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. Jeff McElhannon

    I have traced my family heritage to my 5th great grandfather John McElhannon born 1752 in Londonderry Ireland. Iam very interested in all things Irish. Both sides of my familys heratige is irish.I would love to visit someday. I believe I have a lot of relatives there. Youre lessons really give me a sense of connection to the Irish people of my ancestry.I am learning slow & have only afew words so far,but Iam learning. The links you have provided to Irish t.v. & radio are great! Thank you also for the booklet The Secrets of Practicing Irish Gaelic Every Day, I am finding it very helpful.THANKS, Jeff McElhnnon

    1. Hi Jeff, thanks for spending time with us, learning with the lessons, and with the ebook you mentioned. Keep in touch.

  2. i have irish heritage some where in my family and iv always loved ireland. iv always have wanted to visit and live there and know more about ireland. but it helps that i just did a speech final for school on ireland. also the language is soo unique and i want to learn and be able to speak it like i was born knowing it but im afraid ill forget everything i learn i already know a few words like hello and how are you and gaelic but iv already forgot the rest but i guess ill learn it in time i just have to be paitent

  3. I always wanted to learn Gaelige since as far as I can remember, and I love how fluid is sounds, especially the Gaoth Dobhair and Ulster dialects. I have Irish blood from the Dempsey clan (as well as Scottish and Welsh blood), and I have a deep respect and reverence for my ancestors, which comes partly from my religion ;).
    I’m also planning on going to Ireland and staying there, perhaps after college.

  4. Maoileachlainn

    Irish Gaelic is a very melodious language with a certain very original philosophy I like very much, as every language brings the particular wisdom of its speakers.

    The first time I heard Irish Gaelic was when I heard marvellous songs of Moya Brennan and her sister Enya, with some songs of Clannad too. When I hear those marvellous songs I feel like I’m also Irish myself, though I’m from Switzerland, and my native language is French.
    Very nice picture of Irish nature btw.

    1. Very true: the way you express yourself in Irish is very often different to the equivalent in English, and gives an insight to the underlying (or intertwined) culture.

      1. Oh, thanks about the picture too. It was about springtime in Conamara, and a lovely bright day. Great driving around.

  5. My Grandad moved from Ireland to Austalia in the 60’s. I loved my Grandad very much and I remember as a child hearing that my uncle could speak Gaelic. I have always loved Ireland and wish I’d spent more than a week there when I was 10. I hope to go back one day as I only got to see the town my Grandad was from (he passed when I was 7) and for the life of me I can’t remember it’s name only that it started with D and isn’t Dublin. I think it was my love of my Grandad that made me hold onto and love my Irish heritage so much that now I thought it would be good to learn the native language.

    1. Steph, thanks for sharing your story. A couple of towns that I can think of: Dundalk, Drogheda, Dingle.

      Thanks for sticking around, hope you get to learn lots with us.

  6. I’ll do my best not taking up all your hard memory capacity…

    After my grandparents passing, I was cleaning out their house with more than 66 years of accumulations (they married, both at 19, died in their mid-eighties, same house). I found a picture on the wall with the name O hArractain, fada over the “O” and last “a”, the name written under what I found later is a coat of arms. I knew there was much Irish/Scottish background along with some German–my grandfather spoke that language occasionally. This was before I had access to the ‘Net, but limited research said the name is/was common around County Galway. That sparked the first interest.

    I have most of the singer Enya’s CD’s, and found when she sings about something close to her heart, she says it in the Irish. Curious, I found a couple Irish translation sites and went to work. I’m almost sorry I did that as I found she sings about the loss of her grandparents in a way similar to how I lost mine. Same reactions. I can usually handle listening to “Smaointe” but sometimes I have to skip it.

    On a lighter note, I’m going to Ireland for the middle weeks of this July. Short version, I was offered several places to go and I picked Ireland, so I’m being sent to Dublin. In 61 years I’ve never been outside the States; this is my first international trip. I like saying I’ll meet friends at this Convention I don’t yet know. One way I’ll do this is by learning as much Irish as I can from now til then. I’ll be traveling the city and countryside, and I want to get as close as I can to these my newfound friends. I know this will help.

    Thank you, Eoin. Siochan leat

    1. Hi Marc, it would be nice to hear your experiences here after you come back from Dublin. Did you enjoy it, who did you meet? In the meantime, go raibh maith agat (thanks) for sharing your story above.

  7. I’m from County Tyrone but have lived in London for almost 25 years. I always hated languages when I was at school but as I get older I regret not having learned my mother tongue.

    1. I think a lot of people say the same, Mark. But surely better late than never, and now it’s in your power to keep at it. Maith an fear, well done.

  8. I want to learn more of the Irish language simply because I love Ireland and its people, the best place in the world for me ! I have been studying the history and politics of Ireland for about 6 years now and whilst visiting Co Kerry and Co Cork and especially Co Galway where many areas only have signposts etc in Irish, I was lost ! So if I am fortunate to be able to visit again I will be able to read more and practice the language by talking to the locals. I have found the Irish speakers in Ireland very enthusiastic regarding my efforts, although I don’t know much, and the people I have asked have always been extremely helpful…the Irish people are always happy to help, beautiful country, lovely people…..simple as that. Thankyou my Celtic brothers and sisters, Angel.

      1. Thankyou Eoin…in answer to your question am I planning my next trip yet…I am ALWAYS planning my next trip !!!! but health issues have postponed it…..but I will be back the first chance I get…Afterall, Ireland is where my heart lives. Angel.

  9. Charles E Grove III

    It’s a beautiful language & I’ve always been interested in learning it. The funny part is, I already knew some without knowing it. If you’ve seen an old Droopy cartoon, you’ve heard some without knowing it. I also speak with another ham radio operator in Cork,Ireland(where my roots are)& we have a blast on the air. There is a big difference between Cork,Donegal, & Londonderry! I have to really pay attention ’cause they talk so fast up north.

    1. They are fast talkers alright 😉 So I’m interested… how did you hear about the language in the first place? Was it always something you just knew about?

  10. I’m about 99% Irish from the US, so I just felt this real connection. I want to visit there a lot, and was thinking about going there for college. I thought that learning another language would be fun, so I chose Irish. Thanks for helping!

  11. My whole family is from County Clare, Ireland, and I’ve been meaning to learn Gaelic for years, and am just now doing it! All my friends here in the U.S. love hearing me share what I’ve learned with Bitesize Irish Gaelic.

    1. County Clare is where I grew up, so couldn’t say a bad word about it 🙂 Great that you’re sharing what you’re learning.

  12. I plan on visiting Ireland in the future and would like to speak and understand the language. My Great Grandfather came from Ireland to South Africa. My Great Great Grandfather was Thomas (Lannigan) Walsh (Songs of The Wexford Coast) This has also sparked the interest in the language.