Learning About Language and Culture through Travel

Culture, language and people are three of the things that have always fascinated me. I can’t remember how many times I’ve gone on and on about this fancy of mine but If I had the funds and opportunity to pursue it then I’d probably drop off everything and fly to my dream destinations. I would simply love to immerse myself in their culture and learn their language, and then maybe fulfill my other fancy which is to be a good interpreter or translator. I’d probably pass for a German-English and Spanish-English translator but it’ll also be lovely to add Russian and French translation to my language abilities.

Those who are still young and single are lucky to have opportunities like scholarship grants and language learning experiences offered by governments of some countries. I suggest that they grab this chance to have an educational holiday experience and gain a new language. Here are, in my opinion, some of the best places that offer great cultural experiences and interesting language that one would want learn.

Hajimemashite!

Tokyo, Japan is one of the places that I’d like to settle into. I’m simply fascinated with Nihongo -the language, Japanese food and just about anything that is Japanese. Those who would like to study Japanese in Tokyo can look into the various holiday packages that include dormitory or apartment accommodations, or home stay arrangements where you can live with foster parents or families. During your stay try to explore as much of the city and don’t go home without seeing their key attractions.

kimono and sakura
would be nice to try on a kimono
(image via http://www.flickr.com/photos/yocca/2399983132/)

This includes Sanrio Puroland, Tokyo Tower, Hachiko Monument, Shibuya shopping district, and their various shrines and park. You may also like to visit Mt. Fuji, Kyoto and other interesting spots in Japan. Tourists can also make the most out of their cultural experience by watching sumo tournaments, wining and dining at Ebisu district, indulging in fresh and authentic Sushi dishes, and of course – Unagi! Also, when in Japan, do as the Japanese do: Karaoke! Sing your heart out in a traditional Yukata for a unique mix of old and modern Japanese culture. The spring is one of the loveliest seasons to visit Japan when one can enjoy the beauty of fully bloomed cherry blossoms.

Hola! Como Estas?

The Spanish language is the third dialect I learned while growing up. If there is one place that I’d love to visit to enhance this skill, it’s Barcelona, Spain. Experiencing the sights and sound of this historic city is a great way to get more attuned to the Spanish language. There are also student holiday packages that you can choose from if you want to study here. One can choose from accommodations ranging from budget hotels, room for rent, or dormitories. Get your fill of their tapas during your stay because Barcelona offers some of the best ones in the world. Wash them down with the local cerveza, granizado, or orxata for a perfect meal.

Barcelona
Pic: hubby (he went without me)

Don’t forget to see their famous sights/sites too, my personal picks are the Montserrat and Pyrenees mountains, Tibidabo, and the Basilica I Temple Expiatori de la Sagrada Familia – a UNESCO world heritage site in the country.

Bonjour, Comment allez-vous?

Just beside the borders of Barcelona is the French region of Dordogne. Although Paris, France is the more popular tourist destination, Dordogne, France offers another side of the French culture that one can also fall in love with. Visitors of this region can look forward to plenty of wine and gustatory experiences. There is the Foie Gras or fattened duck liver, salmon terrine or pate, Pot-au-feu or beef stew, and a variety of French cheese.

eyrignac manor gardens
Eyrignac manor gardens, Dordogne

One can top off their meal with some of the best pattiserie that only the French can offer. Accommodation options here include manors, apartments or pension houses. One can enroll in immersion classes that are available in this region and enjoy outdoor activities like kayaking and canoeing in Dordogne Rivers and side trips to parks, chateaus and popular manors while they are studying.

Buckingham Palace Gates
On our way to the Buckingham palace…

Hello there!

English is known as a universal language, but for those who use it only as a second language there is no better place to master it than in London, England. This popular tourist destination is a great choice for polishing up on one’s English proficiency and studying to further their careers. London is known for their museums, architecture, arts and literature. Tourists and student visitors can also enjoy a visit to the Buckingham and Westminster Palaces, a stroll in their scenic parks and gardens, or a ride in the red double-decker buses. Don’t forget to cross the bridge that has been immortalized in the children’s nursery rhyme, the London Bridge!

Vienna night
And yes, Vienna is a great city to learn German too! 😉

Experiencing the way of life in different areas of the globe is a gift to be cherished. Those who have the opportunity to do so should treasure every visit and learn as much as they can about the language, culture and people in the country.

Learning About Language and Culture through Travel
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3 thoughts on “Learning About Language and Culture through Travel

  1. Wonderful photos. Showed this post to my husband and he once again said he wanted to go to the United Kingdom. I laughed and asked, “what about Japan?” and he said “well that too, but the UK first, or maybe second.” I don’t think he can make up his mind.

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