Why and Where to Learn Spanish in Mexico
Differences of Mexican Spanish You Must Know
With its rich cultural heritage, amazing food, and famous beaches, Mexico attracts tourists from all over the world. One of the chief reasons to learn Spanish in Mexico is to justify a trip to this amazing country for an extended period of time!
Having a Mexican Spanish immersion can be a very rewarding experience if you know what to expect from the schools you choose to attend, the cities you select to live in and the culture in Mexico overall.
First things first, lets learn about the main nuances and differences of the Spanish you will be learning in Mexico in comparison to that of other Latin American Spanish speaking countries.
Differences of Mexican Spanish You Must Know
- Mexican Spanish grew out of a fusion of 16th century Spanish and indigenous influences.
- Do you know that Mexicans still use many terms that would be considered archaic in Spain, as well as words derived from indigenous languages like Nahuatl and Mayan?
- In order to use these indigenous words, you will need to learn some extra letter combos such as tl and tz, plus new pronunciations for certain Spanish letters. These combinations don’t exist in other Spanish speaking countries.
- Another quirk of Mexican Spanish is that speakers tend to pronounce their consonants very fully. This is different from most Spanish-speaking countries, and it actually makes it easier for students to learn.
- My favorite aspect of Mexican Spanish is the way speakers pile on the suffixes to change the meaning of words.
For example, you can change “grande” (big) to “grandísimo” (very big) in any Spanish-speaking country. But in Mexico you can also say grandisísimo (very, very big) and even grandisisísimo (very, very, very big). And you can do this with just about any word!
Where to Learn Spanish in Mexico
If you want to learn Spanish in Mexico, here are a few cities to consider. I chose them because of the culture they offer, the low cost of living and the opportunities you could have to learn Spanish fast and make the process smooth.
Study Spanish in Mexico City
The nation’s capital, Mexico City is a huge, sprawling metropolis that can feel very crowded, dirty, and overwhelming to people who are not used to city life.
If you study Spanish in Mexico City, you will find yourself immersed in a vibrant, bustling community and surrounded by art, culture, and history. You will never be bored!
Mexico City is also a great choice for students wanting private lessons, as you can find many tutors at very affordable prices here.
The advantage of a private tutor is that they can tailor the Spanish lessons to whatever you need to learn, like medical Spanish or business Spanish.
Learn Spanish in Guanajuato
When you want to learn Spanish in Mexico the small college city of Guanajato makes a refreshing change from the frenetic pace of Mexico City.
In Guanajuato, cars mostly stick to underground tunnels, leaving the narrow, winding cobblestone streets to the pedestrians.
This hillside city is filled with picturesque plazas, churches, and pastel colored houses decorated with wrought iron and flower boxes.
There are plenty of students here and people are always hanging out on the streets, so it’s easy to find people to practice Spanish with.
Learn Spanish in Oaxaca
If you want to experience a little bit of everything Mexico has to offer, choose Oaxaca.
This beautiful town is charged with culture and it is famous for hosting one of the most recognized Latin holidays in the U.S., El Día de Los Muertos or the Day of the Dead.
This small mountain city has a walkable downtown filled with colonial architecture and friendly people.
The surrounding villages offer traditional craft markets and the chance to explore some of Mexico’s indigenous heritage. A famous archeological site, Monte Albán, is also nearby.
When you feel tired of sightseeing, you can relax at a cafe with a plate of the distinctive Oaxaca cuisine or head to one of the many beautiful beaches in the area like Bahías de Huatulco. Just remember that beaches are far from Oaxaca city, about 8 hours by bus and 30 minutes by plane.
Spanish Immersion in Puerto Vallarta
Why not treat your learning adventure like a time to relax and learn? Puerto Vallarta offers this unique opportunity.
The resort city of Puerto Vallarta is one of the most popular tourist destinations in Mexico. Both foreigners and Mexicans from the capital love to vacation here.
If you want to spend your mornings learning Spanish and your afternoons relaxing beside the Pacific Ocean, Puerto Vallarta is a great choice. Some of the best beaches are Punta de Mita, Sayulita and San Francisco, Playa Conchas Chinas and Quimixto.
These are my top city recommendations for learning Spanish in Mexico. These city encompass culture, low cost of living and excellent Spanish learning opportunities.
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