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EF Stories: Elaine from Belgium at EF Costa Rica

EF Stories: Elaine from Belgium at EF Costa Rica

About a year ago, I went to Costa Rica for the first time with EF. I departed from Zaventem with another girl I didn't know. The connection was immediate! We weren't seated next to each other on the plane, but we exchanged seats from time to time and took "stretch" breaks together during the flight.

When we arrived in Costa Rica, we were already friends. That's how it goes with EF people. Everyone is so open, sociable, and shares the same outlook on life that you immediately feel connected.

We arrived at night and were taken to our accommodation through the EF transfer. I stayed with a host family who warmly welcomed me even though it was in the middle of the night. After a good night's sleep, we had breakfast with other students in the host family the next morning. I hadn't converted my euros yet, but one of the other students immediately gave me some Costa Rican colones to pay for the first colectivo. That's also EF: everyone helps each other!

Love for Tamarindo

After a few hours of walking and exploring Tamarindo, I fell in love with Costa Rica (so much so that less than 10 months later, I returned there, again with EF :D).

The atmosphere in this country is incredible. While in Belgium, people often forget to live due to the hustle and bustle of daily life, Costa Ricans really take the time to enjoy life. Everyone enjoys, lives in harmony with nature, and with each other. Surfing, sipping cocktails on the beach, and dancing during the mild summer evenings. I wanted to write "until the early morning," but I take back those words. :D In fact, my rhythm completely changed in Costa Rica. Due to the morning light, I woke up very early (6 in the morning) and also went to bed early!

During party nights, of course, a bit later, but in Costa Rica, the party starts much earlier than in Belgium, which I really like.

School Life

School Life

The experience at the EF school was amazing (there's even a pool on campus!!). In addition to the beautiful location and the pool, the organization on-site was also very good! On the first day of school, we took a placement test, and they showed us around Tamarindo.

All practical questions (where are the supermarkets, where and how to buy and activate your SIM card, etc.) were explained immediately, and we ended the first day of school with a cocktail in one of the beach bars. During this first evening, we got to know the other EF students who quickly became friends. We also participated in many activities organized by EF throughout the trip: an excursion to the Celeste River and a weekend at the Arenal Volcano, for example! I found these excursions to be a great way to mix things up from the pool and beach activities we did in Tamarindo itself.

And, of course, what is not unimportant: I found the best way to improve my Spanish there. I was also taking Spanish classes in Belgium, and when I came back after my EF trip, everyone told me I had made huge progress in speaking. That's the advantage of taking Spanish classes in a Spanish-speaking country and staying with a host family where you can't help but use Spanish to communicate.

Overall, 10 months after my first trip to Costa Rica, I went back, and I can already say with certainty that they won't be getting rid of me anytime soon! As they say in Costa Rica: Pura Vida!

Learn Spanish in Costa RicaLet's go
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