Understanding spoken French at a natural speed can be a daunting task. After years of study, you may find yourself listening to the news and feeling overwhelmed by each wave of new words. Or, you may feel confident understanding one French speaker, then feel completely lost with someone else.
Whatever the case, podcasts are an excellent resource to get you used to a variety of French-speaking voices and make sure you rely on your ears rather than your eyes for understanding.
Below are 36 recommendations for French podcasts, tested by us and organized by level for your listening enjoyment. Choose one or many to accompany you on your French learning journey.[the_ad id=”27926″]
Although FrenchPod101 requires a paid membership, it comes with some advantages. There are thousands of bite-sized podcast-style dialogues for beginner to advanced learners, plus lesson notes, quizzes, flashcards, and translations. You can also compare your voice to a native speaker’s with each individual line of dialogue.
FrenchPod101 can be a bit confusing with all the available lesson pathways and episodes, but it will probably be worth your while once you decide on a lesson pathway. There’s a 7-day free trial when you sign up for a free account. See our full review for more details.
Hugh and Amélie, two of the main voices in the podcast, are experienced French teachers. Though Hugh is not a native French speaker, his experience with the language shows in the structure of the episodes and clear explanations.
Each episode focuses on real-life situations and breaks down the important vocabulary you would need to navigate these situations yourself. Learn how to discuss gardening, pick up your child from daycare, or tell your friend to stop texting.
Beginners should start at the earliest episodes, which cover the basics. There are also intermediate and advanced episodes, both of which could benefit even an experienced French learner.
The Coffee Break Languages series — available in French, German, Italian, Swedish, Chinese, and Spanish — is a podcast for beginner to advanced learners. With each season, the language difficulty increases.
Each French conversation has an English discussion and analysis at the end. This makes it a great option for learners who prefer to have more context to their learning. You’ll get the most out of this series by responding to the prompts aloud. It’s also best to start at episode one if you have no background in French.
Extra lesson notes and video pronunciation practice are available in the Premium version. But, you’ll be fine listening to the podcasts on major streaming platforms. To learn more, check out our full review.
Caroline has taught both online and in-school French for over 10 years. This experience, plus her friendly demeanour and sense of humor, makes this podcast both educational and entertaining.
She offers “A Day in French” episodes for intermediate learners looking for bite-sized French immersion—plus her regular episodes for all levels, which include tips (given in English) to improve your French. If you struggle with pronouncing the French ‘r’ or can’t figure out why you keep seeing l’on, Caroline can help you out. Transcriptions of the episodes with vocabulary lists, grammar explanations, and writing exercises are available for purchase on her website.
Language Transfer is not so much a podcast as an audio course, but it is an excellent resource for absolute beginners. It provides a series of introductory audio courses for several different languages — including French.
You won’t spend as much time immersed in the language, but you will go into depth about how the French language works. You’ll learn major grammar points and develop vocabulary and pronunciation. You’ll also hear the instructor, Mihalis, interact with a beginner student and correct their mistakes. The goal is to respond to prompts as if you yourself were the student.
Language Transfer can support anyone looking to understand the ins and outs of learning French. If you’d like to get a better sense of what it’s all about, you can read our full review.
Little Talk in Slow French may be helpful for upper-level beginners who want a little extra support to transition into immersive French podcasts. The narrator speaks mostly in French, but she will provide several translations into English for tricky words (though sometimes these translations seem a bit random). She speaks slowly and articulates clearly, covering a range of topics: cultural notes, language, history, film, and more.
As the host of À Podcasts describes, the episodes may not have a clear goal, but they have a nice ambiance. In these five-minute episodes, you can listen to natural French conversations between the host and one of his friends.
There are 4 types of episodes to choose from: “Radio Qu’est-ce que c’est’” and “Radio Quelque chose” both have transcripts and are intended for upper-beginner and intermediate learners respectively. “La chanson de la semaine” will recommend a French song (though not every week as the title implies). And “les recettes de grand-mère” will give you a new recipe to try at home.
Cultivate Your French is narrated by Laetitia, from One Thing in a French Day. In most of the episodes, Laetitia first reads the text slowly. Then, she reads the same text at a near-natural speed. Some episodes encourage you to take part in a dialogue: you’ll hear the dialogue once, and then one voice will be muted to allow you to take its place. These are excellent episodes for upper-beginners transitioning into intermediate content.
Un Petit Caoua? is a French-only podcast for beginners. In each five-minute episode, Paul, the narrator, focuses on a specific topic such as technology, cooking, or musical genres. He will then ask and respond to questions, speaking very slowly and repeating new words and phrases in multiple contexts.
Though it’s not clear if Paul will continue to produce more episodes, this channel is great for any beginner who wants to challenge themselves to listen to full-immersion podcasts.
These two channels seem to be produced by the same person and in the exact same format. In each 3–5 minute episode, Louis introduces a French sentence. He then provides synonyms and examples of each word or phrase in different contexts. You can read the French sentence with the English translation in the description of every episode.
Louis also produces several podcasts for native speakers in Choses à Savoir.
