ISA Study Abroad in Bilbao, Spain

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About

Bilbao, Spain (pop. 354,000) is located in the northern part of the country, within País Vasco. This capital of the Biscay Province provides you with an opportunity for an amazing adventure abroad. Smart, cosmopolitan, and just minutes from the coast, Bilbao is an ideal place to study. As a cultural epicenter, you will delve not only into Spanish culture, but Basque and French cultures as well. Bilbao is a contemporary city with access to mother nature in all directions. Its combination of cosmopolitan and outdoor activities is a great recipe for an exceptional experience abroad. Regardless of your interests, you will have a multitude of activities in which to partake: exploring art/history museums, hiking, sightseeing, surfing, biking, shopping, or socializing with locals.

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Reviews

80%
based on 1 review
  • Academics 3
  • Support 10
  • Fun 10
  • Housing 9
  • Safety 10
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Lorena
8/10

The Rain does not fall on the Plain in Spain

My typical day during the week involved waking up, getting ready, grabbing my umbrella and boots and walking to the metro in the rain. Then a 30 minute ride followed by a 10 minute walk in the rain to class. The class rooms were freezing but the professors were wonderful. The classes were not hard, but the Language immersion classes were all in Spanish and with mostly American students. The business side had more of a mixture of international students and were taught in English. At 130 I would hope back on the metro, go home eat lunch with my host family and take a siesta till 4, go for a run on the pathway next to the beach, come back finish some homework and hangout till dinner with was at 930-10 when my host mom got home. We would eat all together watching El Hormie Guero on TV and then go to bed. On the weekends I went on trips all over Europe, I visited 15 different cities. There was a 2 week spring break so we got to go to Morocco and I visited family in Germany, but other students went all the way to Jerusalem and Egypt. I hung out in the ISA office a lot too which was literally the building next to the school. If I wasn't out traveling we went out on the town, there is a great night life scene where people start partying at 2 in the morning and then go home at 7. We also went to the beach a lot and had surfing lessons with a discount for the Unviersidad de Deusto. It rained a lot in Bilbao in the spring, and it was cold. It had similar weather to Seattle but colder and very little sunshine. That was my biggest disappointment, but the public transit was amazing, and my host family was so gracious and loving. I would definitely go back.

What would you improve about this program?
More cultural activities, like Basque dancing and maybe a discount with the rec center. The worst part was that it rained so much, there was only so much we could do out in the city, and it was not socially acceptable to have friends come over to the host family homes. We hung out in the ISA office a lot, but we were only allowed to be so loud. It was still a great experience and the directors were so supportive and unbelievably helpful. ISA is amazing, but the rain was the worst part of Bilbao.
Yes, I recommend this program

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About ISA (International Studies Abroad)

As a leader in international education for thirty years, ISA is dedicated to providing university and college level students the opportunity to discover, learn, and enjoy a way of life other than their own. ISA offers a diverse portfolio of education...