and meet new people. They learn a lot about the country they visit and about themselves.
2018 International Trips
DAY 1 – Melbourne to Paris
After a year of planning and waiting we were finally leaving to France. Our excitement was building for a little over a year now and the wait was finally over. After arriving at the airport at twelve and saying goodbye to our families we went through security to our gate where we waited to board our first flight from Melbourne to Bangkok with barely contained excitement. We took off at three and settled down to a nine-hour long flight where we watched movies and chatted excitedly about our trip. Although we were all excited at the beginning of the day the flight tired us out and by the time we arrived in Bangkok we were exhausted. We still had two hours to our connecting flight to Paris, so to pass time we played cards and walked around to exercise after being cooped up for so long. When the wait was over, we finally were able to board our next flight. We were all so tired that most of us went to sleep as soon as we got onto the plane. We were on the plane for twelve hours, the longest flight that most of us have ever been on, and at seven the morning, Paris time, we landed. Paris was just as beautiful as we imagined and although we were tired and jetlagged from our long trip over, we were looking forward to what Paris would have to offer.
-Swasti, Bhargavi and Rachel
“Paris is always a good idea”
– Audrey Hepburn
After a very French breakfast of croissants and baguettes, we started our journey to the Eiffel Tower. We bought our lunch from a local bakery (boulangerie) and ordered in French. We then took the Metro (where we saw a French busker!) to ‘La Place de la Bastille’ where we saw La colonne de Liberte. The column commemorates the French Revolution. We then made our way to the Luxembourg Gardens and on the way we passed through the Latin Quarter, where we saw the Pantheon and many French students. Unfortunately, it started to rain a little bit but luckily we could still admire the beautiful scenery and architecture as the rain cleared. Finally, we took a bus and reached our destination of the Tour Eiffel. We took the lift all the way to the top floor and the view was breathtaking! We were lucky enough to see a proposal at the top! Overall, it was an experience that none of us will ever forget. We took the RER train (which was double decker!) and the Metro back to our hotel. After a rest we went for a delicious dinner at an Algerian restaurant called the Café Zerda. We ate couscous with a flavorsome vegetable broth and chickpeas, sausage and chicken. It was an interesting view into the different cultures that have influenced French cuisine.
– Charlie, Anya, Isabella, Ellie
Day 3 – Entry 1
Today was an amazing day! After a lovely breakfast of pastries and fresh fruit, we hopped on the train with our pre-purchased baguette sandwiches, to the Musée de l’Orangerie. At this museum, we got the wonderful opportunity to see firsthand Monet’s Water Lilies, which are recognised as some of the first leaps into impressionist art. Alongside these beautiful pieces, were some artworks by Henri Matisse, Pablo Picasso and Paul Cézanne, just to name a few! We enjoyed this time to view different collections of art, which have been greatly influential in modern art culture. Then we had lunch in the gardens outside of L’Orangerie, facing the beautiful views of Cleopatra’s obelisk and the Eiffel Tower in the distance. After lunch we strolled along the Seine and saw the ornate Pont Alexandre III bridge. We walked past the glass exhibition building and the Petit Palais. On our walk, we were shown the unique designs from the turn of the century and how Parisian architecture was influenced by the world fair. We continued our journey to the Avenue des Champs Élysées, where we got the opportunity to do some shopping for our friends, families, and ourselves of course! We briefly got a chance to see the Arc de Triomphe and take a few pictures before we moved our journey to Galeries Lafayette.
– Lucy, Felicity & Heather
Day 3 – Entry 2
Today we visited many interesting places, including the Musée de l’Orangerie, L’Arc de Triomphe, Champs Élysées and Galeries Lafayette. We started off the day with a fresh baguette and got on the metro to the Musée de l’Orangerie. We saw many different artworks and the one that stood out the most was the Water Lillies by Claude Monet, we then went shopping along the Champs Élysées, which was very entertaining as there were many different shops. We then walked the short distance to the L’Arc de Triomphe which had amazing architecture and detail, which was so different to anything seen in Melbourne. We didn’t climb it just yet, as we had two hours to kill, so we sprinted for the 22 bus to Galeries Lafayette which was massive and fairly expensive. The ceiling was incredible with blue and red mosaic pieces that swirled and twinkled. Finally, after all the shopping was done, we travelled back to L’arc de Triomphe. We climbed over 200 stairs up the spiral staircase to the top which had a marvelous view of Paris. Finally, we rushed back down to the train station and got the train to Bouillon Chartier, where we had a traditional French dinner. Overall, it was a long day but it was interesting and very fun!
