Habla Ya Spanish Schools - Spanish Immersion Programs & Eco-Adventure Vacations

Habla Ya Spanish Schools

About

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 provides quality Spanish programs combined with unique vacation experiences, volunteering and active adventures such as surfing, scuba diving, yoga and much more.

Whether you're looking for a chilled out town in the mountains, a cosmopolitan and trendy city, or a funky island in the Caribbean, Habla Ya Spanish Schools got you covered with authentic Spanish immersion programs, loads of eco-adventures, passionate Spanish teachers and a wide selection of accommodation options from home stays with local families and budget hostels to mid range bed and breakfasts or upscale boutique hotels.

Summer Promo: get a FREE weekly tour when you book 5 weeks or more of Spanish classes!

Learn Spanish and have the vacation of your lifetime:
- Hiking
- Daily Yoga Lessons
- Surfing Courses
- PADI Scuba Diving License
- Rock Climbing
- Ziplining
- Whitewater River Rafting
- Horseback Riding
- Island Hoping
- Sailing
- Caving
Founded
2005
Headquarters

G Street and 9th Avenue
Bocas del Toro
Bocas del Toro
Panama

Reviews

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Madeline
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

I was looking into visiting Panama to take classes with Habla Ya, but then covid-19 made that impossible. But, Habla Ya quickly offered online classes via Zoom, and I am so glad I signed up. I initially signed up for one week of group classes (4 hours/day), but decided to sign up for four more weeks of private lessons (2 hours/day) because I enjoyed studying with my instructor, Kimberley, so much. Taking private classes with Kimberley was great because she tailored everything for my level and preferences. It was fun to work on conversational skills by talking about everything going on in Panama and the U.S. and the world. Talking to Kimberley and hearing about Panama made me sad to miss the opportunity to visit, but it was still a fun way to learn about the country while working on my Spanish. Habla Ya quickly adapted to online classes and was great with support and communication. I highly recommend signing up for classes while quarantined, it was always the highlight of my day.

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Kendra
8/10
Yes, I recommend this program

Our family spent 2 weeks studying Spanish at HablaYa in Boquete Panama. Our daughters had a private group class as well as my husband and I. The type of instruction, pace and personalization was superb. We had 2 different teachers and both were exceptional. Our teacher the second week was Alex and he was fun to work with and we learned so much! He planned excursions for some of our time together and that helped tremendously with learning how to be more conversational in Spanish. Highly recommend this experience in Boquete.

What is your advice to future travelers on this program?
Stay in town and you can easily walk to many things. We rented a car and stayed in Alto Boquete which also worked out very well and was easy to access and park at HablaYa. We were able to go and hike and do tours on our own as well.
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Susan
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

My instructor Leidys Pitti, at the Boquete location, has excellent skill at knowing what conversational and grammar points students are intererested in and need to work on. She presents information and asks questions in engaging ways, so that students are always learning. We make a lot of progress in using the language, and are always interested...even when in class for longer periods of time. Leidys is a very friendly, caring and positive person...another reason why students look forward to her classes. Like many of them, I return every year to improve my skills.

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Libby
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

Great school. Iraida was a terrific teacher-smart. Thorough. Thoughtful and patient. Used lots of techniques to solidify the lessons. Easy to get to. Wifi available to all students. Help with enjoyable outside activities. All the staff were very friendly and helpful. Good placement decisions based on both online and in person testing. Made opportunities to converse in Spanish outside class.
I didn’t really especially like Bocas but I thought the school did a great job. Better than some other programs I’ve taken.

What would you improve about this program?
Work by the local government to make Bocas a more enjoyable place to hang out in for older travelers.
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Elysa
9/10
Yes, I recommend this program

I'm really glad I did Habla Ya! The classes were very interactive and I learned a lot of Spanish very quickly. My teacher Simon was very hands-on and helped me increase my fluency at a great pace. He was very attentive and made class fun! Classes were well planned and incorporated different types of learning. We even visited a coffee shop. Although I was in a group class it felt very hands-on and productive.

What is your advice to future travelers on this program?
To truly immerse and see the city and great sites like San Blas etc. stay for a week at minimum .

Programs

Displaying 1 - 5 of 5
Habla Ya Spanish Schools
Learn Spanish in Bocas del Toro, Panama
Panama
9.54 •68 reviews

Bocas del Toro is a funky, laid back archipelago, dotted with pristine...

Habla Ya Spanish Schools
Spanish Immersion Program in Panama City, Panama
Panama
9.7 •23 reviews

Panama City is home to a rich diversity of cultures and inhabitants...

Habla Ya Spanish Schools
Learn Spanish in Boquete, Panama at Habla Ya Spanish Schools
Panama
9.57 •14 reviews

Learn Spanish in the wonderful country of Panama. Whether it be by the...

Habla Ya Spanish Schools
Learn Spanish & Surf in Panama's Caribbean, in Bocas del Toro
Panama
9.67 •3 reviews

What better way to learn Spanish than surfing uncrowded waves in the...

Habla Ya Spanish Schools
Spanish Language and Yoga Program in Panama
Panama

Join us for the opportunity to learn Spanish and practice yoga in the...

