Top 10 Hardest Languages To Learn - A Detailed Overview - TLD (2024)

What are the top 10 hardest languages to learn in 2021? Language learning is a way to connect with individuals from all over the world. A person who can interact with people using basic phrases is better than seeing another language as gibberish.


When it comes to the ease of learning a new language, no two languages are similar. That’s because the ease of learning depends on the native language.

Top 10 Hardest Languages To Learn

Languages from the same family tree from which your mother language originated are easier to learn. People see English as hard to learn, but English speakers find it more difficult to learn other languages.

We did a bit of research to present the top 10 most challenging languages to learn and why it’s hard to understand these.

1. One of Top 10 Hardest Languages To Learn – Arabic

The most challenging language from the top 10 hardest languages to learn for an English speaker is Arabic. It has an entirely foreign alphabet. Moreover, the individuals find it challenging to get along with the script and direction of reading.

The speech patterns and sounds of Arabic are far more different than English. The rest of the Germanic languages possess the same cognates and vocabularies.

One of Top 10 Hardest Languages To Learn – Arabic

People who get a grip of the alphabet will also have to control the vowel markings. Because vowels can change the meaning of a sentence altogether.

2. Mandarin Is Really Hard to Learn

Mandarin is a language that belongs to the Chinese Language Group. It’s one of the most spoken languages in the world. Still, for a native English speaker, learning Mandarin is a big deal.

It is a tonal language, and every sound in Mandarin System contains different pronunciations. The Chinese language is so rich in hom*ophones, and it’s full of idioms and aphorisms. All these idioms are derived over a long course of history.

These facts make it very difficult for a person to learn Mandarin unless he knows a bit about this culture. Adding more spice, this language has its alphabet!

3. Japanese Comes In The List Of Top 10 Hardest Languages To Learn

Belonging to the top 10 hardest languages to learn, Japanese is more comfortable speaking compared to Mandarin, but what makes it exist in this list? Japanese has a wide range of alphabets that need to be learned before writing in this language.

Japanese Comes In The List Of Top 10 Hardest Languages To Learn

It has its own three independent writing systems known as Hiragana, Katakana, and Kanji. These writing systems have further thousands of alphabets and characters, which might be difficult for an English speaker to learn.

4. Hungarian Is Beneficial But Hard to Learn

Hungarian grammar seems like the road to death for an English speaker. Because Hungarian grammar rules are the most difficult to learn, this language has 26 different cases.

The suffixes dictate the tense and possession and not the word order. That’s is how most of the European languages deal with this problem. Moreover, the cultural elements of Hungarian make it more challenging to learn.

These cultural overtones, like Japanese, make this language even harder to learn in isolation.

5. Korean

Korean has no genealogical relationship to other languages. It makes it the most strange and unique language. There are lots of challenges in this language, like its own alphabet and complex grammar.

Moreover, this language has a particular word order. In other words, Korean is like no different language that you may have heard. For example, the Korean language describes the subject depicted first, then comes the object, and finally ends with action.

6. Top 10 Hardest Languages To Learn – Finnish

After the Hungarian grammar, the Finnish language has the most challenging grammar. It sounds and looks a bit similar to English because of its pronunciation and lettering.

But the grammar makes it far more complicated than the English language. Then there is classical or old-fashioned Finnish, making it more challenging to learn.

The way how contemporary Finns express themselves is quite different from the rest ones. That’s the reason it’s one of the top 10 hardest languages to learn. If you’re seeking to learn Finnish, get ready to enter a maze of grammar!

Top 10 Hardest Languages To Learn – Finnish

7. Basque

Basque is another language isolate like Korean. It has no resemblance to other languages around it. But it has borrowed some of its vocabulary from romance languages. Little wins! It makes Basque a little less challenging than Korean.

Basque is written and spoken differently from other languages. There are several versions of this language that have come a long way through history.

Less than 7000,000 people speak this language; it still has six distinct dialects. That’s what makes Basque very tough to learn and write as compared to other languages. See which version you want to learn and begin the journey!

8. Navajo

It’s a verb-centred language belonging to North America and one of the hardest languages to learn. The descriptions are given through verbs. Most of the English adjectives can’t be directly translated into Navajo.

The pronunciation of this language is tricky because sounds in Navajo aren’t there in English. So it doesn’t sound easy!

9. Top 10 Hardest Languages To Learn – Icelandic

Though Icelandic is far from the difficult languages on this list, it’s still very complicated. That’s what makes it written in the top 10 hardest languages to learn. It’s not a language isolate, but it’s spoken on a small island with less than 4000,000 people. It makes this language have its edges.

Iceland got settled in the 9th and 10th centuries, so this language isn’t pretty much changed. Icelandic people coined new words to give meaning to older ones instead of adopting foreign words for new concepts.

Top 10 Hardest Languages To Learn – Icelandic

All this makes it a significant challenge to learn. If you want to be fluent in Icelandic, move to Iceland because you can’t understand this language remotely.

10. Polish Is One OF Top 10 Hardest Languages To Learn

Although it’s number 10 on the list, it’s no way near simple. The Polish language has 7 cases. But the good news is that this language has similar alphabets and contains fewer sounds, particularly for vowels compared to English.

You can say that it’s not easy to learn the language but a bit less mind-boggling. Though you still have to deal with an overly complicated gender system.


All these languages have no connection to the English language, which makes these the top 10 hardest languages to learn. If you want to master any of these languages, you’ll have to be in an exclusive community. If you’re able to translate between two distinct languages and cultures, it’s no less than a reward.

If you take on the challenge to have mastery over any of these languages, you’ll be perfect to become a translator.

The Language Doctors providing translation and interpretation services for all these languages. Do check with our expert linguistic team. You can also ask for a free quote here. Feel free to contact us if you have any queries.

Top 10 Hardest Languages To Learn - A Detailed Overview - TLD (2024)
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