Spanish Basics: Resources For Language Learners

Everything we’ve ever written about Spanish, all in one place.
woman sitting on balcony studying Spanish basics

If you’re trying to learn Spanish and looking for online resources to help, you’ve come to the right place. This is your Spanish Basics Resource Hub! We’ve collected all of our articles about Spanish, including basic words and phrases, pronunciation and grammar tips, general facts about the language, our favorite Spanish-language media and much more. 

When you’re learning a new language, you’ll want to start with some foundational building blocks and work your way up to more complex topics. This guide is structured in a similar way, starting with the most basic of Spanish basics and getting more challenging and more creative as we go along.

Whether you’re just beginning your Spanish journey or looking for ways to supplement your ongoing language learning, this hub will be a useful resource for you to refer back to whenever you need it.

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Basic Spanish Words And Phrases

Languages are vast and full of exciting things to learn, so where do you even start? These fundamental conversation topics are a good jumping off point.

How To Say Hello
Hola is easy, so what are some other ways to say hello in Spanish? Learn how to introduce yourself and start a conversation in Spanish right away.

How To Say Goodbye
You have options that aren’t “hasta la vista, baby.” Here are the most common ways to say goodbye in Spanish.

How To Ask Someone Out
Find out what you need to know to satisfy your need for companionship in the mundo hispanohablante with these helpful expressions for asking someone out in Spanish.

How To Insult Someone
So you learned how to establish rapport with someone. Now, learn how to insult their mother. Just in case.

How To Apologize
There’s a good argument to be made for why learning to say “sorry” in Spanish should be one of the first linguistic skills you tackle.

How To Introduce Yourself
If you’re ready to get a feel for how basic greetings would sound in a natural exchange between two native speakers, these sample dialogues will provide you with a template.

How To Compliment Someone
Compliments are important for having smooth casual interactions, making friends, and yes, potentially asking out that cutie you’ve had your eye on.

Spanish Business Phrases
Doing some work in a Spanish-speaking country? Here are 18 phrases you should know, pulled from Babbel’s Spanish For Business course.

Spanish Vacation Phrases
Make the most of your trip to a Spanish-speaking country — and avoid getting lost and frustrated — by learning how to say these key phrases.

Mexican Vacation Cheat Sheet
Make the most of your upcoming Mexican vacation by focusing on these Spanish conversation topics ahead of your flight abroad.

10 Best Slang Expressions In Spanish
Knowing a language is often more about mastering the linguistic turns than knowing a lot of words. Improve your command of Spanish with these 10 useful expressions!

9 Most Common Adjectives
Learning the most common adjectives in Spanish can help you differentiate between things, whether they be grande or pequeño. Here’s a few to get you going!

20 Most Common Verbs
Want to know the most important verbs in Spanish, how to conjugate them and how to use them in a sentence? Check out our handy guide.

The Art Of Swearing In Spanish
Swearing is a great way to learn a foreign language, and even achieve fluency. If you ever wanted to swear like a Spanish master, here’s a mini-guide to Spanish swearing.

Spanish Slang Through The Decades
Explore vintage Spanish slang from Spain, specifically from the 1960s, ’70s and ’80s.

Vintage Spanish Words For Passionate Readers
Let’s take a journey to the Spanish of yore with this glossary of 20 words from another era.

How To Talk Like A Spanish-Speaking Millennial
Discover part of Spanish vocabulary adapted today by and for young people and developed outside the strict academic dictionaries.

General Tips For Beginners Learning Spanish

If you’re new to the Spanish language, or even if you just need a refresher, these articles will give you some advice for how to approach learning Spanish basics.

5 Very Specific, Very Useful Tips To Learn Spanish
Is it too ambitious to say that after reading this article you’ll understand Spanish way better? Well, we’re willing to take that risk.

A Pronunciation Guide To The Spanish Alphabet
One of the first things to go after when you’re learning Spanish is how to actually pronounce Spanish.

Words You Might Struggle To Pronounce
Have you ever wondered how to pronounce armadillo in Spanish? Or how to roll your Rs? Follow these simple guidelines for pronouncing Spanish words, and you’ll be a pro in no time.

How To Learn Spanish For Travel
So you want to learn some Spanish for your upcoming vacation, but don’t know where to start? Here’s a two-week timeline we’ve put together to get you speaking confidently before you head out.

