Swahili Vocabulary

The Swahili vocabulary is the backbone for learning. Below we picked 70% of the most commonly used words. Therefore memorizing them will give you a 70% boost in the language. This is the smarter way of online learning. Learn only what you need. We start with commonly used numbers.

One: mmoja  Audio Two: mbili  Audio Three: tatu  Audio
Four: nne  Audio Five: tano  Audio Six: sita  Audio
Seven: saba  Audio Eight: nane  Audio Nine: tisa  Audio
Ten: kumi  Audio First: kwanza  Audio Second: pili  Audio

Days of the week and time expressions:

Monday: jumatatu  Audio Tuesday: jumanne  Audio Wednesday: jumatano  Audio
Thursday: alhamisi  Audio Friday: ijumaa  Audio Saturday: jumamosi  Audio
Sunday: jumapili  Audio Now: sasa  Audio Yesterday: jana  Audio
Today: leo  Audio Tonight: usiku wa leo  Audio Tomorrow: kesho  Audio


Most popular fruits and vegetables:

Fruits: matunda  Audio Apples: tofaa  Audio
Bananas: ndizi  Audio Tomatoes: nyanya  Audio
Potatoes: viazi  Audio Onions: vitunguu  Audio

Colors that we think are very important to remember:

Red: nyekundu  Audio Green: kijani kibichi  Audio Blue: bluu  Audio
White: nyeupe  Audio Black: nyeusi  Audio Grey: kijivu  Audio

Some words related to food:

Breakfast: kifungua kinywa  Audio Lunch: chakula cha mchana  Audio
Dinner: chakula cha jioni  Audio Milk: maziwa  Audio
Coffee: kahawa  Audio Bread: mkate  Audio


Weather terms and sensations:

Sunny: jua  Audio Windy: upepo  Audio Rainy: kunyesha  Audio
Snowy: kunyesha theluji  Audio Cold: baridi  Audio Hot: joto  Audio

Words related to family and relatives:

Boy: mvulana  Audio Girl: msichana  Audio
Son: mwana  Audio Daughter: binti  Audio
Brother: ndugu  Audio Sister: dada  Audio
Man: mwanamme  Audio Woman: mwanamke  Audio
Father: baba  Audio Mother: mama  Audio
Grandfather: babu  Audio Grandmother: nyanya  Audio

Locations in the house which are talked about more during the day:

House: nyumba  Audio Toilet: choo  Audio Room: chumba  Audio
Bedroom: chumba cha kulala  Audio Kitchen: jikoni  Audio Table: meza  Audio

Animals and pets popular to everyone:

Cat: paka  Audio Dog: mbwa  Audio Mouse: panya  Audio
Bird: ndege  Audio Cow: ng'ombe  Audio Horse: farasi  Audio

The clothes most worn by most people:

Socks: soksi  Audio Shoes: viatu  Audio Trousers: suruali  Audio
Shirt: shati  Audio Sweater: sweta  Audio Coat: koti  Audio

Most popular languages in the world:

English: kiingereza  Audio French: kifaransa  Audio German: kijerumani  Audio
Spanish: kihispania  Audio Italian: kiitaliano  Audio Portuguese: kireno  Audio
Greek: kigiriki  Audio Russian: kiurusi  Audio Arabic: kiarabu  Audio
Hindi: kihindi  Audio Chinese: kichina  Audio Japanese: kijapani  Audio


Most popular terms when traveling:

Taxi: teksi  Audio Bus: basi  Audio
Hotel: hoteli  Audio Reservation: reservation  Audio
Airport: uwanja wa ndege  Audio Passport: pasipoti  Audio

Words you can use in class or talking about school:

Student: mwanafunzi  Audio Teacher: mwalimu  Audio Pen: kalamu  Audio
Books: vitabu  Audio Page: ukurasa  Audio Dictionary: kamusi  Audio

Body parts which are talked about more often:

Hand: mkono  Audio Feet: miguu  Audio Hair: nywele  Audio
Eye: jicho  Audio Mouth: mdomo  Audio Nose: pua  Audio

Emergency vocabulary to ask for help or offer help when needed:

Ambulance: ambulansi  Audio Doctor: daktari  Audio
Hospital: hospitali  Audio Pharmacy: duka la dawa  Audio
Police: polisi  Audio Stomach Ache: maumivu ya tumbo  Audio

As you can see, this Swahili vocabulary is something you will need every day. You can use our Vocabulary Trainer to help you memorize these words.

Learn Swahili

Swahili Phrases


Did you know? People use only a small amount of their vocabulary on a daily basis. The rest of the words are either unused or not used often.