Expresiones para hablar del clima

Weather idioms

In Spanish there are some idiomatic expressions to talk about the weather. Some of them sound particularly weird to English speakers as it is not expressed in the same way as in English and the literal translations don't work.
There are basically four ways to talk about the weather in Spanish, with:

  • hace
  • hay
  • está
  • impersonal weather verbs

Have a look at these examples with hace and compare it to how you would say it in English:

Hace frio. [lit: it makes cold]
It is cold.

Hace calor. [lit: it makes heat]
It is hot.

Hace viento. [lit: it makes wind]
It is windy.

Hace sol. [lit: it makes sun]
It is sunny.

Now have a look at similar expressions but using hay:

Hay nubes.
It is cloudy.

Hay relámpagos.
There is lightning.

Hay mucha humedad.
It is very humid.

Hay neblina.
It is misty.

Now have a look at similar expressions but using está:

Está soleado.
It is sunny.

Está nublado.
It is cloudy.

Está lluvioso.
It is rainy.

And finally, with impersonal expressions:

Llueve.
It is raining.

Nieva.
It is snowing.

Truena.
It is thundering.

Llovizna.
It is drizzling.

Be careful because although there might be some expressions that fit into more than one category, others can only be used in one way. For example, you can say

  • Llueve.

or

  • Está lluvioso.

or

  • Está lloviendo.

However you cannot say Hace lluvia  orHay lluvia.

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