All Spanish students should plan to study Spanish in Spain at least once in their lives. While learning from a textbook is a great way to start, no one don’t really knows a language until they start using it in their everyday life. Proficient polyglots always advise to study abroad for people trying to perfect a language. One great city to immerse students in the Spanish language and heritage is the southern city of Granada. In this brief article, we’ll take a quick look at the history of this culturally significant city. We’ll also go over some tips on how to become as proficient as a Spaniard before leaving Granada.
Granada: A Short History
goes back at least 2,500 years. Archeologists have found various Ibero-Celtic settlements here long before the Greeks set up habitations. When the Romans rose to power, Granada became a very important economic center and developed intricate aqueducts and roads
. After Rome fell, Granada was conquered by various empires and tribes. In 711 A.D., the Moors took over the entire Iberian Peninsula and built the stunning Alhambra
palace in Granada.
It wasn’t until 1492 A.D. that King Ferdinand II of Aragon put an end to Moorish rule and officially ended the Christian Reconquista. Granada still has numerous architectural wonders from its storied past. Although the city was damaged during the Spanish Civil War, Granada was fully modernized in the 20th century. In addition to welcoming hordes of tourists every year, Granada is now well known for its businesses and prestigious universities.
Be Sure To Practice Spanish With Locals
Spanish learners always advise to study abroad, but that doesn’t mean just study in the classroom. To really study Spanish in Spain, students actually have to speak Spanish with locals. Although this may seem obvious, most students shy away from practicing their Spanish once they’re out of the comforting confines of the classroom.
Everyone must push themselves to chat with Spanish people at local cafés, libraries, and shops to get better at pronunciation and comprehension. Many people nowadays just use their smartphones to do the talking for them. That’s a big mistake. Granada is a wonderfully welcoming and tourist friendly city, so every student shouldn’t find it difficult to meet locals who’d be more than happy to help them with their Spanish. While it may be tempting just to pull out a smartphone, it’s far better to always communicate in Spanish and without visual aids. Although it will be hard at the beginning, over time every student should notice dramatic improvement in their Spanish speaking abilities.
Before heading to Granada, it might be useful to know a bit of Spanish just to get around. Here are a few key phrases to memorize:
- Can you help me?: ¿Me puede ayudar?
- Where is the nearest hospital?: ¿Dónde está el hospital más cercano?
- Please speak more slowly: Hable más despacio, por favor
- I’d like: Quisiera
- I don’t understand: No entiendo
- Where is…?: ¿Dónde está…?