Best Cities to Learn Spanish in Spain
& Language Differences You Must Know About
Many people believe that the best place to learn Spanish is Spain, the birthplace of the Spanish language.
When you study in Spain, you will feel yourself becoming part of a centuries-old linguistic tradition. Plus, Spain offers a taste of Europe.
You can spend the days soaking up the old-world charm of the ancient cities and castles that crown Spain’s hilltops, and the nights partying at hip, modern nightclubs.
Best Places to learn Spanish in Spain
Here are my top picks for people who want to learn Spanish in Spain and each city has a link with all the information you may need to make a decision!
Study Spanish in Barcelona
This is Spain’s cultural capital, the lively city of Barcelona overflows with art, architecture, and culture.
It is particularly famous for the many buildings designed by Antoni Gaudí, such as the Sagrada Familia Cathedral. In between Spanish classes, you can relax in the city’s many beautiful parks or stroll along Las Ramblas, Barcelona’s main drag.
Even though Barcelona’s main language is Catalán you will have no problems learning Spanish here. You can still find good Spanish classes, and believe it or not, you will be able to practice what you learn because locals speak Spanish also!
Study Spanish in Madrid
Spain’s capital city of Madrid bustles with activity at all hours and offers an exciting backdrop for your Spanish studies.
While in Madrid, you can supplement your Spanish lessons with trips to the famous Prado Museum, the Royal Palace, and the Bullring. Don’t forget to catch a soccer game at Bernabéu Stadium!
The only potential drawback to studying in Madrid is the local accent, which sounds like a lisp to an English speaker. However, you can easily avoid picking up this accent yourself.
Learning Spanish in Salamanca
Salamantinos speak some of the purest Spanish you can hear in the world today, making their city very popular with students. The locals are friendly too, so it’s easy to get out and practice your Spanish with them.
History enthusiasts will love learning Spanish in Salamanca. Not only does this city feature one of the oldest universities in Europe, it also includes many historic cathedrals, castles, and towers.
As a university city, Salamanca has plenty of bars and other student hangouts where you can kick back with a beer and tapas.
There are programs throughout the U.S. that gladly accept credits from the Salamanca University, making this a great opportunity for students pursuing their masters in Spanish teaching.
Study Spanish in Granada
If you find big cities overwhelming, Granada is the place for you. This small university city is best known for its unique Moorish history and culture.
While in Granada, you can visit the famous Alhambra palace and learn about the 800-year reign of the Moors in Spain. The quaint Albaicín neighborhood serves as another reminder of this time, as do the many local tea shops.
Granada’s nightlife is not as vibrant as Madrid’s but it does offer more chances for outdoor activities. You can spend your weekends skiing in the mountains above the city or sunbathing on the nearby coast.
Important Differences in Spanish Language
When choosing where to learn Spanish, bear in mind that Spain is the only country that uses the “vosotros” verb forms. This means that if you learn Spanish in Spain, you may have to memorize verb endings that you will never use in any other country.
It all depends on your Spanish teacher’s philosophy and the type of Spanish you want to learn. No matter where you learn Spanish in Spain, you will be sure to find delicious food, excellent wine, and friendly people.
Best Spanish Learning Software
My Reviews of Tell Me More & Rocket Spanish
Wanting to complement your Spanish learning adventure by learning Spanish ahead or after coming back? Check out my top 2 recommendations for Spanish learning software. I tested them myself and remember, I am a native Spanish speaker from Colombia, which has one of the best Spanish you can find in South America!
Benefits of Studying Spanish in Spain
A culture you enjoy makes you speak. Overall, there are many benefits of simply studying a language abroad. However, studying Spanish in a country like Spain, where the culture is captivating, really forces you to engage and use Spanish much more than you would have at home.
Instead of American TV, Telemadrid would playing in the background many afternoons. After class you would go to lunch with Spanish-speaking friends to Spanish-speaking restaurants. Your life will become a Spanish lesson!
Educating your ear to learn a different Spanish. A second benefit is that by encountering a different kind of Spanish from the one you normally hear in the U.S., educates your ear to different and new sounds of Spanish.
You will find new words will came more naturally. By the end of your program, you will have accomplished more in learning Spanish in Spain than you could do in a whole year of studying it at home.
Disadvantages of Studying Spanish in Spain
Spain may be more expensive to study Spanish than other Spanish-speaking countries, but it is worth it! Pick any one of the cities mentioned above, and you’re sure to have a great learning time!
When learning Spanish in any city in Spain, you may have a difficult time at first because of their pronunciation of z, j, and y. Besides, it is the only country that uses “vosotros”.
What is Next?
You probably work on your Spanish speaking in class for only an hour. Afterwards, you probably go right back to your English classes and you English-speaking friends.
Many American Spanish learners say that Spanish words inside a textbook don’t speak to them. Take this as a great incentive to learn Spanish in Spain, you will not regret it!
Think about enrolling into a program to learn Spanish abroad. Talk to people you know who have done it… They probably loved it.
As you review the program’s website and brochures think about the opportunities that will open to you once you decide to go to Spain. Also, you don’t have to stay away for months, but could go for weeks instead.
So go ahead, what are you waiting for? Plan and start your Spanish Learning adventure in Spain.
All Pictures by Marcela Hede