Our blog serves as regular motivation for you to speak the Irish language. Find posts about culture, videos where you find how to say certain phrases, and member interviews to tell you about their experience of learning the language.

Why Are You Interested in Learning to Speak Irish Gaelic?

Irish Gaeltacht
Irish Gaeltacht
Irish-speaking area in Conamara, County Galway, Ireland.

Little you may know it – you’re sharing a journey in the Irish language (also called Gaelic or Irish Gaelic) with thousands of others worldwide.

We come from different backgrounds

Perhaps you don’t speak a word of Irish yet.

Or maybe you speak cúpla focal (a couple of words).

You might even be a lapsed speaker coming back to the language.

Why do you want to speak the Irish language?

Please reply below, and share with us why you want to speak Irish.

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278 thoughts on “Why Are You Interested in Learning to Speak Irish Gaelic?”

  1. brendan thompson

    i would love to be speak a few sentences. my mum was from dublin and my dad from co antrim. although i was born in coventry i have allways classed myself to be irish. my 2 week holiday in the 70’s as a kid were spent in the middle of dublin in my grand parents small flat in a rough area of ringsend. my school friends were going to parts of spain or france or even disney land. i would never have swapped with them though. now im married with 2 kids i try to take them once a year so they can see all there cousins and see there roots. one last thing, i sing in an irish group so it would be nice to introduce a song in irish…..god bless

    1. Brendan, do you sing any songs in Irish, in that group?

      Sounds like you remember that holiday well. Nice to hear you’re continuing with the tradition coming to Ireland.

  2. Elizabeth Sanford

    I do not know alot about my background because my two brothers and i were adopted. I have always felt a strong connection to ireland and i do know that i have some irish in me. I have always thought that the irish language was a beautiful language and have wanted to learn it. When i looked online and saw the bitesize irish gaelic lessons, i was overjoyed and wanted to start right away. Now that i have learned some of the language, i can’t stop! I love it so much.

  3. Luis Miguel Diaque

    I am not Irish at all and do not even have a drop of Irish blood (that I know of) nor any particular connection to Ireland… I am actually American of Spanish descent. I don’t even know why, but I have always been interested in Irish history and culture; language is a part of that. I studied history in college and Ireland was the focus of my major. Even after graduation I have retained my interest in Irish history and culture… that is all. Someday, if I ever have money, I would like to visit Ireland. Go raibh maith agaibh.

    1. Hi Luis, go raibh maith agat for sharing your interest. It’s great to hear that, even with your Spanish heritage, you’re interested in learning the Irish language (and its culture). I think many Irish people would doubt that this was even possible! Well done.

  4. Dalton Blankenship

    I want to learn for several reasons. First, because on 20 July 2012, if all goes as planned, my husband and I will land in Dublin for a bus ride into Limerick. We are to stay 10 days in Ireland with trips to Wexford, Waterford, Dingle, back to Dublin, all the way up to Carrick-Fergus, which is our sister City and to County Kilkenny—the latter as a special dispensation to me, as that is where my ancestors are said to have been.
    Second, the first time I ever heard what I later found to be called Celtic music, I felt as though I was home. I couldn’t describe it any other way. It drew me into itself. I knew my name was Kelley, but at the time, I had no idea I was of Irish heritage. As I began to learn what heritage meant in school, I was told that 7 brothers of the Kelley clan immigrated to the USA—but I didn’t know when, nor from where. This past year, I found them, and also that only one married and had children. How fortunate for me that he did!
    Third, I think it rude for anyone to go to another county where another language is spoken and not have had the courtesy to at least learn how to say a few phrases in the native tongue. I think is shows a bit of courage (and probably a sense of humor) to at least try to be able to introduce one’s self, say hello and how are you and perhaps dicker a bit about the cost of what one hopes to buy!
    I have a brain injury, so learning anything new is a bit of an issue, but I am determined to have a few phrases with which to great my new friends when I arrive. As our tour guides are native born (one still lives in County Wicklow but travels frequently to the US and is a dear friend; one now lives here, and may actually listen to my feeble attempts prior to the trip), I am sure they will be patient with me.
    Thank you so much Eoin for all the years of toil to bring this wonderful resource to us! I am having great fun, if nothing else. And the world needs more of that, to be sure.

    1. Thanks for sharing your background. It seems like it was a gradual realization for you about your heritage. And congratulations on arranging the trip.

      A word of warning, arriving into Dublin airport will expose you to real Irish culture and organizational skills. What I mean (jokingly) is, embrace yourself 🙂

      As soon as you’re in Dublin airport, you’ll see bilingual signs with Irish written on them. However, you really will need to seek out Irish to be able to hear it. Usually, you’ll hear English spoken. Dingle/An Daingean is your best bet. Sneak into some of the more non-tourist looking bars, and you might very well hear the local banter. I did last time in Dingle, in a pub called O’Flaherty’s (Ua Fhlaithbheartaigh) http://g.co/maps/vrtsj

  5. I want to earn because my great grandfather came to the US from Belfast on my mother’s side and then my dad’s grandparents came from the south near Dublin. So it just feels natural that I learn. No one in my family knows it anymore but I just love the sound of it.

  6. I want to learn Irish due to my heavily Irish background, after alot of family research i found that many irish surnames makeup my ancestors. I even learned that my own surname, Collins came from the Ó Coileáin who were originally thought to be direct descendants of Cú Chulainn himself.

      1. Iv’e read about it, it said that much of that has been lost but that the connection was the cause of Ó Coileáin being the name, it meaning “young welp or hound” just as Cú Chulainn means “Culann’s Hound” and was known as “the hound of Ulster”.
        Dogs were the connection, I’m a bit of a mythology/history junkie.

  7. I want to learn Gaelic because both sides of my family (grandparents) came here from Ireland. Mother’s side is from County Cork and father’s side is from Belfast. My grandparents passed when I was young and my parents didn’t teach my sisters and I Gaelic. I’ve been to Ireland and I love listening to the Irish language. I want to learn to speak it, understand it as it is part of my heritage.

    1. Janet, you have a great head-start having already visited and heard the language. That’s good motivation, keep going.

  8. I wanted to learn for a number of reasons, mainly because a) I am Irish, b) I went to Ireland last fall, heard someone speaking Gaelic and wanted to learn, and c) because I want to incorporate it into a story I’m writing.

  9. I spent a month last summer in County Clare and fell in love with all things Irish. I’d like to go to Trinity to get my masters in Public and Cultural History (of Ireland) and every bit of Gaelic helps. Funny story: my first words I learned in Irish Garlic were “go mal” whilst driving round Dingle!

    1. Yeah, there’s lots of Irish road signs around Dingle. Although some locals seem to have taken offense to the law where it be only signposted as “An Daingean” and not “Dingle” 🙂

  10. Daniel Ricciardi

    I have some feeling related to celtic músic and irish gaelic .The way it sounds seems familiar to me even though I don’t know about it .I suppose I Just like it

  11. My grandparents came from Achill to America and did not teach their children Irish. I’ve always felt like not knowing Irish was like missing a part of me. I’ve been to Ireland a number of times and love the country and the people, knowing Irish helps me feel connected with our people still there. And it’s way cool!

    1. I hear Achill is a lovely place (must admit I haven’t been yet). I’m curious, did you grow up always knowing about the existence of the Irish language?

  12. Wont say in case she reads this

    The reason I am learning Irish is that my girlfriend is Irish and I want to a. learn more about her culture and b. hopefully be able to ask her to marry me in Irish 🙂