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.

Learn Italian watching Italian TV Shows 

If you are learning Italian and you want to get familiar with the Italian language, start watching Italian TV shows!

Who doesn’t enjoy relaxing in front of the TV and watching something entertaining? It may seem like a lazy thing to do, but what if you switch to an Italian TV Show? Now you are adding an exercise for your brain! In fact, one of the easiest ways to be immersed in the Italian language and culture is by watching an Italian TV Shows!

By trying to understand the dialogues, recalling what specific words mean, learning words by the context, and hearing new and everyday expressions you can build up your vocabulary and acquire a sense of the language.

But where can you watch Italian TV Shows? In this article, I am going to tell you exactly where and what to watch.

Where can I watch Italian TV shows?

Even though you won’t get access to all of the Italian TV Shows, Netflix or Amazon Prime Video still offer a lot of Italian series and movies here in the US. In addition you can use subtitles in both English and Italian, which can help if you are learning Italian.

If you are looking for TV Shows Italians watch nationwide, the main tv broadcasting companies in Italy are Rai and Mediaset, who offer live or on demand content for free on RaiPlay and on MediasetPlay.

You’d also be surprised to know how many Italian TV Shows are available in full or partially on Youtube.

If you really are into Italian television and TV Shows you may be interested in getting a trusted vpn to get access to every content Italians watch.

What Italian TV Shows can I watch?

Italian TV shows

Here below I made a list of 30 Italian TV Shows you can watch right now. I included TV series, documentaries, talk shows, cooking shows, reality shows, game shows, sitcoms and even a soap opera!

Let’s discover them together.

Italian TV series

Thanks to the fact that there are many episodes and a story to follow, Italian TV series are a good way to encourage a person to learn Italian. Here below I’ve listed some for you.

1. La Fuoriclasse

La Fuoriclasse is an Italian TV Shows about the life of a teacher of Literature and Latin in an Italian High School in Turin. The Show links together teachers’ and students’ lives.

Watch it here on Rai Play.

2. Detective De Luca

Il Commissario De Luca takes place in Bologna in between 1938 and 1948 and it’s one of the best Italian TV Shows of the period. It is an exciting detective story that sees a faithful historical reconstruction of Italy of that time.

You can watch it on Amazon Prime here.

3. Curon

The Italian TV Show Curon is a supernatural drama that sees two teenage twins, Daria and Mauro, discovering some mysterious family secrets. It takes place in the beautiful landscape of Curon, a town in the Italian region Trentino Alto Adige, known for its submerged bell tower.

Watch it on Netflix.

4. Romanzo criminale

Another Italian TV Show worth to see is Criminal Novel, based on real crimes of the banda della Magliana, a criminal organization active in Rome in the Seventies.

Watch it on Prime video

5. Genitori vs figli

Parents versus children is an IItalian TV Show about the relationship between parents and their children.

You can watch it on Rai Play.

6. Ordinary Heroes

The original title in Italian is “Liberi Sognatori” which means “Free Dreamers”, but it was translated into “Ordinary Heroes”.

This Italian TV Show is a documentary on the true stories of three Italian citizens who stand up for their rights:

Libero Grassi, an Italian businessman passed into Italian history, because he announced publicly in newspapers and tv that he wasn’t willing to pay the pizzo (protection money) to the mafia.

Mario Francese, the first Italian journalist to expose the Italian mobster Toto Riina.

Renata Fonte, the first Italian woman to become a culture assessor, whose murder was probably ordered by Antonio Spagnolo who took her place afterwards.

You can watch the three 90 minutes episodes of this fantastic Italian TV Show on Netflix.

7. Suburra: Blood on Rome

Suburra is an Italian TV Show based on the Mafia Capitale investigation. The series takes place in Rome and it shows the rotten part of Italian society, the corruption and the relationship between organized crime, the church and politicians. It is a prequel of the homonym Italian movie Suburra. The name comes from the ancient lower class area of Rome that was notorious as a pleasure district.

As you can get from the title it can get wild and violent.

You can watch the 2 seasons and 18 episodes on Netflix.

8. The Trial

The trial or Il processo is an Italian TV Show in which a public prosecutor and a criminal lawyer clash in court to shed light on a homicide.

The language is slightly more formal since the series takes place mostly in a courthouse.

You can enjoy the 8 episodes of the first season on Netflix.

9. Baby

Baby is an Italian TV Show loosely based on the baby squillo scandal, that is an underage prostitution ring in Rome. A “squillo” is infact a prostitute.

The main characters are Chiara and Ludovica, two students of a private school for rich people in the wealthy Parioli district of Rome. The two girls start to work as escorts for money and to escape the boredness of their lives.

You can watch the 2 seasons of the Italian Show Baby on Netflix.

10. Summertime

The Italian tv serie Summertime takes place in Cesenatico during the Summer, as you may have foresaw from the title. Summer is also the main character’s name. She actually hates Summer and, instead of having fun like all her friends do, decides to work in a hotel where she meets Ale. That’s the beginning of a modern love story.

You can watch the 8 episodes on Netflix and IMDb Tv.

11. Luna nera

Luna Nera, Black Moon in English, is an historical and fantasy Italian TV show that takes place in 17th century Italy when witches used to be hunted and persecuted. The Italian show rotates around a group of women accused of witchery.

Watch the six episodes on Netflix or IMDb Tv.

12. My brilliant friend

L’amica geniale is a very successful Italian TV show based on the novels of the Italian writer Elena Ferrante:  the story focuses on the special friendship between two young girls in 1950s Naples. At that time the regional Italian languages were still much more used than Italian, therefore you will hear some Neapolitan.

You can find the 2 seasons of 8 episodes each on HBO , Prime Video or RaiPlay.

13. Un medico in famiglia

Un medico in famiglia (A doctor in the family) is an Italian TV series started in 1998 and still ongoing! It rotates on the everyday life of the Martini family, composed by Lele, a widow doctor, his three children, nonno Libero and Cettina, the nanny.

Watch it here on RaiPlay.

14. Come diventare popolari a scuola

How to become popular at school it’s an Italian TV series in 10 episodes about a teenager, Umberto Mieli, who wants to be noticed in school using all kinds of strategies, rarely successful.

You can watch it on RayPlay here.

Soap operas in Italian

Soap operas appear to be one of the best Italian TV Shows to learn a language, since they present more or less the same people, situations and talk with more emphasis. The best Italian Soap opera that you cannot miss is: 

15. Un posto al sole

It’s one of the most popular Italian style soap operas broadcasting almost everyday since 1996.

You can find more than 5600 episodes of it! Impossible to catch up, but you can start watching some episodes on RayPlay.

Sitcoms in Italian

Unlike series, sitcoms are shorter and make humor about everyday situations. For this reason, it is necessary to have a good understanding of the Italian language to get some jokes. But, you can always test yourself and see how much you can get with the following sitcoms.

16. Love Bugs

Love Bugs is an Italian sitcom made of short funny sketches about the everyday life of an Italian couple. There are three seasons on Youtube; the episodes are non sequential so you can always look for more by typing Love Bugs 1, 2 or 3 on Youtube.

In the second season you will find the Italian actress and showgirl Elisabetta Canalis as the main feminine role.

