How to Say Hello and How Are You in Welsh

Welsh, or “Cymraeg,” is a fascinating language spoken in Wales, a country known for its rich history and beautiful landscapes. If you’re interested in greeting someone in Welsh and asking how they are doing, this guide will help you learn the formal and informal ways to say hello and inquire about someone’s well-being. We’ll also provide some tips and examples to enhance your understanding of the Welsh language.

Greeting Someone Formally

When you want to greet someone formally in Welsh, you can use the phrase “Bore da” to say hello. This phrase is most commonly used in the morning and means “Good morning.” It’s a polite and respectful way to greet someone.

Example: Bore da! Sut ydych chi heddiw? (Good morning! How are you today?)

If you want to greet someone in the afternoon or later in the day, you can use the phrase “Prynhawn da,” which translates to “Good afternoon.” Similarly, in the evening, the phrase “Noswaith dda” is used to say “Good evening.”

Example: Prynhawn da! Ga i ofyn sut wyt ti heddiw? (Good afternoon! May I ask how you are today?)

Using these formal greetings shows your respect towards the person you’re addressing and sets a courteous tone for the conversation.

Greeting Someone Informally

If you are in a more casual setting or speaking to someone you know well, you can use the informal greetings. Here are a few common phrases:

  • Helo – Hello (casual and informal)
  • Sut mae? – How are you?

These informal greetings are suitable for friends, family, or colleagues you have a close relationship with. Welsh people are friendly and approachable, so don’t be afraid to use these informal greetings to strike up a conversation.

Regional Variations

Although Welsh is spoken throughout Wales, there are some regional variations in vocabulary and accents. Here are a few examples:

  • North Wales: “Shwmae” is a common informal greeting, which is a variation of the English word “So, how are you?”
  • South Wales: “All right?” is often used as a casual greeting among friends and acquaintances.

While these regional variations exist, they are not necessary to master basic greetings in Welsh. The phrases provided earlier will be understood and appreciated by Welsh speakers everywhere.

Tips for Pronunciation

Pronouncing Welsh can be a bit tricky for English speakers, but with a few tips, you’ll be on your way:

  • Use the following guide for pronouncing Welsh vowels:
    • a as in “cat”
    • e as in “bet”
    • i as in “beet”
    • o as in “boat”
    • u as in “beauty”
    • w as in “hook”
    • y as in the “ee” in “beet”
  • Pay attention to the ch sound, which is made by placing your tongue at the top back of your front teeth. It sounds similar to the “ch” in the Scottish word “loch.”
  • Remember that the ll in Welsh is unique. It is pronounced by placing your tongue against the roof of your mouth and blowing air around the sides of your tongue. It has no direct English equivalent.

Practice Makes Perfect

Learning any language requires practice, and Welsh is no exception. Here are a few exercises to help improve your Welsh greetings:

  1. Repeat the phrases “Bore da,” “Prynhawn da,” and “Noswaith dda” to become comfortable with the formal greetings.
  2. Practice the pronunciation of informal greetings, such as “Helo” and “Sut mae?” until you feel confident saying them naturally.
  3. Try using the phrases with Welsh-speaking friends or colleagues to practice in real-life conversations.
  4. Listen to Welsh music, radio, or podcasts to familiarize yourself with the pronunciation and flow of the language.
  5. Immerse yourself in Welsh culture and visit Wales if possible. Speaking with locals will help you gain a deeper understanding of the language.


Greeting someone in Welsh is a wonderful way to show your interest in the language and the culture of Wales. Whether you choose to greet someone formally or informally, it’s all about connecting with people in a warm and respectful manner. Remember, practice and immersion are key to mastering any language, so keep practicing and embrace the beauty of the Welsh language!

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