9 of the Best Podcasts for Learning Spanish

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Imagine what you would do if you could easily understand spoken Spanish.

You could finally travel to the Spanish-speaking countries you’ve dreamed of, watch foreign films and addictive telenovelas, or understand a paella recommendation from the _menu del día_on a Thursday in Valencia.

Best of all, you’d be prepared for real conversations with native Spanish-speakers. The only question is: how do you find the time to practice your Spanish listening skills?

Podcasts are a great way to add a little Spanish listening practice into your day-to-day life. They are free, and can accompany any part of your day: driving a car, washing your dishes, doing laundry, working out, reading, and more.

The Fluent Show

In addition to the Spanish podcasts you’ll find in this article, check out the Fluent Show. That’s my own show, co-hosted by Lindsay Williams, where we discuss languages, learning methods, and how to live a multilingual life.Click here to listen and subscribe.

Quick Primer: How Do Podcasts Work?

If you're curious about podcasts, but not quite sure how they work, here's what you need to know:

  1. You can subscribe for free to podcasts on your phone, tablet, or computer.
  2. If you use an iPhone or iPad, go to the Podcasts app. If you're on a Mac, use theiTunes directory.
  3. On a PC or Android device, try theStitcher app for a quick and easy start.
  4. Subscribing means you'll always have the latest episode ready and waiting for you as soon as it's published.

The 9 Best Spanish Podcasts for Learners

In this article, you’ll find:

  1. Spanish Podcasts for Beginners
  2. Spanish Podcasts for Intermediate and Advanced Learners
  3. Spanish Video Resources
  4. Story-Based Shows
  5. A Special Tip for Advanced Learners

To help you target your Spanish learning goals, this list also specifies whether a podcast uses Castilian Spanish, Latin American Spanish, or offers options for both.

Spanish Podcasts for Beginners

Castilian Spanish

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Notes in Spanish

Notes in Spanish is a podcast run by Marina, a native speaker from Spain, and Ben, an Englishman. Each episode is actually a conversation between the two. There are episodes dedicated to beginners as well as intermediate and advanced learners. For beginners, the hosts also go over key vocabulary, phrases, and basic grammar points both before and after their conversations.

Since Ben is also a Spanish learner, he offers a lot of useful tips for listeners while Marina often provides corrections and points out common mistakes. They speak clearly, making it easy for beginners to follow along.

Castilian and Latin American Spanish

SpanishPod101

SpanishPod101 from InnovativeLanguage covers the basic through advanced levels of Spanish. The episodes are exciting and immersive. Plus, you can find episodes for both Castilian and Latin American Spanish along with the differences between them. There are even episodes that explain some of the regional vocabulary from places like Costa Rica, Peru, Mexico, and Spain.

The dialogues are presented by engaging hosts in a clear, concise way covering many grammatical features and cultural topics. On the website you can sign up for premium content to access spaced repetition flashcards, PDF lesson notes, and a community forum.

Spanish Podcasts for Intermediate and Advanced Learners

Castilian Spanish

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Unlimited Spanish

Unlimited Spanish with Òscar Pellus uses a unique storytelling technique based on Òscar’s method of learning Spanish through exposure and repetition. Every episode includes a quick story followed by a question and answer session that encourages listeners to practice their speaking skills as well. It’s also a great option for anyone who doesn’t care for lengthy grammar explanations.

Podcast topics include various aspects of Spanish culture, including places and food, as well as social topics and situations. When necessary Òscar touches on some relevant vocabulary and grammar, but it isn’t overwhelming. The podcast is entirely in Spanish, but if you have any trouble understanding, you can download transcripts of every episode in PDF format.

Español Automático

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Done entirely in Spanish, this podcast is meant to provide an immersive experience for intermediate to advanced learners. The host, Karo Martínez, is lively, engaging, and speaks both clearly and naturally.

There are over 100 episodes to choose from, some of which explore grammar concepts, offer tips to improve your pronunciation, or explain colloquial expressions. Other episodes talk about different parts of Spain or even how to learn Spanish with popular shows like Game of Thrones.

