Apart from Spain and Hispanic American countries, there are other nations where Spanish is used by the majority of the population even though it isn’t the official language.
Here we present you three options for your future travels.
(For a list of native Spanish-speaking countries and a map of where they’re located, check out this post.
You might have heard of Catrina Gray or her extraordinary beauty. She made her nation proud by earning the crown of Miss Universe in 2018.
She is one of the many public figures who have managed to set the Philippines under the global light.
Even so, some individuals may feel a bit confused about the history of the Philippines due to the Malaysian looks and Spanish descendant surnames of its people and for the fact that Filipinos fought alongside Americans during World War II.
This is what happened: The Philippines were ruled under the Spanish Empire from 1521 to 1898 and then became a colony of the Unites States from 1898 up until 1946.
For that reason, the English and Spanish languages have been an important thread through the construction of the Philippines’ modern national identity.
Furthermore, the history of this territory is splashed with the presence of both Western and Eastern groups, bringing along with them their cultural ideas and colloquial expressions from many parts of the planet.
The Philippines is, in fact, the third world’s largest English speaking country. Interestingly, nor English or Spanish are the national language, it is Filipino.
Nevertheless, most residents speak Spanish and if you decide to visit this exotic land you will find many words with obvious references from the Kingdom of Spain in addition to colonies from the Americas such as Mexico, as there was a period of time when indigenous groups (like the Nahuatls) migrated with creoles and mestizos to the archipelago.
The Philippines were named after Prince Philip by the voyager Ruy López de Villalobos following his expedition in the 1540s.
Prince Philip was later crowned as King Philip II of Spain, known as ‘Philip the Prudent’.
He ruled the paramount Spanish Kingdom, during what is recognized by some historians as the ‘Spanish Golden Age’, thus one of the most powerful men of his times ringing great influence in every continent of the globe.
Remarkably, even though the Philippines belonged to the Spanish East Indies territories, they were governed by the Viceroyalty of New Spain based in Mexico.
Hence the Philippine Spanish has higher affinity to the Spanish from the New World rather than traditional Castilian from the Iberian Peninsula.
The Republic of the Philippines is currently a sovereign state situated in Southeast Asia. The archipelago, which enjoys outstanding natural beauty, has maritime borders with Indonesia, Malaysia, Vietnam, Taiwan, Japan, and Palau.
Its people are friendly and welcoming and they will sure make your stay an unforgettable one!
We also have a free language book on Maranao Filipino, which you can download to gain a bit of the local language before your trip:
It is likely you have been thinking of places to visit and practice your Spanish language skills. ¿Cierto? Have you considered this petite and enchanting piece of Europe called Andorra?
Skiing in winter and hiking in summer makes it a paradise for nature lovers. After learning more about this sovereign microstate you will probably be packing your bags!
The Principality of Andorra is a landlocked high-mountainous territory situated in the Pyrenees between France and Spain.
Its ancient history and current political regime have been strongly interlinked to three different cultures and their tongues: French, Catalonian, and Castilian.
Andorra has a parliament and two heads of state, the Bishop of Urgell in Spain and the President of the French Republic, which makes it one of a kind in the entire world.
Catalan, a Romance language derived from Vulgar Latin, is the official language of the nation and the government is making real efforts to preserve it for the future.
Therefore, public education programs, street signs, and all administrative procedures are done using Catalan.
However, French, Portuguese, and Castilian are also part of Andorra. According to World Atlas, around 35.4% of the total populations speak Castilian as their mother tongue.
In addition, there are a hefty number of Spanish immigrants (70%) who use Castilian as their main means of communication.
Whether you are dreaming of a winter break to get lost in the snow or a summer escapade with canoeing trips and cycling routes with superb views Andorra can be the right place for you to improve your Spanish language proficiency.
Don’t forget to bring your euros! As shopping is almost a national sport.
The Central American nation of Belize is an example of a very young free country whose past is filled with chaos and confrontation stemmed from the greediness and oppression that usually came along with imperialism.
Still today there is a long list of unresolved disputes with Guatemala regarding their borders.
Belize’s previous name was British Honduras. It gained independence from the British Crown in 1981 and is nowadays a parliamentary democracy.
Before that year the territory had been occupied by both Spaniards and British settlers.
Yet, the Mesoamerican people from the Maya Civilization were the original inhabitants of this tropical land, which rich forests have been long exploited for its natural resources, including logwood and mahogany, since the arrival of the first Scots and Englishmen buccaneers in the 17th century.
British colonizers were also responsible for first importing black slaves to extract timber and then large groups of Chinese and South Asian laborers for the sugar cane plantations.
In addition, during the 19th century, a big wave of exiled Carib Indians and Africans (a Caribbean ethnic group known as Garifuna) migrated to Belize.
Thus, Belize has an ancient mix of races. In fact, nowadays the way of life of the Belizean people reflects the customs, worldviews, and beliefs of over eight different cultures.
While English is recognized as the official language, Kriol is widespread across the nation, a dialect derived from English.
Castilian is also widely spoken as an inheritance from the first Spaniard explorers and missionaries who adventured into the wildest terrains and due to the fact that Latino is currently the largest ethnic group living in Belize.
Spain and Britain had numerous fights about the ownership of the land.
Belize uses the Imperial measurement system and the Belize Dollar is the currency. As a travel destination, it offers a wide range of adventure trips and nature holiday packages.
If you are looking for a new spot to visit on the Caribbean coast, Belize may be the one for you. From Maya archeological sites to pirates shipwrecks Belize is definitively an interesting bid.
Want to get a head start on your Spanish speaking basics? Sign up for our FREE Spanish Survival Crash Course! We’ll send exercises, audio lessons, and more right to your inbox:
Let's connect you with a hand-picked native-speaking tutor today.