With this in mind, here’s our pick of the best places to jet off to this autumn if you want to learn Spanish…
1. Nerja, Spain
This small, attractive town on Spain’s south coast is full of Andalucian charm with its white-washed buildings, flower-laden balconies and decorative ‘azulejo’ tiles. Go in the autumn and you’ll miss the summer influx of visitors but still be able to sit outside to enjoy a plate of sizzling paella under some warm Mediterranean sunshine.
2. Morelia, Mexico
Mexico is a memorable place to be when Day of the Dead falls on 2nd November. Contrary to how it sounds, this is an uplifting and rather heart-warming fiesta whereby people remember and pay tribute to friends and relatives who have died. Morelia, just 60km from Pátzcuaro, which is renowned for its traditional music, dancing and feasting at this time, is a great place to base yourself.
3. Sámara, Costa Rica
Those coming to learn Spanish in Costa Rica may think they have died and gone to linguistic heaven when arriving in Sámara. 5km of soft white sand fringed by palm trees, in a protected coral reef bay, is a setting worthy of a few postcards home. If you need an excuse to stay a while, our 12-week Spanish & Volunteering course is your answer: the perfect way to immerse yourself in the culture and help on genuine projects in the local community.
4. Quito, Ecuador
Surrounded by the impressive snow-capped peaks of the Andes, at nearly 3,000m, Ecuador’s historic capital is celebrating the country’s Bicentenary of Independence from Spain. Heritage buildings such as the Presidential Palace, the Wax Museum and the Museum of Contemporary Art will help you trace the struggle for independence from the beginning of the 19th century, whilst you can be sure the locals will be toasting the victory with their own fiestas…
5. Salamanca, Spain
With the new school year upon us, the university city of Salamanca is the perfect place to head if you want to improve your Spanish. Doing for Spain what Oxford does for England, and Bologna for Italy, this is a prestigious, historical and lively centre of learning – a place where students flock as much to study as to soak up the atmosphere and have fun. The GCSE / A Level Revision course in October half term is perfect motivation for younger learners.