The verb to go in Italian is one of the first verbs you want to learn, thanks to its versatility. In Italian we go everywhere, we don’t need to switch to verbs like to drive or to fly depending on the means of transportation as you do in English.

To go in Italian translates into andare.

But, that’s not only it. Before to see all the very important uses of andare let’s refresh the conjugation of the verb to go in Italian.

To go in Italian – Andare Conjugation

io vado I go
tu vai you go
lui/lei va he/she/it goes
noi andiamo we go
voi andate you go
loro vanno they go

As you can see from the chart, it is an irregular verb. Not completely though, since the subjects noi and voi act like regular verbs. Check the full conjugation of to go in Italian here.


Andiamo! – Let’s go!

Vado a fare la spesa – I go grocery shopping

Dove andate? – Where are you all going?

Uses of the verb to go in Italian

The Italian movement verb andare is versatile thanks to its multiple meanings and uses. As a result, it has literal and figurative senses, too.

Keeping in mind its conjugation, we’ll discover its most common meanings together!

To travel, to drive

The verb to go in Italian is used also as to travel or to drive when it means to proceed with a vehicle or to go somewhere to visit.


Stai andando troppo veloce!

You’re driving too fast!

Se continui, andrai fuori strada.

If you keep going, you’ll drive off the road.

Per favore, vai a 50 km all’ora.

Please, travel at 50 km per hour.

Mi piacerebbe andare 500 anni indietro nel passato.

I’d like to travel 500 years back into the past.

Non dovresti andare in Messico.

You should not travel to Mexico.

To fit

In this case, go in Italian it’s used with the meaning of how something fits you. The thing that fits is the subject and the person is in the form of an indirect object pronoun (mi – to me, ti -to you, gli – to him, le – to her, ci – to us, vi – to you all, gli – to them).


Questi pantaloni ti vanno bene?

Do these pants fit you?

Penso che la gonna non mi vada.

I think that the skirt won’t fit me.

To function, to work

As in the examples below when you say that something is, or is not, working, you can use andare.


La televisione non va.

The television is not working.

Non vanno le lampadine.

The light bulbs aren’t working.

To go away, to leave


Devo andare.

I must go.

Vado via.

I go away.

To feel

We use go in Italianto ask and express how someone, or something, is doing.


Come va? Va tutto bene, e tu?

How do you do? All good, and you?

Come vanno le vacanze?

How is vacation going?

To get along, to agree

Further, if you want to say that you get along with someone, you’ll need to use to go in Italian in the expression andare d’accordo.


Per fortuna, andiamo tutti d’accordo.

Luckily, we all get along.

Non vado d’accordo con il mio capo.

I don’t get along with my boss.

To be ok with, to feel like

Finally, you can use andare in the third person, singular and plural, when you talk about desires, wanting to do or have something. The subject, in this use, is the thing you do or do not feel like doing, and the person is in the form of an indirect object pronoun (mi, ti, gli, le, ci, vi, gli).


Vi va un gelato?

Do you all feel like an ice cream?

Ti va bene?

Is it ok with you?

Mi va di guardare un film stasera.

I feel like watching a movie tonight.

Note that by adding the preposition DI before the infinitive of the verb, you are talking about actions you would like to do.

And these were the main uses of the verb to go in Italian.

One thing to remember is that we don’t use to go in Italian to talk about the future (I’m going to do something).

Vado in Italia domani

I’m going to Italy tomorrow

Prepositions to use with to go in Italian

Same as in English, the verb to go in Italian is followed by prepositions. Andare sometimes wants the preposition A, some others IN or DA but when and how to use them correctly? To use prepositions properly, it’s not an easy task in any language, and Italian is no exception. Below you will find the most common cases with andare and prepositions.

A with the verb to go in Italian

The verb to go in Italian is often followed by the preposition a. Let’s see together all the cases.

Andare a + città

Use this preposition with the name of cities (ex. Roma, Parigi, Londra, New York, etc.) with no articles.

Andiamo a Parigi per il nostro anniversario.

We go to Paris for our anniversary.

Andare a + places

Use a with some names of places in the city (ex. casa, letto, teatro, scuola, una festa, etc.) with no articles


Quando vado a teatro, vado sempre a letto tardi.

When I go to the theatre, I always go to bed late.

Andare a + meals

Use this preposition with names of the meals (colazione, pranzo, cena) with no articles


Dove andate di solito a colazione?

Where do you usually go for breakfast?

Andare a + infinitives

To go in Italian uses this preposition before the infinitive verbs that follow (ex. studiare, ballare, fare la spesa, giocare, correre, etc.) with no articles.


Giorgio e Marco vanno a studiare a casa, mentre io vado a fare la spesa.

Giorgio and Marco go home to study while I go grocery shopping.

Andare a piedi

A follows to go in Italian to indicate the action of walking (a piedi)


Vai a piedi a scuola?

Do you go by foot to school?

Andare a + cardinal directions

Use this preposition with cardinal directions (sud, nord, est, ovest)


Lucia va a sud della città per correre.

Lucia goes to the south of the city to run.

Andare al + specific places

Use al (a + il = al) and other articulate preposition with some names of places, events and geographical names (ex. cinema, ristorante, bar, matrimonio, ricevimento, congresso, mare, lago, etc.)


Possiamo andare al mare?

Can we go to the beach?

Domani vado al matrimoniodella mia migliore amica.

Tomorrow I’ll go to my best friend’s wedding.

IN with the verb to go in Italian

In follows to go in Italian in the situations below.

Andare in + nations, regions, continents

Use this preposition with names of nations, regions and continents (ex. Italia, Spagna, Costa Azzurra, Asia, etc.) with no articles.

Per il mio compleanno andiamo in Franciae in Belgio.

For my birthday we go to France and Belgium.

Andare negli + plural names of nations

Use this preposition with definite articles (aka preposizione articolata – in + def. art.) when used with nations or regions names in the plural (ex. gli Stati Uniti, gli Emirati Arabi, etc.)


Marco va negli Stati Uniti da solo.

Marco goes to the United States by himself.

Andare in + means of transportation

Use this preposition to indicate the means of transport (ex. autobus, macchina, treno, etc.) with no articles


Mio figlio va a scuola in autobus tutti i giorni.

My son goes to school by bus every day.

Andare in + places in town

Use IN with to go in Italian followed by some places in the cities, like shops and also places ending in -IA (ex. città, centro, ufficio, banca, piscina, giardino, farmacia, libreria, birreria, etc.) with no articles.


Stasera andiamo in centro in pizzeria e dopo andiamo in birreria.

Tonight, we’ll go downtown to a pizza place and after that we’ll go to a brewery.

Andare in vacanza

Quest’anno Andrea va in vacanza in montagna.

This year Andrea goes on vacation in the mountains.

Andare in pensione

To go in Italian is also used to say to retire.

Mio padre va in pensione domani.

My father will retire tomorrow.

Da with to go in Italian

Andare + DA

Use this preposition to indicate the person where someone goes or stays (ex. un amico, il dottore, Maria, etc.) with or without articles depending on the person (ex. with personal names no articles, articles with names of professions)

Papà, oggi vado da Luca, la mamma va dal dottore e tu vai dal parrucchiere, va bene?

Dad, today I’ll go to Luca’s, mum will go to the doctor and you’ll go to the hairdresser, ok?

Expressions with to go in Italian

Let’s conclude with some very useful expressions you may use and hear with to go in Italian.

Andare a genio

It doesn’t mean to go to the genius or genie, as it may sound like, but to have the desire or to like.


Non mi va a genio

It doesn’t appeal to me

Andare a monte and Andare in fumo

We use to go in Italian in these expressions to say that something went wrong.


Il piano è andato a monte

The plan blew up

Tutto andrà in fumo

Everything will go up in smoke

Andare a ruba

This expression means to fly off the shelf.


La nutella va sempre a ruba

Nutella flies always off the shelf

Andare a letto con i polli

To go to bed with chickens means to go to bed early.


Tu vai a dormire a letto con i polli

You go to sleep so early

Andare a gonfie vele

To go in Italian is used also to say that something is going very well. Same as to be on a roll.


Il lavoro sta andando a gonfie vele

Work is going very well

Andare alla grande

Same as the expression above.


Come vanno le cose? Va tutto alla grande!

How are things going? Everything goes perfectly!

Andare di matto


Sto andando di matto!

I am getting crazy!

Andare di moda

The verb to go in Italian followed by di moda means to be a trend.


I jeans sono sempre di moda

Jeans are always a trend

Andare di corpo

Sorry about this one, it means to move the bowels. But the finer way to say to go to the bathroom is andare in bagno.

Andare di + infinitive


Ti va di andare al parco?

Would you like to go to the park?

Congratulations! You made it through this very long guide of andare, and its main uses! Now, you just need to andare a praticare (go practice)!

By: Lucia Aiello

Lucia Aiello is one of the co-founders of LearnItalianGo. Born and raised in Italy, she is a passionate Italian teacher and language enthusiast.

Learning the months of the year in Italian might be helpful if you are planning a journey to Italy this summer or telling someone when your birthday is. Furthermore, there are plenty of expressions and sayings related to months that Italians use every day when talking to each other.

Let’s find out how to translate the months of the year in Italian.

Months of the year in Italian

Italian English
gennaio January
febbraio February
marzo March
aprile April
maggio May
giugno June
luglio July
agosto August
settembre September
ottobre October
novembre November
dicembre December

As you can see, the names of the months are not capitalized, as for the days of the week and the seasons.


Gianni va in Giappone a luglio.

Gianni flies to Japan in July. 

Martina e Luca si sono laureati a gennaio.

Martina and Luca graduated in January.

Idioms with the months of the year in Italian

If you are walking down the street in Italy, it is not uncommon to hear some sayings from locals when talking about the month of the year we are in. These idioms generally come from folk tradition.

Here are some of the most used sayings you could learn by heart:

Marzo, mese pazzo.

March crazy month.

Marzo pazzerello, guarda il sole e prendi l’ombrello.

Nutty March, look at the sun and take your umbrella.

In March Italian weather is quite changeable. As there’s the sun, suddenly it starts raining.

Aprile, dolce dormire.

April, sweet sleeping.

In April spring comes and along with it the first heat. People usually feel tired and lazy in this particular period of the year. Due to the change of season, they just want to sleep and relax.

Ditty with the Months of the year in Italian

It’s time now to show you the best way to learn months of the year in Italian! Here is a famous ditty Italians use in many occasions to remember how many days are in each month:

Italian English
Trenta giorni ha novembre, con aprile, giugno e settembre, di ventotto ce n’è uno, tutti gli altri ne han trentuno.  Thirty days has November, with April, June and September, there’s just one with twenty-eight, all the rest have thirty-one.

Articles with the months of the year in Italian

As in English, you will not find articles before the name of a month. However, there are some cases they might occur, e.g. in case you are referring to a specific month where something happened or will happen.


Si dice che gennaio sia il mese più freddo dell’anno in Italia.

They say January is the coldest month of the year in Italy.

Nel luglio del 1789 scoppiò la Rivoluzione Francese.

The French Revolution broke out in July 1789.

Allora verrete a trovarci il prossimo agosto?

So you’ll come to visit us next August?

Prepositions with the months of the year in Italian

A and in

As regards prepositions, we generally use a or in before months in Italian. The choice of the preposition can vary according to the region you are at the moment. For example, In Tuscany and South Italy people usually prefer using a, while in North Italy it’s more common to hear in. By the way, remember that both forms are correct.


In che mese siamo? Siamo in novembre.

What month are we in? It’s November.

A dicembre potremmo andare a sciare in Austria.

We might go skiing in Austria in December.

Note that:

The preposition a becomes ad in presence of another a afterwards.

Check out the following example:

Credo che quest’anno andrò a Lisbona ad aprile.

I think this year I’ll go to Lisbon in April.

Nel mese di

In order to stress the duration of the month, you are going to use the expression nel mese di.

Solitamente vado in vacanza nel mese di giugno.

I usually go on vacation in the month of June.

Da… a

On the contrary, you are required to employ da… a if you want to speak of a specific period of time related to the months of the year in Italian.

In Italia si va a scuola da settembre a giugno.

In Italy you go to school from September to June.

Andremo a New York da marzo a maggio. Ti va di venire con noi?

We are going to New York from March to May. Do you want to join us?

Months of the year in Italian and Important events

Let’s now see what important events each month brings in Italy.

Months of the year in Italian and Important events – Gennaio


On January the 6th Italians celebrate the Epifania.

According to the folk tradition, kids usually receive a colourful sock filled with candies, toys and even black bitter coal (the reward for bad kids). All from an old lady called Befana who flies in the children’s homes riding her broom during the night.

The saying “L’Epifania tutte le feste si porta via” (with Epiphany all the holidays are over) and the ditty “La Befana vien di notte” are very popular in this period among Italians.  

Months of the year in Italian and Important events – Febbraio

San Valentino

February is the month of love because San Valentino, Valentine’s Day, occurs. On February 14th couples exchange gifts and go to the restaurant for a romantic dinner.

Baci Perugina is a widely well-known type of chocolate, exceptionally made and sold in this period by the famous chocolate factory Perugina, based in Perugia.


Another important feast is Carnevale, Carnival. Italian Carnival always falls on Martedì Grasso, Shrove or Fat Tuesday. During the day, folk of all ages wear costumes and masks, taking part in joyful parades and throwing at each other streamers and confetti.

