• Spain
    • Granada
Academic Year, Fall, Spring

Program Details

Program Type
Degree Level
Dormitory Host Family


Price Details
Contact IES Abroad or see website for details.
What's Included
Accommodation Some Activities Classes Wifi
What's Not Included
Airfare Visa
May 18, 2021
Feb 11, 2021
30 travelers are looking at this program

About Program

Many travelers who visit Granada insist it's the must-see city in all of Spain. With one of the clearest windows into Spain's unique historical symbiosis of Islam, Christianity, and Judaism, the IES Abroad curriculum takes full advantage of Andalusia and all southern Spain has to offer including cultural excursions

Two semesters of college-level Spanish are required to enroll in the Intermediate Program and four semesters are required to enroll in the Advanced Program. Both Intermediate and Advanced students are required to take a Spanish language course alongside English taught area studies courses. All majors are welcome to apply. Students can immerse themselves in Spanish language and culture by living with a local family in a homestay, or meet other international and local students in a residence hall and Colegios Mayores.

Video and Photos

Program Highlights

  • The IES Abroad Center gives students the space to study on the terrace or in the library with high speed internet and printer access
  • IES Abroad offers students the chance to expand their study abroad experience by taking an internship
  • All elective courses center around Spanish culture, heritage, arts, and society
  • Students that stay in Colegios Mayores in the fall semester will spend their first month of the program staying with a local host family
  • Past cultural excursions have been to Morocco, Gibraltar, Seville, and Cabo de Gata, among other locations

Popular Programs

three students smiling with stone buildings and palm trees behind them

Designed to improve your Spanish proficiency, students are placed into either the Intermediate or Advanced Spanish Program. Intermediate Program students take IES Abroad courses in both English and Spanish. Advanced Program courses are conducted entirely in Spanish, including study at the Universidad de Granada. Both options introduce you to Spain’s Moorish heritage and Jewish past, and its continuing links to North Africa through Islamic and Contemporary North African Studies.


IES Abroad Scholarships

IES Abroad Scholarships and Financial Aid

Financial limitations shouldn't prevent you from studying abroad with us. That's why IES Abroad offers more than $6 million in scholarships and aid. IES Abroad offers a number of diversity scholarships and grants to provide opportunities for traditionally underrepresented communities in study abroad.

$500 - $5,000

Program Reviews

9.65 Rating
based on 81 reviews
  • 9-10 rating 92.59%
  • 7-8 rating 7.41%
  • 5-6 rating 0%
  • 3-4 rating 0%
  • 1-2 rating 0%
  • Academics 8.3
  • Support 9.7
  • Fun 9.5
  • Housing 9.5
  • Safety 9.5
Showing 1 - 8 of 81 reviews
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Yes, I recommend this program

Perfect Community for a Perfect Trip

My trip to Granada through IES Abroad was the time of my life. Although it was cut short, I am so blessed to have had the experiences I did. The staff did wonderful working students through the cultural immersion and showing us the true story of Granada. Almost all of my classes took days on the town, visiting different locations and discussing their significance. The trip also tied the material into the visits we took, going to Sevilla to study the Cathedral and Christianity in Spain, Morocco to study the Arabic culture and its influence on Granada, and Córdoba to study the mosque. Everyone wants you to have an incredible time - and will work to make sure you do!

What is your advice to future travelers on this program?
Experience all of Granada! It has many layers and takes time to explore. Go on the planned events offered by IES!
30 people found this review helpful.
Default avatar
Yes, I recommend this program

Amazing Program!

I studied abroad this Fall with IES Abroad in Granada and loved every second of it! I was nervous to study abroad and the IES staff was very supportive and helped ease the stress of being in a new country. We spent a lot of time with the staff and I found they genuinely cared about getting to know each one of us. Granada was an amazing location as well. Not too big of a city, or too small and was super affordable and there was a ton to do as well. The classes I took were unique and engaging and I learned a ton while also improving my Spanish. I would 100% recommend studying abroad in Spain with IES and I hope you have as wonderful of an experience as I did abroad! As basic as it sounds, it will change your life!

What was the most unfamiliar thing you ate?
Migas! Migas is a traditional Andalusian dish that Spaniards eat when it rains. It is made of toasted bread crumbs from day-old bread with some type of dried sausage and topped with fresh melon. Kinda an odd mix of textures and flavors but was fun to try!
30 people found this review helpful.
Default avatar
Yes, I recommend this program

Period of self-love and growth

Granada is one of the best cities to travel around by yourself. If you are ever bored on a Sunday, take a stroll down the river and pass people biking, skateboarding, and running. It is a lively community that feels welcoming to even those of us who come from across the pond. I lived and loved every aspect of the small-city charm that Granada gives you and am already planning my next trip to hike above the Alhambra on my next visit, only this time I hope that I can share my experience with more of my family and friends!

