It could be one of the best decisions you ever make about your education if you choose to study Spanish in Salamanca, as this ancient university town has a high pedigree when it comes to learning and provides the perfect backdrop for Spanish courses that will really take you to the next level of your language skills.
There are a great number of high quality language schools in Salamanca, drawn there by the educational heritage that the city proudly boasts. The second oldest university in the world is based there, as it was founded almost eight hundred of years ago in 1218. Teaching in the city has actually existed since 1130 – an impressive statistic, since the previous settlement was decimated by the fighting between the Kingdom of Leon and the Caliphate and was only properly resettled in 1102. It rapidly became one of – if not the – most important academic centres in Europe, with a prestigious reputation and many extremely important scholars and intellectuals based there. Miguel de Cervantes, author of Don Quixote and known as the father of the modern novel, was educated at the university, as were Hernan Cortes and a great host of other notable names. Christopher Columbus is just one of the impressive names of the lecturers who have given classes there!
You can see evidence of the history of the city in the many gorgeously carved facades and beautiful sandstone buildings of the Old Town, many of which date back many hundreds of years, and in the collections of the museums that now inhabit them. Any guidebook will tell you exactly what to do in Salamanca at the moment of your first arrival – you must head to the main facade of the university and examine the carvings there very closely. The pillars that make up the framing of the front of the building feature several skull designs that seem to look down on you from above with their empty eye sockets, and on one of them, if you are sharp enough to spot it, sits a little frog perched quite happily. It is said that if you can find this frog, you will be blessed with good luck – so it is certainly worth going there at the start of your visit to make sure that your time there will be completely charmed!
When you come to study Spanish in Salamanca you will have plenty of time to explore the rest of the city as well. Take a look at some essential Salamanca facts before you book, so that you know what time of year to come and what to look for when you arrive. This will make your trip more worthwhile and ultimately more enjoyable, as you pack in everything that you would like to see and do without trouble. It could not be easier to enjoy yourself while you study Spanish in Salamanca, as everything is in walking distance and most schools are based right in the centre of the Old Town.