As expected, food plays an important role in the Italian Carnevale, too.             

Months of the year in Italian and Important events – Marzo

Festa della Donna

On March 8th Italian women receive bunches of fragrant flowers known as mimosa in order to celebrate Festa della Donna, International Women’s Day. The choice of giving this particular type of flower derives from the fact that each mimosa blossom represents women’s economic, political and social achievements over the last centuries.

During this day, Italian television broadcast documentaries about the origins of this festivity and promotes awareness-raising campaigns against violence on women.

Festa del papà

In March another important festival is Festa del papà, Father’s Day.

During this day, schools plan projects and different activities to let Italian kids give something made with their hands to their daddies (e.g. drawings, handcrafted items). Some children even prepare cakes, sweets, chocolates or read out poems (often both in Italian and local dialect) by heart.

San Giuseppe

Father’s Day is also known as San Giuseppe, St. Joseph’s Day. This feast is mostly celebrated in the South of Italy. Here people go to church and then prepare a typical Italian dessert,the delicious zeppola di San Giuseppe.

Months of the year in Italian and Important events – Aprile


In April the most important festival is Pasqua, Easter. During this day, Italians receive “chocolate eggs” from their relatives or friends. They are particularly appreciated by kids, mostly for the surprise containing inside a gift. Beyond religious reasons, Easter is strongly meaningful to Italian families because they can find each other for a long and hearty dinner spending quality time all together.


The day after Easter is called Pasquetta, literally “Little Easter”. It is an original Italian celebration where people organise an outdoor barbecue or picnic in a park, in a holiday farm or on the seashore with some friends or relatives.

Festa della liberazione

Festa della liberazione (April 25th) is another day off Italians have.

It is a national holiday that memorializes the end of Fascism and Nazi Germany occupation and the victory of the Resistance in Italy.

During the day, lots of documentaries, video-interviews and movies related to the festivity are broadcast on the main channels of Italian television.  

Months of the year in Italian and Important events – Maggio 

La Festa dei Lavoratori

On May 1st people don’t work and stay at home with their families. Sometimes, they organize outdoor trips, heading to areas of countryside, mountains, lakes, etc.

La Festa della Mamma

As for Father’s Day Italian kids give drawings or handmade items to their moms. Others prepare pies, sweets and read out poems instead.

Months of the year in Italian and Important events – Giugno

Festa della Repubblica

It occurs on June the 2nd. The day commemorates the institutional referendum held in 1946 after the Second World War and the Fall of Fascism. The main celebration takes place in Rome, capital of Italy, where a military parade and Frecce Tricolori demonstration are scheduled.

Months of the year in Italian and Important events – Luglio

In July Italians love going to the beach on the weekend when they don’t work because it is always sunny and hot in this period. In order to cool them down, they usually take a swim or drink something cold with their friends or relatives. In the evening, people who live in the same area are used to having dinner together under the stars. Alternatively, they go out for a walk or a drink in a bar.

Months of the year in Italian and Important events – Agosto

In August most Italian cities empty out as soon as people move to coast areas where they usually rent a house or reserve a room in a hotel close to the seaside for the whole month or for 15 days. However, some Italians prefer going to the mountains to avoid heavy summer heat and overflowing beaches stuffed with holiday-makers.


During the week of Ferragosto (August 15th), people who aren’t on vacation yet stop working, too. On this day Italians celebrate with exclusive parties on the most famous Italian beaches, such as those of Adriatic Coast, Amalfi Coast and Emerald Coast. In addition, concerts with traditional music in the main Italian squares take place as well.      

Months of the year in Italian and Important events – Settembre

September is considered “the month of the restart” because summer is over and students have to come back to school. In this period most stores open again and working people return to their city life after leaving beaches and summer holiday resorts. Nevertheless, older people who are retired just go on vacation in this period in order to avoid overcrowded places and cities, relax and have peace and quietness.

Months of the year in Italian and Important events – Ottobre

In October there are not any important festivities to celebrate. Despite that, this is the perfect period to visit Italian cities, historical places and museums because they aren’t crowded with tourists from all over the world and the weather is mild.

In coastal cities like Napoli, Bari and Palermo locals even go to sunbathe on the rocks or take a last swim before colder temperatures occur.

Months of the year in Italian and Important events – Novembre


Allsaints occurs on November 1st. People take a day off from school or work and who is religious celebrates by going to Church.

Giorno dei morti

Il Giorno dei morti (November 2nd) is also a meaningful day because some people, especially in Southern Italy, usually go to the cemetery to honour the memory of their dead loved ones.

Months of the year in Italian and Important events – Dicembre

Immacolata Concezione 

Christmas season starts on December 8th with Giorno dell’Immacolata Concezione, Day of Immaculate Conception. It commemorates the fact that the Virgin Mary has been free of original sin from the moment of her conception. On this special day lots of Italian families are used to baking biscuits, decorating their house and trees, wrapping their presents. Offices and schools are normally closed.        


Natale (Christmas) is probably the most important festivity of the year for Italians.

It is always seen as a joyful day to meet up with friends and relatives, sit around the table, tasting lots of delicious traditional meals and good wines, unwrap all the gifts and play board games. Walking down the streets, you can bump into zampognari (bagpipe players) who are very successful to delight you with merry songs.


Another exciting occasion to celebrate with friends and families and have a big party all night long is Capodanno (New Year’s Eve). It starts in the afternoon with the famous aperitivo. After that, a typical big meal known as cenone follows in the evening. Some people choose to stay at home with their families, while others decide to have a great party in public squares and clubs. At midnight there’s the traditional countdown to welcome the new year.   

After reading this article, you should be able to name which month you are in and pick the Italian event you don’t want to miss.

So, when do you come to Italy this year? A luglio or a settembre?  

By: Alfonso Di Somma

Born and raised in Italy, he is an Italian professional translator and a tireless traveler. His main passion? Foreign languages!

Learn essential Italian phrases for travelers

Traveling to Italy is a dream, an exciting adventure that’s filled with great food, amazing places, and sunshine. The history and nature throughout the country are fascinating, however there’s one thing that you should keep in mind! Speaking some Italian is important if you’re visiting Italy!

So before you get on the plane, make sure to learn some Italian phrases for travelers!

Maybe you have already studied some Italian, by listening to music, reading books, or watching movies. Which is great! But if you need some more training, make sure to go through this Italian travel vocabulary as well! Make sure to pack these Italian words and phrases for your trip, so you won’t get into unpleasant situations with the locals.

Italian phrases for travelers – Greetings

Buon giorno — Good morning

You can use this phrase any time of the day until 12 pm. In Italy, it’s really important when you go in and out of a shop, or in any other case you’re connecting with people to greet them!

Say, “Buon giorno!” as you enter a small shop, as you walk into a booth, as you sit beside somebody in the lounge or waiting area. If you can, extend a firm handshake.

Buon pomeriggio — Good afternoon

You can use buon pomeriggio from lunchtime to around 5 pm. However, don’t be surprised if you won’t get back the same greeting. Italians tend to use buon giorno till lunch and then switch to buona sera.

Buona sera — Good evening

Buona sera is officially known to be used after 12pm, instead of buon pomeriggio, and it’s used until maybe after dinner, around 9-10pm.

Buona notte — Good night

Buona notte is saying goodbye when you’re retiring at night, or when someone else is going home to sleep, so it’s more intimate.

Ciao — Hi/Hello

Ciao is the most common greeting in Italy. You can use it at any time of the day, but it’s important to not say Ciao to an elder. In Italy they use formal communication with elder people, so to greet them, you should strictly use the formal greetings: buon giorno, buon pomeriggio, buona sera.

You can use Ciao for anyone else who is closer in age or younger. When you want to greet more people, you can say “Ciao a tutti” as hello everyone. Ciao is used also to say goodbye as well.

Salve – Hello

Salve is a more formal form of Ciao. This one you can use in formal situations and on older people, but not elders. For example, if you are 20, and the shop owner is 40, you can say salve instead of Ciao.

Arrivederci – Goodbye

Another Italian word that you should use to say Goodbye to someone. Arrivederci is an absolutely formal way to say bye, so you can use it for elders and people you don’t know in shops and restaurants.

These 6 greetings are the most important Italian phrases for travelers that must be learned, as you’ll have to use them a lot.

To extend your Italian travel vocabulary, here are some other ways that you can say goodbye in Italian:

Arrivederla — Until we see each other again (formal)

A più tardi — See you later

A dopo – See you later

Riguardati — Take care

Ci vediamo — See you

Alla prossima — ‘Til next time

Ci sentiamo – See you later, used in the context of call/text/messenger

A domani – See you tomorrow

Necessary Italian phrases for travelers

Grazie — Thank you

The word grazie is another one that you have to use a lot in Italy. When you get a coffee, or anything that’s brought to your table in a restaurant, you say grazie. Also, in Italy it’s really common to say goodbye and thank you when you leave a shop or a bar, restaurant. When you’re leaving you say “Ciao, grazie!” or “Grazie. Arrivederci!”.

Grazie mille — Thanks a lot

This is the way to say thank you when you want to show more respect and compassion for something you’ve received. Grazie mille literally means “thanks a million times”.

Prego — You’re welcome

Prego is used as “you’re welcome” but it also has other meanings. Prego is used also as “Yes? How can I help?” when you go in the shop or a bar and the waiter or staff member will ask you for what you’d like? Prego also can be used as “there you go” or “be my guest” for example if you’re asked if they can borrow something (like a chair).

Another meaning of prego is “after you” when someone lets you enter a room first, or you want to do that for someone. All in all, prego can be used for many different things.

Scusa — Excuse me (informal)

It doesn’t matter what’s your emergency, you never approach an Italian to ask them something without saying excuse me! It’s considered rude and it’s not tolerated. When you approach someone, first always use scusa. Remember, that this is a form you’re talking to friends, colleagues, or people that are around your age!

Mi scusi — Excuse me (formal)

The formal Italian phrase for travelers to keep in mind when you want to approach someone is mi scusi. This is how you should open a communication with an elder, or a complete stranger. It’s more formal to use mi scusi and it’s showing the other person that you’re giving them the due courtesy.

Mi dispiace – I’m sorry

Mi dispiace is used for whatever misunderstanding you encounter during your trip and you want to apologize. This is a more “sensitive” way to say sorry, so you don’t have to use it when you try to open a communication with someone, but rather when you want to say that you’re sorry for something.

Another phrase you can use is mi spiace which means the same but it’s more often used when someone tells you something bad that has happened.

Italian phrases for travelers – Assent/Dissent

Expressing assent/dissent is important in Italian! Here are some more key Italian phrases for travelers

— Yes

No — No

Ma certo — Definitely/Of course

If you’re asked if you like Italy, make sure to say: “Ma certo!

Sì means yes and No means no. This is simple. But what happens if you’re not sure about the answer? Here are some Italian words and phrases you can use:

Forse — Maybe

Può darsi — Maybe

Magari – Maybe

Non lo so — I don’t know

Penso di no — I don’t think so

Non credo – I don’t think so


Please in Italian

Per favore — Please

Per cortesia — Please (more formal)

Per piacere — Please

Same as please, per favore is used to wrap up sentences that involve favors, requests, demands, or orders (at a bar/restaurant).

If you end every other sentence with “Per favore” you will sound like an extremely polite tourist, which is great! You may also hear per cortesia and per piacere with the same meaning.

The nicer you are the more positivity you get back from locals. Italians love to open up for a chit-chat (chiacchierare) but you have to be nice and enthusiastic for that to happen!

Italian phrases for travelers – Speaking English in Italy

When you visit Italy, you shouldn’t have issues speaking in English in touristy areas. In restaurants, hotels, museums and everything similar you’ll be fine with English. With young Italians as well, you might find many who speak English really good.

However, if you’re in a less touristy place or you encounter people who don’t speak Italian, you might want to put your cards on the table upfront! Italians really appreciate it if you’re trying to speak, or actually can speak well Italian. However, you’ll still need to learn some phrases to explain to an Italian that you’re not a fluent speaker:

Non parlo Italiano. — I don’t speak Italian.

Parla/Parli Inglese? — Do you speak English? Parla is the formal way, parli is the informal way to ask!

Non capisco. — I don’t understand.

Parla/Parli piano/lentamente, per favore. — Please speak slowly. Parla informal, Parli formal.

Ripeti/Ripeta, per favore. — Please repeat. Ripeti is informal, ripeta is formal.

Italian phrases for travelers – Common questions and answers

Initiating a conversation with an Italian is fairly predictable. They usually ask you your name, where you’re from and what do you do for a living? Here are some questions and answers you’ll need for your Italian travel vocabulary.


Introducing yourself in Italian

Come ti chiami? — What’s your name?

Literally, you’re being asked what you call yourself or what other people call you.

The answer is:

Mi chiamo, ___. — My name is ____.

Alternatively: Sono ___. – I’m ___.

Piacere di conoscerti/ Piacere di conoscerla — Nice to meet you. (informal/formal)

Locals are more likely to say just piacere.

Give this compliment to every individual you meet on your trip.


Ask how are you in Italian

Come va? — How are you?

Alternative: Come stai? – How are you? – this is informal!

Sto bene – I’m fine

Molto bene – Very well

Molto bene, grazie – Very good, thank you.

If you’re so-so, you can say, “Così così.”


Say where you are from in Italian 

Dove abiti? — Where do you live? 

