Learning Chinese does not have to be tedious and difficult. The good news is that it can be made simple and enjoyable. The podcast is one such incredible resource for Mandarin learners.
Pre-recorded audio isn’t a new form of learning a language. In fact, studying in this way has been a practical approach for a long time.
During their primary education, children learn languages in this manner. The brain is thus imitated, resulting in the same effect. Knowing the correct pronunciation makes sounds more authentic and precise.
Thanks to smartphones, the internet, and technological development, many language tools are available. One of them is the podcasts for Chinese learners. With it, learners worldwide can now explore possibilities they couldn’t have imagined before.
TABLE OF CONTENTS
- Benefits of learning Mandarin with podcasts
- 24 Amazing Chinese Podcasts for Mandarin Learners
- Chinese Podcasts for All Levels
- Best Beginner level Chinese podcasts
- Best Intermediate-level Chinese podcasts
- Best Advanced level Chinese podcasts
- Final Words on Best Chinese Language Podcasts
Benefits of learning Mandarin with podcasts
In the wake of China’s growing economy, trade, expansion of business, and global footprints, there are many perks of learning Chinese. No surprise, it has gained immense popularity worldwide.
Learners from far and wide studying Mandarin to get a much-needed edge in jobs and business. As an outcome, there are plenty of Chinese courses to pick from, and foreigners are increasingly enrolling in such programs everywhere.
Knowing where to begin is challenging for a Chinese learner since learning Mandarin takes a long time and dedication. So let’s face it: only some are suited to it.
The only thing you need to start with is not expensive classes or courses that require you to sit in front of a screen or teachers for hours.
Instead, you can enhance your learning experience with resources like podcasts. You need a digital device like a smartphone or laptop, an internet connection, and headphones, which nearly everyone already has.
Speaking right from the beginning is the best appropriate method when learning a tough language like Mandarin. So, listening to a Chinese podcast engages your verbal skills while learning your target language.
In your journey to mastering the Chinese language, this can be a fantastic tool for engaging your auditory senses.
Studying East Asia languages such as Mandarin takes time. As a result, podcasts can help you save time, improve your learning process, and speed it up.
Podcasts are convenient, entertaining, free or affordable, and easily accessible. You can access it at your fingertips to enhance your Chinese skills through practice and enrichment.
Besides being an outstanding resource for learning, podcasts also offer a great way to understand Chinese culture better. You will appreciate China’s fascinating traditions through various real-life situations.
Is it possible to learn Mandarin from podcasts?
Yes, and no are both correct answers.
You can learn Mandarin in various ways, including teachers, books, Mandarin language apps, and audio lessons.
A podcast can entertain you while simultaneously educating you. Chinese podcasts are a great way to stay motivated and forward-moving each day while learning Chinese!
Pre-recorded digital audio files and podcasts can be beneficial and fun. However, no matter what language you learn, it cannot help you achieve meaningful proficiency.
In the best-case scenario, it supplements other educational resources. But you can certainly improve and advance your Chinese language with it. That itself is good enough, no?
How do podcasts help you improve your Chinese?
You can adjust the audio pace in many podcast programs. This tool might be helpful. Learners of foreign languages often find it challenging to hear native speakers’ voices at lightning speed.
There’s no point in rewinding every few minutes when you can slow down the podcast. It allows you to catch the terms and phrases you may have missed. Also, it helps with pronunciation.
It is now vital to decide which podcast to listen to and at what level.
Choosing one that matches your current Chinese language ability is the most suitable choice. It’s vague, though.
Most broadcasters cover a variety of topics because of diverse audiences and requests. Thus, inevitably, some overlap will occur.
We should only select podcasts that challenge us, such as those that use humor, cultural content, and regional accents. This is only true if you are fluent in Chinese.
Otherwise, it would help if you stick with something simpler. Ensure you listen frequently, read along with your listening, and take meaningful notes to refer to them later. It is possible to advance your Chinese language skills further if you like what you hear.
Listening to native speakers’ material is a success. You can also use subtitles or transcripts to simplify your Mandarin fluency journey.
Where to listen to Chinese podcasts?
There are hundreds of podcasts available. Unfortunately, some are only paid and require premium memberships. Most of them, however, are free.
There may be times when you have to pay for recurring services on the platform. And by doing so, you will benefit from ad-free content, improved sound quality, and exclusive audio. That’s all.
It’s easy to listen to Mandarin podcast episodes for free on SoundCloud, iTunes, Google Podcasts, Amazon Music, and Spotify. You can also choose from dozens of other platforms.
You can also check Ximalaya, China’s most popular podcasting platform.
