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by Dee Andrews

Dee Andrews

Dee Andrews

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{ 60 comments… read them below or add one }

Bruce Riccio December 11, 2009 at 2:08 pm

Just checking in to say hi! And…to tell you how amazed (and jealous) I am of your adventure… and to say I enjoy your writing…and ESPECIALLY to say you have some awesome photos!!!

The one on the slope in Morocco is a absolutely beautiful terrain!!! Another of spice bowls and jars behind is captivating.

OK, all the fun places you’ve been and the kids shots too are wonderful.

Keep up the great stuff! Cheers!

Dee December 12, 2009 at 5:53 pm

Bruce,
So fun to hear from you! Thanks for commenting; it’s great to know who’s reading and enjoying Travel and Travails. Hope you are well and the Windy City still treating you right. ~ Dee

darngooddigs December 15, 2009 at 4:52 pm

Dee,
Thank you so much for your two nominations at darngooddigs.com!! We just posted your review of the Gamirasu Cave Hotel on our blog as part of our travel writer and blogger series. (I hope that’s ok with you!) The hotel truly looks extraordinary! We plan to post your review on our main site, as well of your nomination of the Riad Diana soon. Please let us know if you want us to make any changes.

Best,
Michael and Allison

Dee December 16, 2009 at 8:37 am

Michael and Allison at Darn Good Digs,

Thanks for the post on your website, which is a great resource by the way! I wish I had known about you a year ago when I was looking for darn good digs at a reasonable price. I’ll use you in the future though!

~ Dee

Anne Mounsey May 25, 2010 at 8:38 am

Hello, my name is Anne Mounsey, and I am a friend of the Wiltens. Our kids go to school together in Denver. We are moving to Madrid this summer for one year with our 3 children. Caroline and Tom suggested I contact you, particularly about visa travails, which we are presently experiencing.

Dee June 1, 2010 at 2:19 pm

Hola Anne,

I’ll give you a call about visa travails! Will be easier to discuss on the phone.

David Thompson June 14, 2010 at 11:55 am

Hi Dee – I’ve run Dave’s Travel Corner for a number of years, http://www.davestravelcorner.com and I was wondering if you have some time to check my site out and if you like what you see, perhaps you could add a link back in your “Resources” section.

I have already added your site under my Resources >> Blogs of Travel section.

Thanks.

Dave

Eilene Zimmerman April 1, 2011 at 11:58 am

Hi Dee.
I’m a writer with the Christian Science Monitor newspaper http://www.csmonitor.com), doing a story about families who have left their normal lives behind for a while to travel, educate themselves and/or do service work. You and your family sound like perfect candidates for this story. I’d love to interview you for it. If you’re game, could you contact me via email: ezimmerman@sbcglobal.net or phone: 619-582-2192?
Look forward to hearing from you.
Best,
Eilene

Liz Bares April 25, 2011 at 6:49 am

Hello,

We are thinking of doing EXACTLY this kind of thing. Probably not for one to two years. Currently our children are seven and five.
I was curious id you could give me some info on Visas and such. How do you live abroad for a year? What did you think of the schools in Spain?

Thank You,
Liz

Dee Andrews April 25, 2011 at 7:12 am

Hola Liz,

I highly recommend it! If we do it again, hopefully someday, I think 6 months would be a good amount of time. One year was too little (and too long) and two years would be great to really immerse.

Visas and immigration can be time consuming and expensive, but is a necessary evil if you want to stay longer than 3 months. Let me know if you have any questions after reading my post, linked above.

Our daughters went to an international British school for about six months. It was a positive experience. Our oldest daughter built a strong foundation in Spanish and has continued it back here at home. Our youngest didn’t pick it up though; most of their school day was in English, and she’ll tell you she learned British! =)

Happy to answer any specific questions and strongly encourage you to make it happen!

Dee

Dee Andrews April 25, 2011 at 7:15 am

@ Eilene,

Excited to talk to you and look forward to reading the article!

Bill Bristol May 31, 2011 at 2:36 pm

Hi,

I read about you guys deciding to live en Espana para un rato in the “Christian Science Monitor magazine.” It really fascinated me because living here in southern California I learned some Spanish and I always dreamed of going to Barcelona. Maybe sometime I can.

In the original edition of “Clutter’s Last Stand.” the author tells about, I think it was his wife’s parents decided to “Chuck-it-all” and went to Alaska to live for about 10 years.