Dove vivi? – Where do you live?

Da dove vieni? – Where do you come from?

Di dove sei? – Where are you from?

Native Italian speakers will be always interested to find out where their guests are from. When they ask you dove abiti or di dove sei they are interested in the country, your nationality.

Have a ready answer through sentences like:

Abito/vivo a Londra. — I live in London.

Sono di New York. — I’m from New York.

Sono degli Stati Uniti – I’m from the United States.

Sono americano. — I’m American.

Talk about yourself in Italian

The conversation could go a million different ways from there, but one question that would most probably be asked is:

Che lavoro fai? / Cosa fai per lavoro? — What’s your job?

You can say, “Sono ____” and what your profession is. That’s good to check out in advance before heading to Italy!

Think of “sono” as the equivalent of the English phrase “I am,” and you can pretty much use it for things and facts pertaining to yourself like:

Sono sposato. — I’m married.

Sono un turista – I’m a tourist.

Sono stanco. — I’m tired.


Italian travel phrases for travelers – Asking for directions

Italy is the place where it doesn’t matter for how long you’ve been preparing your itinerary; you will most certainly get confused and lost at some point. The old towns of the Italian cities can be really confusing, even with Google Maps. So, it’s great to know some Italian phrases for travelers when you’re in need of finding your way to a certain place!

Asking for directions starts with you approaching the other person with a “Mi scusi,” asking your question, then hearing the directions to your destination.

Here are some phrases that could help you navigate this conversation. 

The main question word to keep in mind is dove?

Dove? — Where?

Dov’è  ____? — Where is ____?


Names of places in Italian

Other places in Italian:

Il museo  – The museum

L’albergo – The hotel

Il teatro —Theater

Il supermercato — Supermarket

La stazione — Train station

L’aeroporto — Airport

L’ospedale — Hospital

La stazione di polizia — Police station

Fermata dell’autobus – Bus stop

Il parco — Park

Il centro — Town center

Make sure to include in your question the name of the park, airport, station, etc. Otherwise, you might be misguided! Always say the official names of the places, that’s really important!


Directions in Italian 

Ask your question and you’re done. Now, listen for the directions. They talk really fast and you may have to use “Parli piano/lentamente, per favore” (Please speak slowly) and “Ripeta, per favore” (Please repeat) to get the gist of the directions.

Pay attention to their answers and these phrases:

Giri a destra / Gira a destra— Turn right (formal/informal)

Gira a sinistra / Gira a sinistra — Turn left (formal/ informal)

Vada diritto / Va dritto — Go straight ahead (formal/informal)

Vada in quella direzione / Va in quella direzione — Go that way (formal/informal)

Torni indietro/ Torna indietro — Go back (formal/informal)

È vicino — It’s near/close

È lontano — It’s far

If you hear “lontano” from the other person, that may mean your destination is not walking distance and you should consider getting a taxi.

Learn more Italian!

These are some of the basic Italian phrases for travelers.

As I’ve mentioned, in many places, especially big cities you can sort everything out if you’re speaking just in English, but knowing some basics is always great! With these phrases you should be fine having very basic conversations with locals in Italy. But if you really want to have an unique experience and have a deeper connection with Italian people and culture consider learning Italian for real!

By: Lucia Aiello

Lucia Aiello is one of the co-founders of LearnItalianGo. Born and raised in Italy, she is a passionate Italian teacher and language enthusiast.

Italian irregular verbs

Italian irregular verbs belong to a particular category of verbs which don’t have any regularity in their construction. For this reason, they have to be learned by heart.

Examples of Italian irregular verbs in the present tense:

Apparireto appear

I fantasmi appaiono nei luoghi in cui hanno trovato la morte.

Ghosts appear where they have been killed.

Morire – to die

Vedi Napoli e poi muori.

See Naples and then die.

As we will see, Italian irregular verbs usually present spelling and stem changes when conjugated in the present tense. Some verbs just add the consonant G to the first person singular (io) and the third plural person (loro), while others can be identified as contracted infinitives.

In this article we will go over the most common Italian irregular verbs in the present tense of the indicative mood.

Italian irregular verbs – essere and avere conjugation

First of all, we introduce auxiliary or helping verbs essere and avere.

Here is their conjugation:

Essere – to be

Io sono
Tu sei
Lui/Lei è
Noi siamo
Voi siete
Loro sono


Se stai cercando Michael, in questo momento non è qui. Tornerà più tardi!

If you are looking for Michael, he is not here right now. He’ll come back later!

I ragazzi che hanno prenotato una stanza nell’hotel più costoso di Amalfi sono di Abu Dhabi.

The guys who reserved a room in the most expensive hotel in Amalfi are from Abu Dhabi.

Avere – to have

Io ho
Tu hai
Lui/Lei ha
Noi abbiamo
Voi avete
Loro hanno


Hai per caso una penna da prestarmi? Temo di aver perso la mia!

Do you have a pen I can borrow? I’m afraid I lost mine!

Mi dispiace, ma non ho idea di dove si trovi tua sorella in questo momento!

I’m sorry, but I have no idea where your sister is right now!

Italian irregular verbs – Modal verbs conjugation

Following, the most used Italian irregular verbs are modal verbs volere (to want), potere (can), dovere (to have to / to need to / must) and sapere (can / to be able to) which are mainly used paired with another main verb in the infinitive form.

Here you have their conjugation:

Volere – to want

Io voglio
Tu vuoi
Lui/Lei vuole
Noi vogliamo
Voi volete
Loro vogliono


Vuoi vedere come ho sistemato la mia stanza dopo la ristrutturazione?

Do you want to see how I fixed up my room after the renovation?

Stiamo andando a fare una passeggiata nel bosco. Volete unirvi a noi?

We are going for a walk in the woods. Do you want to join us?

Potere – can / to be able to

Io posso
Tu puoi
Lui/Lei può
Noi possiamo
Voi potete
Loro possono


Mi ha già detto come stanno le cose, però io cosa posso farci?

He already told me where things stand, but what can I do about it?

Se ti va possiamo ordinare del cibo cinese per cena questa sera.

If you want, we can order some Chinese food for dinner this evening.

Dovere – to have to / to need to / must

Io devo
Tu devi
Lui/Lei deve
Noi dobbiamo
Voi dovete
Loro devono


Mi sa che dobbiamo prendere l’ombrello… sta cominciando a piovere!

I guess we need to take the umbrella… it’s starting to rain!

Non può andare a sciare perché questo weekend deve lavorare purtroppo.

He can’t go skiing because, unfortunately, he has to work this weekend.

Sapere – can / to be able to

Io so
Tu sai
Lui/Lei sa
Noi sappiamo
Voi sapete
Loro sanno


Non ci crederai ma mio fratello sa cantare, ballare e suonare il pianoforte!

You won’t believe this but my brother can sing, dance and play the piano!

Quel bambino è davvero un genio! Ha 3 anni e già sa contare fino a 30 in spagnolo.

That kid is kind of a genius! He is 3 and he already can count to 30 in Spanish.

Probably, you already know that the verb sapere has a double meaning: to know something and to be able to do something.


Have a look at the following examples:

Sentence Meaning
Sa a che ora arriveremo alla Stazione Centrale?


Do you know what time we arrive at the Central Station?

Someone is asking if you know what time the train arrives at the Central Station
Non è vero che solo le donne sanno cucire e stirare… anche gli uomini lo fanno!


It is not true only women can sew and iron… men can do that, too!

In this case, it is said men like women are able to sew and iron, too!

Italian irregular verbs – Stem changes

Next, we find andare (to go), uscire (to go out) and stare (to stay), the most common Italian irregular verbs presenting stem changes in their conjugation.

Andare – to go

Io vado
Tu vai
Lui/Lei va
Noi andiamo
Voi andate
Loro vanno


Vado spesso al cinema e poi in pizzeria con gli amici quando ho tempo libero.

I often go to the cinema and then to eat pizza with my friends when I have free time.

Non so se Sara e Lara questa sera vanno al club o restano a casa.

I don’t know if Sara and Lara go to the club or stay at home this evening.

Uscire – to go out

Io esco
Tu esci
Lui/Lei esce
Noi usciamo
Voi uscite
Loro escono


Escono quasi tutte le sere perché si annoiano a casa.

They almost go out every night because they get bored at home.

Uscite questo pomeriggio? Dove avete intenzione di andare?

Do you go out this afternoon? Where are you going?

Stare – to stay

Io sto
Tu stai
Lui/Lei sta
Noi stiamo
Voi state
Loro stanno


È incredibile! Stanno calmi solo quando dai loro qualcosa da fare.

It’s unbelievable! They stay calm only when you give them something to do.

Ogni volta che Giovanni sta fuori casa tutta la notte, si sente in colpa.

Every time Giovanni stays out all night, he feels guilty.


As you can see, stem changes don’t occur in Noi and Voi conjugations in this type of irregular verbs in Italian.

Italian irregular verbs – Spelling changes

Now, it’s time to talk about the verbs tacere and piacere, clear examples of spelling changes.

They are conjugated as follows:

Tacere – to shut up

Io taccio
Tu taci
Lui/Lei tace
Noi tacciamo
Voi tacete
Loro tacciono


Siamo davvero dei codardi! Tacciamo tutte le volte che ci danno fastidio per paura di essere picchiati!
We are all cowards! We shut up every time they bother us because we are scared to be hit!

Tacciono sempre quando gli vengono chieste informazioni in merito al progetto.
They always shut up when they are asked to give some information about the project.

Piacere – to like 

Io piaccio
Tu piaci
Lui/Lei piace
Noi piacciamo
Voi piacete
Loro piacciono


Mi piacciono le lunghe passeggiate sulla spiaggia e le gite in barca.

I like long walks on the beach and boat trips.

Non ho mai capito perché piaccio sempre molto alle persone stravaganti!

I never understood why eccentric people always like me a lot!

As you may have noticed, the double consonant –cc– appears in the first person singular, and in the first and third person plural in both verbs.

Instead, as regards the use of the verb piacere, make sure you are using it properly with indirect pronouns, because you can get confused easily!

Italian irregular verbs – Add a ‘’g’’

Meanwhile, Italian irregular verbs venire (to come), rimanere (to remain) , accogliere (to welcome) and tenere (to hold) require in their stem the consonant G at the first person singular (io) and the third person plural (loro).

Here is their conjugation:

Venire – to come

Io vengo
Tu vieni
Lui/Lei viene
Noi veniamo
Voi venite
Loro vengono


Vengono anche Nick e Jasper stasera al compleanno di Kathy?

Do Nick and Jasper come to Kathy’s birthday this evening, too?

Se viene Clara alla festa stasera, io non ci sarò perchè mi sta antipatica.

If Clara comes to the party tonight, I won’t be there because I don’t like that girl.

Rimanere – to remain

Io rimango
Tu rimani
Lui/Lei rimane
Noi rimaniamo
Voi rimanete
Loro rimangono


Rimango senza parole ogni volta che assisto alla nascita di un bambino.

I remain speechless every time I attend the birth of a child.

Cosa accadde quella mattina rimane ancora un mistero.

What happened that morning still remains a mystery.

Accogliere – to welcome

Io accolgo
Tu accogli
Lui/Lei accoglie
Noi accogliamo
Voi accogliete
Loro accolgono


Ogni anno i nostri hotel accolgono più di 600 ospiti stranieri.

Every year our hotels welcome more than 600 foreign guests.

Mia nonna accoglie sempre tutti a braccia aperte.

My grandmother always welcomes everyone with open arms.

Tenere – to hold

Io tengo
Tu tieni
Lui/Lei tiene
Noi teniamo
Voi tenete
Loro tengono


Tiene sempre il bambino tra le sue braccia

She always holds the baby in her arms

Una volta all’anno tengono provini per giovani attori che vogliono unirsi alla compagnia teatrale.

Once a year, they hold auditions for young actors who want to join the theatre company.

You should know that the verb tenere is often used in place of the auxiliary verb avere in colloquial language (especially in some dialects of southern Italy).


Oggi tengo un mal di testa terribile! E pure mal di stomaco!

Today I have a terrible headache! Even stomach ache!

Tenete un bel po’ di cose da fare oggi, eh?

Do you have a lot of things to do, don’t you?

Italian irregular verbs – contracted infinitives

Lastly, we end with Italian irregular verbs bere (to drink), dire (to say), dare (to give), fare (to do). This type of verbs has an infinitive which is very short, while the conjugated forms are basically longer. That’s why we talk about contracted infinitives.

Let’s see how to conjugate them:

Bere – to drink

Io bevo
Tu bevi
Lui/Lei beve
Noi beviamo
Voi bevete
Loro bevono


Prima di andare a dormire, i bambini bevono di solito un bicchiere di latte.

Before going to bed, kids usually drink a glass of milk.

Mi hanno detto che beve tanto quando è sola. Per caso è depressa?

They told me she drinks a lot when she’s alone. Is she depressed at all?

Dire – to say

Io dico
Tu dici
Lui/Lei dice
Noi diciamo
Voi dite
Loro dicono


Dice che vorrebbe fare un viaggio negli Stati Uniti non appena andrà in ferie ad agosto.

He says he would like to take a trip to the United States as soon as he goes on holiday in August.

Perché non dite quello che vi è successo la scorsa notte? Su, coraggio!

Why don’t you say what happened to you last night? Come on!

A thing to remember is that the consonant C followed by the vowels E and I has CH sound in the present tense. Otherwise, it sounds like K.

