Habla Ya Spanish School in Bocas del Toro - Learn Spanish by the Beach in Panama's Caribbean!
97% Rating
(30 Reviews)

Habla Ya Spanish School in Bocas del Toro - Learn Spanish by the Beach in Panama's Caribbean!

- Book a 4 Week Spanish Immersion (or longer) and receive FREE from us one of the following: 5 Day Surf Course, 20 Yoga Sessions, Open Water Diving Course (PADI) OR Rock Climbing Certification!
- Permaculture programs, urban gardening, internships and many new volunteer opportunities coming soon!

Bocas del Toro is a funky, laid back archipelago, dotted with pristine islands of white sand beaches, coconut trees and crystal clear turquoise waters. Bocas attracts off the beaten path travelers in search of uncrowded beaches, first class surfing and scuba diving, a chilled and authentic nightlife, and endless opportunities of wildlife encounters both on land and under the Caribbean Sea.

Habla Ya Bocas del Toro holds accreditation from the Instituto Cervantes as well as being an Official DELE Examination Center, and is one of the most and best reviewed immersion programs in Central America, offering you everything from Group to Private Lessons, Medical Spanish or Spanish for Teachers.

Improve your Spanish, explore stunning beaches and make friends from all over the world. Habla Ya will take care of every single detail, setting you up in the most suitable accommodation according to your budget, as well as offering you loads of eco-adventure and volunteering opportunit

Locations
North America » Panama » Bocas del Toro
North America » Panama
Language
Accommodation
Apartment
Guesthouse
Host Family
Hostel
Hotel
Currency
USD

Questions & Answers

Program Reviews

  • Instruction
    96%
  • Support
    96%
  • Fun
    92%
  • Housing
    92%
  • Value
    92%
  • Academics
    80%
  • Support
    80%
  • Fun
    80%
  • Housing
    50%
  • Safety
    100%

Program Reviews (30)

Lea
Female

Un mes en el paraíso

10/10

Estaba 4 semanas en Bocas del Toro en HablaYa y nunca voy a olvidar eso tiempo. Me quede en una familia y tome el curso del grupo y una hora de clase privada.
*I spent 4 weeks in Bocas del Toro in Habla Ya and I will never forget that time. I stayed with a family and took the group course and a private class.

Me quede en la familie Ortiz. La madre Maribel es muuuy amable y simpatico. Me sentia como si fuera su hija. Ella cocino todos los dias comida muy rica. Ella siempre estaba bailando y cantando y por eso teniamos siempre mucho para reirse en la casa.
*I stayed in the Ortiz family. Mother Maribel is very kind and friendly. I felt like I was her daughter. She cooked very rich food every day. She was always dancing and singing and so we always has lots of laughs at the house.

Yo tenia la suerte de tener clase con la prima de Maribel, Benita Georget. Ella es una profesora muy amable. La clase siempre era divertido y todos los días me alegre de ir a la escuela. En la clase aprendí mucho. Como yo estaba en un nivel bastante alto, hemos hecho muchos análisis y conversaciones. Mi hora de clase privada también tenia con Benita. Siempre hablábamos mucho y si tuve una pregunta ella trato de explicarme con mucho paciencia.
*I was fortunate to have a class with Maribel's cousin, Benita Georget. She is a very kind teacher. The class was always fun and every day I was glad to go to school. In the class I learned a lot. As I was at a fairly high level, we did a lot of analytics. My private class was also with Benita. We always talked a lot and if I had a question she tried to explain me with a lot of patience.

Pero no solo en la escuela nos vimos. Los profesores tambien salieron con los estudiantes. Pasábamos nuestro tiempo libre juntos y por eso podia hacer amistades muy buenas. En Bocas del Toro se puede haver muchos cosas. Tiene muchos actividades organizada de la escuela y todos las playas son increíbles.
*But we did not just meet at school. The teachers also went out with the students. We spent our free time together and that's why I could make very good friendships. In Bocas del Toro there are many things to do. It has many organized activities from the school and all the beaches are amazing.

Entonces, aconsejaría a todos de venir a Bocas y pasar un tiempo increíble.
*I would advise everyone to come to Bocas and have an amazing time.

Aimee
Female

Awesome experience! Great schools/options/flexibility!