The Español Automático site offers episode transcripts along with additional guides and resources.

Latin American Spanish

15 Minute Spanish for Your Job

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Though this podcast is directed towards those learning Spanish for work, its main goal is to help listeners get used to and understand native, spoken Spanish.

The host, Miguel Lira, is a native Spanish speaker from Mexico and a Spanish learning coach. Each episode goes over a particular conversation exchange in Spanish, such as conversations between workers or while simply ordering coffee. Miguel, as the sole host, uses a different tone of voice for each speaker, which is both entertaining and helpful as you follow along. There are also a few episodes on cultural subjects, like The Day of the Dead in Mexico.

In addition, the website offers notes, transcripts, and other resources to help you review the conversations.

Castilian and Latin American Spanish

News in Slow Spanish

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News in Slow Spanish is an intermediate level podcast. This podcast covers world news, grammar, and expressions and slows down all the dialogue to make it easier to process what you hear. Every episode breaks down a point on grammar and vocabulary. It also lets you choose between Castilian and Latin American Spanish.

The audio is very clear and easy to follow. On the website, there are transcripts for each episode available with grammar, expressions, pronunciation, and quizzes.

Spanish Video Resources

Yabla Spanish

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Yabla is a video-based learning platform with bilingual subtitles and integrated dictionaries. The subtitles are interactive, which is a really cool concept! Check out how Yabla works in detail by reading myfull review.

Yabla is great for all levels from basic to advanced. You can check out their podcast and choose between videos from Spain and Latin America for hours of entertainment.

Story-Based Shows

Castilian Spanish

Coffee Break Spanish

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Coffee Break Spanish, a podcast from Radio Lingua Network, combines Spanish language lessons with a lot of useful information about Spanish food, culture, Spanish speaking countries, and so on.

My favourite part of the podcast is the chemistry between relaxed and charismatic host Mark from Scotland (who is fluent in Spanish) and Spanish learner Kara from Scotland. Mark guides both Kara and listeners through Spanish grammar, conversation, culture, and society.

The dialogues are presented in a clear, concise way, covering many grammatical features and cultural topics. On the website you can sign up for the premium content to access spaced repetition flashcards, PDF lesson notes, and a community forum for a subscription fee.

Latin American Spanish

Duolingo Spanish Podcast

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The Duolingo Spanish Podcast tells real-life stories from all across Latin America. Some of the stories are uplifting and inspiring while others are suspenseful and heartrending. Either way, they really make you want to hear more!

The stories are done partially in Spanish and partially in English, which makes it a great option for more advanced beginners who want to get used to spoken Spanish while still understanding what’s going on.

Advanced Learner Tip: Native Spanish Podcasts

If you’re interested in a more immersive experience, there are plenty of podcasts intended for native Spanish speakers available.

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One great option is the Radio Ambulante podcast. Radio Ambulante is a longform journalism podcast that shares real-life Latin American stories. There are stories about language, sports, education, events, and more. Plus, there are both English and Spanish transcripts available for every episode.

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If you want an easy way to access even more Spanish podcasts, go to iTunes and switch your country setting to Spain, Mexico, or any other Spanish speaking country. There’s no restriction on your switch and you’ll be able to access all podcasts in the same way that listeners from those countries can.

This article was written by Cassie Wright and me. She’s a freelance writer who loves languages. Thanks Cassie!

Looking for more Spanish resources?

Click here to get my top tips for Spanish learners.

Which podcasts do you listen to for practicing your Spanish? Leave a comment below and share your tips.

9 of the Best Podcasts for Learning Italian

podcasts italiano

Buongiorno! Who doesn’t dream of beautiful Italy: world-class landscapes, breath-taking history, outstanding food, and the culture of dolce fare niente! Well, not quite niente - which means “nothing”. There’s probably one little thing you want to try: learning Italiano!

Do you ever feel like you don’t have enough time in your busy life for learning more Italian?

Do you want to speak more like an Italian native?