Dare – to give

Io do
Tu dai
Lui/Lei dà
Noi diamo
Voi date
Loro danno


Ti do 5 giorni di tempo per lasciare questa casa. È chiaro?

I give you 5 days’ time to get out of this house. Is that clear?

Dà importanza alle cose materiali perché non vuole ammettere di sentirsi solo.

It could happen you may not be able to distinguish the preposition da (from/by) and the word danno (damage) from the third person singular and the third person plural of the verb dare because they are written in the same way. For this reason, it is recommended to put an accent mark on dà. No one puts it on the word dànno, but the context will help you understand if it means they give or damage.

Fare – to do

Io faccio
Tu fai
Lui/Lei fa
Noi facciamo
Voi fate
Loro fanno


Fa del suo meglio per non sembrare troppo prepotente con i suoi colleghi.

She does her best to avoid appearing too bossy with her colleagues.

Faccio tutto quello che posso per renderti facile ma pare che tu sia incontentabile!

I do everything I can to make you happy but it seems you are hard to please!

Italian irregular Verb Conjugations online

Any problems memorizing Italian irregular verbs? Don’t worry about it! You don’t need to remember them all! If you forget something, use : it is very useful to find all the irregular forms of the present tense… and not only that!

Eventually, you could check some lists of the most common and unusual Italian irregular verbs available on the Internet.

In case you are so brave to learn them all by heart, then give it a try and good luck!

In conclusion, we can say that it is important to know the present tense conjugations of irregular verbs not just because they’re used a lot, but also because they form the basis for other conjugations, such as the Imperative and the Subjunctive.

If you want to practice Italian Grammar and tenses here is a list of useful books for you:

By: Alfonso Di Somma

Born and raised in Italy, he is an Italian professional translator and a tireless traveler. His main passion? Foreign languages!

Italian Desserts and Food

Above all, Food and Italian desserts are surely the first things that occur in your mind when you think about Italy.

In fact, we all know that Italians love to spend hours around the table with family and friends. It does not matter whether it is Sunday, or your birthday or a festivity, on these occasions there are two very important things to remember. First, you will never know when lunch or dinner will end. Second, no matter how full you are, there is always room for dessert.

All Italian desserts are truly representative of the peninsula and carry with its centuries of history, heated discussions on the place of birth, as well as recipes’ and linguistic contamination, which lead to a bunch of funny Italian desserts’ names. On the one hand, neighboring regions have similar desserts which differ only in names and few ingredients. On the other hand, unique samples of regional pastry do exist.

And now, without any further ado…

Finally, let us get started with some of the most beloved Italian desserts that you cannot miss to try out once you are in Italy!

1. Strudel

Italian desserts

Let’s begin with one of the tastiest Italian desserts of Trentino Alto-Adige: apples’ strudel. It roots back to Austrian Empire and the oldest recipes are from the late 1600.

First of all, the elastic pastry is traditionally made from flour, water, oil, and salt. Then, once the thin dough is ready, it is laid out on a tea towel and filled with apples’ cubes, pine nuts, raisin, butter, and cinnamon. Finally, the pastry is rolled up very carefully and baked in the oven. Usually, it is served a little warm with vanilla ice-cream or cream.

In conclusion, these are reasons why strudel is perfect both at the end of the meal or as a snack in the afternoon. For example, you can enjoy it after a long promenade along the picturesque streets of Bolzano.

2. Sbrisolona

To continue, Sbrisolona is another delightful Italian desserts in the north-west of Italy. Primarily, this cake was invented in the Lombardy region. Later, it has spread in the nearby areas. The name comes from the Mantuan dialectal word “brisa” (crumb).

In short, Sbrisolona has poor origins: originally it was made from corn flour, lard, and hazelnuts. Nowadays, it is slightly different: yellow and white flour, sugar, butter, almonds, eggs, and lemon peels.

Furthermore, the quick mixing of the ingredients and its irregular texture is unique: the right way to eat it is to roughly break it with your hands and soak the pieces in the grappa, a typical northern liquor.

3. Bonet

Again, when we talk about north-west Italy, we cannot not mention the Piemonte region and the prince of all Italian desserts: the Bonet.

In short, Bonet is a pudding made from eggs, sugar, milk, cocoa, amaretti and liquor. Originally, the digestive Fernet was far more used, whereas today the Rum often replace it.

Specifically, the name is the dialectal word for “hat”, whose shape is recalled by the bonet’s mold. Surely this pudding is very easy to prepare: all you must do is whisk the ingredients together, put in the mold and cook in a Bain Marie to dry the mix.

Therefore, it is a simple and exquisite ending for your meal, especially if desserts’ wine accompanist it: for example, a Monferrato Chiaretto or a sparkling pink.

4. Cantucci

Principally, one of the most notorious Italian desserts in Tuscany is the so-called Cantuccio (Cantucci is the plural), of Tuscan city of Prato.

Moreover, the pastry chef Antonio Mattei rediscovered the original recipe and readapted it, and today his variation is accepted as the traditional one. In the XIX century Mattei brought his recipe to the Exposition Universelle in Paris and had won a special mention. Nowadays, his pastry shops the Mattonella, is still open in Prato and it is the perfect place to taste the original Cantuccio.

Lastly, this twice-baked, oblong, dry, crunchy biscuit is delicious at any time of the day. Indeed, it is usually served as an after-dinner dipped in a local wine, the Vin Santo.

5. Maritozzo

Meanwhile, our journey of Italian desserts proceeds. We have now reached the Lazio region. First of all,  here we can taste Maritozzo. It is a soft brioche sliced in two, filled with whipped cream and traditionally also with pine nuts, raisins, and orange peel.

If you have been careful, you have surely noticed that the name recalls the Italian word “marito”, husband. In fact, it seems that in the Roman empire the brides-to-be used to receive this sweet from their fiancé, who sometimes ceiled in it a small gift, for example a ring.

In conclusion, the Maritozzo is usually a rich breakfast or snack, served with coffee, cappuccino, or another hot drink.

6. Pastiera

In addition, Neapolitan Pastiera is one of the most famous Italian desserts. It is a typical Easter sweet, whose origins blurred in a great number of legends.

First, the short pastry is filled with ricotta cheese (or sometimes with pastry cream), sugar, eggs, candied fruit, and wheat boiled in milk, then flavored with orange flower water. To continue, on the top of the cake are added some stripes of short pastry, that is assumed to represent the map of historic center of Naples.

Traditionally, the Pastiera is baked on Maundy Thursday or Good Friday and then it is exchanged between families as an Easter gift. As a result, in every home the fridge is full of a bunch of Pastiere (plural form) and an actual competition for the best one begins.

Eventually, this dessert is served at the end of the Easter lunch in the same mold (called ruoto) in which it is baked.

7. Babà

Above all, Babà is the unquestioned king of Neapolitan pastry-making, even though it is an Italian desserts that has Polish and French origins.

In particular, this is a yeast cake, dipped in a syrup made from sugar, rum or other liquor and spices. However, it can also be filled with whipped cream or pastry cream.

In conclusion, you can eat it on every occasion. Moreover, pastry shops in Naples have now reinvented it in several ways: indeed, in their windows you can see not only the traditional shapes, but also Babà filled with ice-cream, cups with layers of pastry cream and Babà or enormous Vesuvius-shaped versions of this sweet.

8. Sfogliatella

As for the Pastiera and the Babà, the Sfogliatella too is one of more traditional Italian desserts from Campania.

Originally, it was created in a monastery on the Amalfi Coast. Later, a Neapolitan pastry chef acquired the recipe and began selling it.

Above all, the choice of the perfect Sfogliatella is a serious matter for Neapolitans and everyone has his favorite shop. Still, only two of them are notorious for baking an extraordinary Sfogliatella: “Scaturchio” in the historic center of Naples and “Attanasio”, specialized only in Sfogliatelle and located near the central station of the city.

Also, you can find two version of Sfogliatella: Sfogliatella “riccia”, a curly shell-shaped puff pastry and the “frolla” one, made with a round-shape short pastry. Both are filled with semolina, candied fruit, sugar, ricotta cheese, eggs, and vanilla essence.

To conclude, as tradition dictates, you can eat Sfogliatella during the Carnival lunch. Still, this sweet is not only an ideal breakfast for Neapolitans, but also a rich snack in the afternoon.

9. Pasticciotto

After that, we finally left Campania region, heading to another Southern area of Italy: Apulia. Here, in enchanted spots of nature and sea you will find another dessert officially recognised as one of the most typical Italian desserts of the region: the Pasticciotto.

To start, we have to say that the two Apulian cities most famous for the Pasticciotto are Lecce and Galatina, in the Salento area. In fact, the local pastry chefs created a simple but unique sweet.  It is an oval shell-shaped short pastry filled with pastry cream, but today many versions can be found.

However, they are typically eaten as a breakfast item or throughout the day, but rigorously warm. To conclude, what’s better than biting a Pasticciotto while exploring the beautiful Apulian land?

10. Pitta ‘mpigliata

Above all, this is one of Italian desserts with such a strange name and it is a traditional pastry of San Giovanni in Fiore, a city in the Calabria region. Firstly, the word “Pitta” probably comes from the Hebrew and Arabic word “pita”, which means crushed, pressed. However, it was probably invented in the XVIII century and was usually prepared for wedding ceremonies, while today has become an Easter and Christmas dessert.

In particular, the Pitta is made of hard wheat sheets’ layers alternated with a mixture of raisins, almonds, mandarin orange liquor, sugar, cinnamon and clove. Afterwards, once it is baked, the pitta is sprinkled with Cognac or Vermouth.

Also, there is the old custom to bake the pitta a week before Easter in the oven of local bakeries. However, on this occasion, in order to distinguish one’s’ pitta from the others, everyone put on his own dessert a recognition sign, like a comfit or an olive branch.

To conclude, even if nowadays a Pitta can be found everywhere in Calabria region, the authentic one is only in San Giovanni in Fiore and that’s why the city is working hard to gain the important D.O.P certification (P.D.O.).

11. Cannolo

Italian desserts

Meanwhile, we finally landed in Sicily, homeland of the worldwide famous Italian desserts and in particular of Cannolo (Cannoli for the plural). As we can see, this is a sweet probably invented during the Arabic domination.

First of all, the name comes from the word “cane”, because at first it was thanks to the river canes that the typical tube shape was formed.

In particular,  the fried shell is filled with a mixing of sheep’s ricotta cheese and sugar and then decorated with candied fruit, chocolate chips or chopped pistachios. However, to avoid that the humidity of the creamy filling ruins the crunchy shell, pastry chefs began to cover its inside with chocolate.

To conclude, while this dessert was once prepared on Carnival festivities, today there’s not a special occasion on which it is eaten.

12. Cassata

To continue, this is one of Italian desserts that you have surely heard about: this beautiful Sicilian sweet consists of a round sponge cake sprinkled with fruit juice and liquor, layered with the same creamy filling of the Cannoli and then covered with marzipan.

First of all, we have to say that he decoration is made with pink and green icing, candied fruits and other decorative items that create a baroque work of art. Nevertheless, in the city of Palermo it is still possible to find the first version of the cassata, which is short pastry with ricotta filling with no decorations or candied fruit at all.

To conclude, even if there isn’t a precise period of the year when the cassata is prepared, this cake is certainly a very appreciated gift during the Easter and Christmas festivities.

13. Seada

Finally, here we are at the end of our journey and discovery of Italian desserts. Last but not least, we got to the enchanting Sardinia, famous for its production of Pecorino cheese, which is actually the main ingredient of the Seada, the traditional Sardinian dessert. In particular, this sweet consists in a large semolina dumpling filled with pecorino cheese and lemon peel, fried in olive oil or lard.

Traditionally, the Seada is then served warm and covered with honey. However, its peculiar name comes from a local type of wheat called “cebada”, which is the basic ingredient for the dumpling. Moreover, the dessert was first prepared on the mountains of the Ogliastra area, in the north of the island. Finally, from those mounts, it eventually spread all over Sardinia where sweet white wines accompany it, like the Malvasia di Bosa.

Dear friends, even if it’s been an extremely quick journey, I hope that you enjoyed it.

However, just in case you are dying to do some of these Italian desserts on your own, I’ll leave below a list of useful words that can help you out with Italian recipes. Have fun!

Vocabulary for Italian desserts 

Let’s start from the kitchen utensils and cutlery.

frullatore blender
paletta per dolce cake slice
tagliere cutting board
frusta elettrica electric whisk
grattugia grater
frullatore a immersione hand-held blender
siringa per dolci icing syringe
spremiagrumi juicer
stampo mould
rotella tagliapasta pastry cutting wheel
mattarello rolling pin
setaccio sifter
spatola spatula
colino strainer
frusta whisk
mestolo wooden spoon

Ingredients for Italian desserts

Let’s s continue with the Ingredients, creams and doughs.

farina flour
grano wheat
semola semolina
uova eggs
albume egg white
tuorlo yolk
zucchero sugar
latte milk
ricotta ricotta cheese
vaniglia vanilla
cannella cinnamon
lievito yeast, baking powder
burro butter
strutto lard
olio oil
miele honey
glassa icing
frutta candita or canditi candied fruit
uva passa raisin
mandorla almond
nocciola hazelnut
pasta frolla short pastry
pasta sfoglia puff pastry
pan di spagna sponge cake
crema pasticcera cream, custard
panna montata whipped cream
budino pudding
marzapane marzipan

Useful Italian verbs for desserts

Here some useful verbs useful to follow the Italian recipes.

aggiungere to add
infornare to bake
tritare to chop
tagliare a dadini to dice
immergere to dip
friggere to fry
grattugiare to grate
impastare to knead
mescolare to mix
versare to pour
stendere con il matterello to roll out
affettare to slice
bagnare to wet
montare to whip

In this article, I wanted to take you on a virtual journey to the discovery of the sweet Italian desserts and fragrances. Indeed, I selected some examples of Italian desserts traditions from North to South. However, although you must consider that it has been a really difficult task that left me guilty for everything I left out (sincere apologies to our Italian friends that may feel neglected)  I also added some recipes just in case you want to test your cooking skills or feel a true Italian.