New content is regularly added to some popular Chinese-language podcasts and educational websites. In this way, the podcast is always up-to-date.
24 Amazing Chinese Podcasts for Mandarin Learners
Now is the time to try Chinese language podcasts! Besides being easy to access, podcasts make learning fun and convenient.
The internet has many excellent resources that can help you succeed.
Check out our list of 24 Chinese podcasts to find the right one for you!
With these podcasts, you can choose per your level and level of your Mandarin skills.
Chinese Podcasts for All Levels
Many Mandarin language podcasts cater to learners of all levels. Here are some prominent ones.
ChinesePod is one of the most popular podcasts available to learners of Mandarin Chinese. This is an excellent resource for those who wish to learn more about the language and culture, and it steals the show. Lots of Mandarin learners swear upon it.
Improve your Chinese speaking skills and become more knowledgeable about current affairs while learning with the ChinesePod.
Discover how to navigate comfortably in a Mandarin-speaking environment by looking at phrases and expressions in a broader context.
It also offers a wide range of topics, from everyday conversations to business Chinese, making it a superb resource for anyone looking to improve their Chinese language skills.
2. You can Learn Chinese
In this podcast, Jared Turner and John Pasden explore knowing Chinese. You will learn everything there is to know about the Chinese language.
This podcast offers helpful insights into learning Chinese. Inspiring stories, practical tips, and answers to many of the Chinese learners’ questions can be found here with regular guest appearances.
The podcast is a perfect resource for learners of all levels, from beginners to advanced learners looking for inspiration and guidance on their Chinese language journey.
3. ChillChat (beginner to advanced)
ChillChat mostly has English translations in the lessons. Still, they explain how each word is used before making it work in a brief dialogue. There’s no better way to relax than with ChillChat!
Besides covering vocabulary and grammar, ChillChat podcasts also cover culture, trends, and other helpful information.
The Mandarin learning podcast can help you learn and improve your conversation skills with plenty of fun activities. You can also download transcripts and study material from their official site.
4. ChineseClass 101
For Mandarin Chinese learners, ChineseClass101 stands out among all other online podcasts. So if you’re headed to China and are looking for a more ad hoc, topic-based way to learn, this is a splendid choice.
New lessons are regularly uploaded, composed, and narrated by native Chinese speakers using world-class content.
Learners at every level can find these lessons valuable — Beginners, intermediates, and advanced—to help them level up. This podcast can benefit you if you study Chinese for the TOCFL or Mandarin HSK exam.
5. iMandarinPod (Beginners to Advanced)
iMandarinPod podcast offers Mandarin lessons for learners of all levels. The podcast is hosted by a team of experienced Chinese teachers who clearly explain vocabulary, grammar, and pronunciation and give examples of using the language in context.
The interactive lessons allow listeners to practice their speaking, listening, and comprehension skills. It covers many topics, from everyday greetings and introductions to advanced business and academic Chinese.
The podcast is top-notch for learners who want to improve their Chinese language skills systematically. It is available on all major podcast platforms, as well as on their official website.
One of the best podcasts for learning Mandarin Chinese is Talk Chineasy, hosted by the famous Taiwanese entrepreneur ShaoLan. In addition, talk Chineasy provides Daily Chinese lessons.
ShaoLan and a special guest teach you useful Chinese phrases daily while sharing cultural insights and stories.
It offers a lot of short, straightforward lessons. This is worth checking out. You can listen to this Mandarin learning podcast on Spotify, Google Podcast, etc.
7. Mandarin Corner
This podcast is designed for learners of all levels, focusing on improving listening and comprehension skills.
This Chinese learning podcast features authentic Mandarin Chinese conversations, with accompanying English translations and vocabulary and grammar explanations.
If you intend to take one of the Chinese proficiency tests, you can try Mandarin Corner. It comprises a great deal of HSK vocabulary.
Best Beginner level Chinese podcasts
This list comprises podcasts for those who have just started learning Mandarin. Whether we limit our knowledge to a few words and Hanzi (漢字) or can hold some initial conversations, this can help.
Some of the study materials provided for your studies are needed for the beginner’s Chinese podcasts listed below.
8. One Chinese Word a Day
Give three minutes a day and learn an unfamiliar word every day by teacher Lin. Of course, you can use the terms if you already have a basic knowledge of the language. Still, if you do, it could be better for complete beginners.
With Teacher Ling, you will learn a new Mandarin word’s correct use, meaning, and sentence structure.
This Chinese learning podcast is designed for beginners who are just starting to learn Chinese and for intermediate learners who want to expand their vocabulary and improve their fluency.
