A view of the Roman Amphitheater in Tarragona, Spain (an Atlantis site).
A view of the Roman Amphitheater in Tarragona, Spain (an Atlantis site).



$2,999 - $4,999


Tarragona is located on the Mediterranean coast, 60 miles southwest of Barcelona. Thanks to its incredible beaches, its gastronomy, its historical heritage, and a wide range of cultural and leisure activities, it receives more than 4 million visitors every year. Around 218 BC, this city was the capital of the huge region of Hispania and the first major Roman capital in the West. For its great cultural treasures, the city was declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 2000. In Tarragona, students will be able to combine a unique experience in an historic hospital with magnificent cultural and leisure opportunities.

Destination Information

The City

Tarragona combines Roman, medieval, and Catalan tradition, with monuments such as the Cathedral, the wall, the arches of the old Jewish quarter, and the castles of the King, Paborde, and Tamarit. Just in front of the Cathedral, you can often observe one of the most popular traditions of Catalonia: the “castells,” or human towers. They perform for the city’s festivities on many summer evenings.

Tarragona has about 15 kilometers of coastline with  golden sandy beaches and very gentle slopes and a great climate for swimming between June and September. The city preserves the traditional seafaring atmosphere in the fishermen’s quarter, where you can even witness the fish auction every afternoon. The old town is also a pleasant area, with numerous terraces overlooking monuments full of history. Be sure to take a stroll along the Rambla Nova, where most of the modern stores are located, enjoying a dinner with the best traditional gastronomy.

Dates & Availability

  • Summer Break 2024




June 22, 2024 - July 5, 2024 2 weeks


Close to Full

July 27, 2024 - August 2, 2024 1 week


Close to Full

August 3, 2024 - August 16, 2024 2 weeks



August 17, 2024 - August 23, 2024 1 week



You may pay over time, fundraise, consider scholarships, and more. Learn about our significant partial need-based scholarships here.

Participants may transfer to another program or receive a refund up until a predefined amount of time before the start date.

What’s Included

Atlantis programs include ~20h/week of shadowing, housing, some meals, transportation, travel health insurance, and more. Airfare is not included but can be very affordable.

Hospital Overview

The hospital Sant Pau y Santa Tecla is the oldest hospital of the province, founded in 1171. Today, it counts more than 200 beds and accommodates 32 services, among which are many surgical specialties. Located in the old center of Tarragona, the hospital currently has more than 200 beds: 177 conventional patient beds, 10 ambulatory major surgery beds, 3 day hospital beds, 9 intensive care beds. Additionally, it has 18 emergency boxes, 3 pediatric cribs, 6 operating rooms (5 for major surgery and one for deliveries), two smaller surgery rooms, and a delivery room.

Alumni Favorite

Beach Outings

Kayaking on the Mediterranean Sea or going to the beach with your new friends are definitely some of the most fun ways for you to spend an afternoon in Tarragona. And on your way to the beach, visit Tarragona’s well-preserved ampitheatre, which dates back to the 2nd century CE.

An aerial view of the Cathedral of Tarragona in Tarragona, Spain (an Atlantis site).
An aerial view of the Cathedral of Tarragona in Tarragona, Spain (an Atlantis site).

Atlantis is an incredible experience that everyone should be able to have. The shadowing showed me incredible cases that really piqued my interest and made me think deeper into the field of medicine.

Students outside the hospital where they are shadowing.
Atlantis students outside the hospital where they are shadowing (Tarragona, Spain, 2019).
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Our excursions are designed to offer a deeper look into your host culture, for both the educational benefit and the enjoyment of exploring a new place with others who share your interests in travel and medicine. Excursions range from historical tours to culinary and cultural explorations.

Your Site Manager will inform you of the excursions they have planned during your program orientation. If you make travel plans outside of your city for a weekend and it conflicts with the events your Site Manager has planned, notify your Site Manager several days in advance so that they can plan accordingly.

Atlantis students on a program excursion.
Atlantis students on a program excursion (Genoa, Italy).

Language Skills Not Required

Most participants do not speak the local language at their Atlantis program. English levels vary within the hospital, but no knowledge of the language is required for Atlantis to be valuable. There is enough English spoken in the hospital for participants to benefit from the programs, as you can read in our testimonials. 

Many patients in your future career will not speak your language and will come from a different cultural background, so the Atlantis experience prepares you for that intercultural perspective. Any slight language barrier you may encounter at Atlantis also helps you develop “resilience and adaptability,” an AAMC core competency.

Clinical Experience that Stands Out to Schools

Medical schools want 3 things: healthcare exposure, GPA/MCAT, and certain competencies. Uniquely, “360 Shadowing” gives you the best version of the 1st, frees you to focus on the 2nd, and cultivates/shows the 3rd to medical school admissions.

Two students walking out of a hospital wing.
Atlantis students in a hospital wing (Lisbon, Portugal).

Funding Your Future

The cost of Atlantis isn’t too dissimilar from the cost of many study abroad programs that you may find. And we’re here to help: from our extensive fundraising guide to flexible payment plans and financing options, we make the process simple and easy, allowing you to focus on what really matters.

An Atlantis student smiling while shadowing abroad.
An Atlantis student on an excursion experiencing culture while shadowing abroad (Athens, Greece).

Bring a Friend

Consider bringing a friend to the same program you’re applying to. Although the vast majority of Atlantis alumni have gone on programs without knowing someone in their cohort, bringing a friend allows your experience to be shared in a unique way, while still allowing you one of the benefits of Atlantis: meeting new pre-health friends from across the country. Consider sharing this idea with your friends.

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students walking and smiling.
Atlantis students exploring together on a program excursion (Athens, Greece).

Med School Interview:
Atlantis Alum vs. Typical Pre-med

Compare a possible medical school interview of an Atlantis alum with that of a typical applicant by looking at responses to common questions.