Alumni Interviews

These are in-depth Q&A sessions with verified alumni.

Lisa Graf

Lisa is a 19-year-old from Germany who recently finished high school, and has spend time living and working in Bocas del Toro, Panamá.

Why did you choose this program?

I want to study Spanish and languages in the future at university and I've also wanted to visit Central America. I chose a country where Spanish is the main language, so I could learn how to speak fluently.

Additionally, I always wanted to work with kids, so I was really interested in the school project that was offered and involved teaching little children.

What did your program provider assist you with, and what did you have to organize on your own?

My program provider, an organization from Germany called "Multikultur", helped me with planning my trip. They also helped me learn more about "Habla Ya", the Spanish lessons offered there, and assisted me with finding my volunteer project and my host family.

I also learned a lot on my own by surfing the Internet, and the information on the Habla Ya website. When I arrived in Bocas, I was picked up and was brought to Habla Ya and my host family.

What is one piece of advice you'd give to someone going on your program?

When it comes to a long trip and traveling on your own to an unknown country, it is important to try to organize almost everything from your home country, because then you will feel safer and you can be sure someone will care about you and support you when you arrive.

The best thing you can do is being open to everything, because it might be completely different than expected, yet still an unforgettable experience.

What does an average day/week look like as a participant of this program?

When I took Spanish lessons at Habla Ya, class started at 8 am. I had breakfast first thing in the morning at my host's house and then walked to school or took the bike. I had classes until noon, and afterwards Habla Ya offers a lot of activities to join, both during the week and also the weekends.

For example, we could take surf lessons, salsa courses, visit different beaches, and coffee plantations. There are a lot of different activities students can sign up for!

When my volunteer work started I had to take the watertaxi to the other island, and had the opportunity to spend time with the indigenous children from 8 am to 12pm.

After school, I always loved to spend time at Habla Ya. I felt very welcome there and made a lot of friends. In the evenings my host family, which I love a lot, prepared dinner and we talked about our days.

Going into your experience abroad, what was your biggest fear, and how did you overcome it and/or how did your views on the issue change?

One of my biggest fears was getting homesick, feeling lonely and that I might not like the life and the culture, because I knew before that it would be totally different for me.

I think those are fears anyone who is traveling for a long time deals with. But after one week in Bocas all my fears were gone, because I felt welcome from the first day. I lived with other students, so it was easy to keep in touch and make friends quickly.

It is important to believe in yourself, to enjoy each day and not to get caught up in your fears, then you will be open for anything and anyone, and then there is no way that you will suffer.

What did you learn during your time abroad?

I wouldn't change anything I did, because everything I experienced here was a new life lesson, and never a loss or a fault.

This trip changed my life and my whole view I had about the world, it made me a better person.

It taught me to appreciate every day, and being thankful for little things, like for a smile from a little school kid when you buy him an apple. The volunteer work showed me that you are special just the way you you are, and when you're kind you will also be accepted for the person you are, and you can make a little kid's life better just by showing them attention and respect.

I had the chance to meet so many different nationalities and it helped me to understand how people from other countries think and live, and that we are literally all the same and you can be the friend of anyone, independent from where they are from.

You learn how to solve problems by yourself, how to react to new situations and how to be independent, positive, and strong.

Staff Interviews

These are in-depth Q&A sessions with program leaders.

Benita Aneth Goerget

Job Title
Academic Coordinator & Spanish Teacher
Benita is a proud mother of 3 with a Bachelor's Degree in Ecological Tourism.

What is your favorite travel memory?

The trip I made to Costa Rica with my family in 2009. We visited San José and Guanacaste. I really enjoyed the different climate and customs, but mostly experiencing a place different from my own for the first time.

Culturally it was really fun and interesting to celebrate New Years over there in a different way than how I have all my life.

How have you changed/grown since working for your current company?

Every week I learn so much, there's always something new. So yes, I've grown a lot. Meeting people from all over the world and also being able to share the same values with like minded people, like growing some fruit and vegetables at home. Here at Habla Ya we get that.

What is the best story you've heard from a return student?

The beauty of Bocas is breathtaking. I had a student from the UK, Rachel, who came back to us just 6 months after her first trip, and we went to Wizard Beach. And when she got there, she just started crying as she was so grateful to be in Panama again and couldn't believe she and I were the only people there at that specific moment having all of that raw beauty to ourselves.

If you could go on any program that your company offers, which one would you choose and why?

I'd just like to do anything related with the Instituto Cervantes. They are the experts. As a student I'd want to do the DELE, and as a teacher I'd want to get a masters approved by them.

What makes your company unique? When were you especially proud of your team?

It feels really nice to be part of such a prestigious school. I'm quite proud of myself and our team because of the work we do. Our students always tell us how we're the best, and it's also very good to be part of a team where it feels like a family, where we each look out after each other and where we feel the support of everyone. That's very important for me.

What do you believe to be the biggest factor in being a successful company?

The people. Us. Getting the right people on the team. Sometimes it can be tricky but then everything clicks and you take off.