Languages Spoken in Spain

Explore the Linguistic Diversity of Spain with Idiomatic Canada


Spain, a country rich in history and culture, boasts a fascinating linguistic landscape. With its diverse regions and autonomous communities, Spain is home to several languages and dialects. In this article, we will delve into the various languages spoken in Spain, including the official, co-official, regional, and minority languages. Join Idiomatic Canada as we embark on a linguistic journey through the captivating tapestry of Spanish languages.

Official Languages


As the official language of Spain, Spanish, or Castilian, is the most widely spoken language throughout the country. It serves as the primary means of communication and is used in education, government, media, and everyday life. Spanish belongs to the Romance language family and shares similarities with other Romance languages such as Portuguese, Italian, and French.

Co-official Languages

Certain regions in Spain have co-official languages alongside Spanish. These languages hold official status within their respective territories, granting them equal recognition and protection.


Catalan is predominantly spoken in Catalonia, Valencia, and the Balearic Islands. It is a Romance language with a rich literary tradition and a distinct identity. Many consider Catalan to be the primary language of Catalonia, where it is widely used in education, media, and cultural activities.


The Basque language, also known as Euskara, is a unique and ancient language isolate. It is spoken in the Basque Country and parts of Navarre. Basque is unrelated to any other known language, making it a linguistic mystery. Despite its limited number of speakers, efforts to preserve and promote Basque culture and language remain strong.


Galician, or Galego, is spoken in the autonomous community of Galicia, located in the northwest of Spain. It is closely related to Portuguese and shares many similarities with the language. Galician holds co-official status alongside Spanish in Galicia, where it is used in education, administration, and media.


Aranese, or Aranese Occitan, is a variety of Occitan spoken in the Val d'Aran, a valley in the Pyrenees Mountains. This co-official language in Catalonia enjoys protection and recognition, helping to preserve its unique linguistic heritage.

Regional Languages


Catalan, as mentioned earlier, is predominantly spoken in Catalonia, Valencia, and the Balearic Islands. Its regional variations provide interesting nuances and dialectal diversity within the Catalan-speaking territories.


Basque, the enigmatic language isolate, is primarily spoken in the Basque Country and parts of Navarre. The dialects within Basque, such as Biscayan, Gipuzkoan, and Zuberoan, add depth to the linguistic tapestry of the region.


Galician, closely related to Portuguese, exhibits regional variations within Galicia. Dialectal differences between eastern and western Galicia contribute to the richness of the Galician language.


Aranese, the variety of Occitan spoken in Val d'Aran, showcases its regional distinctiveness and strengthens the cultural identity of the region.

Minority Languages

Spain is also home to several minority languages, each with its unique history and community of speakers.


Occitan, spoken in the region of Aran in Catalonia, brings a touch of southern France to Spain. Although considered a minority language, Occitan holds significance within its community and contributes to the linguistic diversity of Spain.


Asturian, or Bable, is spoken in Asturias, an autonomous community in northern Spain. With its roots in Latin, Asturian preserves the linguistic heritage of the region and serves as a symbol of cultural pride.


Aragonese, found in the region of Aragon, displays traits of both Romance and Pyrenean languages. Despite its relatively small number of speakers, Aragonese remains a vital part of the linguistic mosaic in Spain.


Leonese, spoken in the province of León, possesses strong historical ties to Spanish and Portuguese. Its usage has declined over the years, but efforts are underway to revive and promote the language.


Extremaduran, prevalent in Extremadura, exhibits similarities with both Castilian Spanish and Portuguese. Although primarily spoken in rural areas, it plays a vital role in preserving the cultural heritage of the region.


Fala, spoken in the Val de Xálima region of Extremadura, is a linguistic treasure. It belongs to the Galician-Portuguese subgroup of Romance languages and reflects the historical connections between Spain and Portugal.


Caló, a Romani language, is spoken by the Spanish Roma community. With roots in Sanskrit and a fascinating blend of Spanish and Romani vocabulary, Caló represents the vibrant cultural identity of the Spanish Roma.

The linguistic diversity of Spain is a testament to its rich cultural heritage and historical influences. From the widely spoken Spanish to the co-official languages, regional dialects, and minority languages, each language contributes to the vibrant tapestry that makes up Spain's linguistic landscape. Idiomatic Canada celebrates this diversity and invites you to explore the fascinating world of languages spoken in Spain.

Frequently asked questions

1. What is the most widely spoken language in Spain?

The most widely spoken language in Spain is Spanish (Castilian). It serves as the official language and is used throughout the country for communication, education, and administration.

2. Are there co-official languages in Spain?

Yes, certain regions in Spain have co-official languages alongside Spanish. These languages include Catalan, Basque, and Galician, which hold official status within their respective territories.

3. How many languages are spoken in Catalonia?

In Catalonia, several languages are spoken. The primary language is Catalan, but Spanish is also widely spoken. Additionally, many residents speak other languages such as English, French, and Arabic.

4. What is the linguistic heritage of Galicia?

Galicia has a rich linguistic heritage, with Galician serving as the co-official language alongside Spanish. Galician is closely related to Portuguese and shares similarities with the language.

5. How many speakers does Basque have?

Basque, the enigmatic language isolate, has approximately 700,000 speakers. It is primarily spoken in the Basque Country and parts of Navarre. Efforts are made to preserve and promote the Basque language and culture.

At Idiomatic Canada, we appreciate the linguistic diversity of Spain and offer language courses to help you explore the beauty of these languages. Visit our website at to learn more about our language programs and embark on your language learning journey.