Podcasts are a great way to add a little Italian listening practice into your day-to-day life. They are free, and can accompany any part of your day: driving a car, washing your dishes, doing laundry, working out, reading, and more.

Discover 9 of the best resources for other languages.

The Fluent Show

In addition to the Italian podcasts you’ll find in this article, check out the Fluent Show. That’s my own show, co-hosted by Lindsay Williams, where we discuss languages, learning methods, and how to live a multilingual life. Click here to listen and subscribe.

Quick Primer: How Do Podcasts Work?

If you’re curious about podcasts, but not quite sure how they work, here’s what you need to know:

  1. You can subscribe for free to podcasts on your phone, tablet, or computer

  2. If you use an iPhone or iPad, you can use the Podcasts app. If you’re on a Mac, use the itunes directory

  3. On a PC or Android device, try the Stitcher app for a quick and easy start

  4. Subscribing means you’ll always have the latest episode ready and waiting for you as soon as it’s published

Italian is a great language for learning by podcast, so let's dive into that top 9 list

In this article you’ll find:

  1. Italian Podcasts For Beginners
  2. Italian Podcasts For Intermediate and Advanced Learners
  3. Italian Video Resources
  4. Podcasts To Help You Learn Everyday Italian

Italian Podcasts For Beginners

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Radio Arlecchino

This is a very grammar-focused podcast, mostly in English, and focuses on making grammar points easily digestible through captivating stories and lots of dialogues. Their focus is on helping you speak. The coolest feature of each episode is a PDF transcript of the MP3 audio with notes and a discussion forum for each episode on the website.

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ItalianPod101.com (InnovativeLanguage)
 
ItalianPod101 from InnovativeLanguage covers the basic through advanced levels of Italian. The episodes are exciting and immersive. One episode I particularly enjoyed is Must-Know Italian Slang Words and Phrases - Expressions to Describe Someone You Dislike. It was one of the most humorous episodes and I learned about how colourful Italian insults can be! 

The dialogues are presented by engaging hosts in a clear, concise way covering many grammatical features and cultural topics. On the website you can sign up for premium content to access spaced repetition flashcards, PDF lesson notes, and a community forum.

Italian Podcasts For Intermediate and Advanced Learners

News in Slow Italian

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News in Slow Italian, an intermediate level podcast, discusses world news, grammar, and expressions in the form of slowed down audio. Every episode is a virtual immersion into the Italian-speaking world showing grammar and vocabulary in context. The hosts are engaging and they show you that the language is alive and vibrant and waiting for you to dive into it. 

The audio is very clear and easy to follow. On the website there are transcripts for each episode available with grammar, expressions, pronunciation, and quizzes. 

Arkos Academy Learn Italian

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Arkos Academy is mainly for the intermediate and advanced levels of learning Italian. The audio is mostly in Italian and the recordings are at a slower than normal pace, which allows you to really focus on strengthening your listening skills. There is also a lot of information on Italian culture and society, along with transcripts from each lesson on the website so that you can follow along and actively practice both your listening and reading at the same time.

As an added bonus, the Arkos Academy website offers a directory of private native teachers and excellent articles about Italy in Italian. 

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Podcast Italiano

This podcast is almost entirely in Italian and is mainly designed for intermediate learners although you can easily select your level and choose to listen to episodes that are right for you. The website includes transcripts as well as helps learners learn colloquialisms in the “Usi Colloquiali” (Colloquial Uses) section. Host Davide mixes stories from his own life with handy new vocabulary - a winning mix!

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Italiano Automatico Podcast

The Italiano Automatico podcast is great for upper intermediate and advanced learners of Italian. It’s total immersion combined with lots of interesting topics and explains idiomatic and colloquial expressions. It is the companion podcast to the popular Italian learning website Italiano Automatico by Alberto Arrighini.

Italian Video Resources

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Yabla Italian

Yabla is a video-based learning platform with bilingual subtitles and integrated dictionaries. The subtitles are interactive, which is a really cool concept! Check out how Yabla works in detail by reading my full review. One episode I particularly enjoyed is “Il mio mondo Su(r)-Reale” by Federica Reale, where she discusses how she conducts art workshops for children and adults to teach them how to create highly personalized books using recycled paper.

