Learn Croatian : How To Say (?) In Croatian

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Learn Croatian: How To Say (?) In Croatian

Guide To What's Inside

This is part two of your guide to Croatian phrases (part 1 is here) with pronunciation; that’ll help you sound like a local for your upcoming Croatian holiday. Learning Croatian is tough – trust me I know (here is proof). In part one of the learn Croatian series, we covered the very basics. Now let’s learn the really important phrases. The kind that’ll help you when you want to order a drink at the bar or head to the local market.

Eating In Croatia

Food In Slavonia - Kulen

It’s a fact that eating in Croatia is practically a national pastime. We do it all day, and you can never say no to food. That would just be seen as rude. Seriously, if your host offers you a drink or snack – and even if you just ate the biggest meal of your life, you should agree. To get an idea of some of the food, you’ll get to try while on holidays, check out my Croatian Cuisine section. Don’t blame me if you suddenly get hungry…

Inevitably you’ll reach the point where you will fear that undoing your button on your pants won’t be enough and that you may just actually explode. At this point, you can reach for the phrase Ne mogu više, hvala!. Which means you can’t take anymore. Just do not overuse this phrase or use it after just one slice of cake and a rakija, as they may not believe you.

Learn Croatian: How To Say (?) In Croatian

Language in Croatia: Alphabet
Language in Croatia: Alphabet

Hello

Bok (bohk)

 

Good Morning/ Good Evening / Good Night

Dobro jutro (DOH-broh YOO-troh)

Dobra večer(DOH-brah VEH-chehr)

Laku noć (LAH-koo nohtch)

How are you?

Kako ste? (KAH-koh steh?) Formal

Kako si? (KAH-koh see?) Informal

Fine, thanks.

Dobro, hvala. (DOH-broh, HVAH-lah.)

And you?

Vi? (Vee?) Formal

Ti? (Tee?) Informal

Please / Yes, please

Molim (MOH-leem)

Da, molim. (DAH, MOH-leem)

Thank you / Thank you very much

Hvala (HVAH-lah)

Puno hvala (Puh-noh HVAH-lah.)

You’re welcome

Nema na čemu (NEH-mah nah cheh-moo)

Goodbye

Doviđenja (Daw-vee-je-nya)

Bye

Bok (bohk)

See you soon

Vidimo se uskoro (veedeemoh seh ooskohroh)

Yes

Da (Dah)

No

Ne (Neh)

Excuse me

Oprostite (Oh-pROH-stee-teh)

I’m sorry / Sorry / Pardon me

Žao mi je (ZHA-oh mee yeh)

Oprostite (Oh-pROH-stee-teh)

Oprostite (Oh-pROH-stee-teh)

What is your name?

Kako se zoveš? (KAH-koh seh ZOH-vehsh?)

I’m… / My name is… / I am called…

Ja sam (Yah sahm…)

Zovem se…(ZOH-vehm seh…)

Zovu me…(ZOH-voo meh…)

Nice to meet you

Drago mi je (DRAH-goh mee yeh).

Where are you from?

Odakle si? (OH-dah-kleh see?)

I’m from…

Ja sam iz…(Yah sahm eez)

How old are you?

Koliko imaš godina? (KOH-lee-koh ee-mash goh-dee-nah?)

I am (x) years old

Imam (x) godina. (EE-mahm…god-ee-nah).

I (don’t) like…

Ja (ne) volim…(Yah (neh) voh-leem)

Language Difficulties

Do you speak…?

Govorite li…? (GOH-voh-ree-teh lee…?)

I (don’t) understand

Ne razumijem. (NEH RAH-zoo-mee-yehm.)

I speak a little…

Govorim malo.. (GOH-voh-reem mah-loh)..

I (don’t) speak…

Ne govorim…(Neh GOH-voh-reem…)

Could you please speak a little slower?

Možete li molim vas govoriti malo sporije? (MOH-zheh-teh lee

MOH-leem vas GOH-voh-ree-tee mah-loh spoh-ree-yeh?)

Could you write that down?

Možete li to napisati? (MOH-zheh-teh lee toh nah-pee-sah-tee?)

Could you repeat that?

Možete li to ponoviti? (MOH-zheh-teh lee toh poh-noh-vee-tee?)

How do you say…?

Kako kažete…? (KAH-koh kah-zhe-teh…?)

What does… mean?