17. Camera Cafè

Camera Cafè is an Italian sitcom that takes place in front of a coffee machine in the relaxation room of an office. The humor of the Show is mainly based on misunderstandings between the main characters Luca Bizzarri and Paolo Bitta and the other colleagues.

You can watch it on Youtube and IMDb Tv.

Documentaries in Italian

In general, documentaries are known as an educational tool, so even better if you watch them in Italian! Here, I listed some documentaries on different topics. 

18. Storia delle nostre città

Story of our cities is the Italian TV Show you want to watch to start traveling with your mind to some of the most beautiful Italian cities. The episodes are about the history of some of the most beautiful Italian cities such as Genoa, Asti, Cosenza, Arezzo, Perugia and Agrigento. It was broadcasted by Rai Storia, you can watch it here on RayPlay to start dreaming about your Italian holiday. You may also find some episodes on Youtube.

19. First team: Juventus

If you like calcio (Italian football) then you will enjoy watching this Italian Show about the football team Juventus, most commonly called Juve by Italians.

You can watch this docu-series of 6 episodes on Netflix.

20. Caro marziano

If you are up to watching something short and interesting in Italian, Caro Marziano (Dear Martian) is the Italian TV Show for you. It’s a sort of documentary of 38 episodes of 15 minutes each presented by Pif and broadcasted in 2017. Pif meets common people in Italy and abroad to Show their lifestyles and life on earth to Martians.

You can watch it here on Raiplay.

Reality Shows in Italian

Reality Shows can be easier to follow for a learner since they use an everyday language and are mostly mindless. So if you like this genre, here below are some Italian reality shows you can watch.

21. Temptation Island

Italian TV shows

If you are a reality Show fan then you already watched all the episodes of the American version. And you also know that it puts together singles and couples to supposedly test the strength of their relationship. You can watch the Italian Temptation Island and more “trash” in Italian here on witty tv.

22. Amici

Amici (Friends) is an Italian TV show that puts together a school of young singers and dancers. I’d say it’s a hybrid between a reality show and a talent show. You can watch some episodes here on witty tv.

Talk shows in Italian

Following,  I listed some talk shows in Italian. In fact, talk shows can be very helpful to get to know the Italian culture from different perspectives.

23. Che tempo che fa

Italian tv shows

The Italian TV show Che tempo che fa (What’s the weather like) is conducted by Fabio Fazio who always invites interesting guests from different fields, such as tv personalities, doctors, actors, comedians, singers, politicians, international guests and more.

To be fair, it has also been the most watched tv show during the Covid 19 pandemic since it offered updates on the virus and virologists expertise in simple and understandable words for people at home.

You can find the latest episodes here on RaiPlay and you can also watch it live on Sundays around 9 pm Italian time.

24. C’è posta per te

Italian TV shows

Watch C’è posta per te (There is mail for you) here on witty tv . The idea is to reconnect lovers, relatives or friends after a long time by sending an invitation to the program through a postino (postman). Prepare your kleenex, it could be very emotional.

25. Le Iene

The Hyenas is a comedy satirical show presenting different entertaining sketches and journalistic reports.

Watch le Iene here on MediasetPlay .

Cooking shows in Italian

Without a doubt, everyone loves Italian food, so if you want to cook Italian recipes and learn Italian culinary traditions, here are the best choices for you.

26. La prova del cuoco

The Italian cooking talent show The cook’s test is something you will enjoy watching if you like cooking and want to receive cooking tips from Italian cooks and amateurs. And as a plus you will learn common vocabulary about food and you will get familiar with Italian measurements (litri, grammi, chili…) . You can watch the last seasons here on RaiPlay.

27. Cotto e mangiato

Cooked and eaten gives you quick and delicious Italian recipes to make with a few ingredients. You can watch this Italian TV show here on MediasetPlay.

28. È sempre mezzogiorno

It’s always midday meaning it’s always time to cook! This Italian TV show is conducted by Antonella Clerici who was also the historical conductor of La prova del cuoco.

Watch it here on RaiPlay.

Game shows in Italian

Finally, if you are a game show lover and you want to test yourself with quizzes, here are a couple of Italian shows for you.

29. L’eredità

The inheritance is a very followed Italian game show broadcasted by Rai. Basically, competitors must correctly answer different types of questions in order not to be eliminated and move on to the next round. Only one competitor will make it to the final round, la ghigliottina (the guillotine), and have the chance to win a prize pool.

You can watch some episodes here on DailyMotion .

30. I soliti ignoti

And the game of The usual unknowns is loved by young and old folks. A player has to guess the identity and the profession of eight people following some clues and mostly the instinct.

You can watch it here on DailyMotion and you can find some episodes on Youtube as well.

So, what are you waiting for? Grab some popcorn and start watching an Italian TV show!

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!

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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.

News in Italian for beginners

Learning a new language from scratch has never been an easy task and learning Italian can sometimes be even more challenging.

On top of this, Italian is a language which changes with time together with society and customs.  So, it can be even harder to keep up with its uses. However, nowadays we have many digital tools at our disposal for this purpose. One of the most effective ones are online sources of news in Italian for beginners.

Here is a list of the best fifteen among podcasts, websites, newspapers and channels with news in Italian for beginners!

Note: they are not listed in any particular order.  All of the resources are great and choosing the right one for Italian news for beginners is really more of a matter of personal taste than anything else!

news in Italian

News In Slow Italian

News in Slow Italian is a weekly podcast in Italian. You can listen to what’s going on around the world at an easy pace. Also, you can choose the topic and the level.

There is some free content, but the full paid experience  it’s worth it.  It comes with many perks like episode transcripts that are very helpful when you are a beginner. If there’s a sentence or a word you cannot understand, you’ll easily want to subscribe. As a result, you’ll improve your vocabulary, and learn informal and formal phrases.

Moreover, you’ll have flashcards to help you throughout each episode and refer to them.

Register or use your 7-days free trial here

Rai News

If you like to watch the news, Rai News is your channel! Rai News is a TV channel broadcasted by RAI (aka national Italian television) where you’ll find news 24/7. Certainly, you’ll have the latest news in real time, but it is also a great platform for Italian news for beginners. To dive in, you can leave it playing in the background all day long!

Turn on the news here

If you just want to read some articles, click here

Rai Cultura italiano

As the previous one, Rai Cultura Italiano is a platform created by RAI and the Italian Ministry of Education and Research, in order to help foreigners learn the language. So, meanwhile the website shares the culture and some political news, you can study and practice Italian.

Follow this link to find more

Corriere Della Sera

Corriere della sera is one of the oldest and most important newspapers in Italy. Moreover, it’s the most widely read daily Italian newspaper because it’s considered complete and serious.

As a beginner, at first you should read the headlines. Then, pick the article that is good for you – your benchmark should be about 10% of understanding after a single reading of less than three minutes. This is a general guideline to read news in Italian for beginners.

Follow this link to read the latest news

 Easy Italian News

Easy Italian News is a free website for Italian news for beginners.

It publishes a diverse selection of easy Italian articles on Tuesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays. In addition, when you subscribe, you’ll also receive an audio recorded by an Italian native-speaker that you can listen to it as many times as you like.

At the end of each article you’ll notice the news original sources so you can even check the full, more advanced, article.

To subscribe click here


If you’re interested in an independent, young, social and interactive platform for Italian and international news… Fanpage is what you’re looking for! It is an Italian online newspaper and it’s also free.