A few years ago my son and I went to Joshua Tree national Monument for a few days. My boss asked when I got back if I had “found” myself. Some people go out to the desert to “find” themselves. I didn’t but I told her that I did find myself – Lost!
Fortunately I had my (doubting) Thomas mapbook of Riverside county so I could find myself getting back.

Best Wishes
Billy

Dee Andrews June 1, 2011 at 9:44 am

Hola Billy,

I hope you make your dream of going to Barcelona happen!

I would love to visit Joshua Tree one day too. Thanks for sharing your thoughts here at Travel and Travails.

Best, Dee

Gail August 23, 2011 at 6:29 am

Hi Dee
Very interested to read your article. I am searching for the best area to live in Spain. I have recently visited Barcelona and loved it though Im not sure there are many expats lving there and it is very expensive. I dont like the south as there are too many brits! I have a working knowledge of spanish and would like to use it.
Are you happy living in Javea? Are there expats there? I know that it can be isolating living in spain even if you do speak the lingo. Just looking for a happy medium really. Would appreciate your advice
regards
gail

Dee Andrews August 25, 2011 at 12:27 pm

Hi Gail, We did enjoy Javea, particularly for its beautiful outdoor scenery, both mountains and sea. There are quite a few expats who live there, though much less than on the Costa del Sol, and we found, while mostly British, also German, Russian and Dutch. You can find Spanish speakers or English speakers and the locals also speak Valenciano. Denia is on the other side of the Montgo, much larger and a more working Spanish community vs. a resort village like Javea. I also really enjoyed Valencia if you’re interested in a city experience. Best of luck! ~ Dee

Maria Barbalho September 29, 2011 at 11:05 am

Hi Dee,
Congratulations for your blog, it has lot’s of good information. My family is planing to live one year in Spain and we are considering the costa del sol region, we are still on the first researches. Could you tell me about Spanish schools, I want my daughters to master Spanish while they are there. Also, do you have any Realtor to recommend, not sure how to find place to rent.
Thank you!

Dee Andrews October 6, 2011 at 8:09 am

Hola Maria,
Glad you find Travel and Travails helpful! We focused on towns that also had international schools just in case something with the local schools didn’t work out. And that was good, because we discovered that the town we chose to live in, the locals schools taught in Valenciano, a regional language, not Spanish! So we were happy to have the international school option, where the kids had a Spanish lesson every day and also a class taught in Spanish, usually PE. We also enrolled our daughters in the local recreation center sports classes which were almost all local kids and Spanish coaches.

The requirements for Spanish schools, once you have your visa, are:
Your child’s birth certificate or passport (original and photocopy), with an official Spanish translation (if necessary) and the parents’ passports (originals and photocopies).
Proof of immunization.
Proof of residence (empadronamiento) from your town hall (ayuntamiento).
Two passport-sized photographs (for a student identity card and school records).

We didn’t use a realtor. Just type the town and rental apartments or “long-term lets” into Google and a ton of options will come up. If you know Spanish, search in Spanish for more “local” options vs. tourist options.

Please share with us here where you end up! ~ Dee

John October 16, 2011 at 8:48 pm

Hi. I was referred to your site by a friend. I am planning to travel to San Sebastian Spain in the spring and spend a couple of months there as a base for exploration. How may I proceed to obtain information from you?

Have you heard a book “Moving to Spain”. I was told it is a Moon Publication. Would it be valuable to hunt down?

Thanks, John

Thanks, John

Dee Andrews October 17, 2011 at 7:22 am

Hello John,

Happy to answer any questions; you can email me directly at dee@travelandtravails.com.

That book sounds familiar. I don’t remember the particulars, I read so many to prepare, but it might be worth finding at your library.

~ Dee

Gaye Billings February 25, 2012 at 1:46 am

Hi

I found your blog by chance and am wondering if you ended up living in Jaeva and if so would you recommend it after living there.

We are english empty nesters who have lived in New Zealand for 20+ years and really fancy a year or so in Spain, so would welcome your thoughts

Thanks – Gaye

katie April 17, 2012 at 2:43 pm

Hi Dee-

How is your camino preparation going? There is so much information on the internet I hope you are able to get through it. You will have an amazing experience and I cant wait to see your posts.

We are getting nearer our departure for a year in Spain and I had a question about the plane ticket. Since we are departing for a year and we have to have a ticket to get the visa approved- what ticket did you get? Did you buy a plane ticket for as far out as you could and pay change fees? do they still sell an open-ended ticket and does that work? We are hoping to leave in August for the following year in Spain.

