Can anyone recommend any good language schools in Nicaragua? I'm looking for something that has a a homestay option.
I'm actually doing two weeks at the San Juan del Sur Spanish school, and it offers a homestay. I haven't done any other research in Nicaragua for this, I wanted to be near a beach so this seemed like a good option. I get there on February 28, so if you aren't leaving for a while, I'll tell you how it is!
Could you let me know how that Spanish school works out? And more importantly, how the beaches are?!
I definitely would NOT recommend this Spanish school. I prepaid for two weeks and spent just four days there. The school was awful, nothing like the website. The class was on the porch of someone's home. You could barely hear the teacher speak because of all the noise coming from the street. The teacher also had no lesson plan and there was no structure to the school so I found the classes to be absolutely pointless. There are too many English speaking tourists in that town anyway, so it was not the best place to go if you are really trying to learn Spanish.
I went to three beaches, the one in town, Maderas, and another beach about 5 min away. The one in town is nice but no one really goes swimming there. Maderas is a great place to surf, and the other beach I went to (can't remember the name) was nice but small. Let me know if you have more questions. I was in Honduras for two weeks prior to San Juan. I took Spanish classes there too and loved it. Had I known how Nica was, I would have stayed in Honduras.
That's terrible. Can't believe you had to waste your cash to find out.
But thanks for letting me know- so happy I didn't book in yet! Have picked out another which got really good reviews on Trip Advisor- the Spanish Ya school. Hopefully will be better than your experience, although I'm just going to book a week to be on the safe side.
I can't wait for Honduras- I hear the diving is amazing and really cheap. It's a pity you weren't in Nica first. I'm track to track down a few good surf spots in Costa Rica. Was thinking Quepos and Samara. Any opinions on those? I'm a beginner!
That's funny, the only other place I've traveled to besides Nica/Honduras was Playa Samara for a month in 2007 - very nice town, beautiful beach! If you are taking classes there as well I would definitely recommend the school. It's right on the beach, the teachers are very nice and they offer activities each week too. The actual town is pretty small, but it's fun. There are about five or six bars, restaurants and the beach is clean. Nice place to kick back and relax.
brilliant, decision made! I've heard really good things about Samara so will definitely give it a go. Tough to get to but I reckon it'll be worth it. Thanks for the info.
If you come across any tips for El Salvador, Guatemala and Belize, I'd love to hear!
From San Jose I remember it was a 6 hour drive to get to Samara. I went in November toward the end of the rainy season, and it was definitely a rough ride! Found the roads in Honduras/Nica to be well paved for the most part. Haven't been to El Salvador or Belize yet (unfortunately)... I'll have to find a way to return soon.
How long are you traveling for? Where are you starting/finishing?
Flying into CR on 3rd April and out of Belize on 29th May. Then I'm heading to Italy and France and maybe Northern Spain. I say this now but I have no idea where I'm going to get the cash from!
How long more are you traveling for? I think I'm doing the trip in reverse to most people, south to north, but I'm hoping (?!) it will work out weather-wise. Where are you off to next?
I think I may be best skipping Quepos, not sure how I'd get to Samara from there, and I'm more keen to get somewhere like Samara. Really don't know what I'm getting myself into with all these bus trips- I'll probably get my bag nicked on the first leg!
I'm already home, I was only gone for three weeks. I wanted to keep going but didn't want to spend the money since I don't have a job - so here I am looking for one wishing I was still traveling.
Sounds like a good plan you have there. And depending on your itinerary/budget you may be able to get on some nice buses. TicaBus, TransNica and Hedman Alas are very comfy.
Oh disaster! But if it's any consolation it's meant to be a nice summer..?!
Had actually only heard of TicaBus, so thanks a mill for the other names- can maybe widen my search a little.
Good luck getting a job- just think once the money starts coming in again, you can book your next trip!
Hi, I plan to retire In Nicaragua & I know I need to learn Spanish. I have surfed the internet and located 60+ schools. From readings on Forums/Blogs, students comments vary, as some find a school great but others find the same school as bad. It could be a bad teacher or it was a wrong choice for you. For now I offer my Web site that lists the 60+ schools. It also includes a Forum Index page and an Information Index page, to help understand Nicaragua.
The schools are by city/town and by price; it has the Web name of the schools; you can select to go to the school's Web site. I rely on this list plus forums to narrow my choice.
Bye from Paul
Here is the web site: www.nicaraguaspanishlanguage.com
There is a Spanish School at the Laguna de Apoyo Cultural Center that is very good. It is now direted by Donaldo Silva. The school was originally established over 20 years ago and has recently been renovated and is back under its original management. The web site is under construction but you can learn a little from http://apoyoculturalcenter.tumblr.com/about. Besure to check the archive for some lovely pictures of what the place has to offer besides spanish lessons
I spent a week learning Spanish at the Lake Apoyo Spanish School in Nicaragua in 2010. My teacher was excellent. She quickly figured out my strengths and weaknesses then worked on my weak spots. I really enjoyed the activities they planned including playing Monopoly in Spanish, taking narrated walks through the beautiful area surrounding Lake Apoyo and learning about the local culture. Lake Apoyo is really a wonderful, natural spot to learn a language because you can lose yourself in the tranquility of the place. Additionally the cooks make fantastic meals based on local and organic food products. They really created some exceptional vegetarian dishes for dinner. The director of the Spanish school is quite knowledgeable about the area. He is very helpful when you have any questions. He can facilitate excursions such as birdwatching, Scuba diving and kayaking. The students who come here are diverse and from all over the world. It is entertaining to sit around and chat with others during mealtimes. Since a biological research station is also on the property, there are volunteers conducting research there. I saw squirrels, birds, fish, bats and gorgeous butterflies being studied. It was really fascinating, and it's nice to know that my money is promoting conservation. You can check out their website at http://www.gaianicaragua.org