Located right on the Pacific Coast, Valparaíso is about a 90-minute car ride from Chile’s capital. With around 300,000 inhabitants, it is much smaller than Santiago, which has almost 6 million residents. However, Chileans know Valparaíso as being the “cultural capital” of Chile. Valparaíso, which is also referred to simply as “Valpo”, impresses visitors with its architecture and location. Valparaíso was declared a World Heritage Site by UNESCO in 2003 due to its historical relevance, picturesque harbor, and many hills that are covered with countless colorful houses and small buildings. It is also one of the most well-known cities in the world for beautiful street art, which can be seen throughout the city. The unique architecture is a mix of 19th century styles and modern art. From almost every hill, you have an amazing view over the Pacific coast and the harbor of Valparaíso. Every year, Valpo attracts thousands of visitors from around the world.
During the 19th century, the picturesque city was home to the most important port in Latin America. After the completion of the Panama Canal, however, Valparaíso lost a lot of its significance for trading, but the city’s port is still used by cargo ships today. Up until today, the city’s charm still remains and reminds visitors of its former glory and wealth through its many high-incline cable cars and old buildings, such as the oldest stock exchange in Latin America.
Our Spanish school is located near the Plaza de Justicia in downtown Valparaíso. A short distance from the school, you will find the picturesque harbor and the famous Plaza Sotomayor, which is the central reference point of Valparaíso. The school is small but has a friendly and international atmosphere with more than 20 years of experience teaching Spanish as a foreign language. The tranquility facilitates the concentration and the exchange of the Chilean culture and language. The abundance of students between the ages of 20 and 40 years old come from around the world forming a multicultural mixture.
In order to maintain its reputation among the top language schools in Valparaíso, the school strives to offer high-quality lessons and friendly costumer service. In order for students to quickly become familiar with the Spanish language and succeed in learning, they are divided into three ability levels (beginner, intermediate and advanced). Each level is subdivided to categorize students and form groups with corresponding language skills. The group courses are small and average only 3 students (maximum 5) per group. A placement test is given to each student to determine their group assignment.
The lessons emphasize learning grammar and expanding vocabulary. Many conversational exercises are carried out during the classes to strengthen speaking and listening comprehension.
All teachers are native Spanish speakers and have university degrees. Many have studied other foreign languages as well allowing them to understand the situation of the students and adapt their teaching accordingly. All classes are well structured using the school’s own teaching material and additional audio, visual and print materials.
Classes in Valparaíso take place year-round and start every Monday. Considering a minimum stay of 2 weeks, you can arrange your course according to your schedule. Students can choose between three different types of course:
• Group Course:
Consists of 20 lessons per week (each 45 minutes). Each group has a maximum of 5 students, usually only 3. Classes take place in the morning from 9:00 to 13:30. The classes may occur in the afternoons if the morning classes reach capacity.
• Intensive Course:
A combination of the Group Course and the Individual Course consisting of 20 group lessons (each 45 minutes) and 10 individual lessons (each 45 minutes) per week. The Intensive Course is ideal for students who want to improve their language skills as quickly as possible. The individual lessons can be arranged flexibly in the afternoons Monday through Friday.
• Private Course:
For students who prefer individual attention and need a flexible schedule. The lessons are adapted to the student’s Spanish level and learning abilities. The student can also request to emphasize studying certain material or themes. The Private Course consists of 15 lessons per week.
• Spanish Course & Volunteer Work (part-time):
Many participants of our Spanish courses in Valparaiso are interested in integrating into Chilean society. Especially for these students, we have created a combination program that gives you the opportunity to combine your theoretical Spanish studies with the practical application of your knowledge through volunteering. By participating in volunteer work you will learn about the Chilean society while assisting those in need. The volunteer work takes place in children's homes, day care centers, homes for the elderly, homeless shelters and other similar social institutions. The combination program consists of a Spanish Course in the morning and then volunteering two to four afternoons per week. You will practice your newly acquired Spanish grammar in real life situations allowing you to rapidly improve your skills.
The charm of Valparaíso will capture you immediately. For our language students, we offer carefully selected guest rooms with Chilean host families or in shared apartments. In either option you will have your own single room and access to the common areas.
Living with a host family allows you to learn about the Chilean customs, cuisine and the culture. The Chileans are very warm people making it easy for you to become a part of the family very quickly. If you want to experience the typical Chilean dishes, we recommend you to request half-board. Alternatively, there is also the option of living in a shared apartment. In most cases, Chilean or international students share their homes with our language students, but also young Chilean professionals offer rooms in order to get to know people from other cultures. The great advantage of sharing an apartment is the direct access to a circle of friends and the fun involved in developing new friendships.