10/10

I was a student at Habla Ya school in Boquete, Panama for two weeks. I loved it! The school is centrally located and there is a great coffee shop next door to help you stay on point! The office is well organized, the common space is comfortable, the schedule of extracurricular activities is diverse, and the classrooms are clean. I super enjoyed my time there! Leidys was my teacher and she is fantastic! She was always punctual, professional, positive, and flexible. My classmate and I had to spend part of one class at the doctor and Leidys made sure we spoke only Spanish with him. We learned so much and also made close friendships. I miss my time there so much! Thanks Habla Ya! Muchas gracias Leidys!

Yo era estudiante en la escuela Habla Ya en Boquete, Panamá por dos semanas. Me encanto! La escuela está en el centro y hay una buena café al lado para ayudarle a prestar atención! La oficina está bien organizada, el espacio común es cómodo, el horario de actividades extracurriculares es diverso, y las aulas están limpias. Me super disfruté de mi tiempo allí! Leidys fue mi profesora y ella es fantástica! Siempre fue puntual, profesional, positiva y flexible. Mi compañera de clase y yo tuvimos que pasar parte de una clase en el médico y Leidys se aseguró de que hablamos sólo español con él. Aprendimos mucho y también hicimos buenos amigos. Extraño tanto a Panamá! Gracias Habla Ya! Muchas gracias Leidys!

How can this program be improved?

I had two teachers that took pretty different approaches so my experience was well balanced. I would only say that I would have appreciated a little more instruction in the use of colloquial language as that is what I will use more in my work when speaking with families. Overall, I felt that I got a lot out of it and would consider adding private instruction to my group course next time.

Kristin
Female

Online Experience

10/10

I have tried many different approaches to learning Spanish. I decided that even though some of the web based applications and college courses may be helpful, nothing beats a face to face conversation with a native Spanish Speaker. I signed up for 20 hours of online lessons with Habla Ya since i am currently unable to travel for a foreign based immersion program. I was assigned Eliana Alejandra as an instructor. She was wonderful! My goal was not to be hammered with grammar lessons, but instead to practice every day conversations. We went over things that I had questions about and she was able to explain the answers very clearly and provide exercises for homework for my weaknesses. I feel like this class was very helpful. We would converse about whatever was going on at the time, about what I did yesterday or what I wanted to do in the future. It was very practical and I also picked up some new vocabulary along the way. I think the price is appropriate and I can't wait until I am able to travel to Panama to learn in person, face to face instead of using an internet connection.
**I put a 10 for housing only because this site requires a response. I did not physically travel to Panama**

How can this program be improved?

The only problem I noticed was the quality of the internet connection at times. Obviously this may not be an easy fix as weather can affect internet service.

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Esther
Female
29 years old
Schweiz
Other

Great learning experience

10/10

This is already my second time at Habla Ya in Bocas del Toro. The first time I came here to study Spanish in 2015 (for 5 weeks) and I liked it so much that I returned this year again :)
This time I took three weeks of group classes (level C1) with Benita. I would have loved to stay longer but it’s not possible because of work. I can only recommend this institution, the school offers a really good service, you feel very welcome, there is help whenever and with whatever you need, there is a lot group activities and it feels like being part of a big family.
Especially the lectures with Benita were definitely incredible. I would like to compliment her. She fills the lectures with various exercises like telling stories, reading, writing, grammar parts, interpreting texts, listening to songs, playing scrabble on a Friday. The content is put together in such a way that you won’t feel like sitting in a class room. It rather feels like sitting together for a coffee and discussing different topics but nevertheless you are learning a lot. Well... sometimes we were indeed drinking a coffee during class, Benita looks after her students in such a lovely way as a mama :)
Thank you a lot, Benita, for creating such a good atmosphere for learning!

How can this program be improved?

-

Valerie
Female

3 weeks in Bocas

8/10

I studied Spanish for a month in Bocas and Boquete. I spent 3 weeks in Bocas fell in love with the place and the people. Benita was my teacher in Bocas . I recommend that if you'd like to learn Spanish - Panama is a great option. If you like to go out at night and enjoy beaches Bocas is certainly for you. I would recommend you try Deep boarding, kayaking, visit Starfish beach, Isla Caranero, Mamallena hostel, try Captain Caribe for food - patacones anywhere and try and use the Spanish you learn as much as possible because you won't be in a position to use it like this again!