If you struggle with understanding French newspaper headlines, look no further than Le Français à la une. Viviane, an experienced French teacher and journalist, reads out 3 headlines from 3 separate newspapers several times per month. With each headline, she breaks down the expressions, plays on words, and challenging vocabulary that are commonly used by journalists.
Although the episodes are intended for lower-intermediate learners (B1 on the CEFR scale), intermediate and advanced learners alike can benefit from these short, 5-minute episodes. Viviane posts transcripts of each episode with a photo of the original headline on her website, Oui-speakfrench.
Fleur-de-lis is narrated by Sarina, a French teacher from Quebec. Her episodes seem best for upper-beginners and lower-intermediate learners wanting to transition to immersive French podcasts.
Sarina speaks only in French and articulates every syllable. You will hear different voices on the show, but everyone speaks quite slowly to ensure that you can follow along. Sarina and her guests talk about travel, literature, and psychology in these 5-10 minute episodes.
In his second series, Mankai Island, a guest must imagine themselves stranded on an island and describe what their island looks like. They then respond to a series of Romain’s questions. You’ll get to hear a variety of voices and join them on their imaginative journey.
The narrators and guests speak slowly and clearly to ensure that intermediate learners can follow along. You can email Romain to get the transcripts or ask him questions.
Aurélie is a French teacher in Paris. She recently started this series for intermediate French learners to improve their listening comprehension and vocabulary. Listen to interviews with French speakers, learn about historical French figures and sites, and get excited about must-see French films.
Check out the free transcripts, vocabulary notes, and quizzes on her website.
Three times per week, Laetitia talks to you for five minutes about her day. You’ll learn about life in Paris and meet Laetitia’s friends while improving your listening comprehension.
Though major platforms only have a handful of episodes, there are over 1900 available on PodBean dating back to 2006. You can pay for a subscription to her newsletter to receive the transcript to each episode in your inbox.
If you find this series too difficult, you can check out Laetitia’s other podcast, Cultivate Your French, which will help you transition into intermediate material.
Accompanied by Pierre’s (and sometimes Noemie’s) enthusiasm and passion for the French language, intermediate learners can enjoy a variety of episodes to level up their French.
These episodes are the audio version of Pierre’s YouTube channel, which has free transcripts available on his website. They mostly focus on important expressions, register, grammar, and common errors that language learners make.
Pierre has worked as a French teacher in language schools and high schools in Spain, and has helped prepare courses and exams for multiple organizations. He will keep you up to date with the latest slang while also ensuring that you don’t make any faux pas in your conversations.
Johan from Français Authentique helps intermediate speakers improve their grammar, pronunciation, and grasp of French expressions.
He teaches you French through authentic content and provides more than simple grammar lectures; you’ll hear him explain French jokes, explore philosophy, and use common expressions in context.
Some of the podcasts are recordings of his YouTube videos; others were recorded for podcast platforms and have an accompanying PDF on the Français Authentique website. If you want more from Johan, check out our review of his French courses.
In Le Podcast Fluidité, Fabien speaks in easy, natural French about French culture and language. He is a French teacher and also a polyglot, and he uses his experience both teaching and learning languages to improve your French.
If you listen on his website, you can read full transcripts of every episode.
Though the text descriptions are in Swedish, this is a French-only podcast that summarizes current events in easy French. Each episode addresses a few main headlines from recent news. You may hear a short recording of the original broadcast or interviews with locals. The narrators speak slowly and explain common expressions or tricky words in French.
With a new episode every Thursday, Yasmine helps you improve your listening comprehension and understand important grammar points with her podcast, Le français avec Yasmine. She speaks relatively slowly and only in French. Learn about contractions, reflexive verbs, nuances between similar words and more in these short episodes.
You can buy transcripts to each episode, but subscribing to Yasmine’s newsletter gives you one for free.
Ehoui!’s founder and narrator, Virginie, has a master’s degree in French as a Foreign Language and over 10 years teaching around the world. In her podcast, she teaches you how to interact, speak, and make yourself understood in French. Tune in to topics like how to use different verb tenses, how to understand real-life questions, and which key phrases and vocabulary you need to express your emotions.
News in Slow French is a paid resource for intermediate to advanced learners who aren’t quite ready to listen to full-speed news broadcasts. You can listen to the audio while reading a transcript that highlights key grammar and expressions. Intermediate learners can take quizzes and practice pronunciation after each episode.
The lessons are about 30 minutes long and includes 4-6 separate news stories.. Read our full review for more information.
In the French Voices Podcast, Jessica helps you improve your listening comprehension through interviews with French speakers. You’ll hear from authors, planetary scientists, bird watchers, and more in natural French conversation.
Each episode comes in two parts: the first is an English introduction to the interview, and the second is the French-only interview. With the variety of French voices and vocabulary from different professions, this podcast can help you transition into podcasts for native speakers.
If you listen on the website, you can read an English summary and key French words used in the interview. You can also purchase full transcripts of the episodes. Check out Jessica’s other podcast, French Your Way, for tips on how to improve your French.
