Learning Spanish is one of the most rewarding experiences in life. Not only does it open doors to travel immersively in amazing destinations like Spain and South America, but it also provides many cognitive benefits including greater memory skills and multitasking abilities. Indeed, studies suggest that learning a second language can thwart the onset of dementia! Undoubtedly, the best way to become fluent in Spanish is to head to a city such as Barcelona and take courses at a language school.
There are many schools to choose from in the buzzing capital of Catalonia, however one stands out above the rest: Camino Barcelona. Located in the heart of the city, Camino Barcelona runs high quality Spanish language courses with fully qualified teachers. No matter your level – be it beginner, intermediate or advanced – everyday you will leave the classroom with more confidence to practice Spanish on the streets. Students are placed in classes with enthusiastic tutors who help them get a step closer to fluency.
In addition to courses, Camino Barcelona can organize the accommodation for your entire stay. From apartments and residences, to host families – learning a language abroad has never been so easy! Another feature of this Spanish school are the cultural activities that you can participate in with the teachers – helping you see all of the city sights and live like a local. Before we go any further covering Camino Barcelona’s programs, let us discuss why learning Spanish in “Barna” is such a wonderful idea.
What are the Main Advantages of Learning the Spanish Language?
More than 550 million people speak Spanish globally, making it the fourth most spoken language on earth. By learning the basics you will be able to communicate with locals in Spain, Latin America and even the United States of America where the largest minority group are Hispanics. No less than 20 different countries have Spanish as their primary language, which opens up a world of opportunities for travelers who want to immerse themselves in these destinations on a much deeper level.
Being bilingual is fantastic for your career as well. You could secure a job in a Spanish speaking city such as Barcelona, Buenos Aires or Medellin and utilize your language skills for multinational brands. Even certain remote work these days requires Spanish. If you get good enough, you might consider teaching online. Regardless of the job title or industry that piques your interest most, putting a second language on your resume always helps you stand out from the crowd and impress discerning employers.
Another great thing about Spanish is that it introduces you to a new culture. Whether it be architecture, books, cuisine, history, music, etc. – understanding it can give you a broader range of perspectives. You may get inspired by Gaudi style architecture or fall in love with the poetry of Jorge Luis Borges. Spanish makes you a more well rounded and internationally minded person – and since it’s considered one of the easiest languages to pick up for English speakers – learning it is such an enjoyable process!
Why Barcelona is the Greatest City on Earth to Learn Spanish
Although Barcelona has the Catalan language, Spanish is still the most widely used lingo here – making it the perfect place to brush up on your Español. In fact, a large chunk of the residents come from other parts of Spain and South America too, meaning there are no issues finding native speakers to practice with. In between studying at the Barcelona language school, you can converse with a diverse set of people – from bus and taxi drivers, to waitresses and bartenders, to shopkeepers and street artists.
Hearing Spanish all around you, and having mini-conversations, takes you a long way to fluency. Since Spaniards speak at a fast rate, you will be thrown into the deep end and forced to sink or swim. Although this might feel difficult at the beginning, in due time you will be capable of keeping up. In fact, learning Spanish in Spain is an advantage because once you conquer it here you can speak it anywhere. If you ever travel to countries like Ecuador or Peru afterwards, you will be surprised at how slowly they talk.
Apart from the Spanish, of course, Barcelona is just a beautiful city to be in. When your head starts to hurt from studying the difference between “ser” and “estar” or wrapping your mind around “el subjuntivo”, you can simply wander to the nearest tapas bar for a much-needed cerveza. On your days off, you will be blown away by how much there is to see and do. For example: strolling down La Rambla, admiring La Sagrada Familia, taking photos at Park Güell or watching the sunset at Bunkers del Carmel!
Best Language School in Barcelona: Camino Barcelona
Hopefully by now you are sold on the idea of learning Spanish in Barcelona at a language school, so it’s time to explain in why Camino Barcelona is the best in the business. For starters, they have a 4.8/5 rating on Google from over 750 satisfied customers. Students continuously sing the praises of Camino for providing a holistic experience – rather than just classes – with events running every single day of the week like free guided walking tours, food and drink tastings, shows and cultural activities, and more.