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Felix
Male
28 years old
Germany
Other

A time well spent

9/10

I was at the campus in Bocas del Toro for four weeks and took group lessons there.
The staff is super nice and competent, group sizes are comfortably small.
The group activities organized by the school were always fun, it is almost like a family feeling with the other students.
I want to specifically thank and recommend Eliana as a teacher, as she is a natural at teaching and motivating her students. By her loveable and cheerful nature she makes time fly as you learn more and more while having a great time.

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Merran
Female
21 years old
Boquete, Panama
Other

6 weeks at Habla Ya in Boquete, Panama

10/10

In total I took 6 weeks of private lessons at the Boquete campus and could not be happier with the outcome! I took 6 hours of spanish a day and I was impressed with how effecient Habla Ya's lesson books are. Yubal, my professor, exceeded my expectations! He prepared interactive and interesting lessons. For 6 hours a day, I was impressed that Yubal always found ways to keep class focused on the subject and fun at the same time. It is helpful having a professor that is able to answer my questions in English, seeing that I am a beginner. I am so grateful to have Yubal as my professor!

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Porsha

Amazing time at Habla Ya - Bocas del Toro

9/10

I decided I wanted to learn Spanish overseas but didn't want to study in Spain, I researched a range of schools in Costa Rica, Cuba, DR and Ecuador. However, the best school I found taking into consideration price, instruction and the overall country, the best option was Habla Ya.

I spent two weeks at Habla Ya, with group lessons in the morning (8-12) with Nicole. I thoroughly enjoyed my lessons with Nicole, she is a great teacher and she really challenges you and I was very pleased and surprised at the amount of progress I made in 2 weeks. Also, I had private lessons with Bendita in the afternoon, I loved my one-on-one lessons with Bendita during this time she helped me to review topics I was unsure about, work on my pronunciation and helped improved my ability to converse in Spanish.

Overall, Habla Ya is a great place to learn Spanish, meet other like minded individuals and you have the opportunity to explore a beautiful place.

My top tips are:
- Try to stay for at least 3 weeks - I only stayed for 2 weeks this was the moment I felt I was really making progress and would have benefited staying longer, even a week more.
- Home Stay - staying with a family really helped me improve my Spanish and the food was amazing!
- Take part in as many extra-circular activities as possible - they offer a range of activities including cave tours, salsa lessons etc.
- If you can invest in private lessons - my private lessons with Bendita really helped to improve my ability and confidence.

Mari
Female

2 Consecutive Years at Habla Ya

10/10

(This review applies to group classes)
Two years ago, I started an internet search for an affordable and well-reviewed Spanish School. I found Habla Ya and attended with my sister. I was so happy with the quality of my learning that I returned again in 2017.

Brief explanation of how it works: At Habla Ya's website, students take a language test for an initial placement. When students arrive at the school they're required to take an additional face-to-face language assessment. Then, students are placed in a specific group with other students of about the same ability. From there, each student receives a workbook and typically keeps the same instructor for the entirety of their study in Bocas.

I've been very pleased with the quality of my Spanish Education. My instructor this year, Eliana, made everyone in my class feel welcome, competent, and capable each day. She structured our lessons with the Habla Ya workbook, and we then applied our learning through various writing and speaking activities. Eliana defined unknown words/phrases/prepositions, and was very thorough with challenging concepts. In my group, we had students whose ages ranged from 22 to 59--she didn't teach to the highest, lowest, or middle level, she truly taught to each of us, attending to each of our differing needs.

I absolutely love this campus and the instructors and coordinators and los otros trabajadores que estan aqui. I read another reviewer writing from an educator's perspective and I, also an educator, can agree that this school is well stocked with caring coordinators who listen and well-trained professors who are creative and do their best to "tune in" to student needs. I love you, Habla Ya! Gracias por todos.

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Beverly
Female
65 years old
Canada
McMaster University

A great experience!

9/10

As a retired educator I carefully selected the language school I wanted to attend and I had high expectations. I was not disappointed with my choice of Habla Ya in Boquete. As a beginner I was placed in a class with no more than six students and given the materials I would need. I really appreciated my instructor Eduardo who used patience and humour to get the best out of his students. We were encouraged to speak in Spanish at all times but as Eduardo spoke English and French he was able to guide us along with clear explanations if we really needed them. The homework he assigned was appropriate and not too taxing. I liked the town of Boquete and timed my visit to take advantage of the Flower Festival and later the Boquete Jazz and Blues Festival. I also attended classes in Boca del Toro but the mountain atmosphere of Boquete was my favourite.

