I studied Spanish in the USA, Central America and Spain, and in my opinion Burgos is the best location for Spanish immersion.
Burgos was the capital of the Kingdom of Castile and the origin for Castilian Spanish.
The city is full of historic landmarks from the Roman Empire, Middle Ages and Renaissance.Read more reviews...
For the program in Burgos, KEI organizes cultural activities in the city and day trips to the Royal Monastery of Las Huelgas, Bilbao and San Sebastian.
During the semester, KEI also plans an extended excursion to Madrid and Toledo.
For the program in Barcelona, KEI organizes cultural activities in the city and a field trip to Montserrat or Tarragona.
Transportation, lodging and admission for planed activities and field trips are included in the program fee (note that meals are not included).
KEI reserves the right to change planned excursions for destinations of equal value and interest.
Excursions may change based on availability, local festivals and interest.
Academic year and multiple term students participate on planned excursions during their first term of study.
Burgos is known for its medieval Castilian ambience.
The Old Quarter boasts several Renaissance churches and buildings.
The Burgos Cathedral is one of the finest examples of Gothic architecture in Europe.
However, Burgos pre-dates written history.
With the recent paleontological discoveries in Sierra de Atapuerco, about 20 miles from the city, the province of Burgos is home of the earliest humans in Europe.
Royal Monastery of Las Huelgas
The Monastery of Las Huelgas is one of the most famous convents in Spanish history.
It was built in the 12th century by King Alfonso VIII of Castile and his wife, Eleonor Plantagenet (the daughter of King Henry II of England and the sister of King Richard the Lion-Hearted) as a refuge for the widowed nobility of Europe, a boarding school for the daughters of nobility and a royal pantheon where the members of their family were to be buried.
The monastery was the site of many Royal weddings, including that of Edward I of England to Eleanor of Castile.
At its peak, the monastery was very powerful with jurisdiction numerous towns, convents and churches, and the right to mint its own coinage.
Today it is home to a community of 44 cloistered nuns, who live a far simpler life than their historic predecessors.
Bilbao & San Sebastian
Bilbao, fouded in the 14th century, is the capital of the Biscay province in Northern Spain near the border with France.
Bilboa is famous for its Guggenheim, Fine Arts and Basque Museums.
San Sebastian traces its history to 1180, when Sancho the Strong founded the city in what is now the Old Quarter.
The city's unique geographic setting made it a perfect port and military stronghold.
Today it is a popular resort city with one of the best city beaches in Europe and renowned for its cuisine.
Madrid & Toledo
This excursion is organizes during the semester only. It is not offered during the summer.
Madrid, Spain's beautiful capital city has a well-developed metro system, many green areas and tree-lined streets.
Throughout the city there are many plazas; the most famous is Plaza Mayor.
These plazas are meeting places for friends and family to gather, and they also serve to provide landmarks for essential navigation.
Madrid has many things to do and see including a fantastic Royal Palace, a museum on the Americas, the world-famous Prado Museum, and an Egyptian temple.
Toledo is one of the most important centers of European medieval history and culture.
The Roman author Titus Liviu described the city as a "small fortified town."
Fortification has always been an important part of its history, and monumental walls still encircle the city today.
The city is also famous for the "Swords of Toledo," giving its steel production world-wide fame.
It was the capital of Spain from Gothic times until 1560, which explains its impressive medieval architecture.
The city's history was dominated by the Romans, the Muslims, the Jews, and finally the Christians.
These different periods of domination can be seen in the various architectural wonders.
When walking though Toledo, you can really feel its history and appreciate its culture.
A city of vibrant contrasts - and one of Europe's most stylish and dynamic cities - Barcelona blends Gothic and modern art and architecture.
Barcelona is also a center of international cultural interest, with works by renowned artists such as Gaudi, Picasso, Miro and Dali.
A city tour is organized during the orientation period.
Montserrat Mountain is a picturesque mountain, which rises majestically to 4,051 feet above sea level.
Montserrat is known for the Royal Basilica, which holds the famous 12th century Romanesque carving of Virgen Moreneta, the Black Virgin.
The Royal Basilica has been one of the most important pilgrimage sites in Spain for hundreds of years.
Tarragona is one of the provinces that makes up the Autonomous Catalan Region.
It is also the capital of the Costa Dorada with over 160 kms of coastline.
In 218 B.C. the city was invaded by the Romans who established themselves there and converted it into the capital of Hispania Citerior calling it Tarraconenses.
In 45 B.C. Julius Caesar made it into a colony. Most of the monuments which form the city's cultural heritage were built during the Roman occupation: the amphitheater, the aqueduct, the city wall, the Escipions Tower and much more.