Što…znači? (SHTOH zhnah-chee?)

What time is it?

Koliko je sati? (KOH-lee-koh yeh sahtee?)

It’s (six) o’clock.

(Šest) je sati. (She-sht yeh sah-tee.)

Shopping & Money

Language in Croatia: Croatian Kuna Coins - Chasing the Donkey
Language in Croatia: Bring Kuna, not Euro

How much is this?

Koliko ovo košta? (KOH-lee-koh oh-voh koh-shtah?)

I’m looking for…

Tražim…(TRAH-zheem…)

I would like…

Želim… (ZHE-leem)…

Can I pay by credit card?

Mogu li platiti kreditnom karticom? (MOH-goo lee PLAH-tee-tee KREH-deet-nohm KAHR-tee-tsohm?)

Could I see this/that one?

Mogu li pogledati ovo / ono? (MOH-goo lee POH-gleh-dah-teeh-voh/oh-noh?)

Do you have this in small/large/medium?

Imate li ovo u maloj/velikoj/srednjoj? (EE-mah-teh lee oh-voh oo mah-loy/veh-lee-koy/srehd-nyoy?)

Do you have anything cheaper?

Imate li nešto jeftinije? (EE-mah-teh lee NEH-shtoh YEH-ftee-nee-yeh?)

It’s too expensive

Preskupo je. (PREH-skoo-poh yeh).

I’ll give you… for it.

Dat ću ti..za to. (DAHT choo tee zah toh).

Where can I exchange money?

Gdje mogu razmijeniti novac? (Gdyeh MOH-goo rahz-MEE-yeh-nee-tee NOH-vahts?)

Travel Croatia Local Tip: Bus Travel Language in Croatia: Alphabet
Language in Croatia: Learn how to ask for directions

Transportation

A one-way/return ticket to… please.

Jednosmjernu/povratnu kartu za..molim. (YEHD-noh-smyehr-noo/POH-vraht-noo ka-rtoo zah..MOH-leem.)

Here’s my passport.

Ovdje je moja putovnica. (OH-vdyeh yeh mo-ya POO-toh-vnee-tsa.)

What time does the bus/train/plane/ferry from… arrive/depart?

U koliko sati autobus/vlak/avion/trajekt iz…dolazi/polazi? (OO KOH-lee-koh saht-ee ow-toh-boos/vlahk/ah-vee ohn/trah-yekt eez…doh-lah-zee/poh-lah-zee?)

Which platform/gate/terminal?

Koji peron/izlaz/pristanište? (KOH-yee peh-rohn/eez-lahz/prees-tah-nee-shteh?)

Is the bus/train/plane direct?

Ide li autobus/vlak/avion direktno? (EE-deh lee ow-toh-boos/vlahk/ah-vee-ohn dee-rehk-thnoh?)

Do I have to change buses/trains?

Moram li mijenjati autobuse/vlakove? (MOH-rahm lee MEE-yeh-nyah-tee owtoh-boo-seh/vlahk-ohveh?)

Do I need a seat reservation?

Trebam li rezervirati sjedalo? ( Treh-bahm lee reh-zehr-vee-rah-tee syeh-dah-loh?)

Is this seat taken?

Je li ovo sjedalo zauzeto? (Yeh lee oh-voh syeh-dah-loh zah-oo-zeh-toh?)

When is the next train/bus/minibus/ferry to…?

Kad ide idući vlak/autobus/minibus/trajekt za…? (Kahd ee-deh ee-doo-chee vlahk/ow-toh-boos/mee-nee boos/trah-yehkt zah…?)

Could you call me a taxi?

Možete li mi pozvati taxi? (MOH-zheh-teh lee mee POH-zvah- tee tah-xee?)

I’d like to go to…

Želim ići u…(ZHEH-leem ee-chee oo…)

Can you let me know when to get off?

Možete li mi reći kada izaći? (MOH-zheh-teh lee mee reh-chee kah-dah ee-zah-chee?)

 

Directions

How do I get to…?

Kako doći do…? (KAH-koh doh-chee doh…?)

It’s on the left/on the right/straight ahead/at the corner.

Lijevo je/desno je/ravno naprijed/iza ugla. (LEE-yeh-voh yeh/deh-snoh yeh/rah-vnoh nah-pree-yehd/ee-za oo-glah.)

How far is…?

Koliko je daleko? (KOH-lee-koh yeh dah-leh-koh?)