Their extensive Cultural Program is composed of seven activities per week, a different one each day (including weekends). This helps the students discover the real Barcelona while honing their Spanish language skills. Furthermore, no other school in Barcelona offers its own on-site and off-site accommodations. Staying in one of the on-site superior apartments means you will be located in the same building as the school, and in the city center itself, and sharing the apartment with other international students.
Perhaps the most special accommodation though is at a Spanish host family. Camino Barcelona is connected with 70 different families who live within a 20-minute radius of the school. The close bonds you form, plus having to speak Spanish on a daily basis with the family members and drastically improving your language skills, creates a truly once-in-a-lifetime experience! Yet, the main reason why Camino is the go-to place for learning Spanish in the Catalan capital is their world-class teachers and courses.
World-Class Spanish Courses at this Barcelona Language School
Camino Barcelona receives the highest Cervantes accreditation, something reserved for only the best Spanish schools. Importantly, the teachers are native speakers and the programs are designed to be both efficient and enjoyable – combining rigorous learning with plenty of fun. Participants can choose between the super intensive courses, semi intensive courses, DELE exam preparations or long term courses – providing students with options tailored to their aims and time restraints.
The super intensive Spanish courses are ideal if you want to hit the ground running and learn as much as possible in your available time. Five classes per day and 25 classes per week, running from 09:30 till 14:30 pm, enables you to go from novice to expert quickly. The fifth class of the day is dedicated to a workshop where you engage in a conversational lesson – practicing the crucial oral component of the language. Despite being super intensive, the course still gives you plenty of time to explore Barcelona!
On the other hand, the semi intensive Spanish courses allow you to progress in a less intense fashion: 10 lessons per week (two classes a day). Alternatively, there are the long term Spanish courses which last for up to a year – at the end of which you will definitely be speaking like a native Spaniard! This is the ultimate language immersion for those who want to take a gap year, prepare themselves for a career in a Spanish speaking country or simply wish to embrace an exciting new challenge in their life.
How Long Does it Take to Become Fluent in the Spanish Language?
The best things in life take time and Spanish is no exception. Going from beginner to advanced depends on the level of commitment you are making. You can put in hundreds of hours at classes back home and not progress because all languages need to be put into practice. That is why it’s recommended to join a language school in a Spanish speaking destination like Barcelona where the immersion fast-tracks the process. In all likelihood, you can reach fluency in half the time just by spending time there.
For some perspective, the US Department of State believes it takes about 600-750 class hours for an English speaker to learn Spanish. If you look at the one year course offered by Camino Barcelona, you can see that the 20 hours per week (x36 weeks of study) equals 720 hours. By starting this course at an intermediate level you can finish with skills that empower you to study complex subjects at a postgraduate and PhD level, work in senior management positions and understand difficult conversations or writings.
It’s also important to note that there are several types of Spanish fluency. Some English speakers have never studied the language and are conversationally fluent just from spending time in a Spanish speaking country, or from picking it up from relatives. The “street” version of the language is entirely different from the academic side. Before booking the language school with Camino Barcelona, you should define what your objectives are and then work together with them to forge a plan.
Tips for Learning Spanish at the Best Language School in Barcelona
- Join Private Courses if You Wish to Progress Faster: The intensive small group classes mentioned above are great and all, as there are many opportunities to converse in Spanish with the other students and make new friends. However, not everyone thrives in a group setting. Camino Barcelona also runs one-to-one courses consisting of 10, 20 or 30 lessons per week. These give you personalized attention from the teachers to overcome problem areas – perfect for introverts and serious students!
- Make New Amigos Outside of the Classroom in Barcelona: Making friends in a new city can be difficult but when you get it right the rewards are massive – especially for practicing your language skills. Nowadays, thanks to the advent of mobile apps and social media, there are plenty of creative ways to meet new people. You could join a casual weekly football team, meet up with other expats from your home country or try out the dating scene. Your new amigos will introduce you to local slang in no time!
- Change Every Interaction Point to Spanish: Complete immersion is the only surefire way to become fluent in another language and this means not relying on your native tongue for everyday tasks. Be sure to only speak in Spanish if you are living with other English-speaking international students, change your phone and computer language to Spanish, use Google Maps in Spanish, read books and watch films in Spanish, and listen to Spanish music. You will be surprised at how quickly this technique works!