How can this program be improved?

I would have enjoyed activities outside of the classroom that required us to use our Spanish.

Michael
Male

Eli is the best

8/10

I had zero experience studying a second language going into the class but my profesora Eli made the class fun and relaxed. She was always super helpful and patient if you didn't quite get something the first time around. The activities the school organizes are always fun, particularly volleyball on the beach at sunset. I would also highly reccomend Chapo my surf instructor at the surf school mono loco. Habla ya also set that up for me and it was fantastic, Chapo, like Eli, made learning something difficult seem fun.

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By
Male
Medellin Colombia
Ohio State University

Eduardo is the best!

9/10

TRANSLATION:

A great school, with a friendly and helpful staff and a central location in Boquete. Eduardo is the teacher to ask. He is very patient, speaks great English and teaches to match each student's rhythm and background. I learned more Spanish in Edward's class than in the other two classes I took before. Eduardo is dedicated to his students, and very intelligent, funny and speaks English very well, so there is no misunderstanding!

ORIGINAL REVIEW:

Una gran escuela, con un personal amable y servicial y una ubicación céntrica en Boquete. Eduardo es el maestro a pedir. Él es muy paciente, habla un gran inglés y enseña a igualar el ritmo de cada estudiante y sus antecedentes. Aprendí más español en la clase de eduardo que en las otras dos clases que tomé antes. Eduardo se dedica a sus estudiantes, y muy inteligente, divertido y habla inglés muy bien, así que no hay malentendidos!

How can this program be improved?

Mas maestros como Eduardo!

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Lasse
Male
41 years old
Panama
Other

Best time learning spanish

10/10

As part of preparations for a 3 month trip around Panama and Costa Rica, I have had the pleasure of learning a LOT of spanish at Habla Ya in Boquete. It has been a great experience and I also had a great teacher "Edwardo". Very good and pleasent teacher. It has been fun to practice my "new language" on the streets of Boquete. I have learned a lot of essential tools both with grammar but also useful phrases etc.

Lars
Male

great learning experience

9/10

I took 4 weeks of group lessons in Dec 2016 before traveling around and I learned a lot for such a short time. My teacher was Eduardo and liked the style of learning a lot, we had a good combination of learning grammar, training conversational skills and doing homework to practice the days topics. Learning in small groups of 4 or even less people most of the time was always fun and our teacher always adapted to the skills and specific questions of each of the students. For me it was a great experience, and I can only recommend the hablaya school and especially the location in Boquete.

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Isabelle
Female
23 years old
Mannheim
Other

Lifelong experience -habla ya ❤

10/10

Bocas was definitely one of the greatest experience i had in my life so far. I stayed at isla colón at the house of a lovely host family for four months. Three weeks of that time I went to habla ya, where I got to know many nice people from all over the world . I made good friends, who joined me on the trips in and around bocas and Panamá. However also the teachers and over all the receptionist (!!!) were awesome. I could never forget how I loved going to school every morning and got that " Buenos días guapa " to my ears :) .
As I was there quite a long time compared to the other tourists I also made good friends with the locals. So I had the chance to learn spanish by talking to them and my host family . The rest of the time I worked in an hostel to finance all the traveling. We often went to the other islands and enjoyed bocas by day and night. I would say it became my home... and it still is when I think about that unforgettable time I spent there with these super relaxed and "cariñosos" people. ❤️

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Amaya
Female
21 years old
Berlin

