Geographical Prepositions

In the French language one of the hardest areas for students speakers to master is the prepositions for places including cities, countries and states. Basically, your choices are à (at), en (in), au/aux (in) and dans (in). But which one you use depends on whether it’s a city or country and whether the the country is masculine or feminine.

French Prepositions for
Geographical Names

à + name of town/city
J’habite à Paris/J’habite à Londres
I live in Paris/I live in London
en + name of feminine country/state
J’habite en France/J’habite en Suisse
I live in France/I live in Switzerland
au + name of masculine country/state
J’habite au Canada/J’habite au Japon
I live in Canada/I live in Japan
aux + name of plural country
J’habite aux États-Unis
I live in the United States
en + name of masculine country starting w/vowel
J’habite en Iran
I live in Iran
dans + in a place/object
J’habite dans une maison
I live in a house

More example sentences

We’ve lived in California for 10 years.
Nous habitons en Californie depuis dix ans.

I love the landscapes in Iran!
J’aime les paysages en Iran!

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She’s traveling in England with her husband.
Elle voyage en Angleterre avec son mari.

How long have you lived in Bruxelles?
Depuis combien de temps est-ce que tu habites à Bruxelles?

Americans like to travel in Mexico in the winter.
Les Américains aiment voyager au Mexique en hiver.

How long have you been living in Canada?
Ça fait combien de temps que tu habites au Canada?

Are you (vous) familiar with Africa?
Est-ce que tu connais l’Afrique?

Do you work in Strasbourg or in Marseille?
Est-ce que tu travailles à Strasbourg ou à Marseille?

Maria lives in Mexcio but she works in Brazil.
Maria habite au Mexique mais elle travaille au Brésil.

I think it’s worth traveling in Asia.
Je pense que ça vaut la peine de voyager en Asie.

In Germany one speaks German.
En Allemagne on parle Allemand.

I like France but I’d prefer to live in Belgium.
J’aime la France mais je préfère habiter en Belgique.

I love the chocolate in Switzerland!
J’aime le chocolat en Suisse!

Would you like to come visit me in France?
Est-ce que tu voudrais venir me rendre visite en France?

Last year we traveled in Asia and we visited China and Japan.
L’année dernière nous avons voyagé en Chine et au Japon.

Related lessons:

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