Thanks,
Katie

Yvonne Connor April 21, 2012 at 9:21 am

Hi Dee, my family and I are moving from Ireland to Javea in June. We have sold our house and are currently looking for a rental property near the international schools. My children are 11 and 13. Would love to hear your views and any advice you can offer about Javea would be gratefully received!

Regards

Yvonne

Dee Andrews April 21, 2012 at 10:46 am

@ Yvonne, Congratulations on your move to Javea! Here is a link to a home that will consider long lets and is managed by the woman we met in Javea and leased our villa from, http://www.holidaylettings.co.uk/rentals/javea/123939 While this may or may not be what you’re looking for, Caroline might have other suggestions for long-lets.

Which international school will your children attend? The Lady Elizabeth Senior School is actually not in or near Javea, maybe a 45 minute drive from the center of town. There is a bus for the students though or perhaps carpooling options. The XIC senior school is near the arenal, or at least it used to be! We have friends who moved their kids to XIC because the commute to Lady Elizabeth was just too long. I think both are good schools. Lady Elizabeth is more British in flavor, and we thought XIC a little more international.

Let me know what questions you have about Javea. It’s a great little town! We’re actually visiting again this summer.

Dee Andrews April 21, 2012 at 10:53 am

@ Katie, I’m getting excited for our Camino and think I have my bag all packed… about 15lbs so hopefully not too bad!

If you plan to leave this August, I recommendation you get your appointments with the Consulate now, they fill up quickly over the summer months with the students. Overkill on financial information is always good, and if you know ANYONE in Spain ask them to write a letter of “recommendation”. Be prepared to have challenges getting fingerprint criminal background report quickly and know that now you also have to have that certified with the Department of State which is in Washington DC and takes a lot of time if you are mailing it in. If you know anyone in DC maybe they can walk it in for you so the turnaround is faster.

Our airline tickets were one year tickets with open end return date. If you are not sure when you are going to return but know you’ll be back in a year then this is the best option. Try British Airways. Or you could buy round trips (cheaper than one way) and let the return be thrown away, especially if you think you’ll be staying longer. The consulate never asked to see our plane tickets, just wanted to know when we planned on departing.

Good luck… truly it’s a nightmare so be prepared!

Michael & Ellen April 22, 2012 at 6:20 pm

My wife Ellen and two children (15 & 10) will be commencing our year in Spain in January 2013. Having read all your information we are now committed to Javea! Did you meet any Australian expats in your travels?
Cheers
Michael

Dee Andrews April 22, 2012 at 7:57 pm

@Michael. We didn’t meet any Australians in Javea but that doesn’t mean there weren’t some there! We did meet one other American family from Los Angeles who then moved to our hometown in Colorado after leaving Spain. That was a small world! Glad to have helped with information! Enjoy your experience!

Sandra May 5, 2012 at 11:18 am

Hi, Dee.

Great blog! My family and I are moving August of 2013…not sure yet to Italy or Spain. We will be traveling quite a bit to Algeria for work. If you had to do it over again, would you have picked a different town in Spain to live in? We would be going with our then 12 year old and 19 year old.

Thanks,

Sandra

Joe Pelzel May 14, 2012 at 5:39 pm

Just following you guys via your blogs … looking forward to the stories and photos when you return ! Safe Travels to you and Scott … I AM IMPRESSED !!

Dee Andrews May 26, 2012 at 12:25 pm

While we truly enjoyed many things about Javea, I think we would pick a small city should we do it again. Somewhere like Valencia or Salamanca. These are small, accessible cities with lots more to do, especially for a 19-year old. Valencia and Alicante both have small regional airports too which might be important to you.

Susan Whitehead June 27, 2012 at 11:10 pm

Hi Dee.
My name is Susan Whitehead from FamilyTravelBucketList.com

In the next few weeks, I am launching a brand new magazine for iPad’s Newsstand, Family Travel Insights Magazine.

Over 67 MILLION iPads were sold in 2 years and Family Travel Insights Magazine is poised to bring highly targeted readers to family travel writers featured in each issue.

I would be honored if I could republish the article that you wrote about your day in Barcelona with your daughter and falling in love with Gaudi. :o)

http://travelandtravails.com/architecture/discovering-love-in-barcelona/

Since the magazine is more interactive than a paper magazine, I would like to include a link back to your site, links to any social media accounts you want, etc.

