“El Sabor, el Sabor!” – This friendly shout fills Academia Tica’s patio every school day at noon, when hungry students flock towards the sound of Caribbean music and the wide smile of Don George. He emerges from a van and opens the side door to reveal baskets and coolers brimming with treats, which hungry students have been yearning for throughout the morning’s intensive Spanish classes. And it´s not just any food, either. Don George specializes in typical fare from the Caribbean part of Costa Rica in addition to snacks like hamburgers, sandwiches, brownies and…Continue Reading “El Sabor: Taste a la Tica”

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 are not just historical throwbacks but remain essential for work, getting around and showing off in distinctly Tico style. About 5 km from the school “Coronado a…Continue Reading “Horsing around”

A few of Academia Tica’s most experienced instructors offered advice on how to begin the rewarding process of learning Spanish. With 65 years of teaching experience between them, we thought it worthwhile to share these kernels of wisdom with the world. Enjoy! “The number one must for new students is simply wanting to study. Step two is actually studying, then studying, studying and studying some more. Finally, don’t just practice in the classroom, practice anytime you can with whomever you can, at the supermarket, with friends,…Continue Reading “Where to begin? Advice for starting your studies…”

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 grilled to perfection, then served with rice, fries, plantains and salad. To find this authentic cultural gem, take the bus to Las Nubes to the…Continue Reading “Catching lunch in Coronado”