By: Maria Rosaria Savarese

Deeply in love with her hometown Vico Equense, near Sorrento, Maria Rosaria enjoys sharing her passion for her land and its culture.

I love you in Italian – Phrases about love in Italian


Love it’s the deepest, strongest feeling we could ever have. Everybody’s journey in life is touched by love. We can all agree that Italians are romantic, they are passionate and lovable, extremely open and expressive. Italians do not only love, they spread love, they share love, they talk love.

It’s not surprising that Italian is considered as the most romantic language in the world. It is so because people are not ashamed of expressing their strong affection for one another, they love to compliment you, to boost your confidence, to make you feel desired.

To express love in Italian you can’t not be romantic. That’s why you need to learn how to say I love you in Italian and some phrases about love that will definitely come in handy if you want to charm your Italian crush and better your flirting skills.

How to say I love you in Italian

There are two main ways to say I love you in Italian: you can say ti amo to your partner, but to a friend or family member you should only say ti voglio bene.

It’s really important to learn them if you don’t want to say the wrong words to the wrong person. Saying ti amo to a friend means you love them romantically.

Ti amo.

I love you.

Used for a spouse/partner

Ti voglio bene.

I love you.

(literally: I wish you well)

Used for friends/family

There are many other ways to express love in Italian, let’s see the most common ones.

Italian phrases about love

Here are some Italian phrases about love that will help you express your affection to your Italian partner:

Ti amo tanto.

I love you so much.

Ti voglio tanto bene.

I love you so much. (I wish you well)

Ti adoro.

I adore you.

Sono pazzo/a di te.

I’m crazy for you.

Mi manchi.

I miss you.

Ti amerò per sempre.

I will love you forever.

Sono attratto/a da te.

I’m attracted to you.

Sono follemente innamorato/a.

I’m crazy in love.

Mi piaci davvero tanto.

I really like you a lot.

Sono innamorato/a cotto/a.

I’m completely crazy in love.

È stato un colpo di fulmine.

It has been a love struck.

È amore a prima vista.

It’s love at first sight.

Sei il mio unico vero amore.

You are my one true love.

Sei la mia anima gemella.

You are my soulmate.

Ti penso ogni giorno!

I think of you every day!

Sono innamorato di te!

I’m in love with you!

And if things become more serious you may want to learn the following common phrases about love in Italian:

Mi vuoi sposare?/Sposami!
Will you marry me? /Marry me!

Voglio passare il resto della mia vita con te.
I want to spend the rest of my life with you.

Sei l’unico/a per me.
You are the only one for me.

Mi hai cambiato la vita.
You changed my life.

Tesoro, dammi un bacio.
Kiss me, darling.

Baciami e abbracciami come mai prima!
Kiss me and hug me like never before.

Sono sempre stato attratto/a da te.
I’ve always been attracted to you.

Non posso vivere senza di te.
I can’t live without you.

Sei il grande amore della mia vita.
You are the love of my life.

Ti voglio sempre al mio fianco.
I want you always by my side.

Italian phrases for a date

At the beginning of every love story there has been a first date, il primo appuntamento. Here are some Italian phrases about love, both practical and romantic for a date in Italy:

Ti piacerebbe andare a cena con me?

Would you like to have dinner with me?

Sei libero/a questo fine settimana?

Are you free this weekend?

Vorresti uscire con me stasera?

Would you like to go out with me tonight?

A che ora ci vediamo domani?

What time shall we meet tomorrow?

Dove ci incontriamo?

Where shall we meet?

Conosco un bel posto. Ti va di prendere un aperitivo?

I know a good place. Do you want to get an aperitif?

Qual è il tuo numero di telefono?

What’s your phone number?

Ti chiamerò.

I’ll call you.

Ci vediamo di nuovo?

Will we meet again?

Quando posso rivederti?

When can I see you again?

È stata una serata fantastica.

It was a great evening.

Ti accompagno a casa.

I will walk you home.

Passo a prenderti alle 9.

I’ll pick you up at 9pm

È stato un piacere stare con te.

It was a pleasure being with you.

Ho trascorso una splendida giornata con te.

I spent a wonderful day with you.

Grazie per la bellissima serata.

Thank you for the great night.

What do you call your lover in Italian?

Be careful translating literally lover in Italian, because usually amante is used referring to extramarital affairs! Instead, there are so many sweet words and terms of affection to call your lover in Italian. Here are some of them:

Amore (mio) – My love, my beloved

Tesoro (mio) – My treasure

Gioia (mia) – My joy

Cuore (mio) – My heart

Caro (mio) /Cara (mia) – My dear

Cucciolo/a – puppy

Trottolino amorosolittle spinning top

They are all used in a caring and loving way, meaning “darling”. If you are looking for more official names to call your partner in Italian, then you may want to use one of the following:

Il mio ragazzo – my boyfriend

La mia ragazza – my girlfriend

Il mio fidanzato – my fiancé or my boyfriend

La mia fidanzata – my fiancée or my girlfriend

Mia moglie – my wife

Mio marito – my husband

Il mio partner / la mia partner – my partner

Il mio compagno / la mia compagna – my partner

La mia dolce metà – my sweet half

Common gifts for your lover in Italian

Even though learning how to say I love you in Italian and all the romantic phrases will be already the sweetest gift you could ever do to your Italian lover, you may want to add some flowers or chocolates to express your love.

Some vocabulary for common gifts for your dolce metà:

Un mazzo di fiori

A bouquet of flowers

Un mazzo di rose

A bouquet of roses

Una scatola di cioccolatini

A box of chocolates

I gioielli


Una collana

A necklace

Un anello

A ring

Un bracciale

A bracelet

Una cena romantica

A romantic dinner

How to compliment someone in Italian

Love is shown also with compliments. You should always compliment people in Italy. It makes them feel good, it makes you feel good too. It’s all about positive vibes, about caring for each other’s well-being.

If you can make someone’s day better by just saying aloud what you really mean about them, don’t hide it, say it openly in the best way possible.

Here you will find some ways to compliment people in Italian.

Stai benissimo/а.

Stai proprio bene.

You look great.

Sei bellissimo/a.

You are handsome/beautiful.

Sei così carino/a.

You are so cute.

Che bellо/а che sei!

How beautiful you are!

Che gentile! /Come sei gentile!

You are very kind!

Che occhi splendidi!

What splendid eyes!

Ti vedo in ottima forma!

You are in great shape!

Bellissimo il cappello!

Your hat is very beautiful.

Hai uno stile molto elegante.

You have a very elegant style.

Mi piace tantissimo il tuo taglio di capelli.

I really like your haircut.

Mi sembri una persona molto profonda.

You seem to me a very profound person.

Mi piaci.

I like you.

Once you give some of these compliments to people, believe me they will give back to you the same amount of love.

Say I love you with Italian songs

L’amore è dappertutto. Love is everywhere. Wherever you go, whatever you do.

And what’s the best way to give love and to receive love if not through music?

A good way to learn more phrases about love in Italian is through music, since basically all Italian songs talk about love.

Start listening to Baciami ancora, A te, Grande Amore or Caruso, just to mention a few. And don’t forget the most touching, worldwide known, “Con te partirò also known as Time to say goodbye by the best opera singer Andrea Bocelli.

Sing an Italian song and spread the love!

By: Lucia Aiello

Lucia Aiello is one of the co-founders of LearnItalianGo. Born and raised in Italy, she is a passionate Italian teacher and language enthusiast.

Seasons in Italian – basic notions 

If you want to learn Seasons in Italian, you should start from the beginning.

Firstly, the Italian word for “season” is stagione,  plural  stagioni.    Many language experts believe that “season” and “stagione” have the same etymological origin in the Latin verb serere, “to sow”Especially in ancient times, farming and agricultural activities were central in the calendar, or – to say it in Italian – in the  calendario.

Seasons in Italian correspond to American and English ones, and that’s quite obvious!


Autumn/ Fall







Italian Season Adjectives

There are also four adjectives related to Seasons in Italian:


something related to Fall – autumnal


something related to Winter – wintry


something related to Spring – springy


something related to Summer – summery

Keep in mind that in Italian articles, pronouns, adjectives, and determiners in general, all change with the gender.  Autunno  and inverno  are masculine.  Primavera  and  estate  are feminine. The term stagione  itself is feminine.

If you are in need, you can find here more information about Italian indefinite articles, Italian definite articles and Italian demonstrative adjectives.

Months in Italian – I Mesi 

























How to chat about seasons in Italian

Now you are ready for some time expressions related to Seasons in Italian:

In che stagione siamo?

Which season are we in? / In which season are we?

Siamo in estate

We are in summer

Quando inizia l’estate?

When does summer start?

L’estate inizia il 20/21 Giugno

Summer starts on the 20/21 of June

Quando finisce l’autunno?

When does fall end?

L’autunno finisce il 21 dicembre

Fall ends on the 21 of December

Siamo in autunno

It’s autumn

L’inverno sta arrivando (Italian gerund)

Winter is coming

La primavera è arrivata

Spring is here / Spring has arrived

Quale è la tua stagione preferita?

What’s your favorite season?

La mia stagione preferita è l’inverno

Winter is my favorite season

Amo la primavera

I love spring

Non mi piace l’autunno

I don’t like autumn

Odio l’estate

I hate summer

Sto aspettando l’estate

I’m waiting for the summer

Quest’anno l’estate è in ritardo

Summer is late this year / It’s a late summer

Quest’anno l’inverno è in anticipo

Winter is early this year / It’s an early winter

La primavera è lontana

Spring is far away

L’autunno è vicino

Autumns is near / Autumn is getting closer

As you can see,      Seasons in Italian are strictly related to weather.  Thus, we recommend reading this article about the Italian climate and Italian climate vocabulary/expressions before going forward!

What do you need to know about Seasons in Italy

Every Seasons in Italian Country has its own temper. For this reason, you can enjoy this diversity to the fullest visiting Italy in distinct times of the year: in fact, one of the best and most appreciated things about Italy is the weather.

Nonetheless, there is still a cliché about Italian seasons and weather: when tourists and visitors think about the Italian climate, they usually imagine neverending sunbathing, melted ice cream, barefoot people in the fountains, etc. But it’s not simply like this! In fact, we have cold winters, mainly in the mountains, cool autumns, sweet rainy springs, and hot fantastic summers.

When it comes to speaking about Season in Italian, be prepared to use terms and expressions that concern weather, holidays, temperatures, and clothes.

And remember: Italian people love chatting and joking about the weather!

Here for you a funny filastrocca (nursery rhyme) about Seasons in Italian, try to understand the meaning!

Seasons in Italy – Everything to know

So the same Seasons in Italian   Country can have different characteristics from place to place! However, on average Italy has a very good climate in comparison to other countries: the well-known nickname “paese del sole” (country of the sun) it’s not chosen by chance. 

Winter in Italy – Inverno 

The Italian winter is cold almost everywhere in the peninsula. In the mountains, you can easily find ice and snow, especially in the Alps and Apennines. The temperature is low in the northern regions and the interior; it decreases when the sky is cloudy or when the air is very clear due to icy winds. Of course, except for some places high on the cliffs, you don’t have to expect the frigid winters of Alaska or Canada. 

The climate near the coast and the seaside is slightly more temperate, but you still need warm clothes and probably a hat, a scarf, and sometimes a pair of gloves. 

Visiting Italy in winter discloses to you exceptional opportunities. For example, Italy has some of the best mountains in the world, and you can practice many winter sports like skiing, ice skating, snowboarding, mountaineering… or staying in a cozy lodge drinking hot chocolate!

Winter festivities in Italy

Christmas and New Year’s Eve

Furthermore, in December, almost every city sets up scenic lights across the roads. Christmas in Italy also brings picturesque street markets and public staging of nativity scenes. Italian nativity scenes are really famous all over the world; you can find them in a lot of places, especially in the southern regions. 

Like everyone else, Italian people love celebrating New Year’s Eve. You can choose between a private event with family and close friends or a great party outside, in public squares or clubs.


The last day of the holidays in Italy is Epiphany, on January 6. Epiphany’s particularly popular among children because of the “socks ritual”. Kids hang one or more colorful socks to the wall or let them in plain view; then they go to sleep. According to the tradition, during the night an old lady called Befana flies in the house riding her broom, and fills the children’s socks rummaging in her sack. The good kids receive candy, chocolate, snacks, coins and small toys; but the reward for the bad kids is black bitter coal! Although the Three Kings’ day official Italian name is Epifania, it’s widely known as Befana from the beloved old lady institution.

