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Rio

Azul

Sebastian - 2015

5 weeks in La Laguna, Jacaltenango My journey started in the north of Guatemala when I met two German guys who spent time in La Laguna as well to improve their Spanish skills. They recommended me the place and I followed- here are the reasons why and to whom it refers. La Laguna is a small village which its 1600 habitants and 700meters over sea level. Of course here you will not find party, cinemas or big city life, therefore a warmhearted and authentic atmosphere which is best. For those looking for an authentic life with locals to get to know about real life the place is best. In total I lived 5 weeks with a local family and definitely have been part of the family. They treated me like a member who lived for more than years here. I had my own accommodation, 3 meals a day, fruits whenever I wanted and they really took care of me. In my free time we went to different places, spent time with other family members, went for fishing, to play soccer or whatever I wanted to do. Whatever is your wish to do or to see or to get they will make it come true. At all who really would like to learn Spanish the place is best because here are no other tourists and that is why there were no other languages spoken except Spanish. After school you can practice your skills in the family or with people in and around the village. About school: I started my lessons as beginner and just spoke a little Spanish before coming here. In total I spend 3 weeks at school and had private lessons 5 hours a day for 5 days a week. That is why the teachers are following your own level and skills. You will discuss what is important for you what will you improve or achieve. For sure it is luxury that you can take your lessons outside in the garden if you want to. During the lessons you will be served with tea coffee fruits or others appetizers. For sure it´s tiring to learn 5 hours but if so you can arrange a special schedule everything is free with you. The director Abelino is responsible for school, teachers and will visit with you different places as well. After my stay here I definitely know about farming, fishing, problems with rubbish or politics, local life and of course Spanish. I definitely took and still take advantage of my stay and would like to highly recommend to others who have same goals and expectations which I had. I´m really grateful for the chance I had and looking forward to come here again. If you have any questions feel free to contact me at Sebastian.WR@web.de


Kate - USA - 2009

I spent two enjoyable weeks in La Laguna at Spanish School Río Azul. My host family was incredibly generous and helpful. The teacher I had was patient, thorough and knowledgeable. There is little tourism in the area, but there are many many things to do. I enjoyed hikes, a history lesson, a trip to a little-known cave very nearby, and some strolls to the nearby Río Azul, which is a great place to cool off on a hot afternoon! I can´t emphasize enough the generosity and energy of the school´s director, Don Abelino, who plans and goes on all of the excursions and provides lots of support and information to the students. If you are interested in Guatemalan history and politics, and the issues affecting the region now, Don Abelino is a superb resource. This is an excellent place for people who desire a full immersion in Spanish--there are virtually no people who can speak English--and who want to really get to know about the realities of living in this small borderlands town. Be prepared to participate fully! I give this school my high recommendation.

 

Clive Marks - USA - 2009

This is not Antigua! Or even Xela. This is a rural Guatemalan village where you can learn Spanish and experience a part of Guatemala that is very different than the tourist Guatemala.  True, there are no movies, concerts, fancy restaurants or hot showers. But you will be able to immerse yourself in the Spanish language with the help of qualified teachers on a one-on-one basis.  And you will live with a family that is anxious to share their food and customs and help you learn and practice Spanish.  While the people in this village are poor, they are very friendly and helpful.  Very near the village is the beautiful Rio Azul.  Most importantly, you will experience rural Guatemala, not through books, but through actually living here and getting to know the situation and people.