Free English Lessons

Talking About Holidays – Listening Lesson (A2)

Where did you go for your last holiday? What did you do, and did you enjoy it? In this free English listening lesson from Oxford Online English, a woman talks about her last holiday in Italy. You can learn some useful questions, words and phrases to use when talking about vacations. This lesson is for pre-intermediate learners.

Listen to the dialogue at normal speed here:

or listen to a slower version here:

Man: So, how was your trip?
Woman: Oh, it was amazing! Holiday of a lifetime.
Man: You went to Venice, right?
Woman: No! Where did you get that idea? We went to Pisa and Cinque Terre.
Man: What’s it like around there?
Woman: Oh, it’s beautiful, especially on the coast. There are some really nice towns and you can swim and sunbathe and walk in the hills if that’s your thing.
Man: Did you speak any Italian?
Woman: No, not really. They get a lot of tourists around there, so they’re used to speaking English.
Man: Bet the food was good though.
Woman: Oh, you can’t even imagine. You even eat when you’re full just because it tastes so good.
Man: Did you bring back any souvenirs? some nice wine? olive oil? an Italian boyfriend?
Woman: No, of course not! Don’t be cheeky!

Talking about Holidays – exercise 1
Vocabulary: tourism words and collocations

The dialogue features words and expressions for the experience of going on holiday and also to describe the places that tourists visit. These include collocations – common combinations of words.

For each question, mark the option that you hear in the dialogue.

Talking about Holidays – exercise 2
Grammar: word order in questions

The order of words in questions is one of the most confusing things in English. There are rules to help you – it’s just a bit more complicated than it might be in your language.

Read five rules about word order in questions; for each one, move the words into the right order to make a question that is used in the dialogue.

Talking about Holidays – exercise 3
Pronunciation: understanding stress and intonation

Stress and intonation are both ways in which the sound of what we say depends on meaning, but they’re not the same thing. Do you know the difference?

Listen to five excerpts from the recording and find the matching rule about stress and intonation.

Talking about Holidays – exercise 4
Pronunciation: elision and the glottal stop

When we put words together, some sounds change. One very common example is when the sound /t/ almost disappears – this is called elision.

Listen to five excerpts containing examples of elision and write the missing words.

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