Winter words in Italian

Here some useful words to talk about Italian winter: 

la montagna

the mountain

la collina

the hill

la neve



the snow


to snow

il ghiaccio



the ice


to freeze

la nebbia


the fog


il freddo

the cold

le nuvole


the clouds


il Natale

the Christmas

il regalo

the present

il Presepe

the nativity scene

l’albero di Natale

the Christmas tree


the fir

Babbo Natale

Santa Claus

le decorazioni / gli addobbi

the decorations

le luminarie

the Christmas lights across the streets

la canzone

the song

la Befana (colloquial for Epifania)

the Epiphany / the Three Kings’ Day

i dolci

the sweets


New Year’s Eve

il brindisi

the toast

Buon anno!

Happy New Year!

i fuochi artificiali

the fireworks

la cioccolata calda

the hot chocolate

lo sci


the skiing

to ski

il pattinaggio sul ghiaccio

pattinare sul ghiaccio

the ice skating

to ice skate


the mountaineering

la slitta

the sled

la seggiovia

the chair lift

la sciarpa

the scarf

il cappello

the hat

il cappotto

the coat

i guanti

the gloves

il mercatino

the street market

Spring in Italy –  Primavera

Spring is one of the  great Seasons in Italian. During Springs you can go to visit gardens, go hiking, and enjoy nature in the countryside. In March, the weather could be still chilly, with rainy skies or sporadic snow on the peaks; to the contrary, in April and May, some people in the South already go to the seaside! That is to say, spring is quite a crazy season. We infact say ‘’marzo mese pazzo’’ which means ‘’March crazy month’’.

To say it in the Italian way, one useful springtime advice is “dressing like an onion”: wear several layers of light clothes and bring with you a raincoat, or an umbrella. 

Where to go in Italy in the Spring

Val D’Orcia in Tuscany, Amalfi Coast in Campania, the heart of Umbria, the Lake District around Como, the Dolomites: they are all stunning places to have magnificent strolls in the pleasant climate of Italian spring. You’ll find colorful flowers, plenty of vegetation, breathtaking sceneries. 

And if you love motorcycle’s holidays or mountain biking, late spring is probably the best season to experience the roads, admire vivid landscapes, and go for an adventure. 

Spring festivities in Italy


The most important Spring holiday is Pasqua, Easter. The old-style Easter dessert is the “chocolate egg”: during festivity times you can give those delicious eggs to friends and relatives. As expected, they are particularly loved by kids, mainly for the surprise inside: in fact, every chocolate egg contains a gift! For Italian people, Easter is truly meaningful, not only for spiritual reasons. Usually, during Easter Italian families meet for a long lunch spending quality time together in front of a great banquet.


But the celebrations don’t end in this way: the day after Easter brings another important party occasion. We’re talking about Pasquetta, literally “Little Easter”; this is an original Italian festivity and for the majority of citizens a day off from work. If Easter is often a family event, Pasquetta is devoted to friends: everyone organizes a barbecue, a picnic or a merenda; merenda is a very informal middle afternoon meal, with typical Italian products like ham, salami, cold cuts, cheese, sausages, focaccia bread, marinated vegetables etc. Remember: the best Pasquetta is open air!

Spring Vocabulary

Now, some useful spring vocabulary: 

il giardino

the garden

la campagna

the countryside

il cielo

the sky

la pioggia

the rain

la passeggiata


the stroll

to stroll


fare un’escursione

the hike

go hiking

il sentiero

the trail

il fiore


the flower

to bloom


the bee

il miele

the honey


the bird

verde (adj.)


il bocciolo / la gemma

the bud

il profumo

the scent

la vegetazione

the vegetation


the raincoat


the umbrella

la bicicletta

the bike

la motocicletta

the motorcycle

il panorama

the landscape

all’aperto (adv.)

open air / outdoors

bucolico (adj.)


la Pasqua

the Easter

la famiglia

the family

l’uovo di cioccolato

the chocolate egg

il banchetto

the banquet

la Pasquetta

“Little Easter”, the Monday after Easter

gli amici / l’amico / l’amica (fmn)

the friends / the friend

la scampagnata

a trip to the countryside

la grigliata

the barbecue

la merenda

the afternoon snack

il prosciutto

the ham

il salame

the salami

gli affettati

the cold cuts

il formaggio

the cheese

le verdure sott’olio

the marinated vegetables

Summer in Italy – Estate

Italian summers are the best! Everybody dreams about Italian summers and everyone has in mind clear images of sunny vacations in the Bel Paese, like delicious ice creams sitting on the iconic Vespa, a giant pizza in a folkloristic restaurant, or a plate of spaghetti  with some glimpse of Rome in the background. Surely, nothing to complain about those postcards, but Italian summer has a lot more to offer!

Above all, Italy has 7914 km of coasts and nearly all of them are open to bathing: you can find golden rough beaches, white refined sands, high rugged cliffs, shores of polished rocks. In addition to that, you can taste the sea in every possible manner: relaxing in a resort, dancing on the sand in an open-air club, exploring a wild bay after a rough hiking route, renting a boat to enjoy deep water diving, spending the day playing volleyball and drinking beer in a packed place.

Where to go for your Summer Holidays – Sea or Mountain?

Puglia and Sardegna are two of the best destinations in the world if you are a true sea lover, believe us! 

A great indicator of the aquatic cleanliness is the Bandiera Blu (Blue Flag): a beach that gains a Blue Flag stand out for lack of pollution and infrastructures’ sustainability. Not surprisingly, Italy has more than 400 Blue Flag beaches!

For mountain enthusiasts, summer is equally special: Alps and Apennines are perfect locations for hikers and fresh air lovers. Nothing more fulfilling than a rich typical meal and a glass of wine after a draining trail among incredible sceneries!

In conclusion, it could sound like an oddity, but Italian people preferably don’t visit their most famous cities (Rome, Florence, Milan, Venice) during summer; if they can choose, they select another period of the year. As a result, those places seem totally conquered by tourists in July and August. 

Summer words in Italian

Let’s see some useful summer words: 

la spiaggia

the beach

il mare

the sea

la sabbia

the sand

la duna

the dune

la costa

the coast

lo scoglio

the rock / the cliff


the wave

il tramonto

the sunset

il pesce

the fish

la medusa

the jellyfish

la conchiglia

the shell

lo stabilimento balneare

the beach resort

la barca

the boat

il traghetto

the ferry

il costume da bagno

the swimsuit


the towel

la maschera

the diving mask

le ciabatte

the slippers


the tan

la discoteca

the club

gli occhiali da sole

the sunglasses

i cruciverba

the crosswords

i sandali

the sandals

la birra

the beer

il vino

the wine

il tuffo

tuffarsi (reflexive form)

the diving

to dive


to rent


to swim

fare immersioni

to practice scuba diving

il beach volley

the beach volley

il calcio

the football

il bagnino

the lifeguard

il salvagente

the life vest

la corrente

the stream

il pedalò

the paddle boat

Fall in Italy – Autunno

Italian fall is gentle at the beginning and cold as winter in the end. Moreover, rainy and cloudy days are quite frequent, especially in the north, but not enough to ruin a beautiful holiday. In other words, Autumn is perfect to visit Italian cities, museums, and historical sites: the places aren’t stuffed of tourists like during summer and the weather is not so hot. Fall colors create a perfect match with ancient architectures and ruins, giving them a nostalgic and fascinating allure.

What to do in Italy in the Fall

In autumn you can use sunny days to walk around the streets, take photos and explore; when the rain is approaching, you have plenty of possibilities everywhere: museums, exhibitions, restaurants, café.

You can devote a day to culture, try some street food for lunch, and have a characteristic aperitivo before dinner. 

Aperitivo  is an Italian tradition: you can sit to a table with your friends, enjoy the view, and drink a tasty cocktail with plenty of appetizers and delicious snacks.

Florence, Rome, Milan, Venice, Naples, Palermo are widely known to be the maximum, but they’re not the only option: Italian medium-size cities and villages are equally wonderful.

Fall festivities in Italy 


The principal Autumn festivity is Ognissanti (1 of November): it’s effectively celebrated only in southern Italy, but in the rest of the Peninsula is only an appreciated day off at work. On the contrary, Halloween isn’t a traditional Italian festivity, although in recent years it has become popular among young people.

Food Festivals

In addition to that, the early fall calendar is full of little local events, often related to food and wine. On those occasions, the towns transform themselves in an open-air party, with long tables set across the streets, outside kitchens, home restaurants, musicians, juggling performances, etc. Those events usually revolve around typical gastronomic products: the mushroom festival, the chestnut festival, the boar meat festival, the tortello festival, etc.

Fall Vocabulary in Italian

And now, some fall vocabulary: 

la foglia

il fogliame

the leaf

the foliage

il fungo

the mushroom

la castagna

the chestnut

la carne

the meat

il cinghiale

the boar

il tortello

untranslatable: a particular type of stuffed pasta, slightly similar to dumplings

le tagliatelle

untranslatable: a particular type pasta

marrone (adj.)


giallo (adj.)


rosso (adj.)



the grapes

la vendemmia

the grape harvest

la ghianda

the acorn

il pranzo

the lunch

l’amaro (a digestive alcoholic drink)

the bitter


All Saints’ Day

la cena

the dinner


the aperitif


the event

la fiera

the fair

il museo

the museum

il quadro

the painting

la mostra

the exhibition

la piazza

the square

il bar

the café

il caffè

the coffee

il ristorante

the restaurant

il cibo da strada

the street food

la sagra

the village festival

il giocoliere

the juggler

il musicista

the musician

il tavolo

the table

gli stuzzichini

the snacks

la cultura

the culture


the architecture

By: Lucia Aiello

Lucia Aiello is one of the co-founders of LearnItalianGo. Born and raised in Italy, she is a passionate Italian teacher and language enthusiast.

Why to learn Italian Sayings?

Sometimes, when you are learning a language you find yourself remembering the weirdest things, for instance Italian sayings or swear words.

Have you ever asked yourselves why?! Because laughing improves your memory – according to a 2014 Loma University research.   So now that even a study approves it, let’s dive into some funny Italian sayings!

As you’ll see Italian sayings come from Italian history, customs and culture. That’s why many of them are food related – Italians favorite ones – and few are in Latin – Italian kept several well-known Latin expressions for day-to-day use.

Here is a list of 20 popular Italian sayings and Italian idioms which will help you enjoy learning the language while sounding like a native.

Render pan per focaccia.

Literal: to give back bread for focaccia. Idiomatic: an eye for an eye, tit for tat.

This is the first ancient Italian saying of the list. As a matter of fact you can find it in Decameron by Boccaccio, from 1300. Since focaccia is a more elaborate type of bread, if you are giving back bread instead of focaccia, your intent is to make the other pay for an offense or a wrongdoing.

For example:
Ti rendo pan per focaccia An eye for an eye, for you!

Avere le mani di pastafrolla.

Literal: to have pastry dough hands. Idiomatic: to be a butterfingers.

Because pastry dough is easy to crumble and break, this Italian Idiom is for someone who is clumsy and unable to hold something without dropping it or breaking it.

For example:
Hai le mani di pastafrolla You are butterfingers!

Take your Italian to the next level with private lessons from Lucia at Learn Italian Go.

Start Learning Today

In vino veritas.

Literal: in wine there is truth. Idiomatic: wine makes people tell the truth.

The first saying in Latin is of course about wine and truth. Thus, its meaning is when you drink some wine and you’re drunk or tipsy, you’ll easily spiel the truth! This is a clear evidence, in fact, that wine has been a fundamental part of society since Romans times.

Che pizza!

Literal: what a pizza! Idiomatic: what a bore!

For Italians, pizza is a comfort staple food which is no news to them and therefore can be considered as very boring. Hence, use it to express boredom or annoyance.

Essere come il prezzemolo.

Literal: to be like parsley. Idiomatic: to turn up everywhere.

If you want to let somebody know they pop up everywhere or are in the way, then this Italian Saying is what you’re looking for! In fact, parsley is a really common ingredient in many Italian dishes and so it can be found almost everywhere…

For example:
Gaia e Marco sono come il prezzemolo! Li incontro ovunque

Gaia and Marco turn up everywhere!

Avere la faccia da pesce lesso.

Literal: to have a face of a boiled fish. Idiomatic: to have a slack-jaw.

As said, Italian sayings often use food expressions, in this case a simple boiled fish. So, if someone has a face of a boiled fish then means they look inexpressive, uninterested and uninteresting.

For example:
Mentre parlavo, avevano tutti la faccia da pesce lesso.

While I was talking, everyone had slack-jaw.


Literal: cabbage. Idiomatic: heck! Bugger!

A less aggressive way of saying “hell” or similar, it’s to use just a vegetable name! To clarify, cavolo is a cheap, not very appreciated produce and sounds almost like an Italian curse word. And there you go…Cavolo!

For example:
Che cavolo vuoi?

What the hell do you want?

Avere sale in zucca.

Literal: to have salt in your pumpkin. Idiomatic: Have your head screwed on.

In Italian slang, zucca also means head. Moreover, if you are aware of sprinkling salt on pumpkins to balance their sweetness then you’re clever, at least according to Italian belief.

For example:
Dovete avere sale in zucca per avere successo

You must have your head screwed on in order to be successful

Essere buono come il pane.

Literal: to be good like bread. Idiomatic: to be a good egg, a good person.

This Italian Saying refers to someone good, nice, a person with a good heart. Bread has always had value in Italian diet and culture so much that it is considered the best food to be compared to – for an Italian, bread is always a good choice.

