Study Spanish in Costa Rica

What could be a better way to practice your language skills than immersing yourself in a native speaking culture when you study Spanish in Costa Rica? This tropical study abroad program may combine in-classroom learning with practical application. Translation? You could work with your professors as part of your scheduled course and then almost immediately apply those same skills and knowledge outside in the real world! Living and learning (in Spanish!) in the bustling city of San Jose might be a great way to learn the language in a way textbooks might not cover. For example, you probably have never had to learn how to order your favorite coffee, pick up drinks at a bar, or request your favorite songs as part of a textbook scenario! There’s new and exciting ways to expand your Spanish speaking capabilities throughout sunny San Jose!

Keep reading to find out more about what you could learn when you study Spanish in Costa RIca!

Learning Abroad When You Study Spanish in San Jose Costa Rica

When you study Spanish in Costa Rica, you might have a great opportunity to develop your language knowledge and skills under the tutelage of a native speaker. Since Spanish is the primary language of Costa Rica, it makes sense that the capital city is overflowing with chances to test your capabilities. That doesn’t mean actual tests, though, more like using your skills to navigate the city, order food at restaurants, call a taxi, or just say hi to your new neighbors.

Switching to an entirely different language may be intimidating to some students. Not to worry! Since San Jose sees a great deal of tourist traffic, you might also still hear your native tongue as well, either from shopkeepers or fellow internationals. This may make adapting to the constant Spanish usage easier. You might have to get used to saying “como se dice…” for the first few months, but by the end you could be confused for a native speaker!

What makes Spanish classes in San Jose even better is the climate. Yes, the climate! Thanks to Costa Rica’s location near the equator, no matter which semester you choose to study Spanish in Costa Rica, you could enjoy warm, sunny days. Who wouldn’t want to enjoy studying in the tropical temperatures instead of freezing at home?

Of course, those warm temperatures also make for perfect exploring weather. Keep reading to see what adventure might await you outside of your classes!

Say “!” To Exploring San Jose!

San Jose is a bustling metropolis with many nooks and crannies for international students to explore. What’s great is that many adventures could be shared with a group of friends, so be sure to bring your new peers along (or ask your Costa Rican classmates for a grand tour!).

For those with a taste for the ornate, start your city tour at the Museo de Oro Precolombino y Numismática. This museum houses some of Costa Rica’s prized artifacts – many of which are made entirely out of gold! You might even get a glimpse of some ancient currencies. If gold isn’t your thing, you could always head to the Museo de Jade which houses, you guessed it – jade! Pair both museums together for some very expensive eye candy. Or, if strolling and seeing the native culture is more your thing, why not take a walk-through Plaza España. The plaza offers views of beautiful, historic architecture that has since been converted in boutiques, restaurants, and hotels. Whether you’re into art-deco or Victorian structures, there’s plenty to see and do in this open-air plaza. Once you’ve finished your day sightseeing at the plaza, you could meander to Mercado Borbón to grab a bite to eat. The market is not only a great place to shop for exotic fruits and vegetables, but also a perfect way to sample authentic Costa Rican cuisine. Bring an empty stomach and try dishes from the multitude of street vendors.

What should you order, though? Great question! Studying abroad in Costa Rica could be the perfect opportunity to try some adventurous eating. Chicharrón might be a popular snack that may be found in many bars and other hangouts. This crispy fried pork dish is deliciously salty – think bacon! Accompany it with a glass of local beer and sit back and watch some of the local sports teams! Soccer, of course, is a popular choice. Or, if you’re really hungry, you might want to hunt down a plate of olla de carne, a beef stew that is sure to stick to your ribs. This dish combines many Costa Rican staples such as plantains, shyote, corn, and cassava to create a bowl filled with authentic native flavor!

These are only a few examples of what you could see, do, and eat in Costa Rica. Ask your peers for recommendations to visit in your time off.

To Study Spanish in Costa Rica Could be a Click Away

Get ready to say “hasta manaña” to your home university and “hola” to Spanish classes in San Jose. Or, in the beginning, you might have to stick with English (only for a little bit)! To find a perfect program, continue further down this page for a list of potential study abroad programs. To request more information from a particular program, click its associated link and then “request info.” Good luck!

Featured Program Information


  • CISabroad

  • SPI Study Abroad

  • Lingua Service Worldwide, Ltd.

  • Greenheart Travel

  • College of DuPage

  • BridgeAbroad

  • COINED International

  • Center for Study Abroad (CSA)

  • Alliance Abroad Group - Australia

  • University of Southern Mississippi

  • ILISA Instituto de Idiomas

  • Language Vacation

  • Febo International Studies Abroad

  • INEX - International Network for Educational Exchange

  • Florida State University

  • Outward Bound Costa Rica

  • Languages Abroad

  • NRCSA - National Registration Center for Study Abroad

  • Truman State University

  • ICADS

  • University of Costa Rica

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