Where is the closest bank/post office/exchange office?

Gdje je najbliža banka/pošta/mjenjačnica? (Gdyeh yeh nay-blee-zhah bah-nkah/poh-shtah/myeh-nyah-chnee-tsa?)

Where can I find tourist information?

Gdje mogu naći turističke informacije? (Gdyeh moh-goo nah-chee too-ree-stee-chkeh ee-nfo-rmah-tseeyeh?)

Do you have a map?

Imate li kartu? (EE-mah-teh lee kah-rtoo?)

Can you show me that on the map?

Možete li mi to pokazati na karti? (MOH-zheh-teh lee mee toh POH-kah-zah-tee nah kah-rtee?)

Where is the (add nationalality here) embassy/consulate?

Gdje je (x) ambasada/konzulat? (Gdyeh yeh (doh-day nah-tsee-oh-nahl-noh-st oh-vdyeh) ahm-bah-sah-dah/kohn-zoo-laht?

Eating & Drinking

Can you recommend a good restaurant?

Možete li preporučiti dobar restoran? (MOH-zheh-teh lee preh-poh-roo-chee-tee doh-bahr reh-stoh-rahn?)

Can we have a non smoking table?

Možemo li dobiti stol za nepušače? (MOH-zheh-moh lee doh-bee-tee stohl zah neh-poo-shah-cheh?)

There are two/three/four of us.

Ima nas troje/četvero. (EE-mah nahs trohyeh/cheh-tveh-roh.)

What would you recommend?

Što biste preporučili? (SHTOH bee-steh preh-poh-roo-chee- lee?)

What are some local specialties?

Koji su neki lokalni specijaliteti? (KOH-yee soo neh-kee lohk-ahl-nee spets-ee-yahl-ee-teht-ee?)

Could I see the menu, please?

Mogu li vidjeti meni, molim? (MOH-goo lee vee-dyeh-tee meh-nee, MOH-leem?)

A beer/coffee/tea, please

Pivo/kavu/čaj, molim. (PEE-voh/KAH-voo/CH-ay MOH-leem.) Find out about the types of tea and coffee on offer here.

Could I get the bill, please. / The check, please.

Mogu li dobiti račun, molim. / Račun, molim. (MOH-goo lee doh-bee tee rah-choon, MOH-leem./ Rah-choon. MOH-leem

I’m allergic to…

Alergičan sam na…(Ah-lehr-gee-chahn sahm nah…)

That was delicious!

Bilo je ukusno! (BEE-loh yeh oo-koo-snoh!)

This isn’t what I ordered.

Ovo nije to što sam naručio. (OH-voh nee-yeh toh shtoh sahm nah-roo-chee-oh.

Can I buy you a drink?

Mogu li ti kupiti piće? (MOH-goo lee tee koo-pee tee PEE-cheh?)

Let’s have another!

Uzmimo još jednom! (OO-zmee-moh yosh yehd-nohm!)

Sightseeing

Are there guided tours?

Ima li tura s vodičem? (EE-mah lee too-rah s voh-dee-Chehm?)

What is the entrance fee?

Koliko košta ulaznica? (KOH-lee-koh koh-shtah-oo-lahz-nee-tsa?)

What is that building?

Što je ta zgrada? (SHTOH yeh tah zgrah-dah?

Is it open on Sundays?

Je li otvoreno nedjeljom? (Yeh lee oh-tvoh-reh-noh nehd ye-lyohm?)

What’s on at the cinema/theatre tonight?

Što igra u kinu/kazalištu/večeras? (SHTOH ee-grah oo kee-noo/kah-zahl-ee-shtoo/oh-peh-ree veh-che-rahs?)

That’s a beautiful church/cathedral/building.

To je prekrasna crkva/katedrala/zgrada. (Toh yeh preh- krahs-nah cr-kvah/kah-teh-drah-lah/zgrah-dah.)

What is there to see around here?

Što ovdje ima za razgledati? (SHTOH oh-vdjeh ee-mah zah rah-zgleh-dah-tee?)

Accommodations

What is an inexpensive hotel you can recommend?

Koji povoljan hotel možete preporučiti? (KOH-yee poh-voh-lyahn hoh-tehl MOH-zheh-teh preh-poh-roo-chee- tee?)

I have a reservation.

Imam rezervaciju. (EE-mahm reh-zehr-vats-ee-yoo).

