Living in Nantes

Guest Post by: Foster Marketing Senior Quentin Lebeau. He is a Foster School Undergraduate who participated in a Foster Exchange at Audencia Business School in Nantes, France in Fall semester 2018.

Before enrolling in the study abroad program, I had never heard of Nantes. Out of everyone I talked to, no one else had hear of it either. Yet, Nantes is the sixth largest city in France, and located about four hours west of Paris. It’s a city that has gone through some dramatic changes over the last ten years but it still retains its roots as a town full of history and character. The town is highlighted by a castle, cathedrals, and a vibrant island on the Loire River. The island was historically a ship building station, but has since been converted into a hip, industrial styled island. There was a mechanical workshop, featuring an iconic life-sized, moving, mechanical elephant. The island also housed most of the nightlife in town.

In the beginning, Nantes took some getting used to. At first, before I had made friends, all the negatives of the town stuck out. The city was dirty, the river was brown, there wasn’t a whole lot to do. However, as I started to make a group of friends, the city began to transform. The stores were quaint and unique, the bars were fun, the architecture was gorgeous. Everything started to come together. The nightlife was really fun, whether it was bars with friends, or large parties through the school. I found a gorgeous running area in the trees along the river, that reminded me a lot of home, and was a great substitute for whenever I felt homesick. Additionally, I joined my school’s (Audencia Business School) basketball team. It was a great way to meet the locals, and it was through basketball that I made a lot friends. Through all these social and athletic events I was able to thoroughly explore the city. In the end, I really loved all the time I’d spent in Nantes.