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5 Things To Do During a Gap Year

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Kimberly Manning

A gap year is a valuable experience for recent high school grads and college students alike, offering unequivocal life skills and a broadened perspective. There are countless things to do during a gap year and truly depend on the experience you’re hoping to have. 

Where There Be Dragons gap year programs encourage students to be immersed in a new community. From the modes of daily transportation to the type of accommodations, students are ingrained in the day-to-day routines, traditions, lifestyle, and culture. 

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Things to Do During a Gap Year

Each of our gap year programs offer a uniquely different experience in locations such as Southeast Asia, Morocco, Bhutan, Senegal, and more. Consider the focus of study, length of the program, and location when deciding the best gap year program for your goals. 

Learn Backcountry Skills

Our backpacking and remote programs help students develop skills to survive in the wilderness and gain knowledge of how humans interact with the land past and present. Students build leadership and backcountry skills, such as pitching a tent, understanding weather patterns, and navigating trails. While trekking through remote wilderness and diverse ecosystems, students explore changing landscapes, study indigenous land rights, and learn resource management. 

Senegal Travel Abroad

Photo by Christy Sommers, instructor.

Visit Historic Religious Monuments

Visiting historic religious and spiritual monuments offers a truly unique perspective into the history of a culture and its traditions. During travel abroad, students are encouraged to observe traditions and read relevant texts to gain a greater perspective of the region and its people. Religious and spiritual monuments can be eye-opening experiences for many students. 

Experience Traditional Culture

From food to shelter to transportation, students on gap year programs engage with cultures in a way that is otherwise impossible. When traveling abroad, students will do day to day activities with their homestay family and fellow participants. Dragons programs are fully immersive, so students learn about daily routines as well as locally important issues, movements, history, policy, ecology, and more.

Senegal Travel Abroad

Study a New Language

The easiest way to learn a new language is to be immersed in communication in that language. Students in all Dragons programs participate in language instruction and are encouraged to engage in conversation. These conversations are believed to offer the most benefit for students to build a vocabulary and gain cultural understanding of the language. 

Contribute to Local Community Projects 

Are you hoping to offer your service to local communities during your gap year? Contributing to local projects offers value to students as well as the areas in which they serve. Where There Be Dragons prioritizes learning service, which is a holistic experience of learning, engaging, and communicating with local communities on projects that create positive impact.

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