Do you have any rooms?

Imate li soba? (EE-mah-teh lee SOH-bah?)

Could I see the room?

Mogu li vidjeti sobu? (MOH-goo lee vee-dyeh-tee soh- boo?)

I’d like to stay for… nights.

Želim ostati…noći. (ZHEH-leem oh-stah-tee…noh- chee.)

Does that include breakfast?

Da li to uključuje doručak? (DAH lee toh oo-klyoo-choo-yeh doh-roo-chahk?)

Is there anywhere I can leave luggage?

Mogu li negdje ostaviti prtljagu? (MOH-goo lee nehg- dyeh oh-stah-vee-tee prt-lyah-goo?)

When do I have to check out?

Kada se moram odjaviti? (KAH-dah seh moh-rahm ohd-yah-vee-tee?)

The … in my room doesn’t work.

…u mojoj sobi ne radi. (…oo moh-yoy soh-bee neh rah-dee.)

Could I get a different room?

Mogu li dobiti drugu sobu? (MOH-goo lee doh-bee-tee droo-goo soh-boo?)

Is there a restaurant here?

Ima li ovdje restoran? (EE-mah lee oh-vdyeh reh-stoh- rahn?)

Difficult Situations & Emergencies

Help! / Can you help me?

U pomoć! / Možete li mi pomoći? (OO-poh-mohtch! / MOH- zheh-teh lee mee poh-motch-ee?)

Please come with me – it is an emergency/very urgent.

Molim vas, pođite sa mnom – vrlo je hitno (MOH-leem vahs poh-dyee-teh sah mnohm – vrloh yeh heetnoh.)

I’ve lost (my keys)

Izgubio sam (moje ključeve). (EEZ-goo-bee-oh sahm moyeh klyoo-cheh-veh)

I need a doctor/dentist/police officer

Trebam doktora/zubara/policajca. (TREH-bahm doh- ktoh-rah/zuhb-arah/poh-lee-tsay-tsah).

Is there pharmacy nearby?

Ima li apoteka u blizini? (EE-mah lee ah-poh-teh-kah oo blee-zee-nee?)

Can I use your phone?

Mogu li se poslužiti vašim telefonom? (MOH-goo lee seh poh-sloo-zhee-tee vah-sheem teh-leh-foh-nohm?)

Call the police/ambulance!

Zovite policiju/hitnu! (ZOH-vee-teh poh-lee-tsee-yoo/heet-noo!)

Leave me alone!

Ostavite me na miru! (OHS-tah-vee-teh meh nah MEE-roo!)

 

Time To Learn Croatian

Croatian is a tough language. Trust me; I have been (trying to) learn Croatian for almost a year now. Everyone will tell you just how hard the language is to master – most Croatian’s will even agree. But it’s not hard to learn a few basic Croatian phrases.

In this post, I will teach you some basic phrases you can use every day while on holidays in Croatia.

Croatian letters are a little different to those in the English alphabet. As you can see, there are quite a few that are the same, and there are some that are entirely different like č, ž, and Lj as examples. You will also notice that some English letters are not there like X and Q.

The spelling of Croatian words is (mostly) phonetic. Therefore words are written as they are pronounced. Which makes things a little easier, but….. there are a bunch of exceptions. But let’s not worry about that for now.

For now, let me tell you how to say everyday Croatian phrases that’ll help you on your Croatian holiday.

Informal And Formal

The Croatian language have both formal and informal forms which are a little tricky. Essentially, you need to use the formal form of a word when speaking to people you do not know and with those who are older than you, as a form of respect.

I often forget and blurt out the informal form of the word being used. Lucky for me my family and friends are forgiving and are just happy that I’m doing my best at learning the language.

In my experience, Croatians appreciate foreigners making an attempt to use the language, mistakes and all, so when visiting here are a few words to get you started.

Croatian Phrases: Everyday Croatian greetings

Hello

Bok (bohk)

How are you?