You can follow their reportages and inquiries also through their youtube channel. Here you’ll watch short and easy-to-understand recorded or live videos. If you want, you can even interact or just read others’ comments thanks to the chat at the side of each video.

Thus, you’ll learn with the news while bringing language learning to life in a fun and easy way.

Click here for the newspaper website   or  watch an example:


Euronews is an international news channel where you can watch and listen to live news in your favorite language.

The Italian version is and it also offers the script of the video story, but some words may have changed as the journalist reads it. It also offers an English version, but this is not a word-by-word translation.

Nonetheless, if you have time you should try and find the story on the English website to find out a little bit more.

Rai Radio 2

Rai Radio 2 is a national Italian radio channel where you can find some programs perfect for learning Italian while discovering the culture, too.

For instance, good examples are programs like I Provinciali and Caterpillar.

I Provinciali is about Italian small towns news. The hosts will give you a taste of how it is living in one of them and you’ll be immediately taken there, thanks to stories and listener-contributions. Also, it’s perfect for learning conversational phrases.

Caterpillar are short, fun, light and entertaining episodes. They are perfect to listen on-the-go. In addition, they comment not only about Italian affairs, but also international ones so they’ll keep you up to date.

Tune in here for the radio channel and pick your show

Il Post

Il Post is a young and dynamic online newspaper which doesn’t require any subscription and is completely free.

You’ll find articles about anything from Italy and the world – latest news, environmental issues, science, etc. – written in a clear and easy Italian. Therefore, this is one of the best choices when you’re looking for Italian news for beginners.

Please choose your article here

Il Mio Primo Quotidiano

At first, Il Mio Primo Quotidiano could seem an odd listing but it’s the perfect tool for practicing Italian.

It’s been created for young adults who want to start reading a newspaper and for this reason, it’s an ideal first approach to news in Italian for beginners.

News is well written, and you won’t find any problematic topics. So, it is also the ultimate giornale felice, happy newspaper.

Discover it here

Focus Junior

Similarly to the latter, Focus Junior is for young adults. In this case, it’s a monthly magazine with in-depth articles about science, school, technology, animals and curiosities.

Further,  its payoff is “Having fun while discovering the world” and in fact it offers games, experiments, comics and short stories. You’ll notice that they also have a joke section where you can discover Italian jokes, too.

You can subscribe for a really fair price (current digital offer is € 19.99 per year) or read a few articles per month for free.

To have fun while learning Italian, visit is another Italian online newspaper. As the previous ones, it is free and independent. Their mission is to deliver news in real time from Italy and the rest of the world.

You’ll find all sorts of news from current events to sport, from gossip to science, and much more, written and layed out in such a clear and simple way that make them perfect for beginners.

In addition, they have a youtube channel with exclusive and special additional contents, and all videos have helpful and clear subtitles.

Here is their youtube channel

Follow this link for the website


One of the national TV news where you can watch and listen to everyday Italian news in a more formal format surfing their youtube channel.

Italia Oggi

Italia Oggi is an online newspaper which focuses more on political, economical and juridical Italian affairs. is an online newspaper plus web TV on youtube where you’ll find Italian news for beginners, and so much more.

Benefits of learning with news in Italian for beginners

Listening and reading are two of language learning pillars – the other two are speaking and writing – but they are the most important ones to master a language. Italian is not different. To clarify, a research by University of Missouri shows that when we communicate, we spend around 40% of our time listening, 30% speaking, 16% reading and only 14% writing.

Let’s see together some of the benefits of learning Italian with news in Italian!

You can do it everywhere

To listen and read news in Italian for beginners are two excellent study methods that will fit in well with your hectic schedule because you can do it anywhere.

We all have crazy busy lives (family, work, friends, gym…) it seems we don’t have enough time – for example, for learning Italian! But nowadays Italian podcasts and radio channels allow you to be on the go and still improve your Italian skills…

For instance, you can take your Italian to the next level meanwhile you’re cooking dinner, exercising or driving to work!

news in Italian

You will understand more

Having said that, the most relevant benefit of listening to Italian news, and also of reading them, is how quick you’ll learn and develop fluency. The more you listen and read, the more you understand. In addition, you’ll also better understand how native Italian speakers talk.

Your vocabulary will expand

Furthermore, your vocabulary will expand alongside your knowledge about Italian news and culture.

You will learn without realizing it

Nevertheless, it is important to keep in mind that even if it doesn’t feel like it, you’re learning because listening and reading are really effective ways you can study, and not only languages, almost without realizing it.

You will improve your Italian pronunciation

In addition, when you immerse yourself in the language, you’ll improve your Italian pronunciation, intonation and sound. Also, words and phrases will come easily and within the right context.

Meanwhile, your brain and ears will do the work for you!

You will know what to talk about

It goes without saying that you’ll start learning colloquial and frequent phrases and expressions which will give you a deeper insight into Italian culture and language.  You will have something to talk about with your Italian friends. And you will know what they are referring to when they talk about something that just happened in Italy.

Learn how to speak and write as a native

Of course, another amazing perk will be to speak and write as natives do. That’s how you will be building the core of your language skills: you’ll be absorbing structure of the language, the ideas conveyed and the rules of grammar, all at the same time.

At the end of the day, if you’re listening or reading, you’ll feel a lot more comfortable with the Italian language.


In short, these are convenient, fun and entertaining methods to learn Italian.

If you’re a beginner, you’ll need to start slow, with just a couple of pieces per week, and then work your way up to a higher level. The more time you devote to listening and reading news in Italian for beginners, the more comfortable you’ll become with understanding native speakers.

In conclusion, listening and reading should be a habit to get into: read or listen to Italian news for just 10 minutes a day will be an awesome start which will considerably improve your language skills.

However, your goals should be to find the right amount of challenges, and these tools are perfect for it in order to hold your attention but also pushing you to learn a little bit more every day. As a result, only you will know what is best for you!

Enjoy listening and reading news in Italian while getting a taste of Italy in your eyes and ears and improving your Italian language skills!

And don’t forget to be positive, confident and motivated since you’re doing it for yourself and nobody’s watching or listening!


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.

The most important thing you must do when trying to improve your listening skills in a foreign language is to choose materials that are interesting and enjoyable for you. You can choose to listen to podcasts, watch movies in the original language or… Listen to Italian songs!

In fact, songs are an excellent resource for dealing with the study of languages ​​in general, and Italian language in particular: they are a source of everyday language, they are catchy, easy to memorize and you can use the music in order to learn in a fun way, without too much effort… And you can even take advantage of improving your singing skills!

So, what are you waiting for?

Check my list of easy Italian songs for beginners that will be useful to improve your skills! I will give you the link of the lyric videos and explanations of the meaning of the song, the grammar rules and vocabulary that you will find in them!

Top 10 Italian Songs to Learn Italian

  1. Con te partirò – Andrea Bocelli 
  2. Almeno tu nell’Universo – Mia Martini 
  3. L’emozione non ha voce – Adriano Celentano 
  4. Solo noi – Toto Cutugno 
  5. Felicità – Al Bano & Romina Power 
  6. Baciami ancora – Jovanotti 
  7. La differenza tra Me e Te – Tiziano Ferro 
  8. Resta in ascolto – Laura Pausini 
  9. Solo ieri – Eros Ramazzotti 
  10. L’anno che verrà – Lucio Dalla 

1. Con te partirò – Andrea Bocelli

Con te partirò
(“With You I Will Leave”) talks about a journey.