Learn Spanish and have the time of your life - Habla Ya Spanish School

10/10

My stay in Panama was definitely one of the best experiences and choices yet.
After lingering in Panama City for 1 week and discovering Isla Bastimientos for another week, I started my 2 week Spanish Classes at Habla Ya Spanish School in Bocas del Toro.
Having been welcomed by César, the friendly director of Habla Ya's location in Bocas, I immediately felt at home. He gave us useful recommendations of good restaurants, nightlife, beautiful beaches, trips to do etc. The teachers at Habla Ya, especially my teacher Benita, are always in a good mood and assist you with any questions.
At Habla Ya being motivated to learn Spanish is easy in a relaxed, caribbean environment.
The classes are very small, only 3 students in my class which allowed us to advance rapidly and learn a lot in only 2 weeks. There is a good combination of learning serious grammar and being introduced to panamanian colloquial language and culture. Making friends there is easy in such a friendly and inviting environment among students.
Appart from the Spanish classes I made unforgettable memories in Bocas del Toro: hanging out at breath-taking beaches with friends, Catamaran Sunset & party tours, giant colorful starfish in cristal clear waters, adventurous boat rides around the beautiful islands, snorkeling trips, stunning nights with skies full of stars, monkeys hanging from palm trees, delicious cuisine, unforgettable nightlife adventures, open-hearted and friendly people, overwhelming botanical gardens.
If you love learning Spanish by the beach in a warm climate and making a lot of new friends you should go to Habla Ya in Bocas. It will be an unforgettable experience with many new impressions. Get a taste of the panamenian life-style! Hope to be back soon!

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Caro
Female
27 years old
Freising

Would love to go back soon!

10/10

After a bit of travelling Latin America arriving in Bocas felt like coming home.
I got there by boat and first thing after putting my stuff in the hotel was going to Habla Ya where I was welcomed with open arms.

Habla Ya:
The atmosphere is open-minded and all people there have the same goal: Learning Spanish and travel. Making friends there is extremely easy and students and staff have a great, friendly relationship (Some you might even meet in your free time ;) ). From serious grammar and vocabulary learning to girl's talk (Kimberly! ;) ), cooking (Benita is the best chef!) and making fun while practicing Spanish, there is a great variety in the teaching / learning methods Habla Ya teachers are using, always considering the needs, moods and characters of the students. The groups are very small with (I think) up to max. 6 students. I was super lucky as for 3 out of four weeks there was only one other person with me in the group and the 4th week I was even completely alone, which meant 4h/day 1-1 lessons. Hence I learned a lot in a very short time. It was just great!
They are very flexible and helpful as well. After four weeks in Bocas and people constantly telling me how nice it is in Boquete, I decided it would be nice to experience the mountaneous region of Panama as well. The school checked if there is a class with my level available and made it happen that I could stay my last week there.

Bocas:
Bocas is a very small city and after a couple of days you realize you know already quite many people on the streets, because you met them at school,at your hotel, in one of the many bars and clubs or wherever else. There is a lot to do, from beaching, diving and surfing to clubbing or wildlife experience. Habla Ya supports with several guided tours (eg. the Katamaran tour or the Zapatilla tour of which both were just great) as well as offering Salsa classes and a lot of other options to spend your free time.

Boquete:
Compared to beach-style Bocas, Boquete is a little more quiet and temperatures are lower. You can hike the volcano or to several waterfalls, go rock climbing, boulder in a small canyon, enjoy the famous local coffee or just relax in a hammock. Overall people in Boquete enjoy the nature around them and are very active. My personal experience was that the first minute I arrived in Boquete, I met someone who I got to know in Bocas. It's amazing how fast you get to know the locals and make friends.

Until now I would count most of the people I met during my time in Panama as friends and I would love to go back rather soon.

If you decide for Habla Ya, it will be just an amazing experience! So have fun, enjoy yourself travelling, learning Spanish and experiencing the amazing panamanian lifestyle!

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Katja
Female
20 years old
Nürnberg

Learn Spanish and make friends

10/10

I´ve been in Panama for 3 month. The first month of my Panama-trip I spend in Boquete, just for learning Spanish at Habla Ya. My teacher and my host-family there was great. My last two month I spend in Bocas Del Toro, also for learning Spanish and make volunteering work and of course relax. :D I prefered Bocas because there you have much more sun and beaches and the sea. My teachers and my host-family there were perfect too. Also the man at the reciption. Everytime I had a question or a problem I went to Habla Ya or to my family and they helped me.
If you love learning Spanish at the beach, high temperatures with a lot of friends and a lot of party, you have to go to Habla Ya in Bocas. It was on of the best experiences in my life.

