Lac du Bois

Experience the French language with all of your senses. Hear voices from Toulouse, Québec or the Maghreb, smell la lavande from Grasse or la brioche from our kitchen. Warm up with a chocolat chaud or refresh yourself with grenadine. Feel cloth from Bamako and Alsace and leaf through an old leçon de chose found at abrocante. Play, speak, smile, laugh and dream en français!

Our talented and motivated staff members’ expert instruction in small and large group settings cater specifically to participants’ language abilities. We make sure the session includes ample opportunity for practicing your newfound French skills, as well as for meeting new people and for having fun. We’ll help you improve your French pronunciation, expand your vocabulary, learn new conversational skills, and broaden your knowledge of French-speaking cultures.

Les Voyageurs

The adventure starts at our basecamp where a small group of adult participants will learn about the history of the fur trade, practice canoeing skills, create small and big crafts, and live la vie des voyageurs!

Your fluent guides are well versed in including adventurers from all backgrounds and language levels. We’ll build a community of French-speaking enthusiasts, serenade the trees with historical and modern French songs, and take off on a canoe trip to discover northern Minnesota’s waterways. The rhythm of life on the waters will allow us to learn and practice French. We will find time to reflect and exchange observations in French. Finally, we will return to our base camp to celebrate and share stories.

With native foods like wild rice and maple sugar, Voyageurs in the 1800s learned to live off the land like their Anishinabe (Ojibwe) neighbors. Even today, nearly 200 years after the height of the beaver fur trade, many people enjoy learning about that historical time and re-enacting it in outdoor museums or re-enactment festivals. One of the many things we love to do here chez les Voyageurs is eat amazing food that we cook ourselves over an open fire each day.

This program is for adults, ages 18 and over. It is offered at the Voyageur  basecamp, just down the road from Lac du Bois, the French Language Village.

If you are interested in learning more about what the program is like, the Star Tribune wrote a great article featuring the program.


Our site is in the woods on the Turtle River Lake property of the Language Villages. It has no electricity. The central location of the program is our campfire next to the outdoor kitchen. We live outdoors the entire session and sleep in shared outfitter-quality tents.

Meet the Program Leader