The theme of the journey is presented in a romantic and poetic way. The artist dreams of rediscovering lost and new places thanks to the love of his partner in the journey of life.

If we take into account that Bocelli is blind, the meaning of the song acquire an extra value: he can see the light thanks to the sincerity of a true, intense feeling.

This is one of the greatest international successes of Italian music. The emotion of this song has no time, but it is worth listening to it (and learning it) not only for purely artistic reasons but also for linguistic ones.

Bocelli marks the words slowly, the music has a slow rhythm, so it is easy to understand the vocabulary and learn it. This is what makes this song perfect for a beginner learner of Italian.

In this Italian song, you will get to know useful expressions and improve Italian grammar, memorizing:

  • Prepositions and Personal Pronouns
    io / tu – I / you
    con te / con me – with you / with me
    su navi per mari – on ships over seas
  • Direct Object Pronouns
    Li vivrò – I will live them
    io lo so – I know that
  • Possessive Adjectives
    Tu mia Luna – You, my Moon
    Mio Sole – My Sun
  • Present tense
    Quando sono solo – When I am alone
  • Future tense
    li vivrò – I will live them
    partirò – I will leave
  • Basic Vocabulary
    Sole – Sun
    Luna – Moon
    Cuore – Heart
    Parole – words (plural)

If you like Bocelli – and surely you will – then you might try listening to some of his other songs. You certainly will improve your skills: all his lyrics are rich of poetry… and Italian grammar!

I strongly recommend my personal top 3 list of Bocelli’s songs:

2. Almeno tu nell’Universo – Mia Martini

Almeno tu nell’universo (“At least you in the Universe”) is undoubtedly one of Mia Martini’s most beloved songs.

The song is about people’s inconsistencies. In a world full of “strange people”, there is no more space for feelings and love. But a woman is madly in love with a man who is unique in this strange world that is constantly changing.

This song is extremely useful to learn the use of “si” pronoun  with reflexive and reciprocal verbs. It is a perfect Italian song for beginners. You can even enrich your vocabulary, getting to know more adjectives and adverbs:

  • Reflexive verbs
    consola – people console themselves (verb consolarsi)
  • Reciprocal Pronoun:
    odia / si ama – people hate / love each other
  • Verbs
    la gente è strana – people are weird (verb essere)
    (la gente) cambia idea continuamente – they continually change their mind (verb cambiare)
  • Adverbs
    continuamente – continuously / continually
    per sempre sarai sincero – you will be forever sincere
    mi amerai davvero – you’ll really love me
  • Adjectives
    tu che sei diverso – you that are different
    sarai sincero – you will be sincere

Mia Martini was a great Italian singer and if you want to enjoy more of her beautiful voice and practice Italian language with songs, you should make sure to listen to her other famous songs.

Still, I suggest my personal top 3 list of her songs:

3. L’emozione non ha voce – Adriano Celentano

L’emozione non ha voce (“Emotion has no voice”) is a beautiful hit by Adriano Celentano.

It is contained in the album io non so parlar d’amore (“I can’t talk about Love”) whose title is nothing but the opening sentence of the song.

The text is a confession of a man in love. He declares his difficulty in opening his heart and giving voice to his feelings. However, he hopes that their love will last for life and this can only happen if both the feelings are based on love, sincerity and trust. A great text, then, described by beautiful sounds and by the unique and suggestive voice of Adriano Celentano.

The rhythm and music are very slow, as well as the pronunciation of the singer, so this is an easy Italian song for beginners. In this song, you will be able to memorize the following:

  • Verbs to be and to have
    l’emozione non ha voce – emotion has no voice
    preziosa sei tu per me – precious are you to me
  • C’è / ci sono expressions
    c’è troppa luce – there is too much light
  • Basic nouns
    ti sarò per sempre amico – I will be your friend forever
    un’altra vita mi darai – You’ll give me another life
  • Future tense
    con te sarò sincero – I’ll be sincere with you
    tra le mie braccia dormirai – in my arms you’ll sleep
    poi sarà quel che sarà – then whatever will be, will be

If you like Celentano I also suggest to listen to other 3 songs that are really appreciated all over the world, and can be very useful for learning Italian:

4. Solo Noi – Toto Cutugno

Solo noi (“Only us”) is the song with which Toto Cutugno won the 1980 Sanremo Festival. The single remained in the Italian top ten for several months.

The song is about a pair of lovers, their love and the end of their passion.

In this beautiful Italian song, you can learn:

  • Personal pronouns
    solo noi – We, only us
    dimmelo tu – you tell me
    io sto bene con te – I am ok with you
  • Interrogative sentences
    cos’è? – what is this?
    la mia mente dov’è? – Where is my mind?
    dimmi che amore è? – tell me what love is?
  • Useful expressions
    io sto bene con te – I feel good with you
    tu sei tutto per me –  you are everything for me

If you enjoyed this song, you surely want to know that another must-know song of Toto Cutugno is L’italiano (“The Italian”). Of course, if you are studying italian, you can’t miss it! By the way, I also want to suggest to you more songs which are really enjoyable and easy to learn.

Here my top 3 songs:

5.Felicità – Al Bano & Romina Power

Felicità (“Happiness”) is an album published in 1982 by Albano Carrisi and Romina Power. It is known all over the world.

The Italian song explains the condition of joy, satisfaction, serenity and excitement that occur in people in a wave of optimism. It tries to express what this condition is, making comparisons and describing what do you feel in that particular moment.

It’s practically impossible not to be happy after listening to this song, not just for its fun and catchy rhythm, but also for the condition of Happiness that you will experience after having learned the numerous new words of the Italian vocabulary that are present in this text!

By listening to this easy Italian song you can learn:

  • Definite and indefinite articles
    la felicità – the happiness
    il tuo sguardo – your look
    l’onda che sbatte – the wave that slams
    un cuscino – a pillow
    una telefonata – a call
  • Imperative tense
    nell’aria – fell in the air
  • A lot of new words!
    del fiume – water of the river
    pioggia che scende – the rain coming down
    bicchiere di vino – glass of wine
    come un pensiero – as a thought
    come un sorriso – as a smile
    biglietto di auguri – greeting card
    canzone d’amore – love song

… What other new words can you recognize?

If you enjoyed the song and want more, then you should without doubt listen my top 3 songs:

6. Baciami ancora – Jovanotti

Baciami ancora
(“Kiss Me Again”) is an Italian song by Jovanotti, made as the main theme of the “Baciami ancora” Italian movie by Gabriele Muccino, which won a David of Donatello as Best Original Song.

The song is about the crazy and very deep love that a man feels towards a woman he fell in love with a simple kiss… He is a man who would desperately want to try again the splendid sensations that the kiss gave himAfter listening to this song, you will be able to ask your Italian partner for more kisses and you will definitely learn how to express your love with a very poetic vocabulary. 

