So, do you think you might want to learn Spanish in Costa Rica? Even if you haven’t thought about, maybe you should start, especially if you want to learn Spanish quickly.
Costa Rica is well known for its language schools, many of which can be found in and around San Jose, the beautiful highland areas in the north, and at the beach. So if you want to combine surfing and Spanish lessons you could certainly do that in Tamarindo. Or if you prefer bird watching in the highland cloud forests of Monteverde, that’s possible as well.
Why learn Spanish in Costa Rica?
Costa Rica has a multitude of activities in a relatively small area. You can go scuba diving, hiking, surfing, and ride a horse all in the same day. Also, the Spanish spoken here is not heavily accented.
Trust me, this makes the process much easier. I’ve traveled through all of Central America, Cuba and Spain and this makes a huge difference. Learning the language here will leave you speaking in a clear and easily understood accent. When I was in Panama with a Colombian friend even he could barely understand a Panamanian traffic cop due to his heavy accent. Cubans, Argentinians, Chileans and Puerto Ricans, while lovely, fun people, often leave me scratching my head with their thick accents.
Choosing Costa Rica to learn Spanish will give you a solid base to start from...then you can move on to appreciate the other distinct accents and inflections of Latin America.
How to Learn Spanish in Costa Rica...Faster!
Most Spanish language schools in Costa Rica offer you a home-stay option, which I highly recommend. I lived with a family when I studied Spanish, and it really forced me to practice the language. Fluency in Spanish only really came to me when I was living with Spanish speaking roommates. To learn Spanish in Costa Rica was a highlight of my stay in the country and it really helped me create lasting friendships and connections within the community.
Programs normally last between one to four weeks, though some schools offer programs up to six months long. Daily instruction usually lasts three to five hours, though more intensive courses of study are available. Of course I recommend that you spend as much time as possible, buteven one week can do wondersto solidify conversational Spanish skills.
As a final word of advice, I highly recommend against spending all your free time with fellow English speakers. It's hard not to do when you’re meeting so many cool people, but I found that spending so much time speaking English outside of class really slowed my progress and I’m sure I could have learned much quicker. So make a commitment to yourself that when you come to learn Spanish in Costa Rica that you give it all your focus, I assure you it will be worth it.
If you want to get a head start, I highly recommendRocket Spanish, an online program at half the price of some competing language programs with all the same features. They even offer a free 6 Day course to get an idea of what the program is like. Since I already speak Spanish, I'm using their French program and it's great!