The podcast is also available on YouTube, where viewers can watch videos of each episode and practice their listening and speaking skills.
9. Mini Mandarin
Mini Mandarin is a podcast that teaches Mandarin Chinese in short, bite-sized lessons. Each episode is only a few minutes long and focuses on a specific aspect of the Chinese language, such as pronunciation, grammar, vocabulary, or cultural insights.
It is a significant starting point for anyone. And you can quickly build up your Chinese skills by watching Mini Mandarin for a few minutes daily.
The podcast is available on all major platforms and the Mini Mandarin website, offering additional resources and materials for learners.
10. Takeaway Chinese
This series is easy to follow. The dialogue is translated into Mandarin, Chinese Pinyin, and English in the episode descriptions.
Besides FeiFei, you’ll hear Tony, who’s learning the language with you, on the podcast. The Chinese language lessons include idioms, dialogues, language tips, and stories behind the words.
Integrating Chinese as part of your daily life exposes you to various topics and ways of thinking. It also allows you to immerse yourself in the language with little effort.
11. Mandarin Monkey
Every hour-long episode will entertain you with news and entertainment, business tips, and study hacks. In Taiwan, an English and Chinese mixed couple, Tom & Ula, teach Chinese via Chinglish (English and Chinese).
Follow the conversation context by listening to a native speaker naturally and at their own pace, but with an English translation.
This podcast is an excellent choice for learners who are still deciding whether to give up English but want to listen to more complex topics in Chinese.
12. Coffee Break Chinese (Elementary)
The Coffee Break Chinese program is an excellent choice for those struggling with learning a second language. It starts by introducing words and phrases before constructing sentences. The podcast has a laid-back vibe that makes students feel like they are studying with a friend.
Each lesson typically lasts 15-20 minutes, and the host delivers logical explanations and examples to help listeners understand the concepts. The sessions are engaging and interactive, allowing listeners to practice their skills and test their knowledge.
For learners who like a well-structured course, Coffee Break podcasts are ideal. They offer audio lessons with a free podcast format and a premium product.
13. Melnyks Chinese
Although a non-native Chinese speaker hosts it, this podcast still holds up very well at higher levels of learning.
Absolute beginners can learn Mandarin Chinese with our audio lessons! You can learn at your own pace when you download!
Every Chinese lesson includes situational dialogues, vocabulary reviews, and practice activities. One of its strengths is its high repetition of essential vocabulary and conversations.
Best Intermediate-level Chinese podcasts
Have you been studying Mandarin for a while and need proper audio lessons to take it to the next level? Then, check out these top podcasts for the lower and upper intermediate group learners!
This type includes podcasts designed for students above the elementary level. And if you prepare for the HSK Intermediate (levels 3 and 4), this can help you. Here are some top ones!
14. Maomi Chinese
Molly and Michael, both professional Chinese teachers, help learners to improve their reading, listening, vocabulary, and grammar by making Mandarin Chinese fun and easy.
As an intermediate and advanced learner, it’s the perfect speed for improving your listening skills without getting overwhelmed! While Molly works on the Chinese study content, Michael is more involved with the technical aspects of the language.
The stories are fun and engaging, covering various topics, from everyday life to Chinese culture and history. This will be helpful if you want to improve their listening and comprehension skills and their vocabulary and grammar.
15. Speak Chinese Naturally
This podcast was created by Jiajia, a native speaker and a qualified Chinese teacher. She teaches you the real Chinese that we use in everyday conversation.
The purpose of this is to teach idioms, colloquial language, and slang, as well as the culture and customs of the Chinese people.
With Jiajia, learners will become confident in speaking Chinese naturally and overcome their fear of the language.
16. TeaTime Chinese
Based on the words the listener knows and the context, they should be able to understand the slightly advanced language used.
Each episode focuses on a different topic or theme, such as travel, food, or daily life. The hosts use authentic, natural language to simulate real-life conversations and give listeners helpful vocabulary and phrases.
You can start with Teatime Chinese if you’re at the intermediate level and need help figuring out how to advance.
It also offers supplementary materials such as transcripts, vocabulary lists, and exercises to help learners reinforce what they’ve learned and continue to progress in their language studies.
17. Learning Podcast through Stories
Many language-learning podcasts incorporate stories into their lessons. Storytelling can effectively engage learners and help them remember new vocabulary and grammar structures.
We’re going to talk about stories about this one. But first, your host will tell and explain a Chinese tale.
This Podcast produces authentic and immersive podcasts in Chinese that use over 99% target language. It offers a broad range of topics and proficiency levels for intermediate-advanced learners of Chinese.