Thanks so much for your time and I look forward to your response!

Susan Whitehead :o)

P.S. My heart LONGS to go to Spain. We’re currently in Mexico and hope to set foot in Spain in Feb 2013. I can hardly wait…especially after reading your blog! *sigh*

Dee Andrews July 2, 2012 at 1:51 pm

Hello Susan,

Yes, I would love to have you republish the article I wrote about my day in Barcelona with my daughter and Gaudi.

If you could please link back to the original post and my homepage, I would be appreciative. I am interested in your endeavors and would love to write other articles, either based upon blog posts or fresh ones. We just returned from Spain again this past week. My husband and I walked the 500-mile Camino de Santiago. Where in Mexico are you?

Please let’s stay in touch,

Dee

Lynda August 13, 2012 at 2:24 pm

Hi Dee

We’re a family from NZ traveling this year and looking at living in Spain from early Sept until mid Dec (we’re leaving it til the last minute to book this stage!) We’ve just come across your fantastic blog. In which part of Javea would you recommend living? And would we need a car on a day to day basis? We have two children, age 3 and 1.

I look forward to hearing from you!
Many thanks.
Lynda

Dee Andrews August 13, 2012 at 3:23 pm

Hi Lynda,

There are three distinct parts to Javea: the old town, the port and the arenal. All have their merits: old town is very Spanish and would offer your most local experience; the port in on the water, a mixture of locals and tourists; and the arenal has the best beach, especially for young kids. The Arenal is typically where the tourists stay, though that time of year, there won’t be many. That’s the time of year the locals probably most use the arenal. Even though it may be too cold to swim, there is a great sandy beach and several kids play areas and a boardwalk of shops and restaurants. All of those areas offer restaurants and grocery stores within walking distance, though walking between those three areas would be far, especially with the kids. I don’t think you’d need a car on a daily basis, but you probably would enjoy the area more with one to see the surrounding towns.

We just came back from a couple of weeks in Javea this summer. Not a lot has changed; still a great little beach resort!

Dee

Nurah January 2, 2013 at 11:10 am

Hello Dee

We are planning to buy an apartment in Spain first we thought of Malaga but many people told us it was a crowded place and full of bars then we heard about a beautiful place in Puerto Santa Maria ,Cadiz but when I read your blog I really took interest Javea we are five girls and my mom. We are looking for an apartment near the beach, what areas would you recommend for us ?
My parents will be visiting Spain in January
Looking forward to your answer
Thank you,
Nurah 🙂

Dee Andrews January 3, 2013 at 9:42 am

@Nurah, I agree that Malaga is crowded and personally does not feel “Spanish” to me. It is very much a vacation/package tour destination. Javea is a nice balance of beach resort and small Spanish town. You will find many apartment opportunities in the arenal area of Javea, where you can walk to the beach and shops and restaurants. You are also between two regional airports, in Alicante and Valencia, so it is easy to get to Javea from many places in Europe. I love the area too for the mountains (the Montgo is just stunning) and the many hikes in the area.

Best of luck, Dee

Andrew Kensley April 10, 2013 at 9:17 pm

Hi Dee, great site! I, too, am an avid traveler and love to explore. My wife and I would love to move with our children to France for a year, and I am putting together a book proposal. I was curious: what kind of following do you have on your blog? Also, any other advice you could provide would be welcomed. Thanks! (I signed up for your feed, by the way!) And if you have a minute, check out my “Dad blog.”

Andrew

Roxane Holton October 24, 2013 at 10:55 am

Dee…I read over your blog post about Morocco with your kids. I’m in the beginning stages of planning a trip there this summer (May/June). I have young kids…at the time of travel I will have a 5 year old and almost 2 year old. They are good travelers and we’ve had quite a few adventures together…along with my husband. I can’t figure out if I’m totally nuts…but after doing the camel trekking experience…can you see that it would work for our little family? I don’t know how it would work with a child not quite 2…maybe I’d strap him to me in a little carrier. Not sure. My thought is to just go on a little adventure out of Merzouga…several hours. I think a sleepover outside in the desert would be too much for our crew…but do you think a small camel trek would work??? Am I totally nuts??!!! Any thoughts you have on this would be appreciated. Thanks.

Dee Andrews November 6, 2013 at 7:28 am

@ Roxane,

I’m still laughing about trying to figure out if you’re totally nuts… I think those of us who travel with young kids must be, but I wouldn’t change it!

