I recently finished up 10 days in Sámara and a week long course at Intercultura. As a Spanish teacher, I was looking for a way to dip into the Central American culture authentically, while still feeling safe and having opportunities to practice my Spanish. I'd done a semester abroad in Spain, but had never spent any time in Central or South America. My experience in Sámara could not have been better. The school was located directly off of the beach, which made for a stunning view. The teachers are charismatic and lively, and are terrific educators. They do a placement interview to play you correctly and have on level content depending on where you fall. I chose to do the homestay option and also loved it. I will be honest, there were a few more insects than I was used to seeing, but the house itself was extremely clean, my host family was incredibly welcoming and accommodating and the food was great! I lived about 10 minutes walking from the school. As someone who is OVERLY cautious when it comes to safety and someone who had never traveled alone, I was feeling a little nervous about going to Costa Rica. However, I couldn't have felt safer in this town. Like any place, don't walk around alone late at night. Like any town, you risk being in the wrong place at the wrong time. But honestly, I felt very safe during the day and at night and had zero problems. The people are incredibly friendly, the town loves its tourists, there are plenty of fun restaurants and bars and many excursions offered both through and outside of the school. I couldn't say enough about this school and this town. I literally made a TripAdvisor account to write it :) LOVE IT. PURA VIDA
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