The Good Life

Dear JMU students,

I’ll be running Exploring the Good Life in Scandinavia in the Summer of 2024. Stay tuned! Meanwhile below is information on past programs, fyi.
You can find the official information (including an explanation of the coursework) and application here.


Basic Information:

On June 13th, you will arrive at Copenhagen airport (CPH) and be transported to housing in the heart of the city. Accommodations will be provided by the Danish Institute for Study Abroad. You will have shared rooms, kitchens, laundry, wifi, and access to bicycles (Copenhagen is the world’s most bike-friendly city). You will get meal stipends to cover all meals (apart from a few group meals we provide). You will also be given subway passes, although Copenhagen is quite compact.

We will have a designated classroom where we will meet each day. This will likely be on located on the Strøget, Copenhagen’s main shopping and people-watching street. We will have formal class meetings for about an hour and a half per day.

On June 25th (or thereabouts), we will take a high-speed train to Stockholm, which takes about five hours. Once there, we will check into our rooms at the Zinkensdamm Hotel in the Sodermalm (“South district”) area of the city. As in Copenhagen, you will be given meal stipends and unlimited subway passes, and we will have a designated classroom provided to us by DIS.

On July 2nd, you are free to go and will fly out of Stockholm’s Arlanda airport (ARN).

Copenhagen Highlights:

img_0153We’ll start in Copenhagen, which was recently voted the world’s most livable city. On June 13th, you’ll have an orientation to the city, provided by DIS.

Highlights of our time here will include:

A guided tour of Christiania, a free-spirited commune in the heart of the city.

A food tour in which you’ll sample both traditional and modern Danish cuisine, learn about the New Nordic food movement, and maybe even sip some microbrews.

A bike tour to the seaside fishing village of Dragør.

A nature experience outside of Copenhagen (hiking and/or kayaking).

Small group dinners with local English-speaking host families.

Two guest lectures from DIS faculty, focusing on Danish language and culture.

A daytrip to Helsingør including a tour of Kronborg (Hamlet’s castle).

A bike tour focusing on urban planning and well-being.

Free time to explore areas of interest, which may include the seaside Louisiana Museum, Carlsberg Brewery, the Forgotten Giants, the new ski slope built on the side of a power plant (yes, really), or just enjoy wandering the city.

An evening at Tivoli Gardens: thrilling rides, live music, and a nightly fireworks display…if you can stay up late enough. Because, remember, the sun won’t set until after 11 p.m!

Stockholm Highlights:

Stockholm is Sweden’s vibrant seaside capital. Fun fact: Stockholm is made up of 14 islands, connected by 57 bridges!


Exploring Gamla Stan, the charming old city, which dates back to the 13th century.  We’ll take a ghost tour and learn some secret, creepy history of the area as well.


Skansen, a outdoor museum preserving the folk traditions of Sweden, complete with native animals.


A guided tour of the Vasa Museum.

A ferry ride to the Stockholm archipelago, a chain of over 30,000 islands, which begins just outside of Stockholm and extends east into the Baltic Sea.

A daytrip to Artipelag museum, which includes hiking in the area (the museum is located in a forest reserve).

A guest lecture by a DIS faculty member on Swedish Language and Culture.


Fika, fika, fika. The traditional Swedish coffee break is a daily must-do.

Free time to visit areas of personal interest, which may include the Nordic Museum, the Abba Museum, the Royal Palace, or even the Icebar.

Discussions of happiness, savoring, and the good life in parks, gardens, and by the sea. Scandinavians don’t waste a precious moment of summertime, and neither will we!

You’ll fly out of Stockholm on July 2nd with a deeper, first-hand understanding of why Scandinavians are some of the world’s happiest people. You might also decide to incorporate some of what you’ve learned into your own life! SAMSUNG CSC

Questions? Interested in applying? November 1st is the deadline. Contact me at