Portuguese Languages for Life course
8 weeks Portuguese course/ Lisbon
I expected to be able to come home having a basic level of conversation and grammar. In general, I hoped for clean, friendly accommodation and welcoming, patient staff at the language school.
The experience far exceeded my expectations I came home having a high intermediate level of Portuguese; the home stay was brilliant, friendly and helpful.
Furthermore the staff at the school were exceptional, welcoming and supportive. The 8 weeks was much more than just a language course.
The lessons at the Portuguese language school in Lisbon were brilliant; the class size was probably a great advantage since it was the winter months. The teachers were very supportive and professional yet relaxed and friendly. The lessons were usually half grammar, half conversation with a lot of cultural insights and current issues.
I think that the secret of the school was that it was so small. Everyone was comfortable as everyone interacted. The teachers were extremely nice and more like friends than just teachers. The central location was also handy.
The best parts of the programme were the improvement I made in speaking Portuguese in a day-to-day situation and definitely the people; both students and teachers.
I think the general course of 15 lessons per week with free time is a perfect balance. I took extra afternoon lessons to improve conversation yet still had time to visit places in the afternoon. The cultural excursions are great to get your bearings and get to know the other students. I made some lifelong friends. I would recommend a transfer to your accommodation as it can take an hour to get a taxi at the airport and a transfer is much easier.
Lisbon is a great destination. It’s a mix of beautiful buildings and cosmopolitan, modern shopping centres. The food is cheap and the people are friendly and they are willing to speak to you in their language. The city is generally safe. There are plenty of pubs, bars and clubs, which aren’t expensive and have a wide range of music (from Spanish pop to funky house). For a fun night out I`d recommend “Docas” by the river, then the “Salsa Latina Club” for more serious clubbers. “Santos” and “Queens” club or “Lux”. There are so many cinemas, shops and art galleries or museums to visit during the day. Belem is a good afternoon out. Also “Bouro Alto” for small friendly and funky bars.
I was delighted with the accommodation. I loved staying with Raquel, her daughter and her granddaughter. The Portuguese conversation at breakfast was very helpful and informative and they were lovely people. I would definitely recommend them to other students although I found I didn’t spend too much time in the house, as there was so much to see!
CESA was very helpful and I felt reassured by the information I received before I left. I think Portugal is a wonderful place and the school is fantastic!
I would definitely go again. Anyone who wants to learn Portuguese, this is by far the best way to do so! I think the nights out, trips we made to Porto, Evora and Sintra and losing my house key on the first day are my most memorable moments!
– Thanks CESA!