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Travel to Portugal

Kyle Stanley and Kyle Wells 4This weekend we took a trip to Aveiro, Portugal. Stepping off the bus you can smell the fresh breeze from the sea which was really refreshing. We stayed at a nice hotel, and our room was on the fifth floor with a gorgeous view of the city. Since it was the 4th of July we decided to ‘go American’ and eat some really good burgers with ham, cheese, and mix of mayonnaise and ketchup. After lunch, we rode on the gondolas and we got to see the city from a different perspective and overall had a very good time.

The nKyle Stanley and Kyle Wells 3ext day we went to the beach which was really beautiful, but the water was really cold! We spent some of our time digging holes and burying people- I was one of the unlucky ones to be buried. For lunch we went to a seaside restaurant. We played soccer on the beach, raced one another, froze in the water, and had fun in the sun. We had a great time and I feel that the group became closer as friends.

– The above post was contributed by Kyle Stanley and Kyle Wells, who visited Aveiro, Portugal when they studied abroad with ISA High School in Salamanca, Spain in 2015.

Cathedral in Sevilla, Spain

The Cathedral of Saint Mary of the See is located in the middle of Sevilla and when visiting Sevilla, it’s one of the most breathtaking architectural innovations you’ll see. Influence from the Moors is evident in the architectural design of the cathedral. This Moorish style combined with many Gothic aspects creates the masterpiece that is this cathedral. The intricacy of the design is very evident as it took over 100 years to construct.

Cathedral PhotoThe high vaulted ceilings give the cathedral a very open feel, so it is easy to believe that it is the largest Gothic cathedral in all of Spain. The cathedral features a large courtyard upon entry and a 104 meter tall bell tower that was originally used several times a day by the Moors to call people to pray.  In order to reach the top of the tower, or the Giralda, the Moorish people rode their horses up 35 ramps to the top. The cathedral features 8 different doors, each door is dedicated to different people/purposes.

Overall, the cathedral was one of the most beautiful sights that we have seen in Spain. The attention to the detail of the design of the cathedral is very evident as the placement, size, and color all maximize symbolism and the Catholic beliefs.  A walk through the beautiful cathedral is a walk into the history of Sevilla.

– The above post and photos were contributed by Emma Hunter, Sarah Winston Nathan, and Corrin Courville, who studied abroad with ISA High School in Sevilla, Spain in 2015.

Singing in Class in Italy

One day we took a break from the traditional classroom way of learning Italian and instead furthered our knowledge of Italian culture by singing traditional Italian songs. Along with improving our vocabulary in a cheerful way, it was a great bonding experience.

When the variety of instruments we had no experience playing were implemented into our singing and we were asked to play along with the music, it provided a very humorous scene and led to teachers from around the school being drawn to our class to witness this hilarious event.

As much fun as it was, it was a great example of how music and entertainment is a valuable way to improve learning a language. It also introduced us to music that we may not have otherwise been exposed to living in America.

– The above post was contributed by Evan Llewelyn, who studied abroad in Sorrento, Italy during the summer of 2015 with ISA High School. 

Bringing a bit of Home to France


Anita (our host mom) learning to make pancakes.

Everyone knows that Bastille Day is a French holiday, but on that morning we snuck some American culture into the kitchen. As an attempt to repay our host mother for being so kind in cuisine, Georgia (my roommate) and I taught her how to make pancakes.

Anita, our host mother, has never had a pancake in her life yet the first one she made was the best out of all of ours. The following days she made us pancakes for breakfast before classes and I’ve got to say I enjoyed it a lot more than I should have. I don’t know if it’s the concept of eating familiar food in a foreign country or the deliciousness of the food, but seriously- wow.

– The above blog post was contributed by Lea Payette, who studied abroad in Aix-en-Provence, France in 2015 with ISA High School.

Discovering Ronda


On Sunday, our group went to Ronda, Spain. We viewed the Puente Nuevo Bridge. It was incredible to see the bridge, and if we looked below we could see the Tajo River where the people from Ronda used to get their water. We also visited the Arab Baths that date back to the 13th and 14th centuries. We watched a video and our tour guide told us a lot of information about the baths. It was interesting to learn about the three rooms. The hottest room was closest to the fire and served as a sauna. The second room was more of a social area, where the people of Ronda could relax and socialize. The final room, which was the furthest from the fire, was the coldest room, and was a bathing area with cooler water.


Students in the stands.

Another place we visited was the bull ring. Here we learned about bull fights and got to see where the bulls are kept before they enter the arena. We also were able to see the different outfits that the bullfighters wore as well as examples of what audience members wore to the bullfight. We really enjoyed our visit to Ronda and getting the chance to see the all of the beautiful views.

– The above post and photos were contributed by Hannah Herrold and Hailey Herrold, who visited Ronda while abroad with ISA High School in Malaga, Spain.

The Cadiz Experience

Cadiz - Alexis and Matty

We went to Cadiz after a week of being in Sevilla. Cadiz is a beach town towards the southern most part of Spain and is close to Gibraltar. We stayed in Puerta Tierra  which is a hotel that was close enough to the beach for walking. The main dish in Cadiz is Pescado Frito, which is a fried delicacy in this town.

What was your favorite thing in Cadiz?

