Horsing around

The hand-painted sign showing two bridled horses does not point towards a fancy place. Turning down this stone driveway off the main road through Las Nubes will not deliver you to a state-of-the-art equine training facility. Nor are these lush pastures described in any Lonely Planet guidebooks. Yet, the animals grazing these hills speak volumes about the culture of Costa Rica’s Central Valley, where horses … Read More

Emily CuretonHorsing around

Catching lunch in Coronado

Up the hill from Academia Tica Coronado a cozy little place by the side of the road serves up about the freshest trout imaginable, Tico style. At this family-run “trucheria,” (trucha means trout), you can catch your own lunch from a backyard pond. Luckily professionals take over from there. Have a seat in the rustic dining room as the fish is seasoned and … Read More

Emily CuretonCatching lunch in Coronado

Un día en la vida: Volunteering at Carara National Park

In the tangle of cacophonous green that is Carara National Park, two types of forest meet, a mix of plants, animals and insects found nowhere else in the world. This convergence of Costa Rica’s dry Northern Pacific region and its much wetter Southern Zone is host to half the known animal species in a country famed for prodigious biological diversity. … Read More

Emily CuretonUn día en la vida: Volunteering at Carara National Park

Changing face in Escazú

When we pull up to his Escazú home, Gerardo Montoya hits play. Parade sounds fill this sleepy neighborhood in the hills overlooking Costa Rica’s capital city. Crashing cymbals and snare drums punch off time as we walk down the driveway towards a garage workshop where our host awaits, dancing among the monsters he’s created, many of them large enough to swallow a man whole. He cuts the music and announces: “Meet … Read More

Emily CuretonChanging face in Escazú

¡Gracias Sele! Celebration discounts

Costa Rica is out of the run for World Champion, but the whole world cheered as they finished unbeaten in 5th place, just under four of the historically strongest national teams. We celebrate this fantastic performance as the underdogs, and all the passion that it inspired not only in Ticos, but in people everywhere praising the names of Jorge Luis Pinto, … Read More

admin¡Gracias Sele! Celebration discounts

Costa Rica’s stone balls join World Heritage

Costa Rica’s iconic stone spheres have been recognized for their value to World Heritage by the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO), bringing more international attention to the southern region’s mysterious past, as well as its contentious future. No one knows who made a single one of the preColombian stone spheres, let alone why more than 300 were sculpted to near geometric perfection more than 1,000 years ago. Like Stonehedge and Easter … Read More

Emily CuretonCosta Rica’s stone balls join World Heritage

Amazing corn

We loaded our plates with fresh empañadas, cheesy tortillas and sweet chorreadas, unwrapping huge banana leaves to reveal steaming tamales filled with  veggies and meat. We ohhed, ahhed and salivated over the tamal asado, a sticky sweet cornbread that frankly put me over the edge of satisfied, too full to try any more typical Costa Rican dishes made from maize, the star ingredient in this Tuesday tasting class. When … Read More

Emily CuretonAmazing corn

¡Oé, oé, oé!

When Costa Rican player Marco Ureña sent a third point into Uruguay’s goal during Saturday’s World Cup game, a nation of spectators already thought to be the happiest people on earth became the most elated people on earth. No one expected the Costa Rican team to hold its own against Uruguay, let alone trounce the 2010 semifinalist team in a 3-1 upset. We watched the exciting second half of … Read More

Emily Cureton¡Oé, oé, oé!

New adventures

Welcome to our new blog! Here at Academia Tica we  pride ourselves on high caliber in-classroom instruction, while our students and staff remain active participants in the community outside school walls. For us, language learning is not just about traveling, passing a test or getting a new job — it is about cultural understanding and friendship most of all. This is at the heart of … Read More

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