The 7 Most Common Mistakes English Speakers Make In Spanish
We all make mistakes when trying to speak Spanish, but the most embarrassing ones can be avoided. Keep reading to save yourself the embarrassment in the future.

6 Spanish Phrases Native Speakers Never Use
Sometimes, the phrases that certain English-speakers think of as “Spanish” are not authentic

How To Read Spanish Letters And Accent Marks Aloud
One of the first things to go after when you’re learning Spanish is how to actually pronounce Spanish. Fortunately, it’s not too hard!

How To Recognize False Cognates
Spanish in particular seems to have an abundance of words with a resemblance to their English counterparts.

How And When To Use Spanish Modal Verbs
Modal verbs are used all the time in Spanish because they express the speaker’s attitude in relation to an action.

Practicing Pronunciation With Spanish Tongue Twisters
Spanish tongue twisters are the linguistic equivalent of lifting weights. Here are a couple you can try to master the trickiest sounds in Spanish.

Paronyms, Homophones And Other Mistakes In Spanish
Paronymous words sound similar but are spelled differently; homophones sound the same but have a different meaning. Learn the difference.

When To Use Ser And Estar
There are a few rules that will help you easily master ser and estar, verbs that are notorious for confusing beginner Spanish learners.

Figuring Out Grammatical Gender
When you first start learning Spanish, grammatical gender can seem arbitrary and confusing. Fortunately, there are some rules you can follow.

When To Use Tú And Usted
Learning when to use and Usted isn’t too difficult, and a few guidelines will have you well on your way.

A Guide To The Most Important Spanish Punctuation Marks
You might already know about the upside down question marks, but there’s more to Spanish punctuation than that.

The Most Common Prepositions And How To Use Them
One preposition in English might have two possible translations in Spanish. Here, we’ll cover the most important Spanish prepositions and how they’re most commonly used.

Useful Spanish Phrases To Fix And Avoid Mistakes
Whether you’re correcting yourself after you’ve slipped up or you’re asking someone to clarify something, these will be very helpful.

Spanish Numbers

When it comes to Spanish basics, learning the numbers is as simple (but important) as it gets. Make sure you get counting down before you move on to the slightly more difficult number-related articles.

How To Count To 100
Fortunately, counting in Spanish isn’t that hard. Some would even say it’s as easy as “uno, dos, tres.”

How To Tell The Time
If you speak English, you’re already halfway there, as many of the same rules apply (barring a few differences). 

How To Write The Date
Need to learn how to say what day it is in Spanish? It’s a date! Here’s how to write the date in Spanish, along with pronunciations of calendar terms.

Spanish Vocabulary Lists

Ready to expand your vocabulary? Check out these lists of words and phrases to explore topics that seem relevant or interesting to you. We even have recordings of native speakers to teach you the correct pronunciation.

Spanish Food Vocabulary
Once you learn to name and pronounce these Spanish food words, you’ll be ready to have a delicious meal in any Spanish-speaking country.

Spanish Travel Vocabulary
Whether you’re traveling by plane, train or automobile, we’ve got you covered with the words and phrases you need to navigate transportation in Spanish.

Spanish Color Vocabulary
Roses are rojas, violets are azules; mastering the colors in Spanish would make you the coolest! Here’s a quick guide to el arco iris (“the rainbow”).

Spanish Weather Vocabulary
Whether you’re figuring out what to pack for vacation or just really love talking about the climate, knowing Spanish weather vocabulary is very useful.

Spanish Animal Vocabulary
Do you prefer los perros or los gatos? Here’s a list of some of the most useful vocab for discussing animals in Spanish.

Spanish Emotions Vocabulary
Whether you’re happy, sad or somewhere in the middle, you should let someone know! We collected basic vocab for emotions and feelings in Spanish, which will help you get started.

Spanish Hobby Vocabulary
Discussing shared interests is a great way to get the ball rolling when you chat with a Spanish speaker.

Spanish Body Parts Vocabulary
If you’ve always been curious about el cuerpo, click to learn how to name the parts of the body in Spanish.

Spanish Family Vocabulary
Love ’em or hate ’em, tu familia is here to stay. Find out all the expressions you need to know to talk about family in Spanish.

Spanish Tech Vocabulary
Changing your computer settings to Spanish is a good way to get exposure to the language. Of course, you’ll need to learn some tech vocab first.