Journal en Français Facile is only available on the Radio France Internationale website, but it is worth the extra minute of web navigation.
Every weekday it provides 10-minute summaries of the biggest news headlines. It sounds like a typical news report, but often the journalists will help you understand words and concepts common to the news. At first listen, it may be a bit tricky for intermediate learners, as they speak at a relatively natural speed. But, if you follow along with the free transcript, you’ll likely find that you understand more than you initially thought.
This podcast will expand your vocabulary in 3 minutes per day. Jean-Alain dedicates each episode to a single French word. He introduces the word in context, then provides examples of synonyms and antonyms. He then reads a quote from pop culture or the news that includes the chosen word. Finally, he provides translations into English, Spanish, Italian, and sometimes “Le langage ado”.
Any French speaker or learner will find something that interests them in Choses à Savoir. The producers record between 8 and 15 three-minute podcasts per day and publish them under multiple podcast channels. Learn about science, history, sports, economy, celebrities, travel, sleep, and more — plus, read the free transcripts of each episode on their website.
The narrator speaks quite quickly. But, he articulates clearly and uses simpler French than you might find in the news or other podcasts.
Émotions by Louie Média is a popular podcast that explores both the scientific explanations and human experience of emotions. Through interviews with medical experts and powerful first-hand accounts, you’ll learn about what motivates human behaviour while improving your French at the same time. Whether it be shame, frustration, or gratitude, Émotions will take you on a powerful journey through the inner workings of the human experience.
Though Émotions was recorded for native speakers, upper-intermediate learners can also benefit from the narrator’s clear articulation. Louie Média also produces several other high-quality podcasts for your enjoyment.
Trois Bières is one of the most popular Québécois podcasts — it was even nominated for best comedy podcast at the Canadian Gala Les Olivier.
The three main hosts take topic suggestions from their listeners on different social media platforms and put the suggestions in a bag. They then randomly pick a subject to discuss together over a beer. Over the course of an episode, the team will choose three different topics (hence the name, 3 beers). Sometimes they invite famous Québecois artists or comedians to join them, too.
If you are an advanced learner, this is an excellent show to familiarize yourself with real life conversations in Québécois French.
It’s not enough to call the individuals profiled in Les Baladeurs “travelers.” These are adventurers, and they will take you on a journey to relive their most challenging and thrilling experiences around the world. Join them as they Rock climb in Morocco, bike the Karakoram Highway between China and Pakistan, compete in the Whitbread sailing race around the world, and more in this high-quality series.
This is a podcast for native speakers, but the narration and interviews will give you lots of opportunities to practice your listening comprehension.
Génération XX interviews female entrepreneurs about their projects and experiences. Learn about their professional and personal lives; let them inspire you with both their failures and successes; and gain more motivation for your French studies and personal endeavours.
Though the series has ended, there are 100 episodes available on the Génération XX website and major streaming platforms.
Made in collaboration with Les Éditions Le Robert, Parler Comme Jamais discusses the use of language, and what languages say about those who speak it. The host, Laélia Véron, is the author of the book, “Le français est à nous!” Through research and interviews with experts, she explores topics such as inclusive language, dead languages, and whether or not your dictionary has a political bias.
On the website you can find background information about interviewees, reading or film recommendations, quotes, and references. Its producer, Binge Audio, also has several other high-quality podcasts for native speakers.
If you love food and love listening to people talk about food, then you’ll want to check out À Poêle. Every second Thursday, you’ll meet chefs, restaurant owners, or entrepreneurs in the restaurant business. These individuals represent the current and future stars of haute cuisine.
The episodes are about an hour long, but you can look in the description to find the time stamps for each topic discussed.
RCI produces a variety of podcasts in French. Most of them focus on the history of Canada, but others highlight Canadian-led projects, interview Canadians about current events, or introduce different topics that are at the forefront of Canadian media.
You’ll hear a variety of French-Canadian accents in these engaging series while learning about the past, present, and future of Canada.
RFI has over 100 different podcast channels, most of which are available on major streaming platforms, and all of which are available on their website.
Two daily podcasts stand out in particular for advanced French learners: Les mots de l’actualité and De vive(s) voix. Les mots de l’actualité dedicates 3-minute episodes to a word from the news. The narrator provides multiple examples of its nuances and how it’s used in context.
De vive(s) voix focuses on the French language in all its forms. You can explore how French words affect its speakers, curiosities in the French language, and the influence of Molière on comedy and writers.
In Nouvelle École, Antonin invites French entrepreneurs and artists to talk about their life. This is a channel for anyone looking to be inspired by individuals who carved their own path to follow their passions. Though the podcast has ended, Antonin has interviewed over 85 different people.
La Grande Librairie is a popular show and podcast that greatly influences book sales in France. In each episode, four writers are invited to talk about their newest piece of writing. If you’re looking for a new French novel, essay, comic, or anything in a literary form, these episodes can point you in the right direction.
These are a few of many awesome podcasts available for French learners. We hope you found some gems, or that we reminded you of one that you have been hoping to check out.