Kako ste? (kah-koh steh?) Formal

Kako si? ( kah-koh see?) Informal

I’m fine, thank you

Ja sam dobro, hvala (doh-broh sahm, hva-lah)

Nice to meet you

Drago mi je (dra-goh mee yeh)

Good morning

Dobro jutro (doh-broh you-troh)

Good afternoon

Dobar dan (doh-bahr dahn)

Good evening

Dobra večer (doh-brah ve-cher)

Good night

Laku noć (laa-koo notch)

Goodbye

Doviđenja or Bok (doh-vee-jen-yah / bok)

Being polite in Croatian

Please

Molim (moh-limb)

Thank you / Thank you very much

Hvala / Hvala lijepa (hva-lah / hva-lah lee-pah)

You’re welcome

Nema na čemu (neh-mah na che-moo)

Yes

Da (da)

No

Ne (ne)

Excuse me / Sorry

Oprostite (oh-pro-sti-teh)

I’m sorry

Žao mi je (zhow mee yeah)

A little chit-chat in Croatian

What is your name?

Kako se zovete? (kak-koh seh zoh-ve-teh)

My name is …

Zovem se … (zoh-vhem se ..)

I am ..

Ja sam … (yah sahm …)

I speak a little Croatian

Govorim malo Hrvatski (go-voh-reem ma-low hurv-ahts-kee)

I can’t speak Croatian

Ne govorim Hrvatski (neh goh-voh-reem hurv-ahts-kee)

Do you speak English?

Govorite li engleski? (goh-voh-ree-the lee en-glees-kee)

Is there someone here who speaks English?

Govori li ovdje netko engleski? (goh-voh-ree lee oh-vdyeh neh-tjo en-gless-kee)

Want more?

Here loads more phrases for you to sound like a local on your next Vacation to Croatia.

Croatian Swearing

Not for everyone, but you can check some phrases you won’t find in your travel guide – also known as Croatian swear words – just don’t say these around the elderly or in church. And don’t blame me if you get in trouble for using them.

For more advanced level swear words check out Croatian swear words part II and Croatian swear words part III.

So many people speak English here in Croatia, so never fear you do not have to learn Croatian to enjoy your holiday. But do try one or two of these Croatian phrases – you’ll really make your hosts day!

If you’d like to more phrases, you can find a bunch here. And if you’re like me and you plan to live in Croatia and so desperately want to pass the citizenship test, let’s share tips on how we can master the language.

What other key phrases would you like to know while on holidays in Croatia? Let me know in the comments, and I’ll be sure to add it to part 2.

The language in Croatia is tough and my brain hurts – does yours? What so you think, will this help you feel more local when you travel Croatia next time?

Looking for more on the Croatian Language?

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Comments (11)

  1. Your blog. Fantastic and your language etc guides so helpful for me. Thank You. We have visited Croatia a few times. We are coming up for retirement and work will be no more. We are very seriously considering moving to Croatia. What a beautiful country along with the people who seem to be so friendly and calm.

    I wish you well with your adventures.

  2. And here I am to say Thank You again!! I didn’t look to see if I’d gotten a response from you regarding language sites, and I I’d say you took my question to heart! When I do get to Croatia, I sure hope I have the privilege of meeting you (and your family)!
    Your blog/site is a wonderful and very interesting and enjoyable one indeed! Your love of ‘all things Croatian’ come shining brightly through for all of us to see and feel! Keep up the great work. Hvala!! <3

    1. Yes, you did inspire me that is for sure! Do let us know if one day we can meet. I appreciate your very kind words on my blog – VERY MUCH.

  3. Puno hvala!

    There are some great resources online for learning Croatian too! Youtube has some good videos with pronunciation guides, and Netflix has some Serbian films with English subtitles. Both are useful for me, since I need to find ways to practice when I’m far, far away from Croatia! 🙂

  4. Wow, that’s a whole lot of information.

    I really like languages (I have a word addiction) and will study this more at a different time.

    Part 3 should be bad words 😉

  5. Thank you for your attempt SJ! I am actually in Vrsar right now and I have no idea how to even say it since it seems there is at least one vowel missing in the name… 🙂
    But for some reason everyone here says Dober Dan for hello, which is exactly the same what they said in Slovenia. While this is strange and while I have no idea how to actually pronounce words, it’s even stranger that literally every person seems to not only speak some English, but actually German. That really makes travelling Croatia way too easy… 🙂

    1. You are so very welcome!! The lack of vowels is a killer for me – I am glad to know that I am not the only one. And yes, the Dobar and Dober is a dialect thing. There are so many changes in the language from place to place. For eg: Where is in Croatian is’ ‘Gdje je’, yet where I live they just say ‘dije’ … and I can make you a list so long. But yes lucky for you and me the use of English and German is awesome. Hope you had a fab time in Croatia.

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