Puntarenas offers the peace and rural beauty of a small beach town while at the same time affording easy access to the activities of the capital. During the nineteenth century it was Costa Rica’s major seaport, but Puerto Limón and Caldera (11 miles to the southeast) have assumed that role. Now primarily a tourist destination and transportation hub, it is a bustling town, particularly during the dry season months (November–April). During the wet months (May–October) it is hot with refreshing afternoon showers. The geography of the city is unique since it is located at the end of a sandy peninsula almost five miles long, but only 120 to 700 yards wide. Consequently, one is always close to the ocean, and there are many beaches from which to choose. Puntarenas offers access to the Nicoya Peninsula on two ferries. Nicoya is best known for its pristine beaches and resorts, as well as for its native folklore. From Puntarenas, you can travel up and down the coast to world-class surfing beaches, nature reserves, and plantations. This central Pacific region offers something for every outdoor enthusiast. Students find buying a used bike upon arrival is the easiest form of transportation for getting around Puntarenas.
Unnamed Road, Mount Abundance QLD 4455, Australia
Melbourne, Geelong and Warrnambool are all in the state of Victoria. Victoria is Australia’s smallest mainland state but has the second largest population, with approximately 5.2 million people from culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds. It is a place of great contrasts—ocean beaches and mountain ranges, deserts and forests, volcanic plains and vast sheep and wheat farms. Victoria has national parks and forests teeming with wildlife; wineries, lakes and mountains offering climbing, hiking and skiing and the magnificent Great Ocean Road coastline, Australia’s premier surfing destination. The state has long been regarded as the cultural center of Australia, with a historic architectural elegance that characterizes the capital, Melbourne, and the regional cities. Victorians combine a strong cultural tradition with a contemporary and relaxed lifestyle, a distinct sense of community and a passionate interest in sports. Victoria also is the major center of education and research in Australia.
Unnamed Road, Lugareño, Cuba
The La Habana summer program offers an unparalleled opportunity to visit this enchanting island and legendary city to learn about its culture and society. It will also provide a unique occasion for understanding—firsthand—the multiple layers of history that make Cuba significant in North America and in Latin America. The courses will examine not only the history of former Spanish colonies, but also the twentieth-century, during which Cuba played a significant geopolitical role. The Habana summer program will give you the opportunity to experience the past, present, and future realities of Cuban society and its fusion of Spanish, African, and American flavors to create a rich culture of its own. The La Habana program consists of one 5-week session offering academic coursework in history, society, politics, and culture studies. Many of these courses include enticing field trips offering hands-on experience with the subject matter, such as Old Habana, Matanzas, Pinar del Río, a tobacco factory, and Varadero Beach. The session begins with several days of orientation and lectures in Costa Rica before departure for Cuba. The courses for the La Habana program focus on the history and society of Cuba, with particular attention focused on exploring the impact of slavery and Cuba's African roots on its culture and religions, as well as the present-day political and economic factors Cuba faces in its future. If you are interested in studying Spanish language in preparation for several weeks in Cuba, the first summer session in Costa Rica can be paired with the La Habana summer session for intensive language study.