Yabla is great for all levels from basic to advanced, and you can check out their podcast and their videos for hours of entertainment.

Podcasts To Help You Learn Everyday Italian

30 Minute Italian

This show is ideal for learners at any level. The podcast host Cher Hale is super charming, and she provides fun, useful content for Italian learners about the language and the culture.

Cher says:

The Iceberg Project is an online experiment on how when you don’t know Italian you only see the surface of Italian culture (or the tip of the iceberg). When you get into learning the language, you’re able to deeply understand the mentality and mindset of Italian people (that is seeing the rest of the iceberg underwater). It’s about promoting understanding and compassion for Italian culture.

The show covers a variety of topics way beyond your usual textbooks. Check out Cher's episodes on How to Write a Love Letter in Italian, Phrases to Buy Jewelry in Italy, or her Tips for Navigating the Train System in Italy.

Coffee Break Italian

coffee pod italian

Coffee Break Italian, a podcast from Radio Lingua Network, combines Italian language lessons with a lot of useful information about Italian food, culture, Italian speaking countries, and so on.

My favourite part of the podcast is the chemistry between relaxed and charismatic host Mark from Scotland, native Italian speaker Francesca, and Italian learner Katie as they guide through Italian grammar, conversation, culture, and society. I particularly enjoyed several episodes, including one about where the hosts talk about where you come from, nationalities, one about learning to talk about where you live, and the names of many countries. They were very fun to work through!

The dialogues are presented by engaging hosts in a clear, concise way covering many grammatical features and cultural topics. On the website you can sign up for the premium content to access spaced repetition flashcards, PDF lesson notes, and a community forum for a subscription fee.

Advanced Learner Tip: Native Italian Podcasts

The Italian podcast world has come a long way in recent times, and these days you’ll be able to find a big array of native level content to listen to when you want to get Italian language immersion. You can choose from a full catalogue of shows on topics from politics to film reviews.

The easiest way to access native Italian language podcasts is to go to iTunes and switch your country setting to Italy, San Marino, Vatican City, or Switzerland. There’s no restriction on your switch, and you’ll be able to access all podcasts in the same way that listeners from Italy can.

italian podcasts

 

Do You Have an Italian Favourite?

If you like your podcasts in italiano, leave a comment below and share more recommendations.

This article was researched & co-written by Alex Gentry who also writes on Medium. Check him out!

9 Of The Best Podcasts For Learning French

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Do you ever find it difficult to fit French listening practice into your life?

Do you want to understand native French speakers?

Bonjour! This month in the 9 Best series, we’re going to list 9 of the best podcasts for French learners.

Podcasts are a great way to add a little French listening practice into your day-to-day life. They are free, and can accompany any part of your day: driving a car, washing your dishes, doing laundry, working out, reading, and more.

In addition to the French podcasts you’ll find in this article, check out the Fluent Show. That’s my own show, co-hosted by Lindsay Williams, where we discuss languages, learning methods, and how to live a multilingual life. Click here to listen and subscribe.

Quick Primer: How Do Podcasts Work?

If you’re curious about podcasts, but not quite sure how they work, here’s what you need to know:

  1. You can subscribe for free to podcasts on your phone, tablet, or computer

  2. If you use an iPhone or iPad, go to the Podcasts app. If you’re on a Mac, use the itunes directory

  3. On a PC or Android device, try the Stitcher app for a quick and easy start

  4. Subscribing means you’ll always have the latest episode ready and waiting for you as soon as it’s published

French is a great language for learning by podcast. There is a big selection, so I’ve gone and selected 9 of the best shows for you to discover.

Beginner Level

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Learn French With Alexa is ideal for absolute beginners. The podcast creator Alexa Polidoro emphasizes grammar heavily and it has a classroom style of learning. The audio is very crisp and clear so you can hear correct pronunciation. Alexa has a relaxed voice and does a great job of breaking down sentences into manageable chunks of phrases. If you want to start off on the right foot with grammar, go ahead and check out this podcast!