18. MandarinPod (intermediate to advanced)
MandarinPod is a highly recommended podcast for learning conversational Chinese. In addition, Chinese language learners of intermediate to advanced levels can find current and engaging content from them.
The team creates engaging content to help you enhance your listening skills, cover various aspects of Chinese culture, and host many guests from different fields.
The podcast covers various topics, including Chinese presidential elections, social issues, entertainment, current affairs, music, and reviews on C-drama and Chinese films for learners.
This podcast is ideal for lower intermediate levels.
Best Advanced level Chinese podcasts
This can be helpful for advanced learners who need more encouragement to reach near-native proficiency levels.
Do you need more listening exercises if you are an advanced learner? Less common words, complicated grammar rules, and exposure would help.
If that is the case, it’s for you, then. You can also use these advanced Mandarin podcasts to study for HSK advanced (Levels 5 and 6).
Native speakers create some of them. As a result, it covers more complex topics, a natural speaking pace, slang, and plenty of vital cultural awareness.
You want to make sure you get this!
19. 大人的Small Talk (Dàrén de Small Talk)
It is a Taiwanese podcast hosted by management consultants Bryan, and Joe called Adult’s 大人的 Small Talk (Dàrén de Small Talk). This podcast will teach them what they need to know to “become adults.”
Various topics, including perseverance, goals, depression, and personal development, are discussed in these episodes.
This podcast is a superior choice for those who want to devote time to listening to Chinese podcasts but need help concentrating while listening to longer shows. The pace is moderate, and the episodes are usually about 20 minutes long.
20. 嘻谈录 (Xītánlù)
This weekly podcast, called 嘻谈录 (Xītánlù) in Chinese, is well-known and immensely popular. It tends to be quite comedic, with general discussions about current trends and trivial matters.
Another great way to learn about Chinese humor and the entertainment industry is to listen to podcast guests, usually stand-up comedians. A typical episode lasts between 60 and 90 minutes.
This Mandarin podcast is an excellent resource for intermediate and advanced learners who like to improve their listening and comprehension skills and gain insights into contemporary Chinese culture and society.
21. 宇宙乘客 Universal Residents (Yǔzhòu Chéngkè)
This fun and informal podcast features two friends in two different time zones: one in China and the other in Spain.
Every week, this podcast covers topics such as feminism, globalization, and cultural exchange. The average episode lasts 60 minutes.
The podcast is accessible and entertaining for listeners of all levels but is mainly meant for advanced learners.
22. 睡前故事：一千零一夜 (Shuìqián Gùshì: Yīqiānlíngyī Yè)
Though this isn’t your typical “podcast,” it is still beneficial! It can be a relaxing way to end your day with some light Chinese learning by reading these short 10-minute bedtime stories.
Even though they are mainly aimed at children, adults can also benefit from them. You can find the bedtime story you’ve secretly been craving in these entertaining stories!
If you intend to take an advanced-level Mandarin TOCFL or HSK test, consider this podcast to enhance your language ability.
23. 姐妹悄悄話｜SistersTalkTalkShow (Jiěmèi Qiāoqiāohuà)
An authentic Taiwanese podcast that focuses on topics affecting modern Taiwanese women (and most women in general).
Throughout the show, Melody and Jenny discuss various topics, including love and marriage, the meaning of life, and how to deal with loneliness. Their Instagram is a great place to follow them, and you can send them fan emails and topic suggestions. Each episode lasts about 60 minutes.
YouTube has recordings of this podcast you can watch and listen to.
24. 打個電話給你 | One Call Away
Since over a decade ago, Wendy and Iphie have been best friends. Listening to their lively conversations through One call away gives you insights into their perspectives on relationships, personal development, and self-concept.
While learning vocabulary, they can immediately apply it to everyday life. As a result, Chinese learners will feel like they’re hanging out with close friends.
Although this is a podcast for native English speakers, upper-intermediate learners should be able to understand the hosts’ articulation.
Final Words on Best Chinese Language Podcasts
Podcasts are an ideal way to study, practice, improve, and explore the fascinating world of the Chinese language and culture.
It is a mixture of authentic and delightful resources. Over time, your Mandarin understanding will improve as you continually expose yourself to this beautiful language.
You can find just about every Chinese podcast currently available on this list.
Last but not least, you should be consistent in your learning process. So please stick to your favorite podcast once you’ve found it.
You will keep what you have learned by sticking to a routine, and you will also be able to expand your knowledge of Chinese as you gain new material.
Did I miss any top-quality Chinese learning podcasts? Do you have a favorite? Comment with your thoughts and questions.