Sometimes it still feels like yesterday, sailing over the Atlantic en route to Barajas International Airport, mentally preparing to touch down for “a year” in Madrid.
Are North Americans residing in the Canary Islands eligible for the resident discount? Maybe. Read on for details!
We arrived around two and the fiesta was already in full force. Squeezing through the mobs of sweaty fiesteros and fishermen selling eucalyptus branches for 2 bucks a pop, we made our way through the crowded, narrow streets to Plaza de la Constitución, the heart of enchanting Agaete.
My standard packing style usually starts the night before I leave, typically after my despedida (farewell) dinner, and almost always after one-too-many glasses of wine. It’s one thing to rock that laissez faire lifestyle when packing for a month or two, but a year of living abroad is definitely higher stakes, as I learned moving to Spain as an Auxiliar de Conversación.
Apartment hunting isn’t usually considered fun. Throw in a different language in a different country with different customs and it’s, well, different. Luckily, you’re not the first guiri to make the move to sunny Spain, so save yourself the stress of making all the mistakes yourself and learn from some of ours before you.
To describe Cuenca as dramatic would be an understatement. Originally founded by the Moors in the 8th century, the city was built on a peak protected by severe drops down to the gorges of the Huécar and Júcar rivers below. Everything surrounding the city is verdant green, and everything within the city is solid stone that has witnessed thousands of years of history.
Every Thursday night in Vegueta, the scent of mojo and mariscos fills the air and hungry patrons – both locals and guiris alike – fill every bar, terrace and square inch of sidewalk. It’s the weekly Ruta del Pincho aka Tapas Thursday in the historic center, where friends gather together to share a bucket (or 10) of botellínes and sample the countless pinchos on offer.
Finding a flat is essential.
Finding a flat you love (or at least like, hopefully a lot) will make a huge impact on your overall Spain experience.
No One Says Apartamento: A Piso Glossary for Spain When I first moved to Madrid, I absolutely thought my Spanish was on point… until I started looking for apartments and had my potential compañeros de piso rambling on a mile a minute about fianzas, ascensores and gastos aparte. ¿Say what? For starters, you’re not looking…
If you’re reading this, you’ve probably received your regional placement as a Language Assistant in Spain… congrats! If you’re like most first-time auxiliares, this will be your first time living overseas for more than a just study abroad stint, and let’s just say… it’s different. Different in lots of good ways, and a few stressful ways, but absolutely different.
The truth is, there’s quite a bit that you won’t be able to do until you arrive – finding a piso (apartment) you love, setting up a bank account, securing a Spanish SIM card, etc. There are, however, a few things you can do now to make the transition a whole helluvalot easier when you arrive, and here are my top 3: consulates, cash & communication.
Eating my way through the Canary Islands has been and continues to be one of my favorite parts of living in this little corner of the world.
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This month begins the beautiful debauchery of one of Spain’s most cherished festivos. If you’re lucky enough to be celebrating in one of the top Carnaval hotspots in Spain – Santa Cruz de Tenerife, Las Palmas de Gran Canaria, Cadiz, Sitges – get ready to be dazzled. From shimmering, sequined gowns and luminous firework displays to blaring Latin beats and the sensation of thousands of people soaking it all in with you, your senses are sure to be on overload.
Barcelona truly does have something for everyone – golden beaches, world famous architecture, trendy boutiques, street musicians and nightlife that doesn’t quit. Here are my top 10 spots to get lost in.