Top 6 Locations to Study Spanish Abroad

December 03, 2012 3 min read

Spanish is a useful and fun language to learn, but who likes sitting in a classroom back home? These 6 locations allow you to immerse yourself in a new part of the world and practice the language you are learning!
Located at the tail end of Mexico, Guatemala is one of the most beautiful countries in Central America.  From ancient Mayan ruins to vast jungles leading up to the base of enormous volcanoes, Guatemala has an awesomely diverse range of places to discover.  What makes the country even more appealing is that the dialect of Spanish is very basic, slow and easy to understand.  In addition to the fact that you don’t need to be a linguistic expert to understand Guatemalan Spanish, it is also considered to be the cheapest place on earth to learn the language.  Three popular cities with great schools are San Pedro La Laguna, Antigua and Quetzaltenango.
This country may look small in comparison to its neighbors, but don’t be fooled, Ecuador packs a wicked punch of culture, adventure and diversity.  Spanish schools are a dime a dozen throughout the lively beach towns and large colonial cities of Ecuador and the prices are the 2nd cheapest in the continent (behind Bolivia).  In a continent where Spanish varies greatly from country to country, Ecuador reigns supreme in being the easiest to understand and learn.
The absolute cheapest country in South America, Bolivia is a more adventurous option for training your tongue into the quick rhythms of the Spanish language.  La Paz is not only the highest capital city on this planet, but also home to a number of well-established Spanish schools. Indigenous people make up the majority of the population, so the Spanish can vary from place to place, but the price is the best in the continent.
Anyone who has been to Argentina can tell you that the Spanish is by no means an EASY place to learn the language.  The accent is faster than a speeding bullet and they use slang that will never exist in a dictionary.  However, Argentinean Spanish is considered to be the most sophisticated and beautiful dialect of Spain’s mother tongue. If you are looking to master the language and speak with an air of eloquence, Argentina is the place to go.
While the majority of people flock to Central and South America for the opportunity to learn Spanish, many people overlook the motherland of the beautiful language.  Spain is one of the cheaper countries in Western Europe and Spanish schools are plentiful all over the country.  While Spain does use vocabulary and tenses exclusive to only their country, it will give you the absolute best background in the language.  Unlike Latin America, Europe is chalked full of countries with a ton of different languages.  Instead of being surrounded by Americans and Canadians you will find your Spanish classmates to be from a variety of different countries which can make the learning experience more interesting.
What was once a playground for cocaine gangsters is know a phenomenal location for learning Spanish. While the accent isn’t always the easiest to understand, Colombian Spanish has a unique flavor unlike any other country. Many South Americans consider Colombian Spanish to be the most romantic form of Spanish in Latin America. As Colombia is slowly becoming a big tourist destination because it is not as violent as it used to be, Spanish schools are popping up all over the country. Cartagena, Medellin and Bogota are places that are hubs for Spanish learning. Don’t be afraid of Colombia’s past reputation, because it is more of perception than a reality.
By Alex Vere Nicoll

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