Spanish 1/Vacation

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Chapter 16 (Vacation / de vacaciones)

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Flash Cards

Places to go

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  • ciudad - city
  • estadio - stadium
  • lago - lake
  • lugar - place
  • mar - sea
  • monumento - monument
  • museo - museum
  • país - country
  • parque de diversiones - amusement park
  • parque nacional - national park
  • teatro - theater
  • obra de teatro - play
  • zoológico - zoo

Note: Ciudad is a feminine noun. Mar is one of very few words in Spanish that can be feminine or masculine: el mar and la mar are both proper Spanish.

Zoo attractions

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  • árbol - tree
  • atracción - the ride
  • mono - monkey
  • oso - bear
  • pájaro - bird

Vacation activities

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  • aprender - to learn
  • bucear - to scuba dive, to snorkel
  • recuerdos - souvenirs / memories
  • descansar - to rest
  • montar a caballo - to ride horseback
  • pasear en bote - to go boating
  • tomar el sol - to sunbathe
  • visitar - to visit
  • nadar-to swim


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  • en - by
  • por - by
  • autobús - bus
  • avión - airplane
  • barco - boat
  • tren - train

Words to describe a vacation

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  • boleto - ticket
  • como - like, such as
  • ¿Cómo lo pasaste? - How was it?
  • dime - tell me
  • fantástico(a) - fantastic
  • Fue un desastre. - It was a disaster.
  • hotel - hotel
  • impresionante - impressive
  • ir de vacaciones - to go on vacation
  • Me gustó. - I liked it.
  • ¿Qué hiciste? - What did you do?
  • ¿Qué te pasó? - What happened to you?
  • regresar - to return
  • salir - to leave
  • ¿Te gustó? - Did you like it?
  • tremendo(a) - tremendous
  • vi - I saw
  • ¿Viste...? - Did you see...?
  • viajar - to travel
  • viaje - trip

Time phrases

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  • durante - during
  • tarde - late
  • temprano - early

Preterite of -er and -ir verbs

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The preterites of -er and -ir verbs conjugate the same. Below are the endings of the conjugations:

-er & -ir

-yo: -í

-tú: -iste

-Ud./él/ella: -ió

-nosotros/nosotras: -imos

-vosotros/vosotras: -isteis

-Uds./ellos/ellas: -ieron

An example preterite conjugation of -er of aprender:

  • aprendí - I learned
  • aprendiste - you learned (singular)
  • aprendió - he/she learned
  • aprendimos - we learned
  • aprendisteis - you learned (plural)
  • aprendieron - they learned

Note: Remember yet? Usted and ustedes conjugate under the 3rd person form.

An example preterite conjugation of -ir of salir:

  • salí - I left
  • saliste - you left (singular)
  • salió - he/she left
  • salimos - we left
  • salisteis - you left (plural)
  • salieron - they left

Note: See above.

Preterite of ir

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Ir is an irregular verb, so its preterite also conjugates irregularly. Below is the preterite conjugation of ir:

  • fui - I went
  • fuiste - you went (singular)
  • fue - he/she went
  • fuimos - we went
  • fuisteis - you went (plural)
  • fueron - they went

Note: See 2 rows above.

Vocabulario adicional

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  • aeropuerto - airport
  • agencia de viajes - travel agency
  • cheques de viajero - travelers' checks
  • equipaje - luggage
  • hacer una reservación - to make a reservation
  • lugar de interés - place of interest
  • pasaporte - passport
  • volar - to fly

Note: Volar is a stem-changing verb, o changes to ue in the present tense but not in the preterite.

Cultural Insight (Traveling)

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Spanish-speaking countries offer one of the most exciting places to travel in the world. From the Aztec pyramids of Mexico to the wide boulevards and plazas of cosmopolitan Buenos Aires in Argentina, the countries are packed with adventure and things to do. Spanish-speaking countries offer many sights in culture, history, and landmarks. In Mexico, major cities such as Mexico City, Guadalajara, and Veracruz offer vibrant choices in culture and history. The United States of course, is packed with countless sights and culture, while the Caribbean is famous for its beaches and nightlife. Culture and history dominate travel sights in Spain with Roman, medieval and imperial landmarks dotting the country.

Country Focus (Bolivia)

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Bolivian flag
Bolivian flag
map of South America with Bolivia highlighted
map of South America with Bolivia highlighted

Bolivia (Spanish: Bolivia) named after Simón Bolívar, is a landlocked country in central South America. It is bordered by Brazil on the north and east, Paraguay and Argentina on the south, and Chile and Peru on the west. From 1839 Sucre was the seat of government until the administrative capital was moved to La Paz in 1898. Sucre remains the constitutional capital and seat of the Supreme Court (Corte Suprema de Justicia).

The Spanish conquest began in 1524 and was for all practical purposes completed by 1533. The territory now called Bolivia was then known as "Upper Peru" and was under the authority of the Viceroy of Lima. Local government came from the Audiencia de Charcas located in Chuquisaca (La Plata—modern Sucre). By the late 16th century Bolivian silver was an important source of revenue for the Spanish empire.

Bolivian culture has been heavily influenced by the Quechua, the Aymara, as well as by the popular cultures of Latin America as a whole.

Located 3,600 m (11,811 ft) above sea level and home to 1,250,000 people, La Paz is the highest capital city in the world.

The cultural development of what is present-day Bolivia is divided into three distinct periods: pre-Columbian, colonial, and republican. Important archaeological ruins, gold and silver ornaments, stone monuments, ceramics, and weavings remain from several important pre-Columbian cultures. Major ruins include Tiwanaku, Samaipata, Incallajta, and Iskanawaya. The country abounds in other sites that are difficult to reach and have seen little archaeological exploration.


-Official Languages: Spanish, Quechua, Aymara

-Other Languages: Guaraní, Native American languages

-Capital: Sucre, La Paz

-Government: Democracy

-Area: 1,098,581 sq km (424,163 sq mi) (28th)

-Population: 10,907,778 (84th)

-Religion: Christianity (Catholic 78%, Protestant 16%, other Christian 3%) 97%, Non-religious 2.5%, Buddhism 0.26%, other (Animism, Judaism) 0.24%

Lake Tititaca is the highest body of water in the world.

-Human Development: 0.729 (113th, MEDIUM)

-Independence: August 6, 1825

-Currency: Boliviano