How to use the verbs haber and estar in describing places

One of the most confusing grammatical contents for A level students of Spanish is how to use the verbs haber y estar in describing places.

It is quite common for students to confuse their use and, therefore, use them incorrectly. If you are just starting to learn Spanish, when describing your city or neighbourhood, you may make mistakes such as; en mi barrio está una farmacia. Making this mistake means that you are not yet clear on how to use the verbs haber and estar in describing places. But don’t worry, I’m going to clear up your doubts.

In this post, I have created an infographic to clarify the use of the verb haber and the verb estar in describing places.

Remember that the verb estar is used to express location. To understand it better, let’s look at some examples:

  • La Sagrada Familia está en Barcelona.
  • Mi país está en Europa.
  • Las Islas Canarias están en el Océano Atlántico.

On the other hand, the verb haber is used to express existence. Let’s look at the following examples:

  • En mi barrio hay un supermercado.
  • En mi ciudad hay una catedral.
  • No hay muchos edificios antiguos.

In addition to using these two verbs, it is necessary to point out that we also use the verb ser to describe places.

We can use it in the following way:

  • SER + adjective: Barcelona es muy grande (adjective).
  • SER + noun: Valencia es una ciudad  (noun)muy turística.

Below, you can see the infographic.

I hope this brief explanation helps you and that you can continue to make progress with your Spanish!

Also, in this link, I leave you a list of adjectives to expand your vocabulary in the description of places.

Now tell me, what is your city like and leave me your description in the comments!

If you want to start learning one of the most spoken languages in the world, book a free class with me and start now!


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