Spanish Home Vocabulary
As the popular expression goes, mi casa es tu casa (“my house is your house”). Here’s some vocab to help you refer to various parts of the home.

Spanish Clothes Vocabulary
Learn how to get dressed in Spanish with this guide to basic clothing vocabulary.

Spanish Fruits And Vegetables Vocabulary
Get ready for a trip to the grocery store or farmer’s market with this linguistic walk down the produce aisle.

Spanish Office Vocabulary
Get to work with this guide to words and phrases you’ll need to navigate an office in Spanish.

The Babbel Pocket Spanish Guide
Wherever your travels take you, our foldable pocket Spanish conversation companion is perfect to take right alongside!

Spanish Countries And Nationalities
Learn how to say where you’re from with this extensive list of country names and nationalities in Spanish.

Spanish Filler Words
While you might not think of “er” and “um” as words at all, learning them in a new language can make you sound more fluent!

Spanish Movies, Books And Other Media

Watching movies and TV shows, reading books, listening to music and podcasts, and following Spanish social media accounts are all fun and helpful ways to supplement your studies. Not sure where to start? Check out these recommendations!

Palabras Bravas: Babbel’s Spanish Podcast
Are you looking to add another dimension to your Spanish learning? Introducing the new podcast made by Babbel’s language experts.

Aventura On The Babbel Express: Babbel’s First Interactive Spanish Podcast
All aboard the Babbel Express, where you’ll be tasked with solving a catnapping mystery.

Other Spanish Podcasts To Listen To
Foreign language podcasts can be a great supplement to your language learning. Check out our list of the six best Spanish language pods!

Spanish TV Shows To Stream
By helping you improve your Spanish from the comfort of your bed, these shows provide the only excuse you need for binge-watching TV.

Spanish Movies To Watch
Want to combine your Spanish learning with the wonder of film? We’ve rounded up the best movies to learn Spanish with, all chosen by our language experts.

Beginner-Level Spanish Music To Listen To
Check out our Spanish playlist, and follow along with our guide to pick up some language and cultural tips.

Babbel Mixtapes: Learn Spanish With Music
Babbel Mixtapes is a guided playlist with nine Spanish songs that we helpfully broke down for you.

Spanish Books To Read
Supplement your studies with these Spanish-language books, chosen by experts to help you learn.

Books About Madrid
Madrid is one of the largest cities in Europe, and it’s a major world center for art, architecture and culture.

Books About Mexico City
This collection of fiction and nonfiction set in and around the capital of Mexico will take on the subject from a number of different angles.

Spanish YouTube Channels To Subscribe To
Looking for a fun way to mix up your language-learning routine? Check out these Spanish-speaking YouTubers!

Spanish Instagram Accounts To Follow
Want to follow some Spanish Instagram accounts but don’t know where to start? Here are a few options.

Spanish Twitter Accounts To Follow
Turns out, Twitter is good for more than just ranting about politics. We’ve compiled 9 Spanish Twitter handles to consider following if you’re learning the language.

Spanish TikTok Accounts To Follow
Looking for a quick and fun way to practice your Spanish? Check out these TikToks!

Spanish Dictionaries To Use
Whether you’re still stumbling over hola or you consider yourself a master of Spanish, you’ll need a dictionary at some point.

Spanish Puzzles, Quizzes And Other Fun Stuff

If you’re looking for a way to switch up your learning methods and make things a little more interactive, try one of these puzzles, quizzes or other fun activities.

Where Are People Using Babbel To Learn Spanish?
Find out more about your fellow learners, who come from all over the world!

Spanish Reading Comprehension Test To Determine Your Proficiency
From beginner to mastery, find out your Spanish level by reading a paragraph!

Spanish Lessons In The Magazine
In these short texts, you’ll learn both vocabulary and a little more about the Spanish-speaking world.

How Much Do You Know About Spanish? Quiz
Spanish has a long history, stretching back several centuries and covering half the globe. Test your knowledge of Spanish trivia with this quiz!

Do You Know The Colors In Spanish? Quiz
Can you tell the difference between verde and azul? Test your knowledge of color words in Spanish!

How Well Do You Know Spanish Animal Names? Quiz
Take our Spanish animals quiz below to test your knowledge of some of your favorite creatures and to see where a bit more practice might be in order.