For example:
Il tuo cane è proprio  buono come il pane,  beato te!

Your dog is really a good person, lucky you!

Avere il prosciutto sugli occhi.

Literal: to have prosciutto over your eyes. Idiomatic: to have your head in the sand.

It’s clearly a figure of speech which means not to get the point or not to see what’s going on. In addition, it can also mean a voluntary state of distraction. Even this saying comes from old time, from the ‘800, and from regions famous for prosciutto production.

For example:
La maestra non ha visto nulla. Aveva il prosciutto sugli occhi!

The teacher didn’t see anything. She had her head in the sand.

A buon intenditor, poche parole.

Literal: few words to the wise. Idiomatic: a word to the wise.

This Italian Saying is very common and indicates there’s no need for many words to understand something, when someone is wise and intuitive. As many of these Italian sayings, this has an ancient origin as well: it actually comes from a Latin comedy by Plauto. To know more about the author, please click this link

For example:
Hai capito? A buon intenditor, poche parole…

Did you understand? Word to the wise…

Chi dorme non piglia pesci.

Literal: who sleeps doesn’t catch fishes. Idiomatic: you snooze, you lose.

You’ll say this to lazy people who sleep till late, and so cannot do anything all day like a fisherman asleep cannot catch any fish.

For example:

Mamma: “Svegliati!”

Figlio: “Voglio dormire ancora!”

Mamma: “Chi dorme, non piglia pesci! Alzati!”

Mum: “Wake up!”

Son: “I wanna sleep more!”

Mum: “You snooze, you lose! Get up!”

Il lupo perde il pelo, ma non il vizio.

Literal: the wolf loses the fur but not the vice. Idiomatic: old habits die hard.

Originally, the protagonist of this Italian saying, from a Latin Suetonius’ story, was an actual fox, and it was referring to Roman Emperor Vespasiano, known for bad-temper and determined to reach his own goals at any cost. It means that it is very hard to eradicate old and bad habits, already part of our nature as it’s hard for the wolf to change.

For example:

Carlo è sempre il solito. È proprio vero che il lupo perde il pelo, ma non il vizio.

Carlo is always the same. It is true that old habits die hard.

 Prendere due piccioni con una fava.

Literal: take two pigeons with one fava bean. Idiomatic: kill two birds with one stone.

Like the English version, this saying means to achieve two goals with only one effort, and it’s used in the same sense. However, the difference is that in the Italian version instead of birds you have the more common pigeons, and instead of killing them, you just catch them – it was custom to catch wild pigeons with a big fava bean bait to have them for dinner.

Quando il gatto non c’è, i topi ballano.

Literal: when the cat isn’t there, the mice dance. Idiomatic: when the cat’s away, the mice will play.

Some Italian sayings include cats impersonating human beings’ traits. This one refers to the absence of a figure of vigilance or control that allows someone to feel relieved and do what they want. But “the cat” sooner or later will return and there will be bitter consequences to face.

For example:

Giulia: “Stasera festa a casa mia! Mia madre è via per il fine settimana.”

Lucia: “Quando il gatto non c’è, i topi ballano, eh?!”

Giulia: “Tonight party at my house! My mother is away for the weekend.”

Lucia: “When the cat’s away, the mice will play, eh?!”

La mamma dei cretini è sempre incinta.

Literal: the mother of idiots is always pregnant. Idiomatic: there’s one born every minute.

In this expression there is all of Italian popular wisdom. The meaning of this Italian saying is, simply, that you will always end up meeting idiots, no matter where you go…because their mother is always pregnant, according to Italians.

You can turn to a friend and use it when you meet someone foolish or who does silly things.

Non si può avere la botte piena e la moglie ubriaca.

Literal: you can’t have a full cask and a drunk wife. Idiomatic: you can’t have your cake and eat it too.

You will hear this one very often in Italy. It describes a situation where you have to choose between two opportunities which are both appealing, but each one has its own pros and cons. And in the end, even if you want it all, you can have only one of the two.

For example:

Rodrigo: “Ho ricevuto due offerte di lavoro: una noiosa ma con un ottimo stipendio e l’altra con uno stipendio basso ma molto più interessante. Le vorrei entrambe! Che faccio?”

Stefano: “Non puoi avere la botte piena e la moglie ubriaca! Scegli.”

Rodrigo: “ I’ve received two job offers: the first is quite boring but with a great salary, and the other with a low salary but far more interesting. I would like to have both! What do I do?”

Stefano: “You can’t have your cake and eat it too. Pick one.”

Acqua in bocca.

Literal: (keep the) water in your mouth. Idiomatic: keep that to yourself.

Be very careful about gossiping and revealing your sources! When you talk about something sensitive, make sure your conversation-partner won’t blow your cover. Acqua in bocca is a very common Italian saying that Italians usually use to warn you that what they’re saying is for your ears only!

For example:

È un segreto, acqua in bocca!

It’s a secret, keep it to yourself!

Pietro torna indietro.

Literal: its name is Pietro and it has to come back. Idiomatic: its name is Jack and it has to come back.

The meaning is pretty straightforward: return this thing to me when you’re done. This expression is usually used when you lend something of yours to someone else and you remember them to give it back.

For example:

Luca: Mi presti il tuo libro su Michelangelo, per favore?

Carlo: Certo! Ma ricordati che c’è scritto Pietro torna indietro!

Luca: Can you lend me your book on Michelangelo, please?

Carlo: Of course! But remember that it’s name is Jack and it has to come back.

Essere alla frutta.

Literal: to be at the fruit course. Idiomatic: be at the bottom of the barrel/hit rock-bottom.

As you can imagine, this Italian saying refers to the habit of ending meals with a fruit course – meaning that you’ve finished your dinner or lunch. That’s why it commonly expresses a stage where a person has exhausted all energies and resources.

For example:

Non mi ricordo più nulla. Devo essere alla frutta.

I don’t remember anything anymore. I must be at the bottom of the barrel.

Do ut des.

Literal: I give so you give. Idiomatic: qui pro quo (a favore for a favor).

This last idiom in Latin is a peculiar one because English adopted a different one, also in Latin, qui pro quo – which actually means something instead of something else, a misunderstanding – to express what do ut des does.

Since ancient times, Italian society has been based on helping one another, doing favor for one another. Therefore it’s custom if I do a favor for you today, that tomorrow you’ll do a favor for me.

For example:

Con un do ut des a volte si possono ottenere cose inaspettate.

With a qui pro quo sometimes you can obtain unexpected things.


This list ends here but Italian sayings do not. As a matter of fact there are tons of them related to family, friends, animals, love and of course more food and Latin words. It is just a start to get you more familiar with Italian idioms and expressions and to have fun mastering the language.

And remember Italians really like to play with words and proverbs because with just a few words you can express a whole concept, idea or feeling. So they are a must!

Enjoy and have fun with them!

In bocca al lupo (Good luck)!

By: Lucia Aiello

Lucia Aiello is one of the co-founders of LearnItalianGo. Born and raised in Italy, she is a passionate Italian teacher and language enthusiast.

Beautiful in Italian – How do I say it?

Being Italy a country rich in beauty and culture, many things can be described as beautiful… But how do I say Beautiful in Italian?

In this article, we’ll see how you can say it in various way… Let’s see them!

The most common word to say beautiful in Italian is “bello”.

Bello is one of the most used adjectives to say beautiful in Italian. 

It describes people, animals and things that you consider pleasant to the eye, more than pretty or nice, very enjoyable and it translates directly with beautiful.

Here you will not only learn how to use the adjective bello, but  also many ways to say beautiful in Italian, that will bring your vocabulary to the next level and step up your game!

Ways to say beautiful in Italian

  • bello (bellissimo, molto bello)
  • attraente 
  • affascinante
  • delizioso
  • incantevole 
  • stupendo
  • fantastico
  • magnifico
  • splendido
  • straordinario
  • favoloso
  • incredibile
  • carino
  • un capolavoro
  • uno spettacolo
  • spettacolare 

Now that you have a list of the most common adjectives to say beautiful in Italian, let’s see how to use them correctly.


First of all, bello is is the most common way to say beautiful in Italian. It is an adjective: this means that it changes depending on the number(singular or plural) and gender(masculine or feminine) of the noun it refers to.

Take a look at this table:

  Singular Plural
Masculine Bello/ bel /bell’ Bei/ begli/belli
Feminine Bella/bell’ Belle

Contrary to English, in Italian adjectives usually come after the noun.

  • un ragazzo bello
  • una donna bella
  • i bambini belli
  • le persone belle

Starting with the basis, we have bello, which is singular and masculine.

For example:
Un ragazzo belloa beautiful boy
Sei proprio bello! – you are very handsome!

It may be used as a greeting between friends or family:

Ciao bello! – Hi handsome! or Hi bro!

Bello after a noun

Usually, in Italian, the adjective comes after the noun it refers to.

However, In the case of bello, it can come before or after a noun.

If placed before, depending on the noun, it slightly changes, to best accommodate the pronunciation and the sound of the phrase. It follows the same rule we use with definite articles, like so:


You use bello in front of a noun that starts with s + consonant, z, y, ps, pn, x or gn.
For example:
bello scenario – beautiful scenery


Bello becomes bel (singular masculine)
For example:
bel ragazzo, bel cane – a beautiful boy, a beautiful dog


Bell’ is used in front of a singular noun starting with a vowel, whether it is masculine or feminine.
For example:
bell’artista – a beautiful artist


Bella is used with feminine singular nouns or as an informal way of greeting between female friends:

For example:
Una ragazza bella – a beautiful girl
Ciao bella! – Hi beautiful!


When placed in front of a noun, it stays the same, except in front of words starting with a vowel, where it drops the final “a”:

For example:
Che bella giornata – what a beautiful day
Una bell’isola – a beautiful island


It generally accompanies masculine plural nouns. It can be heard amongst youngsters as a form of greeting, similar to “bros”:

For example:
dei ragazzi belli – some beautiful boys
Ehi belli! – Hi there bros!


Before a noun it changes, following the definite articles rule, becoming:

Begli in front of a noun that starts with s + consonant, z, y, ps, pn, x or gn.
For example:
begli scenari – beautiful sceneries


Bei (plural masculine) in all the other cases.
For example:
bei ragazzi, bei cani – some beautiful boys, some beautiful dogs


This is the feminine plural form of “bello”, it doesn’t change when placed in front of the noun it refers to:

For example:
Delle ragazze belle – some beautiful girls
Delle belle amiche – some beautiful friends

Più bello

Moving on, bello can be modified according to the degree of intensity: we saw its basic form, now we will deal with the comparative and superlative.

When comparing two things, situations or persons, and, in particular with the adjective, in Italian we use the formula:

X è più bello di Y”, which literally translates into “X is more beautiful than Y”.

So, just by adding the particle “più”, you can build a comparative phrase. As you can see, this process works with all the normal adjectives, so keep it in mind, it could come in handy in other occasions!

Bellissimo and Molto bello

  Singular Plural
Masculine Bellissimo Bellissimi
Feminine Bellissima Bellissime

Next, we can say very beautiful in Italian with the the superlative form of bello which is bellissimo: to construct the absolute superlative, you just need to add the suffix –issimo and you’re done! It translated into “very/extremely beautiful” in English. Of course, don’t forget that, being an adjective, it still needs to be adjusted to the noun that it accompanies:

È una canzone bellissima!
It’s a beautiful song 

However, similar to bellissimo, we have molto bello, which expresses the same meaning by adding the adverb molto (very) in front of the adjective. Bear in mind that this formula must always follow the noun it refers to, contrary to what we said before about the use of bello and bellissimo.

For example:
Oggi è una giornata molto bella.
Oggi è una bella giornata.

These phrases both translate as “Today it is a beautiful day”, but, please, take note of the position of the adjective: can you see the difference? While bello can go either before or after the noun, molto bello can only follow it!

More ways to say Beautiful in Italian

As anticipated before, now we will see more ways to say beautiful in Italian. Remember that all these synonyms might have slightly different meanings and nuances between them, but they are generally used as substitutes of bello in different contexts.


This usually refers to a person, meaning that he or she is not only aesthetically pleasing, but has to them a sensual allure. As a matter of fact, often you could hear the phrase:

è molto bello, ma non è per niente attraente” – he/she is beautiful but not at all attractive

meaning that their beauty is somehow cold and distant.


It is similar to attraente, so it used to describe a good-looking person that also possesses quite the charm, a charismatic character.

For example:
Trovava il mago alquanto affascinante. – She thought the magician quite charming.

However,  other adjectives that are frequently used to describe people (but also situations, things and places) are: delizioso, incantevole, meraviglioso and stupendo.

Delizioso and incantevole

They both denote a certain elegance and awe towards the addressee; they are usually referred to girls or women, their attire and appearance. Even an event or a situation can be described using these adjectives. Delizioso is often used referring to food.

For example:
Wow, quel vestito è delizioso su di te! – Wow, that dress looks stunning on you!
Che serata incantevole! – What a lovely night!
Questo dolce è delizioso! – This dessert is delicious!


I can’t help but sing this song in my head when I hear the word stupendo:

It is translated as gorgeous, wonderful, stupendous, marvelous, splendid.

For example:
Grazie per lo stupendo regalo! – Thank you so much for the wonderful gift!

