Learn Spanish in Bocas del Toro, Panama

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Spanish Immersion + Active Pursuits and 2019 Early Bird Special!

5% - 15% Discount OFF 2019 Spanish Courses PLUS:
- Daily Yoga Lessons
- Surf Course
- PADI Scuba Diving License
- Rock Climbing
- Ziplining
- Whitewater River Rafting
- Horseback Riding
- Island Hoping
- Sailing

About

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 opportunity.

Questions & Answers

Reviews

96%
based on 40 reviews
  • Instruction 9.7
  • Support 9.7
  • Fun 9.3
  • Housing 8.9
  • Value 9.2
  • Academics 8
  • Support 8
  • Fun 8
  • Housing 5
  • Safety 10
Showing 16 - 30 of 40
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Felix
9/10

A time well spent

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.

Yes, I recommend this program
Default avatar
Merran
10/10

6 weeks at Habla Ya in Boquete, Panama

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!

Yes, I recommend this program
Default avatar
Porsha
9/10

Amazing time at Habla Ya - Bocas del Toro

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.

Yes, I recommend this program
Mari
10/10

2 Consecutive Years at Habla Ya

(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.

Yes, I recommend this program
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Beverly
9/10

A great experience!

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.
Yes, I recommend this program
Michael
8/10

Eli is the best

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.

Yes, I recommend this program
Default avatar
By
9/10

Eduardo is the best!

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!
Yes, I recommend this program
Default avatar
Lasse
10/10

Best time learning spanish

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.

Yes, I recommend this program
Lars
9/10

great learning experience

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.

Yes, I recommend this program
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Isabelle
10/10

Lifelong experience -habla ya ❤

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. ❤️

Yes, I recommend this program
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Amaya
10/10

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

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!

Yes, I recommend this program
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Caro
10/10

Would love to go back soon!

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!

Yes, I recommend this program
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Katja
10/10

Learn Spanish and make friends

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.

Yes, I recommend this program
Default avatar
Shannah
10/10

Unforgettable experience

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

Yes, I recommend this program
Sasi
10/10

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

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

Yes, I recommend this program

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About Habla Ya Spanish Schools

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...