In particular you can learn:

  • verbs in the imperative and infinitive form
    Baciami ancora – Kiss me again
    voglio stare con te – I want to be with you
    stare soli – To be alone
    Inseguire con te – to chase with you
    Invecchiare con te – get  old with you
  • Again… A lot of new words!
    spreco di tempo – waste of time
    un’impresa impossibile  an impossible undertaking
    una mamma – a mother
    un amante – a lover
    una figlia – a daughter
    una casa – a home / house
    un aereo che vola – an airplane that flies
    una bimba che danza – a child who dances
    un cielo – a sky
    una strada – a street
    un lavoro – a work
    una scuola – a school

… How many words do you already know? How many words can you add to this list? Write down all the words that you want to learn!

If you want to learn more and more words, then you must check out other Jovanotti songs. He uses a lot of everyday vocabulary  in an evocative way. This is why I suggest to you other 3 songs of Jovanotti:

7. La differenza tra Me e Te – Tiziano Ferro

La differenza tra Me e Te (“The difference between Me and You”) is a very famous Italian song by the Italian singer-songwriter Tiziano Ferro. It talks about the differences  between  two people, making comparisons and describing two different ways to be.

In this Italian song you can repeat:

  • Direct questions
    come stai?
    – How are you?
    chiedermi “perchè?” – I ask to myself “why?”
  • Answers
    stare bene / male
    – I am ok / bad
    Boh – an expression to say “I don’t know”
  • Conditional Tense
    non te lo direi –
    I wouldn’t tell that to you
    io verrei da te – I would come to you

If you like Tiziano Ferro, you could also listen very useful Italian songs for improving listening. My suggestions are the following Italian songs:

8. Resta in ascolto – Laura Pausini

Resta in ascolto
 (“Keep Listening”) is the seventh studio album by Italian singer Laura Pausini. The meaning of the song is all about breakup.

The singer misses the lover and thinks of him all the time. Even if she has tried to cancel him from her life, she thinks that it’s possible that they can get back together again because she’s the best suited person  for him.

This is a little more rhythmic and aggressive song, so it can be more challenging. In particular, you can focus on:

  • C’è / non c’è
    c’è un messaggio per te – there is a message for you
    alternativa a me non c’è – there is no alternative to me
  • Imperative forms
    in ascolto – keep listening
    dimmi se ci sei – tell me if you are there
  • Past tenses
    nessun altro chiamai amore – No one else I called love
    cercai il tuo nome – I looked for your name
    hai perso per sempre ormai – you lost forever by now

Laura Pausini has written a lot of very sad songs about love, so if you are in the “sad mood” grab some ice cream and have a good cry  listening to the following songs:

9. Solo ieri – Eros Ramazzotti

Solo ieri (“Only yesterday”) by Eros Ramazzotti is an Italian song about loss.

A man is destroyed by the end of a great love that  he thought it would last forever, but it all ended. He feels like there is nothing left to do and no purpose, that he can no longer believe in anything.

But then he makes a pass and decides that he wants to start again and build a new life. his song is really perfect to learn all basic Italian tenses:

  • Past tenses
    solo ieri c’era lei – only yesterday she was here
    credevo – I  used to believe
  • Present tense
    ora lo so – now I know
    si paga in pianto – you pay in tears
  • Future tense
    al futuro – I will talk to the future
    guarderò più in là – I will look further
    ne uscirò – I will come out of it
    la vita inventerò – I will invent life

You can also learn:

  • Adverbs of time
    solo ieri – only yesterday
    mai più – never again
    ora so – now I know
    da domani in poi – from tomorrow onwards
    pensando ad oggi – thinking of today
  • Modal verbs
    non può
    finire qui – it can’t end here
    non può finir così – it can’t end in this way

I also recommend :

If you want to try something more difficult you can  listen Se bastasse una sola canzone (“If one song were enough”) by Eros Ramazzotti & Luciano Pavarotti, where you can learn Italian Conditional and Subjunctive tenses.

10. L’anno che verrà – Lucio Dalla

Last but not least, I propose to you a Lucio Dalla song… The choice was really hard, because perhaps every Italian has a favorite Lucio Dalla song, although choosing one is a very difficult thing.

But surely everyone will agree that L’anno che verrà (“The incoming year”) has become over time one of the most characteristic songs of the bolognese singer, and certainly one of the most famous and beloved.

“Caro amico ti scrivo” (“Dear friend I write to you”) is probably one of the most famous incipits in the history of Italian music and immediately gives the idea of ​​what we’re going to listen to: a letter to a friend.

In this song you can learn:

  • Verbs
    Caro amico ti scrivo – Dear friend I write to you
    Da quando sei partito – Since you left
    qualcosa ancora qui non va – something is still wrong here
  • Imperative form
    vedi, vedi, vedi –
    see, see, see
  • Everyday Expressions
    E si farà l’amore – and people will ll make love

after this listening your Italian vocabulary will grow enormously.

And if you want more, you can check other Lucio Dalla’s songs:

Just pick one of this easy Italian songs for beginners and enjoy it!

Article written by Federica Contento

Learning Italian, especially as an American who only speaks English, isn’t easy. 

It takes a serious time commitment and lots of patience. You will fail frequently and at times it will seem like you are making no progress.

But don’t give up hope. 

With these 5 keys to Learning Italian Fast you will be on your way to Italian fluency:

1. Begin With The Right Mental Approach

Having the right mental approach is probably the most important key to your success in learning Italian fast. Without a strong commitment to learning Italian and the proper attitude your chances of becoming fluent aren’t going to be high.

Here are some of the keys to have the right mental approach:

Have a “Why”

Your “why” or your reason to learn Italian is key to staying motivated and focused along your journey to Italian fluency.

Everyone has their own “why”. Perhaps it is to be able to speak with your “nonna” or relatives back in Italy. 

Or maybe you have an Italian boyfriend or girlfriend. What is a better motivator than “amore”. 

For others it may be their love of Italian music and wish to understand their lyrics.

For me it was my desire to connect with my Italian ancestry and love of Italian travel. When learning Italian became frustrating to me or I wasn’t sure I wanted to continue I would think about how great it would be to be able to visit my family’s homeland and communicate with my friends and locals. This helped pull me through those difficult times when I was struggling to understand the language.


“Forget about willpower. It’s time for why-power. Your choices are only meaningful when you connect them to your desires and dreams. The wisest and most motivating choices are the ones aligned with that which you identify as your purpose, your core self, and your highest values. You’ve got to want something, and know why you want it, or you’ll end up giving up too easily.”
Darren Hardy 

Don’t be Afraid of Making Mistakes in Italian

We have all heard a child try to speak when they are little.

Do they have perfect grammar? Do they use big words?

Of course not and you shouldn’t expect that from yourself either.

One of the most important things in learning Italian is to expect you will be making mistakes and realize that making them will help you actually learn the language.

Don’t be afraid of making mistakes. We can learn from children here. They are aren’t afraid of making mistakes when they are learning a language. You shouldn’t be afraid either. 

This study at the University of Haifa has found that under the right circumstances, adults show an intuition for unexplained grammar rules better than their younger counterparts.

Be Patient with Yourself

Unfortunately you are not going to master the Italian language in 3 months like some language “gurus” will tell you. Learning Italian is a longer journey that will test you patience at times. 

Even still there will be times where you are frustrated and want to quit. 

