School Trips to CERN

School trips to CERN are invaluable for science students learning outside the classroom. The largest particle physics laboratory in the world, CERN brings together scientists from all corners of the globe to research and advance our knowledge on matter. Since it was founded in 1954, CERN’s main aim has been to answer the big questions – from understanding the centre of the atom, to looking into what the universe is made of and how it works. It’s the number one visit for Science school trips.

Famed for its work on poignant particle studies, such as The Higgs Boson and The Large Hadron Collider, CERN currently employs around 2500 people, but houses research facilities that are used by scientists from far and wide. For Science and Technology students hoping to learn more about particle research CERN offers excellent guided tours and two permanent exhibitions to explore. If you are taking a tour for French students to improve their language skills in the beautiful city of Geneva, CERN will always be a unique visit not to be missed.

Schools visiting CERN

During a guided tour around CERN, students take part in a highly informative introduction to the research undertaken, with an accompanying short film. Then, a volunteer will show them around experimental areas, with the chance to see an accelerator first hand.

Both students and teachers will also be able to visit the centre’s two permanent exhibitions at their own leisure. CERN’s Universe of Particles exhibition showcases the centre’s scientific breakthroughs and ongoing missions, looking at how the great questions of contemporary physics are explored via the Large Hadron Collider.

Alternatively, the Microcosm exhibition explores the mysteries of the universe and the apparatus used by physicists, looking more closely at accelerators and detectors and how they’re used.

For a little more insight about what you can expect when visiting CERN, this short video features Large Hadron Collider Project Leaders, Lyn Evans and Lucio Rossi, discussing the launch of the machine and how it’s progressed in its 10-year history.

CERN for teachers

For teachers, CERN offers free inspection visits, which include a guided tour and a chance to ask questions before you bring your students along. These visits are a great way to get to know the centre, and will need to be booked directly with CERN, two weeks ahead of your preferred date.

Our top tips for CERN

"If you haven’t been before, do an inspection visit. CERN does offer a free teacher visit on a guided tour but you can only book it two weeks in advance. The places go very fast and by the time I had filled the form out there were no places left. However, I still turned up at CERN when I visited Geneva and they were very accommodating. I had a good chat with the receptionist who answered questions about the group tour and I also got to see the Expo and Museum where we were also able to answer questions. I would recommend you just turn up and you will get a good idea of what you will cover with your students."

"Book your school tour of CERN on time, I didn’t confirm the Geneva trip with WST until I knew I had confirmation of the CERN tour. WST told me when my dates would be coming available on the CERN website, so I diaried this in advance so I was ready when our dates came up."

"Geneva public transport is free and easy to use You can get your free tickets at the airport in baggage handling area. It can be easy to miss the machine, so make sure you don’t leave baggage reclaim until you’ve got your tickets. "

Graham Brooks top tips for organising a school trip to Geneva

Book your trip

Planning a school trip to Geneva? If you’d like to speak with our team about an itinerary featuring a visit to CERN, get in touch today.

Please note that visits to CERN will need to be booked directly via their website by the school trip leader. Reservation slots are available up to 9 months in advance, and more information about the booking process can be found on the CERN website.

Our specialists can help to create bespoke itineraries for specific school trip subjects. We’ll arrange everything from educational tours and workshops to accommodation and travel, to make sure your trip goes smoothly.

Click here to request a quote today.