Studying Spanish & living in Bogota; also live music?
Replies: 5 - Last Post: May 5, 2012 2:11 PM Last Post By: lilwhy
Apr 21, 2012 10:21 AM
Studying Spanish & living in Bogota; also live music?I have been looking through the threads on schools in Colombia and I have a few questions.
Background: I will be in Colombia for about two months and I would like to study the whole time. I studied Spanish for a month in Nicaragua, but other than that, I have never studied, so my Spanish is mostly Spanglish (mix of Spanish and English) right now. I am fluent in another language and I pick language up pretty quickly, not that that matters. I am studying Spanish because I plan on pursuing a graduate degree in teaching English as a second language and because I really enjoy it :)
I am 28 year old female traveling by myself. I am planning on finding a place to stay in Bogota, close to the school I choose, but only because that's where I fly into. I love traveling and visiting multiple locations, but I think it is probably counterproductive to my learning if I continuously switch schools. Would anyone recommend staying in one place for the whole time or splitting the trip into two locations (maybe Medellin? I have a friend there)? I am open to any ideas! I can also travel a bit on the weekends.
I am looking into the universities - is this a good idea? Most of them don't have all of the info on their sites, so I have been emailing questions to the contact email address given. I have thus far contacted Universidad Nacional, Universidad Del Rosario, Universidad de los Andes, and Pontifica Universidad Javeriana.
I am open to the Institutes or non university affiliated programs, but I am a bit overwhelmed by the amount of schools. I am concerned about choosing a legitimate school versus a chain or an agency looking to profit by redirecting prospects to schools and charging a fee.
What would you recommend as far as studying for 2 months - the universities or one of the language schools? I am concerned about choosing a good language school after reading all the warning threads.
Lastly, I would really like to stay in a city with some local live music options - I'm thinking Bogota is a good choice - am I wrong? I am not looking to go to large concerts, just the occasional weekday show at a bar or coffeeshop, maybe an open mic.
Sorry for the exhaustive thread, and I appreciate any responses!
Apr 21, 2012 6:29 PM
1Spanish schools in Colombia are generally quite poor (structure, quality, price and professionalism of teachers). Recommend one school in Medellin with federico. www.colombia-total.com
Yadira at the blacksheep hostel is also excellent however do not think she does group classes (may be wrong).
If you are set on Bogota, here is one school that I didnt like that much, however others loved it - Higher Tecnology Learning (also now in Medellin). The reason i did not like it is that they teach very little grammar which does not suit my learning style. If you take this option, haggle, they will give a reasonable discount.
Bogota has more live music than Medellin, but you can still find it here.
Edited by: Bickerss
Apr 22, 2012 10:41 AM
2Go and "like" The Hamburgesería's Facebook page
They have lots of live music mainly in La 85. Local bands, jazz nights, tribute bands and most Wednesdays there is a Blues Jam (which is never particularly bluesy) and you get free beer if you get up and sing (or play something)
They seem to have a friendly relationship with Carlos Reyes & La Killer Band which is a local rock band whose CD "El Ruido de Bogotá" seems to be exclusively available with your hamburger. Those guys seem to host the blues jam in La 85 too.
Café Sirope on Calle 60 con 8ª has live acoustic music on Fridays. Stones Rock Bar also has lots of live music, google it yourself, I cannot get any of the links to work.
All of the above is "no cover." Plenty of similar stuff happening but it is just a question of finding it.
This place is cool http://www.terrazaexpress.com/index.php although the comedy isn't very funny
I was actually looking for another place on the corner of Cra 13 and Calle 49 which also has a terraza and is called something Express but they don't seem to have any web presence whatsoever
Apr 24, 2012 10:54 AM
3Thank you johnnybogota - this is awesome! And exactly the info I was looking for! If you are free and would like to meet up at one of these places when I'm in Bogota, that would be rad. If not, no worries, and thank you for the info. I am super excited for my trip :)
Thank you everyone else for your help and input. I am still seeking out a second Spanish program as the one I have found at Universidad Nacional is only two hours a day and I would like to study a bit more than that.
Any more info is always appreciated. I think I will stay in Bogota for at least one month and then possibly go elsewhere.
Apr 27, 2012 7:50 AM
4Universidad de la Sabana offers 4 hours a day, but they are outside of Bogota, in the north. I am doing the course at UNal and it's more or less like everywhere else - teacher training here is very poor, so it's not easy to find a good teacher (I'm speaking as a teacher myself). Still, looking at me or my classmates, it seems effective :) The price is also very competitive compared to other schools. One of my friends studied at Javeriana and she was happy (4 hours a day).
There's a great cafe with live jazz concerts on Fridays and Saturdays in barrio Palermo - Carrera 24 con 45a, it's called San Cafe.
May 5, 2012 2:11 PM
I have arrived in Bogota and signed up for classes at Pedogogica. The classes are cheaper than UNacional and seem to be slightly better organized. I am still looking for a tutor or someone who is interested in a Language exchange, as my classes are only 2 hours a day. I'm staying in La Candelaria (last night was my first night here) and haven't ventured out to find music as I have spent the last week visiting schools and finding a place to stay, but I think I'm ready now! Just wanted to update everyone and thank everyone for the help! Also, the hostel I am staying at is great, if anyone else is interested in the info, just message me. I have a private room that is cheaper than most dorm rooms in the other well known hostels, and I'm 2 blocks from transmilenio. I am going to try and seek out some language exchange events this week as well - if anyone feels like joseeing, send me a message :)
(0 star Hotel)
From US$12.80 per night
(0 star Hotel)
From US$11.69 per night
(0 star Hotel)
From US$12.80 per night