– Ruby & Abbey
China Study Tour
On the 14th of September, 20 girls from Year 10 and 11 took a plane from Melbourne and arrived in Xi’an, a city located in the north-west of China. The day after arriving was jam packed with exciting activities including a visit to the extraordinary Terra-cotta warriors, Huaqing Place Heritage Site and a spectacular finish to the day with a buffet and performance at China’s Premier Cultural Entertainment Theatre Restaurant. Our time in Xi’an was spent in awe as we were introduced to our surroundings; the atmospheric markets, breathtaking scenery and the rich history of the city. On the sunny morning of the 17th, our group took a plane to Nanjing, we were introduced to our teachers at Nanjing University and taken on a tour of the scenic campus. The few days we have had in Nanjing so far included morning Chinese classes, sightseeing to the Nanjing Museum and Youth Olympic Park. We have also had the amazing opportunity to visit the students at Zhiyuan Primary School and spent time with them in their classes. With just over a week left of our trip, there are still many activities to experience including a day at Jinling Middle School, a visit to the Sun Yat-Sen Mausoleum, a cruise along the Qinhuai River and dining at the Oriental Pearl Tower (Shanghai). With all of these opportunities will come priceless memories. All of us are incredibly grateful to Ms Chen who was the coordinator of the trip, and the lovely Ms Shi and Ms Holdenson. We are all looking forward to the rest of our time in China and can’t wait for the opportunities that it will bring.
Oh boy! It hasn’t even been a full week yet and we have been plunged into an absolute explosion of Chinese culture. Aside from the delicious cuisine we have been blessed with (If you have never tried hotpot, I would strongly recommend), we have seen some incredible monuments throughout the trip. Though the first couple of days in Xi’an were a little rainy, we didn’t let that stop us from visiting the Terracotta Warriors, the Small Goose Pagoda, Xi’an’s City Wall and not to mention the Tang Dynasty Theatre!
We are currently in Nanjing right now and we are lucky enough to be attending classes at Nanjing University, where we are learning how to speak confidently and apply our prior knowledge of the language and put it into real life situations. Last but not least, this afternoon we had the privilege of visiting Zhiyuan Primary School and experience a variety of different after-school classes including: Hair-braiding, Ukulele playing, Basketball, Singing, Coding and more!
I am having an amazing time on this trip and I can’t wait to see what else is in store for us.
- – Veronique
2017 International Trips
New York & Los Angeles U.S.A. (Art)
On 26th of March we jetted off on the third MGC Arts, Design and Culture trip to New York City and Los Angeles in the United States of America. Thirty students from Years 10 – 12 and three staff spent fifteen days exploring the Arts offerings of these two cities. The influence of these two cities on the Arts is incalculable. This unique experience will not only encourage the students to further explore their own art, it will also positively enrich their lives.
See below for a first hand account of the Los Angeles leg of our journey from one of our students.
Head of Visual Arts
NEW YORK leg 2017
On the 26th of April, 30 students from years 10 – 12 student and 3 teachers jetted off to New York and LA for the bi-annual arts and culture trip. Spending 10 days in New York, we experienced a wide range of New York culture, walking through the streets of midtown and Manhattan, taking the subway all around the city and venturing over the Brooklyn bridge and buying hotdogs from a street vendor! We were also fortunate enough to experience a wide range of important artistic landmarks of New York, with visits to galleries such as MoMA, the Whitney, the Brooklyn museum, the Met, the New museum and Dia Beacon.
In addition to immersing ourselves in art, one of the other highlights of this trip was seeing the Broadway musical Hello Dolly with the incredible, Bette Midler! We are all so grateful for this amazing opportunity and for the guidance of our teachers. It has opened our eyes to new ideas and perspectives and given us inspiration for the future.
LA leg 2017
During the term 1 holidays a group of 30 students and 3 teachers visited America on an art trip. One of the stop offs was Los Angeles, where we spent the last four days of our adventure.
We went to places like LACMA and MOCA, both of which displayed different types of art while focusing on different areas of art studies. A highlight of LA was The Broad. The Broad is an art gallery owned by a couple with hundreds of art pieces from artists including Jean Michel Basquiat, Andy Warhol and Keith Haring.
Other experiences included visiting the fashion district, Universal Studios and going to the Santa Monica boardwalk. Overall the trip inspired me to widen my work variety and explore different concepts in art.
Space Camp U.S.A. (STEAM)
In September 2017, 21 brave students will set a heading for the United States of America to test themselves at Space Camp in Huntsville, Alabama. Here students will live like an astronaut in training. They will experience Orbiter, Space Station and Mission Control simulators. They will design and test their own virtual Mars Rover and experience weightlessness through scuba diving scenarios. They will have the opportunity to meet other cadets from all over the world.
Following the official graduation ceremony from Space Camp, students will board a flight to Orlando, Florida. Here they will visit Kennedy Space Centre and have lunch with an astronaut. They will also complete an indoor skydiving experience and visit the Florida Everglades. Students will also get to visit Disney’s EPCOT and Magic Kingdom.
This camp aims to promote collaboration, creativity, critical thinking and communication skills in our students and develop their love of STEAM fields.
Head of S.T.E.A.M.