07 Apr Mundolengua Conquers Tibidabo
Jordan Drummonds, a student in our spring study abroad group, wrote this amazing blog post about Centro Mundolengua´s recent Barcelona trip. Our Sevilla group recently made the trip up to Northern Spain to see what the heart of Catalonia had to offer. Barcelona has new attractions, a different geography, and even its own language! As you can see in Jordan´s post, the group saw many of Barcelona´s major attractions and had a great time while there. Some of us decided to visit Tibidabo.
Friday and Saturday were our more structured days; we spent much of the time walking through the different sections of Barcelona such as El Born and the Gothic Quarter as well as taking in both the history and art found at the Gaudi landmarks. Sunday, however, was a free day until we had to return to Sevilla. Some students went to the beach around the Barceloneta area, while others went shopping and visited museums. Because I lived in Barcelona for almost a year, I chose to revisit Tibidado, a nearby mountain, with anyone who wished to join. Eight people decided to tag along, and the journey began.
We didn´t exactly climb the mountain. There´s a cheap way to get to the top of Tibidabo but few people know about it. We left the hostel and made our way to the nearest FGC (similar to a metro) stop. After taking the FGC to the base of the mountain, we took a funicular to the top. For anyone who does not know what this is, it´s similar to a gondola but it´s connected to a track with a sharp incline. After exiting the funicular, we took a bus from the top of the mountain to the center. All of this transportation cost a total of 1 euro!
When we first saw the view of the city, I think we all let out a collective ¨wow!¨ at the same time. We were fortunate enough to have good visibility and blue skies. We spent about an hour at Tibidabo walking around, eating churros, and taking in the view of Barcelona and the nearby provinces such as Sant Adrià de Besòs and Badalona. We were even lucky enough to see some snow-capped mountains to the west of us. Usually, those are only visible on a handful of days every year.
All of the students I brought with me all said that they loved the panoramic views and that the complex steps required to reach the center of Tibidabo were well worth it. The tourist area in the center of the mountain (where everyone goes for the views) is quite a unique place; there is a large church open to the public and a full-size two level theme park just outside of it. This features a ferris wheel and other rides that aim to maximize the views. Though it costs money to buy tickets for the rides, anyone can enter the theme park and enjoy feeling like a kid again.
The students and I were able to take this amazing trip because of the flexibility built into Centro Mundolengua´s schedule. One of the most amazing things about studying abroad with Centro Mundolengua is the balance between structure and free time. The students enjoyed our walking tours and visits to Gaudi attractions, but the ability to also do something unplanned and unstructured is part of the fun of being abroad. Programs such as our Intensive Spanish Courses are great way to learn Spanish at an unprecedented rate while still having the flexibility to do what you want. We hope that we can offer you a Spanish experience similar to the great experience our spring semester students are having!