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Learn French By Podcast is a bilingual podcast in English and French. It's presented by two hosts, one French speaker speaks in French and one English speaker who explains what the French speaker said. The audio is very clear and easy to follow and the format is great for beginners and intermediate learners. It eventually progresses from basic conversations to intermediate and advanced-level dialogues about a variety of everyday topics. PDF guides are available on the website.

Intermediate/Advanced Levels

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News in Slow French is an intermediate level podcast. This podcast covers world news, grammar, and expressions and slows down all the dialogue to make it easier to process what you hear. Every episode breaks down a point on grammar and vocabulary.

On the News in Slow French website there are transcripts for each episode, plus added resources and quizzes on French grammar, expressions, pronunciation.

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One Thing In A French Day describes the daily life of author Laetitia in France. Each podcast episode covers different events in her life such as going to the bakery, shopping, going to the gym, seeing friends, among others. Her French is spoken very clearly and crisply at a regular speed and her words is easy to understand. Laetitia publishes articles every Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday. I certainly recommend this one for intermediate and advanced learners of French!

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This podcast by Radio France International (RFI) is a show that is designed for intermediate and advanced learners of French. It's a genuine news broadcast from the French radio station, but read a little slower so you can become comfortable listening to French.

The episodes each have the most important news of the day in just 10 minutes (great for those who don’t have a lot of time in the day!) and come with a free online transcript.

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The Français Authentique podcast is great for upper intermediate and advanced learners of French. It’s total immersion combined with lots of interesting topics and explains idiomatic and colloquial expressions. It is the companion podcast to the popular French learning website Français Authentique by Johan Tekfak.

Jonan is not just a super likeable host, but he also invites you to join his life and adventures by talking about them in French.

French Video Resources

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Yabla is a video-based learning platform with bilingual subtitles and integrated dictionaries. The subtitles are interactive, which is a really cool concept! Check out how Yabla works in detail by reading my full review.

Yabla is great for all levels from basic to advanced. There is a free French podcast available with plenty of videos to watch.

Story-Based Shows

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Coffee Break French, a podcast from Radio Lingua Network, combines French language lessons with a lot of useful information about French food, culture, French speaking countries, and so on.

My favourite part of the podcast is the chemistry between relaxed and charismatic host Mark from Scotland (who is fluent in French) and French learner Anna from Scotland. The segments are also great: Cultural Correspondent has great cultural advice, and Grammar Guru discusses grammar in a clear, easy-to-understand way.

FrenchPod101 from InnovativeLanguage covers any level you can think of from basic to advanced French. With enticing titles and interesting themes for each episode, you’ll never get bored.

The dialogues are presented by engaging presenters and the hosts Céline (a native speaker) and Sam (a fluent speaker) cover both cultural and grammatical aspects clearly and concisely. On the website you can sign up for the premium content to access spaced repetition flashcards, PDF lesson notes, and a community forum for a subscription fee.

Advanced Learner Tip: Native French Podcasts

The easiest way to access native French language podcasts is to go to iTunes and switch your country setting to “France”, “Belgium”, “Switzerland”, “Canada”, or any other French-speaking country.

There’s no restriction on your switch, and you’ll be able to access all podcasts in the same way that listeners from France can. One of my favourites is Whisperos, a native French podcast getting into every little detail about Game of Thrones.

Do You Have a French Favourite?

If you like your podcasts en français, leave a comment below and share more recommendations.

This article was researched & co-written by Alex Gentry who also writes on Medium. Check him out!

9 of the Best Podcasts for Learning German

German is a great language for learning by podcast. There is a big selection, so I've gone and selected 9 of the best shows for you to discover.

In this article, you'll find

  1. German Podcast Courses from Deutsche Welle
  2. Podcasts in Slow German
  3. German Video Shows
  4. Story-Based and German Culture Podcasts
  5. A tip on how to find podcasts produced by native German speakers
Read More