Some tricks to deal with the frustrations:

  1. Take a real look at your progress
    Most likely if you are feeling overwhelmed you have been spending some serious time learning Italian already. Taking a look back at your actual progress can be helpful to overcome your current frustrations.

    Remember when you could barely form a sentence in Italian. Look how far you’ve come now. You can do it!!!
  2. Redefine your short term goals
    Usually we get frustrated when we expect too much from our progress. Instead try to examine your short-term goals. Instead of being completely fluent by the end of the month, perhaps a wiser short term goal may be to understand one verb tense or a handful of vocabulary words that day. 
  3. Give yourself a break
    Sometimes you just need to step away from learning Italian  and allow yourself a chance to breathe. This shouldn’t be for long but even a day away from learning can be enough to give you the break you need.

Think Smaller

You always hear people say “think big” but in the case of learning Italian “thinking small” will help you get to that BIGGER  goal of Italian fluency.

Did you know that with as little as 250-500 words in your vocabulary you should be able to get through most tourist encounters in Italy?

Increase your Italian vocabulary to 1,000 Italian words and you’ll be able to be conversational in Italian. 

Don’t get overwhelmed with the fact that you don’t know every word or get stuck on the idea that you don’t know the word for every item in a kitchen. Instead focus on the most frequently used words. 

If you have the right mental approach, anything is possible. You just need to get started… what are you waiting for?

2. Listen to Native Italian Speakers Immediately

Get started immediately by listening to native Italians speak their language.

As a beginner I found that listening to short, simple, Italian language videos and audio clips over and over again was the best way to get started with the language. Don’t jump into a feature length Italian film on day one. Instead listen to simple phrases repeatedly to get started.

Remember: be patient with yourself.

As an native English speaker, some of the sounds won’t come naturally to you and you won’t understand every word. But with time and patience you will start to hear the same sounds and words and soon you too will be able to replicate them.

Try to understand the context first and don’t stress if you can’t understand every word of what you are listening to.

I found that listening to topics that interested me in the language were much more fun and easy to follow. For me this meant listening to videos on Italian travel, food and health/fitness often. Whatever your passion or hobby maybe there is sure to be content out there for you to watch or listen to.


YouTube has been an invaluable resource for me in learning Italian. There are countless hours of content ready for you to consume anywhere. I will listen to Italian in the shower, in my car, anywhere I can get internet access. All free to watch/listen at your convenience.

Here is an article I wrote about some of my favorite YouTube Italian Language Channels:

25 YouTube Channels to Help You Learn Italian

I’ve also had luck searching for Italian television programming and movies on YouTube. Here are a couple of my favorites:

Love Bugs (TV Series 2004–2007)

Sketch comedy featuring Fabio De Luigi, Michelle Hunziker and Elisabetta Canalis

The short comic routines are easier to follow and the chemistry between the lead actors is obvious and the scenes are funny even if you can’t understand every word.

Don Matteo

A crime series featuring the charming Father Matteo.  


Netflix is another resource I use frequently to watch/listen to Italian programming. Netflix isn’t free and it doesn’t have a huge selection of Italian movies or series but if happen to already have a subscription why not use it to watch something in Italian.

Some Italian shows and films currently available on Netflix include:

Happy as Lazaro

“Purehearted teen Lazzaro is content living as a sharecropper in rural Italy, but an unlikely friendship with the marquise’s son will change his world.”


“Story of Roman teenagers on their journey of self-discovery.”

Welcome Mr. President!

“When frustrated politicians name a historical figure as the next president, an honest, humble man by the same name suddenly becomes Italy’s leader.”

Suburra: Blood on Roma

“In 2008, a fight over land in a seaside town near Rome spirals into a deadly battle between organized crime, corrupt politicians and the Vatican.”


“In this documentary, a centuries-old horse race in the city of Siena, Italy, is the forum for a showdown between a young jockey and his former mentor.“

If you really want to get more Italian language programming from your Netflix subscription you can get a VPN such as ExpressVPN. 

With the VPN you can log into Netflix Italia and open up hundreds of more hours of Italian content.

Amazon Prime Video

Amazon Prime Video is included as part of the Amazon Prime subscription. Typically Amazon Prime Video has more Italian language films and television shows than Netflix. The films tend to be older but there are some classics too.

  1.  Mid August Lunch (English Subtitled)
    “An utterly charming tale of great food, feisty ladies and unlikely friendships during a very Roman holiday.”
  2. Salt of Life
    “A middle-aged retiree (Gianni Di Gregorio) has become invisible to all the women of Rome. He contends with a demanding mother, a patronizing wife, a slacker daughter and a wild party-girl neighbor who uses him…as a dog walker. Watching his friends snare younger girlfriends, Gianni tries his best to generate some kind of extracurricular love life with hilarious results.”
  3. It’s Better In Italian
    “A charming look at the “doppiatori”-the Italian voice over actors that dub all English-language films into Italian.”

RaiPlay Radio

Italian public broadcasting’s radio app RaiPlay Radio is free to download and listen to. The app features 12 stations ranging in topics from news, sports and music. 

Listen to Rai Radio 1, Rai Radio 2, Rai Radio 3, Rai Radio Tutta Italiana, Rai Radio Classica, Rai Radio Techetè, Rai Radio Live, Rai Radio Kids, and Rai Isoradio with your phone anywhere you go.

Tune In Radio

This free app allows you to search for channels and podcasts by language or location. Simply search for Italian language programming or for programming in Italy.  There are hundreds of stations to choose from covering various topics like news, sports, arts, comedy, science and much more.


Podcasts are another great way to listen to Italian no matter where you are. 

Do you commute to work each day? Are you an avid runner or love to go to the gym?

Instead of spending that time listening to music you could load up an Italian podcast and be one step closer to Italian fluency.

Here are some Italian Podcasts I’ve enjoyed:

  1. Radio Feltrinelli
  2. Ad Alta Voce
  4. SBS in Italiano
  5. Italiano Automatico Podcast
  6. Coffee Break Italian

3. Speak Italian Early and Often

As soon as possible, jump in and start speaking Italian.

You aren’t going to be perfect and you may sound silly at times but you have to get started speaking. 

Don’t make the mistake of saying “I need to completely finish all the levels of Duolingo before I would feel comfortable speaking Italian”.

Here are some ways to jump into the deep end and start speaking today:

Online Tutoring

If you are serious about learning Italian I highly recommend that you consider hiring a private tutor to help guide you through your learning process. Specifically hiring a native speaker. This is extremely helpful and surprising affordable.

This was especially true for me.

I’ve had several online and in-person tutors over the years and they have helped me tremendously. Some I’ve hired for conversation only and others to help me with my grammar and speaking alike.

There are many excellent websites that make finding, scheduling and paying for your tutor easy and fast. While this list is growing here are two of my favorites:


Finding an Italian tutor is really easy and affordable with iTalki. Simply visit the site, choose Italian, and within seconds you are able to browse through the profiles of over 280 Italian tutors.

Each tutor on the site has an introduction video about them which is great and each tutor offers a trial lesson usually at a reduced rate.

Once you have selected a tutor you can schedule your first lesson online through their scheduling software.

All of my lessons through iTalki were completed on Skype so you will just need to be sure you set up a free Skype account prior to your first lesson.


Wyzant’s interface is a little different as it will ask you a series of questions in the beginning to better match you with the right Italian tutor for your needs. 