I don’t think the little camel trek adventure for a few hours is totally nuts, probably very doable with your kids if you’re not planning on an overnight. Getting to Merzouga or Mhamid might be more nuts. It’s a pretty long car trip from Marrakech or Fez. My girls, who were 6 and 10 at the time, are seasoned road trippers (9 hours one-way to grandma’s house,) but it’s long and pretty boring for a kid. And my youngest gets car sick so that wasn’t fun either. Bathroom stops are interesting. We stopped once at a road side home, our driver asked if we could use their toilet, which was our first experience with a squat toilet. (We did hire a private driver which made all the difference for our experience. Not only did we love him, value his knowledge, trust his abilities, he was great with our girls. (He actually just sent my now 15-year-old a birthday message yesterday!)) And, we broke up our drive over the Atlas mountains into several days to try and limit the chunks of time in the car.

Another reality to consider is your kids are so young that they’re not going to remember it. Our now 11-year-old has scant memories of our year living abroad. While we didn’t let that stop us from things, it has helped us make choices. We have continued to put off a trip to Africa, waiting for them to get older, so we can do more and they’ll remember it. If you and your husband are going to love the camel trek, even with the hassles of the kids, then go for it. If you’ll have a chance to make it happen again in your life, sometime when they’re older, maybe consider you’ll all remember it more {fondly.}

I think traveling with kids when they are little shapes us more than them sometimes. It takes a lot of patience. Our trip to Morocco is still one of our favorites, but it wasn’t a vacation. It was so foreign to us; it was stressful and over-stimulating many times. I would recommend you plan in a day or two at the beach or a nice hotel’s pool (great one in Mhamid just before the camel trek) for all of you to have some time to relax and re-energize before the next adventure!

Good luck, let me know what you decide to do! I love hearing about family travels!

Bliss Broyard November 20, 2013 at 9:13 am

Dear Dee:

My husband has a sabbatical year next year and we are planning to live abroad. Some friends of friends have just moved to Javia and speak highly of it, but other friends recommended Salamanca. Is it possible to email you with some quetions?

We don’t want to be a big city, because we are coming from New York City, and were leaning toward a rural destination. But I’m afraid of being bored living in a small village, as you seemed to also conclude. We have a lot of the same criteria.

Our kids will be 5 and 8. We prefer to not go the international school route, but are hesitant about schools where classes are taught in both Spanish and the local dialect, which seems to be the case in Javia and Barcelona for example. Are you in touch with anyone in Salamanca who might be able to offer some advice? My husband is fluent in Spanish. I have only a little but would like to improve and the kids have been exposed a little but are young enough to learn quickly (we hope!).

Thanks so much. Your blog is very helpful and the photos really capture the spirit of your time there.

Dee Andrews November 21, 2013 at 9:09 am

@ Bliss. Read this blog post from my original Spanish blog for my thoughts on Salamanca. Even now, some four years later, I think I’d recommend Salamanca over Javea. There are trade-offs of course, but if you’re looking for Spanish culture and language immersion, Salamanca wins. And I definitely would have preferred a bigger town to Javea; Salamanca is a perfect size with lots to offer but not a big city.

Feel free to email me with questions and thoughts; I’m always happy to talk about our year abroad. I’m ready for another one!

Jane August 22, 2014 at 1:21 am

Hi,
I’m Jane and am an avid reader and blogger, a passion which I think we share. I’ve been writing contents on the web professionally since 2010. I share my experience through articles on Travel, Culture, History, Lifestyle and many more.

Your blog “travelandtravails.com”is probably one of the most interesting ones I’ve seen recently and with due reason. I was wondering if I could do a guest post for your blog.

I would like to write on “5 Most Desired Tourist Attractions in Australia “or any other suggested topic for your blog.

It would be an honor to see my article published on your site.

I look forward to hearing from you.

Regards,
Jane Roberts.

David November 17, 2014 at 12:57 pm

Dee,

My family and I are traveling to Spain in June for a year. It has been very helpful reading your blog. We live in Fort Collins and are very excited about our “year off the clock.” We have started our visa travails and have been looking at different towns and cities to live in. Do you have any suggestions?
Thanks for writing your blog.
David
David´s last [type] ..Themal Strike Luggage

Dee Andrews November 18, 2014 at 9:16 am

Hello David. I’m excited for your upcoming family adventures.