The best part of Cadiz was going to the beach and being able to also be absorbed in the culture and history of Cadiz. The beach of Cadiz was beautiful and the water felt amazing. It was a refreshing place to relax and have a care-free attidute towards. However, as for the history of Cadiz one of the most amazing places we visited was the Torre Tavira which used to be a watch tower and held a camera obcsura room.

 “Cadiz has been a great experience to have been able to be a part of. The scenery was breathtaking and the beach was wonderfully refreshing.¨ – Matty Stoddart-Cone

Cultural Cadiz

On Sunday, one of the coolest parts of Cadiz was a flea market that they had in the main plaza. There, we were able to buy authentic Spanish jewlery as well as souvenirs!! It was really cool to be able to see the day to day lives and routines of another city in Spain besides Sevilla!

– The above blog post was contributed by Matty Stoddart-Cone and Alexis Tello, who studied abroad with ISA High School in Sevilla, Spain in 2015. They visited Cadiz during a weekend excursion.

Exploring Monteverde Cloud Forest Reserve in Costa Rica

Cloudforest shot 2

After a long bus ride into the mountains of Costa Rica, we stopped at the Monteverde Cloud Forest Reserve to experience the flora and fauna that this country is known for. Our walk through the cloud forest began fairly easy, but turned into more of a hike with steep hills and stairs that had us panting.

Along the way though, there were great “ventanas,” or windows, where we could see the valleys and towns of Costa Rica from above. We saw beautiful birds and plants with the largest leaves we had ever seen. When we reached the top observation deck, a heavy rain began, making the hike back pretty soaked and slippery.

About halfway back, everyone was getting muddy, so we decided to have a bit of fun on the soaked trail. We splashed each other with mud and shared lots of laughs. By the end of the hike it was clear that our walk in a cold and wet forest had turned into an exciting and memorable afternoon.

Cloudforest Excursion– The above post was contributed by Morgan Rising, who studied abroad with ISA High School in Heredia, Costa Rica in 2015. Morgan Rising took classes at the Universidad Latina for college credit, and volunteered at La Carpio, an impoverished community on the Global Impact portion of her program. Morgan became an ISA High School Featured Blogger upon being awarded a Social Media Scholarship.

Living in Salamanca, Spain

Jamal & TrevorOur favorite things in Salamanca are the different types of food and tastes that are not in America. We enjoy how everything is close together and we can walk to different places very easily. We enjoy how everything is less expensive than in the United States. Also, the culture and people here are very interesting and fun to learn about.

With that being said, the heat at night that makes it difficult to sleep, and is definitely something we had to get used to. Communication is difficult in the home at first, however it helps us to study Spanish all the time. Overall, Salamanca is a great and beautiful place to live in and we would recommend it to anyone trying to visit España. – Jamal Richmond and Trevor Dilla

Ray & Nick & Kevin3Our trip to Spain has been so fun. Our favorite part so far has been living in Salamanca for 3 weeks. The food is here very good and there are lots of things to do in the city. Meeting new people and living with our host families has been an adventure. Our host families are very nice to us and living with them is definitely very different than home. Getting to know locals has made the city easier to navigate and more fun. Although it is challenging having to speak Spanish all day since it’s not our native language, it has made our Spanish better. We have especially loved being able to experience the excursions we all went on and the fun we had – in particulargoing to Aveiro and Santander. – Kevin Prophet, Nicholas Karl, and Raymond Lewis

– The above post was contributed by Jamal, Trevor, Kevin, Nick, and Ray, who studied abroad with ISA High School in Salamanca, Spain during the summer of 2015.

Boat Ride Around Malaga

Chloe_Pae_Boat Ride

For our afternoon excursion we went on a boat tour around the bay of Málaga. We met in the Plaza de la Marina (our usual meeting spot), and we walked to the port where we would climb on board our boat in order to see Málaga from a whole new perspective. The water was very clean and blue; however we were not able to see the grey dolphins that inhabit the ocean near Malaga. That didn’t stop our group from having a great time snapping photos, goofing around, and of course, practicing ourSpanish. The boat trip ultimately provided us with some stunning views of the city as well as time to have fun and see Málaga in a new light.

– The above blog post and photo were contributed by Chloe Pae, who studied abroad in Malaga, Spain in 2015 with ISA High School.

Beach Day in Cadiz

This weekend we traveled to the beautiful town of Cádiz. This trip was well needed, for the weather in Granada was getting hotter and hotter by the day. As we left Gibraltar [after our day trip there] and started our voyage to Cádiz, the excitement grew as we began to see “la playa”.

Within five minutes of arriving to Cádiz, we all grabbed our beach necessities and ran to the ocean. That night we all went out to dinner on the beach and marveled at the beautiful sun setting on the ocean. We later walked around town and got a feel for the life in Cádiz.

The next morning, we went to visit the world famous watchtower, Torre Tavira. In the watchtower, we came across a “camera obscura”, which is a mirror that reflects LIVE images of the city on to a curved canvas. This was one of the most interesting contraptions I have ever come across. We climbed some stairs to the top of the tower and looked at a panoramic view of the town. The view was breathtaking.

Jemma Baus - MiradorAfter the tour, once again, we all ran to the beach to enjoy the sun and refreshing water from the Atlantic Ocean. This excursion to Cádiz was a great time to sit and enjoy the sun while reminiscing on all the fun times our group has had together.

– The above post was contributed by Jemma Baus, who studied abroad with ISA High School during the summer of 2015. Jemma visited Cadiz during a weekend e xcursion with her group on the Granada, Spain program.

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