The Spanish courses in Valparaiso include
• Personal and professional consultations regarding your program
• English-speaking contact person in Chile
• Useful information about your stay in Chile
• Country Handbook Chile
• Free internet access in the school
• Class material
• Language evaluation test
• Refreshments and light snacks during the breaks
• Cultural activities calendar (depending on season)
• Accommodation (if booked
• Airport pick-up (if booked)
• Language course completion certificate
• 24/7 emergency number
|Program / duration||2
(20 hrs / week)
|480 USD||720 USD||960 USD||240 USD|
(20+10 hrs / week)
|800 USD||1,200 USD||1,600 USD||400 USD|
(15 hrs / week)
|620 USD||930 USD||1,240 USD||310 USD|
|308 USD||462 USD||616 USD||154 USD|
|476 USD||714 USD||952 USD||238 USD|
* High season surcharge for accommodation 5 USD/day between December 1 and February 28.
(Airport - bus terminal)
For the organization of volunteer work an application fee of 100 USD is required.
• One week Spanish course lasts from Monday to Friday
• New courses always start on Mondays (all levels)
• Each lesson has 45 minutes
• The Group Course includes 20 lessons per week
• The Intensive Course consists of the Group course and 10 private lessons per week
• The Private Course includes 15 individual lessons per week
• All Group Courses are expected to have a minimum of 3 students per class. In case there are just 1 or 2
students, class hours will be reduced by 50%.
• Accommodations are arranged in single rooms with a host family or in a shared apartment. Half board is only
available with host families.
• Accommodation prices consider check-in Sunday before the course starts, check-out Saturday after the
course has ended (extra days can be booked).
• The volunteer work is carried out part time, 2 to 4 afternoons per week (if booked)
• The half-day volunteer work takes place on 2 to 4 afternoons per week. It can only be booked together with
a Spanish course during the same period of time.
**Airport pick-up is only available within Santiago (Santiago Airport - Bus Terminal. From there, buses to Valparaíso leave every 30 minutes).
Public Holidays 2018:
Jan 01, Mar 30, May 01, May 21, Jul 02, Jul 16, Aug 15, Sept 18 + 19, Oct 15, Nov 01, Nov 02, Dec 08, Dec 25. Classes will be rescheduled.
How to enroll?
How are students assigned to the right language course?
Before starting a language course in Valparaíso, each new language student takes a placement test. This test must either be submitted by email beforehand or taken on the first day of school before the course starts. Based on this test, students are evaluated regarding their language skills and are assigned to the right group. In case a student wishes to take private lessons, the test helps the Spanish school determine the right course material.
Where are the other language students from?
The language students represent a diverse range of nationalities, typically originating from Germany, Switzerland, Austria, the USA, Canada and Brazil. Every now and then the courses are attended by students of other nationalities, primarily Asians.
Can I do the DELE test in Chile?
We only offer DELE (Diploma de Español como Lengua Extranjera) preparation courses in Valparaíso. The DELE test itself will has to be taken in Santiago de Chile.
Does the language school also offer leisure activities?
The language school in Valparaiso offers leisure activities on a small-scale, which depend on the number of enrolled students. However, you can also easily discover the city by yourself. There are many ways to spend a relaxing afternoon in Valparaiso. The long beaches in neighboring Viña del Mar attract many sun seekers, especially during the summer months.
Will I be picked up at the airport?
We are happy to organize pick-up at the airport. This way you won’t have to go through the hassle of looking for a trustworthy taxi driver and won’t need to explain where exactly you’re staying. We pick you up at the airport in Santiago and bring you directly to the bus terminal, where you can board a bus to Valparaiso (approx. 2 hour drive). If you prefer to stay in Santiago for a night or more, we will take you to your accommodation in Santiago.
Will I receive a certificate from the school upon completion of the course?
Yes, upon completion of the course, the language school in Valparaíso will issue a certificate stating the level achieved.
What kind of insurance do I need for my stay abroad?
In order to participate in our exchange programs, you need to at least take out travel health insurance. This is important as it will cover you against every possible case of illness or accident. For this purpose, we cooperate with STA Travel, with whom we have negotiated special rates. Chile Inside and STA Travel offer various advantages, the biggest of which is overall insurance coverage (illness, accident, third party liability, and baggage) for a reduced monthly fee. For more information read here.
What should I do if I have a problem?
In the unlikely event that you experience problems during your stay in Chile, we are available to provide assistance. No matter whether you encounter these problems in your language course or whether they are of a different nature, we are always happy to help. You will find our 24-hour emergency number on your reservation confirmation. It ensures that we are reachable also outside office hours.
Where will I be staying?
Our language students in Valparaíso either stay with a Chilean host family or in shared accommodation. Unless requested otherwise, you will be allocated a single room (instead of a double room or dormitory style rooms). If staying with a host family, you can request half-board. In shared accommodation everyone is responsible for their own meals. All participants have access to a fully equipped kitchen where they can store and prepare food. Double rooms are available upon special request for friend or couples traveling together.
Will I have access to internet where I’m staying?
In particular Chile’s bigger cities have a good infrastructure. Internet access (WIFI) is part of the standard equipment of 95% of the accommodation we offer. In case you unexpectedly don’t have access to the internet, there are various internet cafes in Valparaíso.