Intern Abroad

Kategorie: ‘Toledo’

Toledo- an old city with a lot of Spanish flair

October 25th, 2022 | by
  • Biology M.Sc.
  • Spain, Toledo
  • Hospital Nacional de Paraplejicos
  • 04.05.2022-30.09.2022


My name is Anna, and I have been studying at the “Hospital Nacional de Paraplejicos” in Toledo from May to October 2022. I study Biology in my Masters. In the following, I will try to share knowledge with you that will help you to make the best out of your stay.

The preparation for my internship focused on transport, insurance, and housing. For my research internship abroad, I travelled to Toledo by plane. I arrived at the airport in Madrid and travelled from there to Toledo by train. If you do not want to go by plane, you can also go by railway. This takes a little bit longer, but you can combine your travel with some stopovers in other beautiful cities. Further you save some CO2 and secure the additional Erasmus funding for a green travel back home.

The health insurance is very simple. If you didn’t already have one included, you can ask your insurance to provide you with a European health insurance card. Keep in mind that most insurances do not cover rescue or repatriation in case something goes wrong on a hiking trip for example. You should ask your insurance about that.

I started to look for a flat or a room in Toledo approx. one month in advance. I made some visiting appointments for the first few days. During this time, I was living in a guest room in the professor’s house. The apartment search turned out to be very difficult. I tried to find a flat with the website “Idealista”. Many accounts didn’t even answer or other flats where small or dubious. Also, the language barrier was a big problem, due to the reason that the most landlords did not speak English. I would recommend all students doing an internship in Spain, to practice some Spanish before your internship abroad. Without the help of my work mates most of the viewing appointments were not able. Further I would recommend structuring your profile on those websites so personal as possible. If you apply for an apartment, you should always bring some personal stuff inside the texts and maybe take up some points of their advertisement.

After visiting some flats without any success, one of my workmates had the idea to look for a room in a student’s residence. I found a place in the “Residence María Immaculada Toledo”. Here I lived in a single room in the casco of Toledo. The rent for one month was 520 euros including breakfast, lunch, and dinner. This room was only available for 1 month, so I had to look for another flat in the meantime. Happily, I found my perfect flat quickly. It was a shared flat with three other Spanish girls in the age between 25-30. All three of them were as well working in the hospital. The flat was just perfect, with a large living room, a large kitchen, and a swimming pool. It was also near to the hospital, so I could walk every day by foot to the work. The rent here was 250 euros excluding extra costs like water and light.

My first impression of Toledo was impressive. It is an old city with a lot of Spanish flair. Exactly what I had expected from Spain. I applied for a position in the “Hospital nacional de paraplejicos”, to do my practical course of my master thesis there. The hospital and the investigation have their focus on spinal cord injuries. The hospital is very new and modern, and my work collogues were helpful and nice from the first moment on. I really enjoyed the work in the hospital. The willing to help was so large from all my work mates, and they integrated me into their team very quickly. I learned a lot of new techniques important for my further working live. I was working on my own project. Although the working language in the laboratory was English, it turned out to be a little bit tricky to communicate. The English knowledge of most of my collogues was rather bad. On the other hand, my Spanish knowledge was not the best. So I decided to learn a lot of Spanish int the next few weeks. The understanding was getting better from day to day. As well in English, but also in Spanish. Quickly I was able to follow conversations in Spanish and to talk some basic sentences.

With the girls of my flat I made friends quickly. They took me on hiking tours, we all signed in for the gym and they told me how to play padel tennis, a very popular sport in Spain. On the weekends we normally went out together and they introduced me to their friends. They took me to cultural events in Toledo and told me which places are worth to visit. Another positive point is the close distance to Madrid. It is only 30 minutes by train, so you can also explore the capital of Spain on the weekends.

Going to Toledo was one of the best decisions of my life. The “Hospital nacional de paraplejicos” is a great hospital with nice work mates and a great investigation department. On top, Toledo is a nice, typical Spanish city with endless opportunities and a close distance to Madrid. I hope that my short report gave you some insights into these opportunities.