It’s hard to choose a place to live in Spain. In hindsight, we let weather (and being on the southern coast) dictate too much of our choice. One of our biggest goals was immersing in the language, and it proved to be our biggest disappointment. Most of the sizable coastal towns (such as Javea with ~30,000 people) have a lot of English speaking expats and it’s just too easy to live in English. Looking back, we would have chosen a small city, such as Valencia or Salamanca. While Salamanca does have a lot of expat students and some tourists, it still felt like a place where we would have been more immersed in Spanish. Valladolid even more so, and also Burgos.

You don’t mention how old your children are… that might impact where you decide to live too. Schools, activities, etc. needed for young kids vs. teenagers.

You can read more about Salamanca and our life in Spain on the more personal blog I kept, Sieze el Dia.

Happy to answer more specific questions. Best of luck to you!

~Dee

Rob Byrnes November 27, 2014 at 2:43 pm

Dee-I came across your blog while researching our families move to Spain, and I was struck by the similarities of our life paths. We share many of the same philosophies about a life well lived and time being more valuable than money and things. In August of 2012, my wife, 11 year old son and I drove from Boulder where we were living, to Buenos Aires over an eight month period and had the adventure of our lives. Now after spending time in Northern California we are considering moving to Spain for my sons’ high school years. I look forward to reading about your time in Buenos Aires, one of our favorite places where we spent time in.

Dee Andrews December 8, 2014 at 2:21 pm

Hello Rob,

Thanks for connecting. We have shared many of the same paths! I must say driving from Colorado to Buenos Aires sounds brave. I’m not sure I’d want to drive through certain Central and South American countries right now. I’d love to know if you blogged and/or would share your itinerary. I am so excited to be exploring again with my daughters now that they are 12 and 16. It will be such a different experience now that they are young adults. Does your son like the idea of high school abroad? Where are you considering in Spain?

Best to you, Dee

Dahmari Taplin May 26, 2015 at 9:34 pm

Dear Dee,
I am a 25 year old college graduate with a Hospitality/Tourism management & Dietetics degree. I plan on moving to Spain within the next two years with my girlfriend to learn Spanish fluently and to experience living in a different country. We are really into beautiful beaches and a good night life. Something affordable & beautiful. We don’t have any kids or pets. We are just looking for somewhere to have fun, be happy, enjoy ourselves, and learn some Spanish! if you have any ideas please let me know. Thanks Dee! We love your website by the way.

Dee Andrews May 27, 2015 at 9:01 am

Hello Dahmari,

Congrats on the college graduation and decision to move abroad, both life changing experiences!

Beautiful beaches, good night life, Spanish speaking and affordable… I’m having a hard time thinking where all those things might be found in Spain. Have you considered Ecuador? I am there now actually and have enjoyed the past month immensely! It’s definitely affordable and much more Spanish speaking then Spain. (We found everyone in Spain just switches to English.) We spent two weeks in Canoa on the coast, amazing beach and beginner surf break, inexpensive and great ceviche! There are small towns all up and down the coast. Montañita might be more to your liking with its well-known night life. This article has a good overview of Ecuador beach towns. Chile might also be a good place to check out. My guess is the visa requirements are also much easier in South America vs. Spain. We had a nightmare visa experience for Spain.

Best of luck! Let me know where you land,

Dee

Trevor Cohen January 5, 2016 at 5:08 pm

Hi Dee,

I’m putting together an article on travel advice for the new year. It features quick and tasty travel tips from the best family travel bloggers.

Would you consider lending one sentence of your wisdom?

Warm Regards,

Trevor Cohen
Content Editor
Vacatia.com

Dee Andrews January 8, 2016 at 9:47 am

Hello Trevor,

I love to share travel advice! One sentiment that I share often with families considering extended travel or a move abroad is:

While we believe travel is about discovering other places and cultures—and it is—I find the greatest benefit the opportunity to discover myself. It’s being away—from work and school routines, errands, habits, and my own culture—and the new challenges and frustrations that inevitably rise up that shape me most and inspire my greatest discoveries.

Happy travels everyone. 😉

Dee

Liz Badgley January 22, 2016 at 3:31 pm

I’m in the process of picking a place to Spain to work remotely and am wondering how fast and reliable the DSL was in Javea? Granted you and your husband were not working but I assume you used the internet to book travel and such.

How did you kids do in regards to schooling in another country? Did they adjust well?