Fantastico, magnifico, splendido and straordinario

These are often used in advertisement and TV language, to emphasize the products or concepts advertised even more. However, employed with the same hyperbolic function we have fantastico, magnifico, splendido and straordinario.
Here you will find some examples, to better understand how to use these adjectives:

In uscita il fantastico nuovo film di Gabriele Muccino. – Coming soon the new breathtaking movie by Gabriele Muccino.
La vista da quassù è meravigliosa. – The view from here is wonderful.
Visitate la magnifica Costiera Amalfitana! – Come visit the beautiful Amalfi Coast!
Non lasciatevi sfuggire questa offerta straordinaria! – Don’t miss out on this extraordinary offer!


This adjective comes from the word “favola”, which directly translates into “fairy-tale”, so when you refer to someone or something as favoloso, you’re actually saying that they are fabulous!

For example:
Adoro il tuo nuovo taglio di capelli, è favoloso! – I love your new haircut, it’s fabulous!


Similar to favoloso, there’s incredibile, which literally means “unbelievable”. In the context of beauty, it is used to say that something or someone it’s unbelievably, incredibly beautiful, gorgeous or amazing.

For example:
Lo spettacolo è stato incredibile! – The show was awesome!
Laura è incredibile! – Laura is amazing!


Carino is another term frequently used to indicate that something or someone is cute or nice, with a lesser degree of beauty compared to bello. However,  it can also signify that someone is being kind to you or displaying some polite and gentle manners, which in Italian can be called “carinerie”.

For example:
A: Ti piace Marco? – Do you fancy Marco?
B: È carino, ma non è il mio tipo. – He is cute, but he’s not my type.

A: Che  cane carino! – What a cute dog!
B: Si chiama Dug ed è un carlino. – It’s Dug and it’s a pug

Un capolavoro

You may find this expression referred to a piece of art, in general. It directly translates with “a masterpiece” and it is used with the same meaning, so when something, or someone, is just perfect and outstanding, it is a capolavoro!

For example:
Quel dipinto è un capolavoro! – That painting is a masterpiece!
Sei un capolavoro! – You are beautiful/handsome!

Uno spettacolo or spettacolare

If someone or something is very beautiful you can refer to it as uno spettacolo (”a show”), or describe it as spettacolare (spectacular).  

For example:
Roma è spettacolare! – Rome is spectacular!
Con quel vestito sei uno spettacolo! – You look spectacular with that dress on!


As you can see, I used different variations of the word beautiful, according to the context. With time and practice, you will learn which adjective works best with which nouns, paying attention to the nuances that each one of them beholds.

You just leaned all valid alternatives to the word beautiful in Italian. I know, there is a lot to memorize, but little by little it will come natural and easier to use them. Practice makes perfect, so go out there and start making nice compliments to Italians!

By: Lucia Aiello

Lucia Aiello is one of the co-founders of LearnItalianGo. Born and raised in Italy, she is a passionate Italian teacher and language enthusiast.

Talking about weather in Italian

As you probably know, Italians love having long chats with friends or even with people they meet on the streets. Talking about the weather in Italian, or il tempo,  can be a good idea to break the ice when you are going to start a conversation with an Italian person, or just to avoid embarrassing silence. 

Sure enough if you are at the bus stop, or waiting in line, or in the elevator it would be very common to say something like:

Fa caldo oggi, eh?  – It’s hot today, isn’t it?
Come piove! – It’s raining a lot!

Before going to check the vocabulary and the main expressions to refer to Italian weather, it is interesting to say something about the weather in Italy.

Weather in Italy

Generally, Italian weather is mild in spring and autumn, cold in winter and warm in summer.

However, the climatic conditions can vary from North to South Italy: in most mountain areas of North and South-Central Italy, winters can be cold or even freezing while summers are cool and breezy.

On the contrary, in coast areas, winters are mild, sometimes rainy and windy whereas summers are hot and sweltering.

The hottest Italian cities are usually Bologna, Florence, Milan, Naples, Palermo and Rome, while the coldest cities are Aosta, Bolzano, L’Aquila, Torino and Trento.

Now that you know more about the weather situation in Italy, let’s go to see the different ways to talk about the weather in Italian.

Asking for information about the weather in Italian

The most used expressions to ask for information about weather in Italian are:

Quali sono le previsioni del tempo per oggi / domani / questa settimana?
What’s the weather forecast for today / tomorrow / this week?

Com’è il tempo?
How’s the weather?

Che tempo fa?
What’s the weather like?

Che tempo fa fuori?
What is it like outside?

As you can see, in the last two questions there’s the Italian irregular verb fare (to do) whereas in English we use to be.

Giving information about weather in Italian

In this paragraph, you will learn four options to answer to the question che tempo fa?

Please note that Italians usually use sentences built with the verb fare much more than the other solutions.

Weather in Italian – Fare + adjective 

Stamattina fa davvero caldo!
This morning it’s really hot!

Ieri ha fatto molto freddo.
Yesterday it was very cold.

Mi sa che farà cattivo tempo domani.
I think tomorrow’s weather is bad.

Se piovesse, farebbe più fresco.
If it rained, it would be cooler.

Weather in Italian – Essere + adjective

Oggi è soleggiato, per fortuna!
Fortunately, today it is sunny!

In Italia lo scorso inverno è stato davvero piovoso!
In Italy the last winter was really rainy!

Mi auguro non sarà nuvoloso in montagna come l’ultima volta.
I hope it won’t be cloudy in the mountains as it was last time.

Se non fosse così afoso, andrei a fare una corsetta.
If it wasn’t so muggy, I would go for a jog.

Weather in Italian – c’è / ci sono + noun

Ci sono molte nuvole in cielo oggi!
There are a lot of clouds in the sky today!

Potremmo andare a fare una passeggiata. C’è bel tempo oggi!
We might go out for a walk. It’s nice weather today!

C’era un vento forte quando siamo tornati a casa!
There was a gale while we were coming back home!

Se ci sarà la nebbia, temo sarà piuttosto difficile ritornare alla baita.
If there is fog, I fear that it will be pretty hard to come back to the cottage.

Weather in Italian – “weather verbs”

Sta piovendo da ieri mattina!
It has been raining since yesterday morning!

Ieri ha grandinato mentre invece oggi fa caldo… che tempo strano!
Yesterday it hailed. Today it’s warm… what weird weather!

Credo proprio che nevicherà.
I really think it will snow.

Troppo rischioso uscire in questo momento! Potrebbe diluviare da un momento all’altro.
It’s too risky to go out at this moment. It might pour at any moment.

Describing nice weather in Italian

Nice Weather in Italian

Here are some expressions which can help you to describe a nice and sunny day:

English Italian
It’s chilly / cool Fa fresco.
It’s  clear È sereno.
It’s drizzling Pioviggina.
It’s dry È secco.
It’s good / nice weather C’è bel tempo.
It’s sleeting Nevischia.
It’s sunny È soleggiato. / C’è il sole.
It’s warm Fa caldo.

Describing bad weather in Italian

Bad weather in italian

There are now those expressions you need when you want to describe an awful and rainy day:

English Italian
It’s awful / terrible weather Fa un tempo orribile.
It’s bad / miserable Fa cattivo tempo.
It’s clammy / close / muggy C’è afa. / è afoso.
It’s cloudy È nuvoloso.
It’s cold Fa freddo.
It’s foggy / misty C’è (la) nebbia.
It’s gloomy È uggioso.
It’s hot Fa caldissimo.
It’s humid È umido.
It’s icy / frosty Fa freddissimo. / Si gela. / C’è il gelo.
It’s rainy È piovoso.
It’s stormy È burrascoso / tempestoso.
It’s ugly (weather) È brutto (tempo)
It’s windy È ventoso. / C’è il vento.

Weather verbs in Italian

Here are the most common verbs to discuss weather in Italian:

Italian English
congelare / gelare to freeze
diluviare to pour
grandinare to hail
nevicare to snow
nevischiare to sleet
piovere to rain
piovigginare to drizzle
schiarirsi to clear up
tuonare to thunder

Vocabulary for the weather in Italian

Here below we have a list of Italian words you can hear when checking the weather forecast on TV:

Italian English
Acquazzone Cloudburst
Afa Mugginess
Arcobaleno Rainbow
Brezza Breeze
Brina Frost
Chicco di grandine Hailstone
Diluvio Downpour
Disgelo Thaw
Fanghiglia Slush / Mud
Fiocco di neve Snowflake
Folata di vento Gust of wind
Foschia Haze
Fronte freddo Cold front
Fulmine Lighting / bolt
Ghiaccio Ice
Grandinata Hailstorm
Grandine Hail
Nebbia Fog
Neve Snow
Nevicata Snow shower

weather in Italian

And even more vocabulary…

Italian English
Nevischio Sleet
Nube temporalesca Thundercloud
Nuvola Cloud
Ondata di caldo Heatwave
Ondata di freddo Cold snap
Pioggia Rain
Rovescio Downpour / Shower
Rovesci sparsi Scattered showers
Rugiada Dew
Sole Sun
Tempesta Storm
Temporale Thunderstorm
Terremoto Earthquake
Tormenta Blizzard /Snow storm
Tornado Tornado
Tromba d’aria Whirlwind / Windstorm
Tuono Thunder / Thunderclap
Uragano Hurricane
Vento Wind
Vento forte Gale

Idioms related to the weather in Italian

Do you know Italians use a lot of idioms related to the weather when they talk to each other? Are you curious to find out which ones are the most popular? Let’s see them together!




Speriamo che il tempo tenga.

Let’s hope the weather holds out.

Used when you really hope it won’t rain suddenly.

Piove sempre sul bagnato.

When it rains, it pours.

Used when you want to say that good things keep happening to lucky people while bad things to unlucky people.

Il maltempo ci perseguita.

The bad weather is still with us.

Ironically used during a rainy day where


it seems that bad weather is following you wherever you are going.

Vedere le stelle

To see the stars

Used when you experience a huge physical pain after getting hurt with something.

  • Piove a catinelle.

  • Piove a dirotto.

  • Piove che Dio la manda!

  • Sta piovendo a secchiate!

  • It’s raining like from the basins. / It’s raining cats and dogs.

  • It’s raining excessively.

  • It’s raining (as if) God sends!

  • It’s raining buckets!

These four expressions are mainly used in informal contexts when you want to describe a strong and heavy rain.

  • Essere al settimo cielo.

  • Toccare il cielo con un dito.

  • To be over the moon.

  • To touch the sky with a finger.

Funny expressions used when you state to be extremely happy!

Cielo a pecorelle, pioggia a catinelle.

Mackerel sky, not twenty-four hours dry.

According to this famous Italian idiom, conventionally translated with an old and obsolete English saying, if there is a sky with clouds in the shape of little sheep, probably it will rain a lot.

Non ci piove!

There’s no doubt about it!

Used when you have no doubt about something, when you know something for sure.

  • Si muore dal caldo qui dentro!

  • C’è un sole che spacca le pietre!

  • Fa un caldo da morire!

  • It’s way too hot in here!

  • The sun is splitting the rocks! / The sunshine is hot enough to fry eggs!

  • It’s deadly hot!

These three common idioms are used when you want to express frustration and discomfort caused by excessive heat.

Avere la luna storta.

To be in a bad mood.

Used when you are nervous and you get easily angry.

  • Fa un freddo cane!

  • Si muore dal freddo!

  • It’s cold as hell!

  • It’s deadly cold!

These two expressions are used when you say that it is extremely cold out. The reference to the dog in the first idiom is unclear: probably it recalls the image of a dog shivering due to the cold.

Avere la pelle d’oca.

To get goose bumps.

Used when you have shivers due to the cold and your skin looks like that of a goose.

Come un fulmine a ciel sereno!

Like a bolt from the blue.

Used when it happens something unexpected and almost negative.

Avere un colpo di fulmine.

Love at first sight!

Used to say that you fell in love with someone at first sight.

Celsius vs Fahrenheit

Celsius Farenheit

Probably you already know that Italy – as most of the countries in the world! – uses the Celsius scale to measure the temperature. On the contrary, the USA and few other countries opted for the Fahrenheit scale.

To convert Fahrenheit to Celsius, subtract 32 and divide by 1.8.

Example of conversion: 86 degrees Fahrenheit = 30 degrees Celsius.

In addition, I suggest you revise Italian numbers.

Here are some examples which can help you ask for the temperature:

Quanti gradi ci sono oggi?
What’s the temperature today? / How many degrees are there today?

La temperatura è di 30 gradi (Celsius / centigradi). / Ci sono 30 gradi.
The temperature is 30 degrees. / There are 30 degrees.

Please note that the use of the terms Celsius or centigradi (singular: centigrado) is optional when replying.

How and where Italians check the weather forecast

Italians usually search for information about the weather on the main channels of Italian television (for example: Rai 1, Canale 5, Italia1) or on their own mobile phone.

In addition, if you want to have some information about Italian weather on your own mobile phone, you can look at these 5 websites:


Sunny, rainy, hot, cold… check the weather and plan your next trip to Italy!

Finally, you can give information about the weather in Italy, use the right words to ask and answer questions about Italian weather, use typical Italian idioms related to the weather in informal contexts, convert Fahrenheit to Celsius and vice versa.  Also, you will be able to consult Italian websites where to find the daily weather report.

What else? Now you are ready to start a small talk about weather in Italian!

By: Alfonso Di Somma

Born and raised in Italy, he is an Italian professional translator and a tireless traveler. His main passion? Foreign languages!