These Places Speak Surprising Languages

By: Katie Robertson


Planning on traveling to any of the following places? The language you’re brushing up on might be the wrong one!

Welsh in Patagonia, Argentina

-You might find it interesting that traveling to Patagonia on the southern tip of Argentina might mean studying Welsh. Near the beginning of the 1800’s, Welsh settlers landed here in the hopes of separating themselves from the encroachment of English powers.

-Though the Argentine eventually stepped in to impose direct rule, Welsh is still very popular in Patagonia and communicating with many of the locals there means being proficient in Welsh.

Icelandic in Manitoba, Canada

-Canada is known for its variety of languages and cultures, but Icelandic is a lesser known facet of culture in some cities here; especially Manitoba. In fact, the University of Manitoba is known for its entire department on Icelandic language and culture.

Catalan in Sardinia, Italy

-This island in the Mediterranean has seen its fair share of conflict, and the result is a divide in language usage. Due to its status as a part of the Roman Empire for 694 years it saw many rulers, one of which was Spain. From this, the language of Catalan still survives on the island and communicating with locals could require proficiency in Catalan.

Portuguese in Brazil

-After the 2016 summer Olympics in Rio many people have been realizing that this vastly expansive South American country doesn’t speak Spanish like many of its counterparts. In fact, it speaks Portuguese and has made Portuguese its official language. Portuguese settlers landed in Brazil in the 1600’s, and the rest is history.


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