In-Person Tutors 

If you like the idea of in-person Italian lessons it will really depend on where you live. 

A simple Google search for “Italian Tutors”  in your area will hopefully work.

For example, here in Connecticut where I live,  Learn Italian with Lucia is a local tutor.

Lucia, originally from Vico Equense in Italy, conducts lessons in-person and online via Skype to students across the globe.

Find a Tandem

In fact find 3 or 4 or 5. 

If you don’t know what a language tandem is it is a language partner whose native language is the language you are looking to learn. In turn the language partner is looking to learn your native language. 

But how can I find a tandem partner?

It’s actually a lot easier than you would imagine. 

First, you are lucky because many Italians want to learn English. It is one of the most useful languages to learn in Europe so you will never find a shortage of Italians looking to learn English.

Second, there are several apps and websites that make finding a tandem match easy. Usually these apps start as chat apps where you can send text or audio clips. Eventually you can graduate to Skype calls to really work on your Italian.

Here are two of my favorite apps to find a tandem


Free to download, this app allows you to find Italian native speakers and communicate with them immediately via text and voice chat. The app also has features to translate messages and allows people to correct your messages as well so you are learning Italian as you go.

Keep in mind the Italian native speakers you are meeting are looking for help in English so you will usually need to split time between both English and Italian.


Similar to HelloTalk, Tandem is also free to download. Once downloaded you can easily find Italian native speakers willing to help you in exchange for assistance in learning English. 

On Tandem you can instant message, send audio clips, share pictures and video chat with your new Italian friends.

Become Friends with Italians

Ok, this may not be easy for some people. Especially if you don’t have Italians living in your hometown or are not able to travel to Italy frequently. That said, if you happen to have local Italian native speakers that live and work in your area make it a point to start to use Italian with them. They will really appreciate the effort and you will feel a rush of success when you are able to even say the smallest things.

I am truly blessed to have Italian friends that live locally and abroad. Without their assistance I would never have progressed with the language.

Go out and meet some Italians 😉

4. Read Italian Content

italian newspapers and magazines

While I’ve found listening and speaking Italian are the best methods for me, reading Italian content has also helped me in my journey to Italian fluency.

My visual memory is stronger than my audio memory so seeing a word written out helps me remember the word later. 

Start Small

If you are a beginner in Italian start will short, easy-to-read material. Novels or long newspaper articles may be your goal but they can be frustrating in the beginning. 

Instead opt for a children’s book or short story.

Ideally it would be great if the book or story had an audio track to follow along with. 

The Italian Experiment does just that. The site features several children classics like “Little Red Riding Hood” and “Goldilocks and the Three Bears”. With the text in both Italian and English it also includes video with playful illustrations and professional narration. 

The Italian Experiment is a fun way to start reading in Italian.

Switch Your Reading Material

Want to get serious about learning Italian?

Try switching your reading material from English to Italian.

Do you need to get your news fix each morning with your coffee? Instead of goto an Italian news source. 

Is Facebook, Twitter or Instagram more your thing? Start following Italian companies, celebrities, or social media stars. 

Have a favorite book? Try finding it in Italian and re-reading it. Having a book you are familiar with will help you understand the full story.

5. Immerse Yourself In Italian

woman writing in italian journal
Some people will say that you need to fully immerse yourself in a language in order to become fluent. 

Unfortunately, for most of us, taking 6 months + to live in Italy just isn’t an option. 

Most of us have families, jobs, or other commitments that prevent us from being able to live in Italy  for any extended period of time.

So how can you immerse yourself in Italian without actually being there?

Here are a few suggestions  to convert your normal day-to-day life into “La Vita Italiana”

  1. Change your phone
    Most modern phones have the ability to change your language. Once you are ready, switch your phone’s language to Italian. It is a little tricky at first but in no time it will become second nature to you.
  2. Write a daily journal in Italian
    Keeping a journal in Italian will help you improve your past tense verbs in Italian as well as your vocabulary. For me writing words on paper helps me learn and remember them later. What better way to do that then with a daily Italian diary/journal
  3. Write your shopping list in Italian
    This is another helpful vocabulary builder. Especially when you are at an Italian restaurant.
  4. Get your news from Italian sources
    Read Italian Newspapers sites, Listen to Italian News
  5. Watch/Listen to only Italian programming
    This was discussed previously in this article but should be repeated. If you are serious about learning Italian stop watching or listening to programs in English and immerse yourself in only Italian programming.

    Wherever you are you can easily replace that English broadcast with something similar in Italian.

    Italians are famous for their dubbing.

    I am a big fan of Stranger Things and found out I can rewatch episodes in Italian on Netflix!!

  6. Talk to yourself in Italian
    Ok you this may sound crazy but I can’t tell you how many times I have had “pretend” conversations with myself  in Italian just to practice.
  7. Follow Italians on social media Facebook/Instagram/Twitter
  8. Watch Italian Movies 

Find Out What Methods Works for You Learning Italian

Some language experts will claim they have the best method to learn Italian. They will swear that the fastest way to learn Italian is by using their software or taking their online courses. 

While these will certainly help you there is unfortunately no magic plan that works perfectly for everyone. 

Each of us learns faster using different techniques.

Part of learning a new language like Italian for the first time is actually learning what methods work best for you learning a language. 

For most of us the best methods aren’t obvious at first. 

Learning what works for you will help you to Italian fluency faster.

By: Frank DePino

Frank DePino is one of the co-founders of LearnItalianGo. He is a frequent traveler to Italy and has been studying Italian for years.

Learning Italian has never been easier than it is today.

With the amount of free resources online you have an endless supply of free Italian content at your fingertips. 

One of the best resources I’ve found for learning Italian is YouTube. There you can find videos covering everything from Italian grammar basics for beginners to full-length Italian movies with subtitles for more fluent speakers.

Here is a list of my favorite YouTube Channels I’ve found along my journey to Italian fluency:

Learn Italian YouTube Channels

  1. Learn Italian with Lucrezia 
  2. Impara L’Italiano con Italiano Automatico
  3. OneWorldItaliano
  4. Italy Made Easy 
  5. Loescher Editore video
  6. ALMA.TV
  7. Edilingua
  8. Learn Italian with
  9. LearnAmo
  10. Learn Italian with Us
  11. Sgrammaticando 
  12. Weila Tom
  13. Istituto Linguistico Mediterraneo
  14. Your Italian Teacher
  15. Rai
  16. Italia Squisita  
  17. Il Lato Positivo
  18. Serie A
  19. Nicolò Balini
  20. Dr. Filippo Ongaro
  21. The Jackal
  22. EuroNews – In Italiano
  23. La Repubblica
  24. TV2000 It
  25. Cook Around TV


1.  Learn Italian with Lucrezia

VIDEOS: ~ 470

Born and raised in Roma, Lucrezia has an impressive YouTube following and it’s no wonder why. Her videos are engaging and are extremely helpful for beginners to more advanced students. 

While Lucrezia has plenty of videos on Italian grammar I am a huge fan of her vlogs where she gives you a glimpse into her life in Italy. From simple visits to a local “supermercato” to trips around the beautiful country that is Italy the vlogs are a fun way to see how Italians live and learn the language at the same time.  

