This site contains a wide range of materials to help you learn Estonian. Pick up some basic phrases, expand your vocabulary, or find a language partner to practise with.
Estonian phrases sorted into useful everyday topics.
Estonian vocabulary divided into themed lists.
About the Estonian language
Estonian is spoken by about 1.1 million people worldwide, around 950,000 of whom live in Estonia itself.
It is a member of the Finno-Ugric language family, being closely related to Finnish and more distantly so to Hungarian. It's not an Indo-European language such as French or Spanish, and as a result the vast majority of words in Estonian will look thoroughly unfamiliar to someone whose mother tongue is English.
Estonian is certainly not considered to be an easy language to learn for English-speakers. However, don't be put off! With a little practice, you should soon find yourself able to get by in most everyday situations.
So why learn Estonian?
You enjoy a challenge
With fourteen different cases and an utterly unrecognisable vocabulary, Estonian should test even the most capable linguist! If you've studied other European languages in the past, you may find it refreshing to learn one where you effectively have to start entirely from scratch.
It sounds beautiful
Estonian, with its exotic vowel-rich words and almost song-like intonation, is arguably one of the world's most beautiful-sounding languages.
Estonians are enormously appreciative of any attempts by foreigners to speak their language, which makes practising what you've learnt a particular pleasure. Any trip or stay in Estonia will undoubtedly be enriched if you take the time to learn a little of the language before you go.