Want to Study Abroad in Spain? 5 Reasons Why Spanish Language Students Should Choose MurciaOctober 17, 2017
If you’re studying Spanish, studying abroad in Spain may seem like a fairly obvious decision. However, as tempting as it may be to spend a semester or a year in Barcelona or Madrid, there are other regions that offer equal (and possibly superior) social and academic resources. Here are five reasons why studying Spanish in Murcia may be a fantastic opportunity.
1. Universidad de Murcia has one of the best language programs in Spain
If you are majoring in Spanish Language and Literature, Universidad de Murcia has one of the finest language departments in Europe. Consistently ranked as one of the top 20 universities in Spain, Universidad de Murcia offers a comprehensive language and culture program geared toward advanced language students. Students are given the opportunity to immerse themselves not only in classroom Murcian Spanish (often considered separate from Spanish and an endangered language), but also to take advantage of the one-on-one instruction that isn’t readily available in bigger, more impersonal universities.
2. Murcia is a small, intimate region
Although Murcia is the capital and largest city in the autonomous community province, the Murcia population isn’t nearly as international as that of Barcelona, Valencia or Madrid. This is tremendously beneficial to students seeking language immersion because the opportunities to speak English aren’t as abundant. Being forced to speak Spanish more often will greatly improve your language skills.
One of the most wonderful things about Murcia is its celebration of its history and traditions. The Murcia population is a diverse mix of Spanish and North African cultures and religions, and the city hosts a variety of festivals highlighting its unique blend of customs. In the spring and summer there are fairs dedicated to the Easter holiday, Holy Week and Flamenco (Cante de las Minas de La Union Festival and Lo Ferro Flamenco Singing Festival)
3. Murcia offers extraordinary cuisine
Batter-fried lemon leaves, “grandma” artichokes, stewed rabbit and raw sausages are only a few of the uniquely Murcian dishes you’ll encounter during your visit. While a few of them might be a bit frightening to the standard American palate, (raw sausages?!) if you’re feeling adventurous, you may discover a whole new world of fabulous flavors!
Murcia is often called “the garden of Spain” because the climate allows for a breathtaking diversity of local produce. The ready availability of beautiful vegetables, fruits and seafood has given Murcia the reputation for having some of the finest tapas in Spain (which can be paired with delicious local wines).
4. The weather in Murcia is glorious
Murcia is located on the southeast coast of Spain, and has, on average, 300 days of sunshine per year. Students who love outdoor activities will appreciate the wealth of opportunities for hiking, climbing and exploring the many pristine mountains and parks scattered throughout the region. The province also boasts over 100 miles of stunning coastline, so a day at one of the world’s most beautiful beaches is right at your fingertips!
5. Murcia is a shopper’s paradise
No matter what your personal tastes are – from high-end designer chic to folksy and traditional – Murcia offers a wealth of boutiques and flea markets where you can pick up fabulous clothes, accessories, home décor and locally-made craft pieces.
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