Guide: How to Say Carousel in Mandarin

Welcome to this comprehensive guide on how to say “carousel” in Mandarin! Whether you’re planning to visit a theme park, discuss childhood memories, or simply expand your vocabulary, this guide will provide you with all the information you need. We’ll explore both formal and informal ways to express “carousel” in Mandarin, highlighting regional variations when necessary. So let’s dive in!

Formal Terms for Carousel

When using Mandarin in a more formal context, such as an educational setting or official communication, you can refer to a carousel as:

  1. 旋转木马 (xuánzhuǎn mùmǎ): The most common and widely recognized term for carousel in Mandarin. It directly translates to “rotating wooden horse.” This term is suitable for all Mandarin speakers and understood throughout China and other Mandarin-speaking regions.
  2. 转马木马 (zhuǎn mǎ mùmǎ): This term is less commonly used than “旋转木马” but still accepted as a formal way to express carousel. It literally means “rotating horse wooden horse.”

Informal and Regional Variations

In informal conversations or when speaking with friends and family, you can opt for more relaxed and playful terms for carousel. These variations may vary regionally, so let’s take a look:

1. 包围马

This term, pronounced as “bāowéi mǎ,” is commonly used in Northern China, particularly in Beijing. It translates to “surrounded horse” and refers to the carousel’s circular structure where decorative horses are placed.

2. 摩天轮

Although “摩天轮” (mótiānlún) typically refers to a Ferris wheel, this term is sometimes used loosely to describe a carousel in certain regions. Its direct translation is “sky touching wheel.” While not universally recognized as carousel, it might still be used in casual conversations.

3. 转转乐

In some parts of Taiwan, you may come across the term “转转乐” (zhuǎn zhuǎn lè). This term translates to “rotating bliss” and can be used to refer to a carousel. It carries a cheerful connotation, emphasizing the joyful experience of riding a carousel.

Tips and Usage Examples

Here are some handy tips and usage examples to help you discuss carousels in Mandarin:


  • When in doubt, use “旋转木马” (xuánzhuǎn mùmǎ) as your default term for carousel.
  • If you know the regional variation used in the area you’re visiting or you’re speaking with someone from that region, it’s best to use the corresponding term to establish a connection.
  • Feel free to combine the formal and informal terms to add variety and capture the attention of your conversation partner.

Usage Examples:

Chinese: 让我们去旋转木马那里玩吧!

Pinyin: Ràng wǒmen qù xuánzhuǎn mùmǎ nàli wán ba!

English: Let’s go play at the carousel!

Chinese: 儿时,我的家乡有个超大的转马木马。

Pinyin: Érshí, wǒ de jiāxiāng yǒu gè chāo dà de zhuǎn mǎ mùmǎ.

English: In my childhood, my hometown had a huge carousel.


Congratulations on completing this guide on how to say “carousel” in Mandarin! You have learned the formal term “旋转木马” (xuánzhuǎn mùmǎ) as well as some of the informal and regional variations. Remember to adapt your vocabulary to the situation and consider local preferences when using Mandarin. Now, go out and delight in the whirl of the carousel as you enjoy your Mandarin language journey!

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