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Shannah
Female
25 years old
Lugano

Unforgettable experience

10/10

The teachers in Habla Ya know how to integrate you in the panamanian cultrure and they surely make you feel at home! Wonderful people, chilled and respectful!!
They offer you guidance and sicurity, help and advice for anything you need.
I have thousands of unforgettable memories of beaches, spanish lessons, friendships, adventures that only being there you can describe!
I recommend this destination trip and Habla Ya as your base point!
Only love

Sasi
Female
26 years old
Feldkirch, Vorarlberg

Learn spanish at the best spanish school and make a great life experience

10/10

I've heard about Habla Ya Spanish Schools through the Internet. It had some good reviews so I decided to give it a try. I went to the Habla Ya School in Bocas del Toro and I took some private classes for two weeks. I had two different teachers and both were really friendly and professional. I could see that they like teaching, they had some fun games to organise the classes more creative. In private classes, it's easier to focus on what you specifically need if you already know some spanish like me. Now I can say, that I really learned what I needed to and I improved a lot. Besides that, I had a lot of fun during classes and I never was bored. Though I was taking private lessons, I had the possibilty to get to know the other students thanks to the activities offered at Habla Ya every day. From monday to sunday they offer different activities, for example tours to different places, riding the bike to the next beach, conversation classes for free with the teachers, sportive activities (Salsa dancing classes, Martial Arts,...) and many more. One activity I won't forget was the Catamaran Tour. We were about 20 people on a big Catamaran with good music, the whole evening dancing and having fun :) But I also liked the relaxed times, just hanging out with other students or going to eat somewhere. Bocas is a nice little town where you can find everything on the main street. Just one thing annoyed me was that I had to go to the bank about 3 times until I got some money. Sometimes on sundays the bank there runs out of money and you have to wait until the next day to get some. So my advice is, go to the bank early enough! But with every other issues or question I had, the guys at the reception at Habla Ya helped me a lot. I made my placement test with a guy called Ludo. He explained me everything about the islands very well and he could answer all my questions. In total I can say, Habla Ya Spanish school in Bocas is a very professional school which I can totally recommend, not the bank though :P

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Carolin
Female
28 years old
Trier

Learning Spanish in paradise

10/10

You want to learn Spanish? Your search is over, because Habla Ya in Panama is the right choice so go for it.
I did a 4 week course in 2012 already and went back in 2013. My skills were those of a beginner and after these 4 weeks I did not feel like this anymore. The classes are small which means that the teacher is really able to care about everyone, the exercises are fun and its not only theoretical. You will do lots of group activities which helps to improve quickly. The teachers are qualified and you can see that they want you to learn their beautiful language Spanish. In case of questions or whatever, you can always go to Cesar at the front desk and he will be happy to help (best guy ).
No need to be shy-in your group everyone will be at your level and everyone has the same goal so just participate as much as you can. You will become more and more confident.
Of course being in a host family also helps, because most of the times they do not speak a lot of English and you need to apply what you learned to be able to communicate.
I went to Boquete and to Bocas del Toro which I preferred. The atmosphere is just great, the beaches are fabulous, the people beyond friendly, the bars are awesome and it was just perfect for me. As it is only an island, you will get to know a lot of people and you will definitely get to know some salsa or reggaeton moves :)
Thank you to all of the staff to make my experience unforgettable. 4 weeks pass too quickly.
I can recommend it for sure!

Lisa
Female
20 years old
Öhringen, Germany

Habla Ya was my best decision!

10/10

Learning Spanish in beautiful Bocas already is great, but learning Spanish in Bocas with Habla Ya is an experience, I'll never forget and I would recommend to everyone who wants to learn Spanish to contact the school. My language skills got way more better after the course, a reason for that is that the teachers help you in any way and create a comfortable atmosphere. Also if you have any questions or suggestions, the people, working at the reception will listen to you and try anything to solve a problem or to make you enjoying your time at the school! I never experienced so much cooperativeness and dedication before and I am really thankful for that, because I never felt helpless, when I was insecure about something. The atmosphere at Habla Ya is familiar and the people are open, friendly and it's always a pleasure for me, visiting the school, even if I don't have classes anymore. I made so many friends, people from all over the world, different nationalities... Besides I worked voluntarily at a school and Habla Ya helped me to feel welcome in my project! By the way I don't think that it's possible to find a place more beautiful to learn than Bocas. I literally fell in love with the island and appreciate every day, to be such a lucky person to live here for a while.
To conclude, I have to say, that for me it was a personal gain to learn Spanish with Habla Ya and I would do it over and over again!

