Many students from lasting friendships with their host families. With the homestay, you have your own bedroom, and are provided with 3 meals a day. If for any reason you prefer not to have a homestay, we can arrange for you to stay in a local hotel or guest house. Every afternoon we have daily cultural activities which allow you the opportunity to practice your Spanish, explore the area around Quetzaltenango, as well as learn about the cultural, social and political situation in Guatemala.
Activities include conferences on different topics, Salsa and Merengue dance classes, documentaries and movies, field trips to nearby indigenous villages, markets, hot springs, volcano hikes, trips to Mayan ruins, coffee cooperatives, the beach etc.
One of the goals of our school is to establish school supported reforestation projects. Population growth, immigration, the expanding agricultural frontier, and recent forest fires have all contributed to a grave deforestation problem around Quetzaltenango. Recently several Protected Areas have been established around Quetzaltenango to protect remaining forests and watersheds.
Our school works with the department of Protected Areas (Department de Areas Protegidas) and other conservation groups in reforestation projects and other conservation and environmental education projects. Student tuition directly supports these efforts and students can volunteer in our projects.
Quetzaltenango, more commonly called Xela, is the second largest city in Guatemala with a population of about 160.000 people, half of them indigenous. Xela is considered by many to be the cultural capital of Guatemala, for it's many past and present artists and poets, and for it's three universities. Xela is a great place to study Spanish, because of it's friendly people and reasonable prices.
While Xela offers many services to tourists, internet cafes, restaurants, etc. it is not primarily a tourist city, and retains many of the traditions of a small town. Xela is surrounded by beautiful mountains, volcanoes, hot springs, and indigenous villages, whose inhabitants still dress in colorful native clothes and speak their native languages, all of which make wonderful day trips from Xela. Xela is located in the mountains at an elevation of over 2.000m, four hours from Guatemala city, and four hours from the Mexican border. Because of it's elevation, Quetzaltenango is quite cold at night, but warm during the day. The rainy season runs from May to November, when it often rains in the afternoons.
We offer a homestay with local families all of which are located in middle class neighborhoods within a five minute walk from the school. The homestays include a private bedroom and three meals a day are a great way to practise your Spanish and experience Guatemala life first hand. Every afternoon we offer different cultural activities, such as lectures, dance classes, field strips to nearby indigenous villages, hot springs, volcano hikes etc.
The homestays are an integral part of our full immersion program. The homestays are an excellent way to practice your Spanish and experience Guatemalan life first hand. All our homestay families provide you with a private room, three meals a day, hot water and will treat you as a member of the family. They can accommodate vegetarians and other dietary restrictions. If for any reason, you prefer not to have a homestay, we can arrange to have you stay at a nearby hotel.
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