Dee Andrews January 25, 2016 at 9:38 am

@Liz
We did use the internet frequently while in Javea. At that time, eight years ago now, we counted on the service that came with our rental house. Internet cafes and wireless options were not very frequent back then… I would image that’s changed considerably now. While living in Buenos Aires last year, we found wireless options everywhere, and all of the apartments we rented had it. It was a little slower than we’re used to here in the States but that could have been because I had two teenagers streaming YouTube videos!

There were ups and downs regarding school for my daughters, but not so much different than the ups and downs that occur at home too. Online school last year in BA was more challenging than attending an international school when we lived in Javea.

Best of luck, Dee

Jennifer Sutherland-Miller March 23, 2016 at 8:27 am

Hi Dee,

I wanted to let you know that we updated the piece you contributed to on BootsnAll a couple of years ago: 21 Reasons to Travel Around the World With Your Kids, From Those Who Have Done It. We would love it if you would re-share it with your followers. We’re trying to build as much excitement about family travel as we can!

Here is the link.http://www.bootsnall.com/articles/11-07/21-reasons-to-travel-around-the-world-with-kids.html

Thanks for continuing to inspire people to travel with their kids!

Jenn Sutherland-Miller
Editor, Bootsnall

Clare Talley May 3, 2016 at 2:52 pm

Hello,

My fiance and I are heavily considering moving to Valencia or the surrounding area. He is ready to retire, I, on the other hand, may work part-time. I have 5 children but most are grown. The youngest is 13 now and the other child that may come with me is 16, I am not sure if she will stay in the US for her last year of high school, or not. I am looking for bilingual schools, and there seem to be only very expensive International schools and a few that are subsidized private schools. I am afraid to just dump my youngest into total Spanish School. But will not spend $8000 a year. What did you do when you moved? Any other suggestions?

Clare

Risa Shargel May 22, 2016 at 9:49 am

Hello and thanks in advance for your any advice you can offer. My son has been enrolled in a dual Spanish-English school in Washington, DC since kindergarten; he will be entering fourth grade next school year. In three years, his older sister will be off to college and we are considering moving to Spain so that he can continue school and Spanish there. What can you tell me about the quality of the public schools in Javea or elsewhere? My husband and son are both dual citizens (Bulgaria-EU and US) and I have the equivalent of a green card from Bulgaria which is valid in the EU.

Thanks again, Risa
Risa Shargel´s last [type] ..Bulgaria Summer 2016

Dee Andrews May 30, 2016 at 7:01 am

@ Clare,

Thanks for your question. I loved Valencia and in hindsight wish we would have considered a city of its size for our year abroad. Due to immigration issues/timing, we didn’t have a choice of the local schools and ended up at the expensive International school. I think a good in-between would have been one of the local, private, mostly Catholic schools. I would think in Valencia there are several, most likely associated with a church. (I do remember there is one in Denia that is perhaps Baptist?) Though perhaps less expensive, these schools are hard to get into unless you speak Spanish well (and can ask lots of questions) and ideally know someone who knows someone. Total immersion as a young teen does sound challenging unless your daughter already has some Spanish. Best of luck! ~ Dee

Dee Andrews May 30, 2016 at 7:06 am

@ Risa,

Unfortunately, I don’t have experiences with the local schools in Javea or throughout Spain. My daughters attended one of the International schools in Javea, which we found to be of good quality. We did meet a family with four kids who had lived in Javea for many years and their children attended various local schools until high school, when they switched to the International school. Their oldest children are now at university in the UK. As here in the States, I would imagine the larger cities provide more choices vs. the smaller towns. Best of luck! ~ Dee

emma April 19, 2017 at 10:03 am

Hi Dee

I have enjoyed reading your website and like you me and family are looking to relocate to spain but are unsure what area to go to. we have 2 boys, 10 and 6years old. Any advise you can give me will very much appreciated?

Anthony August 3, 2017 at 2:49 pm

Hi Dee – I have seen on other sites noting that Waihee Valley Trail is closed. Is this true?

Dee Andrews September 5, 2017 at 11:02 am

Hello Anthony,
Yes, I’ve heard the Waihee Valley Trail is closed now. Too bad. I did a great hike with Hike Maui this past summer over on the Hana side.
Aloha, Dee

Dee Andrews September 5, 2017 at 11:11 am

Hello Emma.
Have you considered Salamanca? I wrote about it on my personal blog, Sieze el Dia, at the end of our time in Spain. Best of luck to you!
Dee

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