Do You Know The Days Of The Week In Spanish? Quiz
Do you even know what day it is? This Spanish weekdays quiz will help orient you in time.

Differences Between Latin American And European Spanish Quiz
If you’ve been to multiple Spanish-speaking countries, you’ll know that everyone doesn’t speak Spanish the exact same way. Can you tell the difference between the Spanishes?

Common Mexican Vs. European Spanish Mistakes Quiz
This quiz includes a variety of some of the most common mix-ups people make related to Spain vs Mexican language differences.

Can You Spot The Spanish Grammar Mistake? Quiz
This beginner quiz will help you sort out the most common Spanish errors.

Spanish Language Facts Crossword Puzzle
Test your Spanish smarts and try your luck at this criss-crossed crucigrama.

How To Host A Spanish Dinner Party
Impress your friends (and yourself) by using these recipes to make an authentic Spanish meal!

7 Struggles Spanish Learners Understand All Too Well
If you’re still stuck on rolling your R’s, just know you’re not alone. As a Spanish learner, you will struggle. And the struggle is real.

Choose Your Adventure: Mexico City
Let your curiosity guide the way as you click your way through your own customized itinerary of a day in Mexico City.

Miscellaneous Spanish Facts

Beyond learning the Spanish basics, it’s fascinating to learn about the Spanish language and culture. Take a deep dive into the world of Spanish!

How Many People Speak Spanish, And Where Is It Spoken?
As one of the most spoken languages in the world, Spanish is a popular tongue to learn, as well as to learn about.

Top Spanish-Speaking Countries To Visit That Aren’t Spain
If you’re looking for travel destinations where you can practice your language skills, add these Spanish-speaking countries to your list!

How Hard Is It To Learn Spanish?
Babbel’s expert linguists are here to guide you through the delights and difficulties of the language.

The History Of The Spanish Language
Have you ever wondered about the history of the Spanish language? Let’s travel back in time and discover where everything began.

The Nuances Of Spanish Dialects Around The Globe
What are some of the distinguishing factors of Spanish dialects across the globe? Here are a few of the biggest differences.

Mexican Spanish Vs. European Spanish
Even when sharing the same language, Mexican Spanish and European Spanish have little differences between them that learners should know about.

How Is Spanish In Spain Different From Spanish In Latin America?
Let’s get complicated and delve into the differences between the varieties of Spanish spoken in Spain, Mexico, Puerto Rico, the Dominican Republic, Colombia and Argentina.

New Mexican Spanish: A Dialect Preserved In Time
A look at how New Mexican Spanish formed and why the dialect remains similar to its colonial form.

English Words That Are Actually Spanish
Spanish and English have been trading vocabulary (and culture) for centuries. Here are just some of the Spanish words in English that you use all the time.

The Influence Of Arabic On The Spanish Language
Modern Spanish includes thousands of words of Arabic origin. How did this happen and what does it mean for learning Spanish today?

11 Things You Probably Didn’t Know About Día De Los Muertos
Ancient rituals, hairless dogs, Disney fails — these fun facts about the Day of the Dead may come as a surprise.

5 Things You Probably Didn’t Know About Cinco De Mayo
Cinco de Mayo history is maybe not what you think it is — and the truth is a lot more interesting.

The Top 5 Reasons To Learn Spanish
If you need some convincing, we rounded up the five best reasons to learn Spanish.

Latin American Christmas And New Year’s Traditions
Here’s a look at some of the end-of-year celebrations, traditions and superstitions around Latin America.

The Language Of Flamenco
Flamenco is part of Spanish culture, and its language lives on in everyday Spanish conversations.

What Are The Differences In Humor Between Spanish And English?
It’s, of course, not a neat breakdown according to language, but there are a few noticeable patterns when comparing humor in Spanish and English.

Why Learning Spanish Is Still Better Than Relying On A Translation Device
Tools like Google Translate are getting very good, but learning the language is still the best way to get a Spanish-English translation.

Go beyond Spanish basics with Babbel Live

OK, so you’ve spent some time combing through these handy resources for grasping the basics of Spanish. Want to put what you’ve learned into action? Start speaking Spanish now with Babbel Live. With options for newcomers and more advanced learners, you can go beyond the basics and practice your conversation skills with up to six peers in live, online tutoring classes led by an expert teacher.

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