Travelling in Italy – asking for directions

Exploring Italy can be an adventure, but if you want to be sure to see everything on your list, you need to know how to ask for directions in Italian and understand the directions you are given. After all, if you don’t know how to understand what you’re told, you might miss the very things you hoped to see. Whenever you need to find something, the first thing to do is ask for assistance.

To get help you can say:

Per favore può darmi alcune indicazioni?Can you give me some directions, please?
Mi scusi, mi servono delle informazioni, per favore. – Excuse me; I need some information, please.
If you are really having a hard time finding a place, you might ask the person to show you where to go by saying:
Può mostrarmi dov’è? Can you show me where that is?

The following words can be used when asking for or receiving directions in Italy.
ovest – west
giri a destrayou turn right
giri a sinistrayou turn left
va sempre dirittogo straight ahead
a destraon the right
a sinistraon the left
una cartinaa street map
all’angoloon the corner
davanti ain front of
via / strada / vialestreet/road/avenue
accanto anext to
qui vicinonear here
di fianco aalongside
è proprio qui vicinoit’s really close by
lontanofar away
è lontano?is it far away
va fino in fondo alla viago to the end of the street
dietro all’angoloaround the corner

Asking for directions

The following phrases are typical of asking for directions in Italy.
• Scusi, sa dov’è la stazione? (Excuse me, do you know where the train station is?)
• Scusi, c’è una farmacia qui vicino? (Excuse me, is there a pharmacy nearby?)
• Dove posso trovare una cartina della città? (Where can I find a map of the city?)
• Non troviamo il nostro albergo. (We can’t find our hotel.)
• In quale via si trova il teatro? (What street is the theatre on?)
• Come arrivo al museo? (How do I get to the museum?)
• Io sono a piedi. (I’m on foot.)
• È lontano? (Is it far?)
• Dovrei prendere l’autobus? (Should I take a bus?)
• Quale numero di autobus? (What bus number?)
• Dov’è la metropolitana? (Where’s the subway?)
• Dov’è l’ostello della gioventù più vicino? (Where is the youth hostel around here?)
• Dov’è la banca più vicina? (Where is the nearest bank?)
• Ci siamo persi. (We’re lost.)
• Mi scusi, siamo vicini al Palazzo Ducale? (Excuse me, are we near the Palazzo Ducale?)
• Scusi, quanto dista la Galleria degli Uffizi? (Excuse me, how far is the Uffizi Gallery?)
• Dista duecento metri. (It’s about 200 meters away)

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