What is your advice to future travelers on this program?
Take a day just to walk around the city! There are so many hidden gems down each narrow street from art shops to galleries to cafes. Granada truly has a little of everything.
33 people found this review helpful.
Default avatar
Yes, I recommend this program

Como Graná no hay ná

Everything about my experience in Granada was magical. From the compassionate center staff to the rigorous yet not overbearing course load, I couldn't have asked for a better program. A walk through Granada feels like a walk back in time to the Moorish days. There always seemed to be more to discover around every corner and the history and architecture never failed to take my breath away. In the fall all of my classes were in Spanish, but I did have the opportunity to take two classes in English in the spring. They were all very interesting and geared towards the experience in Granada. No class at my home university would have been as fulfilling because a key component would have been different - the location. If you go to Granada with IES, I wholeheartedly recommend living with a host family. There is no better way to truly immerse yourself in the culture and language. Not to mention, no one cooks as well as a Spanish señora (sorry mom!).

What was your funniest moment?
"Sentirse" means to feel. "Sentarse" means to sit. For about a month and a half I was asking waiters if I could feel in the restaurant.
29 people found this review helpful.
Default avatar
Yes, I recommend this program

Living and Loving Spain

Living in the Colegio Mayor Santa Fe provided me with a once in a lifetime look into spanish culture and day to day life. At first I was intimidated by the prospect of living with 70+ 18-22 year old spanish girls who don't speak English or know much about American culture. I was shocked and happy to find them accepting, generous, curious, and funny girls who loved having us there. Living in the middle of my two best friends that I met through the program was another plus! Besides being able to interact with local students, I was really able to interact with the history of the city. Imagine walking down a grand staircase that has probably been around for more than 100 years to a dining room with two long tables. At least 15 girls are all seated in the same area as we receive paella, pasta, or cocido to name a few meals. They ask about your day and fill you into what is new in their lives. On Saturdays we eat outside in the courtyard if the weather was nice while the cooks would chat with everyone and crack jokes. One of my favorite memories was playing on the basketball team which added girls from a different colegio to the team giving me a chance to meet new girls and see what life is like at another colegio. On the final game before christmas break we played against one of the hardest teams we played that season. Our supporters came in droves. We had girls cheering us on and tutoras, or RAs, supporting and being there for us for the biggest win of the season! Overall, living in the Colegio helped me exceed my study abroad cultural and linguistic expectations as it allowed me to interact with girls my own age and learn new words, popular songs, and traditions. I will never forget their kindness and generosity to me, and the memories that I will share with them.

What would you improve about this program?
A greater variety of classes that correspond with my home school!
32 people found this review helpful.
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Yes, I recommend this program

Go to Granada

Granda is the perfect city to study abroad in. IES Granada makes it easy to integrate into the community and really get to know the city and the people who live there. Granada is the perfect mix of historic city and bustling city. There is always something to do or see and the staff at IES Granada always ensure that students know about the multitude of events that are happening in the city. They also plan amazing excursions for students to different cities in Spain and a week long trip to Morocco. These trips were the most amazing part of study abroad. We had incredibly authentic experiences and we rarely felt as though we were tourists. I am so grateful for my time studying at IES Granada, majority of the classes were related to the city and it's history. We would take walking tours to see what we were learning about in class and to that effect I was able to feel as though I was truly part of the city because I didn't just live there, I knew how it had become the amazing place it is today.

34 people found this review helpful.
Default avatar
Yes, I recommend this program

¡Un semestre inolvidable!

IES Granada was an awesome experience, and I would recommend it to anyone with a Spanish language background willing to explore this beautiful city and culture!

IES Abroad and IES Granada staff were super helpful, from the beginning by making sure we got our visas ready to our 2-day orientation program in Málaga. Throughout the semester, they made sure that we were settling in okay, meeting locals, and then preparing for our return home. I ended up having a foot injury that lasted throughout the semester, but the staff was super kind about checking in on me, and also arranging doctors visits with a translator and taxi up to the hospital.

We always knew what was happening in Granada because of the weekly Agenda email that we received. Our orientation leader joked that she forwards it to all her friends because it is the most comprehensive list of events in the city. IES also planned field trips within Southern Spain and to Morocco to help us learn more about the region's history and stunning sites. The Morocco trip, optional but most students choose to go, was carefully planned to be more than just a tourist visit, as we stayed with host families for 2 nights and met with 2 NGOs and a lot of local students.

The best part about my experience was getting to know locals. I found two groups of local students, one through an "intercambio" program that IES set up to give us each a language partner, and the other through the university church group. Both groups welcomed me in, and I was able to improve my Spanish a lot and and learn more about Spain through these friendships. I´m already trying to figure out when to return because of these strong connections that I made!

On the academic side, IES has a lot of great classes to offer its students at its own program site, with professors from the University of Granada. I was able to take all of my classes in Spanish, but in a smaller classroom than at the university. We were able to explore much of the city and its history through classes like Islamic Art and Architecture, or take classes I wouldn't usually get to take, like watercolor.