Clara
Female
21 years old
Viña del mar, Chile

time of my life

10/10

Thanks to Habla ya I had the greatest time ever! It felt like home the second I got there. My spanish teacher was super nice and patient and I learned a lot from her. The guys from Habla ya are amazing guys. I loved spending time with them at School, parties or on fun catamaran trips (which are offered by the School) and they became good friends! They helped me a lot with all kinds of stuff like getting a bike or where they sell the best food or which People to trust. Also my host Family was incredible... They were so caring and loving! I fell in love with them! I went hunting with my host mum for dead lizzards, we went to the beach with her Brothers boat and the rest of the fam and we shared various recipes we cooked for eachother...i'm still very close with my host mum and I hope to be able to go back in 2017. Habla ya was the best choice I could have ever made. I found a second family.

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Teresa
Female
23 years old
Vienna

2 weeks filled with friends, adventures & Spanish :D

10/10

Alright, where do I beginn..

I first had the feeling that I made the right decision with Habla Ya when I sent them countless mails with hundreds of questions about the arrival, the hostels, how to get there, etc. Since I've never been to Latin America & Panama before, I was quite nervous when I got there. Plus I could only take the night bus & ferry that arrived the same monday as my course started, so I was nervous, super tired & had no idea what to expect. Still, they kept answering super quick & explaining & helping me with everything patiently.

When I first got to the school everyone was super friendly, they knew on the spot that I was new, the school is not too big & they know every single student. So I had my placement conversation & got placed in a class of 4 with the teacher Benita, who is a lovely, hilarious & passionate person! We had so much fun in class, not only did we learn a lot of Spanish, but also talked about personal stuff, got to know each other & got taught a lot about Panama & Bocas.
Somehow the 2 weeks went by pretty fast without realizing I was learning so much. Additional to the group course I took one private lesson per day, first week with Tonis, second week with Bladimir & Ricardo, where I learned even more, but it was also super intense being so focused on Spanish for 5 hours a day.

Apart from the courses there are daily activities to join, such as volleyball on the beach, family dinner at school, cinema nights, salsa lessons or day trips to the islands on the weekends.
We surely spent a lot of time with the teachers & even had a couple of great, crazy & fun days hanging out with them :D

Apart from the Spanish lessons we became a little family with everyone from school. The guys at the front office also always had an open ear (and an open door) for me & helped me out with my hundreds of questions, so they were pretty cool as well ;)

I had a really great time in Bocas, I love that little island with all its stunning beaches, diving schools, bars & delicious local restaurants. It's a vibrating island with warm & welcoming people! I felt super comfortable & safe in Bocas & am grateful that the guys from Habla Ya helped me arrange everything & were part of my incredible time in Central America :)

Bethany
Female
26 years old
Kokomo, Indiana

FUN FUN FUN!

10/10

Learning with Habla Ya took my Spanish to the next level, and I also made great friends and had so much fun. There is always a group going to the beach with or going out dancing. So, not only did I get to practice Spanish in a structured setting, but I also practiced it around Bocas casually. Also, my homestay family was very friendly and helpful. The meals they cooked for me were delicious. I actually ended up moving to Panama afterwards for a teaching job, and the Spanish I learned there helps me every day now that I live in Panama City. I know that without the classes I would not be able to communicate with the people well. If you want to speak better Spanish and have fun, go to Habla Ya!!!

Meghan
Female
27 years old
Blackstone, Massachusetts

Excellent choice for Spanish education!

10/10

I enjoyed my visit to Habla Ya in Bocas del Toro so much in March 2016 I went back to Panama for another 4 weeks in July!! I was lucky to experience classes in both the Boquete and Bocas locations and although the quality of instruction is great no matter where you choose to study, each place has its own vibe.

In my opinion, Boquete is the better option if your main goal is to learn Spanish in a quiet setting conducive to studying. Yubal was my teacher and he is a model example of what Spanish education should be. I was so impressed, I continued taking classes with Yubal online via Skype after my stay in Panama ended. Plus, the ecotourism options are exceptional in Boquete if you really love nature and hiking.