2. Impara L’Italiano con Italiano Automatico

VIDEOS: ~ 525

Alberto’s enthusiasm and positivity makes his channel a must see. You won’t find a lot of grammar lessons here as that isn’t Alberto’s style but what you will find are videos that talk about Italian culture and tips on how to learn Italian.

His videos that include his “nonna” are entertaining and a personal favorite.

3. OneWorldItaliano

VIDEOS: ~ 150

One World Italiano features Veronica, a teacher at the One World language school based in Cagliari, Sardinia.

The channel includes lessons that start for beginners (A1 Italian level) all the way through the advanced intermediate levels (B2 Italian). At the end of every level Veronica has a “prova” or test for you to complete before you proceed to the next level.

The lessons are completely in Italian but if you start from the very beginning you will be surprised how you will be able to follow them completely.

4. Italy Made Easy 

VIDEOS: ~ 400

Manu’s channel is a must see for anyone wanting to learn Italian. His videos are fun, informative, easy-to-follow and feature content in Italian grammar for beginners to more modern, conversational Italian for intermediate and advanced students. 

Most importantly ALL his series in Italian are SUBTITLED

5. Loescher Editore video

VIDEOS: ~600

 Loescher offers videos for those looking to learn multiple languages so be sure to search for the Italian video playlists.

In particular,  I really enjoyed “The Cities of Italy” series that includes Italian subtitles. 


VIDEOS: ~100 

ALMA.TV was created for teachers, those who want to learn Italian, and all those who love Italian culture. The videos are tailored for different users and cover everything from grammar to new trends in Italian language and society.

I love travel shows so the Italian travel videos with Sara are a personal favorite:

7. Edilingua

VIDEOS: ~ 140

Edilingua features some videos taken from the video courses “Via del corso” (levels A1 and A2),  “Nuovo Progetto italiano video” (levels A1, A2, B1 and B2) and “Progetto italiano Junior video” (levels A1, A2, B1) 

These short video stories allow you to learn the Italian language in a different and more entertaining way than your typical grammar/vocabulary videos.

For beginners I recommend this Italian beginners series.

8. Learn Italian with

VIDEOS: ~ 525

ItalianPod101’s channel has hundred’s of videos on learning Italian ranging from topics like vocabulary “400 Words Every Italian Beginner Must Knowto grammar “Fix Your Italian Grammar in 90 Minutes“ .


9. LearnAmo

VIDEOS: ~150

Italians Graziana and Rocco host this Italian language learning channel which features videos on topics such as Italian expressions , Italian verbs ,  and Italian travel.

10. Learn Italian with Us

VIDEOS: ~ 50

Mirko and Chiara are two Italians that provide some well done videos helping you learn about the Italian language and culture. The channel features grammar lessons and some videos of their trips around Italy. 


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

Start Learning Today

11. Sgrammaticando 

VIDEOS: ~450

I have to be honest. Grammar lessons are not my favorite part of learning Italian. But that said it is the foundation of the language and should not be neglected. If you are looking for grammar lessons this channel focuses on just that.

12. Weila Tom

VIDEOS: ~ 90

Tom is an American who teaches both Italian to English speakers as well as English to Italian speakers. His channel offers some nice beginner level Italian lessons that are subtitled and in both English and Italian.

13. Istituto Linguistico Mediterraneo

VIDEOS: ~ 90

The Istituto Linguistico Mediterraneo is an Italian language school located in Pisa that has been offering Italian lessons to foreigners since 1981.

The channel offers a variety of well produced videos 

Impara l’Italia – Che lavoro fai? (Lezione 11 Livello A2) – Lezioni di lingua italiana

For more advanced students here are some additional resources of great Italian language programming you can use to help you learn Italian quickly:


14. Your Italian Teacher

VIDEOS: ~ 79

Your Italian Teacher is hosted by Valeria. The videos are completely in Italian so if you are a complete beginner you may want to start with another channel. 

However, if you can speak Italian a little you should check out this channel and her playlist “Parliamo l’italiano” / “Let’s speak Italian” which contains 45 videos to help you speak Italian today.

15. Rai

SUBSCRIBERS: ~3,000,000
VIDEOS: ~ 17,500

Rai, the national public broadcasting company in Italy, is also the biggest television broadcaster in the country. With over 17,500 videos on YouTube to choose from you could only watch this channel and you would have enough Italian language programming for a lifetime. 

If you are looking for authentic Italian programming look no further than one of my favorite Rai shows “Che tempo che fa”  featuring the hilarious Luciana Littizzetto.

16.Italia Squisita

VIDEOS: ~ 850

If you love Italian food, and who doesn’t, then you have to follow this channel. Italia Squisita’s channel features the best Italian chefs sharing their favorite recipes and food stories.

The station showcases videos from all around the country, capturing the italian culture of food: creative chefs and unique landscapes, niche makers and artisans, restaurant and great ingredients.

Have you ever wanted to make pizza at home like they do in Napoli? Check out this video and learn how.

17. Il Lato Positivo

SUBSCRIBERS: ~1,800,000
VIDEOS: ~ 2,000

Features shorter clips on everything from health tips like “Come Addormentarsi in 2 Minuti: La tecnica dei Marinesto fun riddles to test both your brain and Italian fluency at the same time 9 Indovinelli che solo persone con un QI elevato possono risolvere”.

18. Serie A

SUBSCRIBERS: ~2,775,000
VIDEOS: ~ 18,000

“Calcio” fans need to check out Serie A’s channel. Packed with match highlights  and  interviews what better way to learn Italian than to learn it watching “the beautiful game”.

19. Nicolò Balini

VIDEOS: ~ 558

 Nicolò Balini, AKA Human Safari, has become the king of travel on YouTube for Italians. The 25 year old’s channel features videos of his journeys around the globe. One of my favorite videos of Nicolò’s is his first visit to an American Walmart.

20. Dr. Filippo Ongaro

VIDEOS: ~ 300

If you are interested in learning more about health and psycho-physical performance Dr. Ongaro’s channel is a great find. His channel covers topics such as nutrition, physical fitness, and mental health.

21. The Jackal

VIDEOS: ~ 200

The Jackal are a group of 7 Italian friends who create high-production comedy videos. Their channel became a hit with the web series Lost in Google

22. EuroNews – In Italiano

VIDEOS: ~ 74,000

Euronews channel brings viewers a daily dose of international news offering in-depth coverage and analysis from correspondents and news bureaus all over the world.

23. La Repubblica

VIDEOS: ~ 16,000

Founded in 1976 in Rome, La Repubblica is an Italian daily general-interest newspaper. Their channel includes news and insights centering around major events from Italy and the world.

24. TV2000 It

VIDEOS: ~ 47,000

While the focus of TV 2000 is Roman-Catholic based programming there are also interesting non-denominational shows as well. One of the more interesting programs I’ve seen on the channel is “La Classe

This documentary series focuses on the return to school of ten high school dropouts.

Do you have any additional Italian language channels you would recommend? If so please leave them in the comments section below.

25. Cook Around TV

VIDEOS: ~ 1,200

Cook Around TV has over 1,200 cooking videos for you to choose from.

Learn how to make Penne all’arrabbiata and other classic Italian dishes while improving your Italian language skills.

By: Frank DePino

Frank DePino is one of the co-founders of LearnItalianGo. He is a frequent traveler to Italy and has been studying Italian for years.