My living situation was great! I had a lovely set of host parents who really welcomed us into the family. My roommate and I were even able to travel with our host mom to her hometown and meet her father and brother. Her cooking was excellent, and although not everyone had such a positive experience, I think overall most students in both homestays and residential living were happy with their choices.

Overall, the IES Granada semester was well-run and made sure we felt at home. They even cooked us a Thanksgiving dinner :)

(note: I am an Ambassador for IES Abroad, but only because I felt so much support from IES with my injury and semester, that I wanted to share my experience with others!)

What would you improve about this program?
Not all of my friends loved their classes (some were better than others), but I was really happy with most of them and to have the opportunity to take them all in Spanish.
27 people found this review helpful.
Yes, I recommend this program

Treasures Uncovered Under the Alhambra Hill

I studied abroad in Granada in the fall semester of 2018. I had chosen the program somewhat on a whim early the previous semester because it offered classes in my major of religious studies but still provided the opportunity for Spanish immersion. Even though I dove into my decision knowing very little about Granada or even the program, it was the best decision I could have made.
I entered into the program feeling very anxious but excited about my adventure ahead. Still, I was doubting my language abilities and worried about building a community in Granada. Those doubts were quickly diminished when I experience the warmth and love of the IES Granada staff that grew to become a huge support system for me. I also quickly was feeling confident in my language abilities through the growing relationship with my host mom through our daily lunches together, talking politics or about the latest celebrity drama we would see in the news.
Studying in Granada provided me with new and exciting learning opportunities. One of my favorite classes that I took was Islamic Art and Architecture, through which we visited nearly every corner of the city exploring its architecture. Through this class I had the privilege of visiting the Alhambra multiple times, and we even got to visit parts of the Alhambra that are not open to the public. Each class at IES provided unique learning opportunities, but I was most thankful for the opportunity to improve my language abilities through most of my classes being taught in Spanish. Through my experience abroad, I learned about the rich religious history of Granada through classes like Islamic Civilizations in Spain and Memory and Identity of Sephardic Jews. This was incredibly interesting to me and gave me new learning opportunities within my major. I also gained a stronger sense of independence and a new perspective of how to navigate another part of the world. It was incredibly worthwhile to learn about myself, the city of Granada, and the world as a whole.
When studying abroad on a budget, Granada is a fantastic place. There are so many restaurants to explore throughout the city. Plus, whenever you order a drink, whether it be Tinto de Verano, Fanta Limón or something else, they’ll bring you a tapa along with it! One of my personal favorites for food was Shawarma, a delicious pita stuffed with grilled kebab chicken and loads of veggies and yummy sauces - all for only 3 euro! The city is incredibly walkable, but also very affordable in terms of public transportation. There are busses to the university, bus station, airport, and other parts of the city. A few weekends my friends took the busses out to the Sierra Nevadas and hiked. It was beautiful and so awesome to have fantastic hiking trails so close. Another weekend in December when snow was finally on the mountains, we had the opportunity to ski! The program also provided fantastic excursions including trips to Cabo de Gata, Ronda, Córdoba, Sevilla and Morocco. Each trip provided new immersion into cultures and opportunities to learn about art and history. The Morocco trip was truly a highlight of my experience. I stayed with a host family in Rabat, experienced the Hamman (the traditional arab baths), had lunch with a family in a village of the Rif Mountains, and so much more.
Throughout my time in Granada, I met people within my program that I now know will be lifelong friends. I met Spanish friends through orientadores of the IES program as well as through the intercambio pairing. Should you choose, IES pairs you with a Spanish peer so that you have someone to meet up with, practice your Spanish, and learn more about what it is like to be a young person in Spain. My intercambio grew to be one of my great friends, and I am thankful to have met her.
Overall, my experience in Granada was fantastic and I will always look at it as a second home. It helped me grow as an individual but also as a world citizen. I am incredibly grateful for my opportunity to study there and I highly recommend studying in Granada with IES to anyone hoping to study abroad.

32 people found this review helpful.

Questions & Answers

Hi Giselle, I think they can. However, I would not recommend it actually. Classes at the university are taught completely in Spanish and also at the level for native speakers and would be very difficult to keep up with if you are not near fluency. Regarding what section you are placed in, I know with my program, IES, you take one placement test before you arrive and two more after you get there...

Most people walk to the IES Center from their homestays, and most people's commutes were under 30 minutes. Only a few more around 40 minutes, and a lucky few were less than 10 minutes away. As far as public transit, Granada only has a bus system, and while it can be helpful (especially for getting to the larger bus station or the University of Granada, if you decide to take a class there), a lot...

There are many ways that you can meet Spanish people without taking classes at the University. IES sets each student up with an "intercambio", a Spanish student that also wants American friends. You can get in touch with each other and hang out as much as you want. You will also meet many Spanish people when you go out to tapas, bars, salsa clubs, etc... I would definitely recommend living with a...