Bocas is the place to be if you like to balance business and pleasure. Basically, mornings are spent in the classroom, afternoons on the beach and evenings at the bar enjoying (perhaps too much) tequila. There are also lots of opportunities to sign up for group excursions. Though not for the faint of heart, I highly recommend the trip to Isla Bastimentos to explore the bat cave. Of all the great things Bocas has to offer, I was most impressed by the customer service given by the guys in the reception office at Habla Ya. César truly went above and beyond to help me when my luggage was misplaced by the airline on my way to Panama. I am forever grateful for his help. They are also happy to help you set up living arrangements. ***Be sure to take their advice and stay at either a hostel of their recommendation or with a local family.

Most importantly, Spanish classes at Habla Ya have served me well and I highly recommend this school if you are looking to have fun while learning or improving your Spanish speaking skills!

Safe and happy travels!

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Verena
Female
24 years old
Germany

Best time of my life!

10/10

I have done a four-week spanish course in Bocas del Toro, the paradise on earth! As I walked through the streets for the first time I immediately fell in love with this place and I knew that I would enjoy a lot - and I did! I was lucky to have the best host family I could imagine. They received me with open arms and made me feel being part of their family. Still now I am in contact with them (through skype, whats app,...) and I miss them a lot. So, during the week I went to Habla Ya every morning. I enjoyed school a lot, although it was sometimes hard to stand up because the nights are long in Bocas. But my teacher Adriana always was understanding when I came to school with a hangover ;) After the lessons there is so much to do in Bocas, for example going to the beach, doing a bike tour, snorkeling and diving, hanging around the streets, and so on. At 7pm every day I got a great dinner in my host family and after that I went out to meet my friends. There are partys almost every night with good spanish music and lovely people.
I can't find words to descirbe how much I love Bocas. After I finished school, I stayed there for two more months just to relax and work a bit. I just couldn't leave this place, my family and my friends there. I am sure that one day I'm gonna come back to visit all of them. I had an incredible time in Bocas - the best of my life!!

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Cathy
Female
45 years old
BELLEVILLE
University of Toronto

Great teachers means a great experience at habla ya boquete

9/10

To be clear I toom my two week course in Boquete in the mountains of chiquiri, but there wasn' t a separate option for the Boquete school. The teachers I had were awesome-Leidys Pitti for four hour small group class and Kimberly for daily one hour conversation. Both had tons of patience and were super encouraging. They made it easy to speak in the class and to try it out on the street-and this from someone normally shy to talk to strangers inher native English! Thecoffice staff were also super- always smiling and helpful. A great experience overall- I hope I can come back sometime for another round.

How can this program be improved?

Maybe a little more encouragement on the social side. Things may have been quiet because it was so close to Christmas but other than a couple of signs snlwing possible activities there wasn't any real mention or encouragement around outside activities for socialising and cultural exposure.

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Arantxa
Female
26 years old
Nuremberg

best staff in the best place!

10/10

I've done my spanish course in Habla Ya and I would
totally recommend it to everyone who likes caribbean
lifestyle and panamanian mentality. The school is perfect
placed, staff is really cool and helpful, the teachers
are great! The beginning was really hard cause I never
had a spanish course before, but they were always
"waiting" for me and the lessons were never to fast.
Good courses for beginner! Nice beaches are around
and good tour offers (surfing course was a lot of fun!)
-great school in a great place! ;)

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Selin
Female
23 years old
Switzerland

Best time ever!

10/10

So I was at the Habla Ya Spanish school in Bocas del Toro and we had the best time ever! The staff is amazing, the teachers care so much and Bocas del Toro ist just paradise on earth. I was lucky enough to have the best host family anyone could wish for. I still feel like part of their family, thanks to the warm Panamenian culture. Besides learning Spanish we were going on incredible trips around the island. There is so much going on there. The nights are long, the drinks cold, the music great and for those who are not into partying there are great places to grab the best food and relax. In many bars tere is live music. It's very easy to connect with people from all over the world at school because there are many nationalities and people are generally laid back and very sweet. I'm definitely gonna come back and this time for much longer... oooh and for the surfers, yogis and divers out there: it's heaven on earth!

About The Provider

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Learn Spanish by the Caribbean Sea, in the cloud forest, in Latin America's most cosmopolitan city, or at the three of them!

With locations in Panama's most exciting destinations by the beach (Bocas del Toro), in the mountains (Boquete), and in Panama City, Habla Ya

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