learn to say good night in Italian

10 Real Ways the Locals Say Good Night in Italian



Buona notte! Ah, the charming Italian way of saying “good night.” Imagine the thrill of mastering different ways to bid sweet dreams in Italian. That’s exactly what I am here to help you with.

In this language guide, we’ll learn the authentic ways Italians wish each other good night, from playful to poetic. You’ll discover the right pronunciation, regional variations, and responses to this beloved phrase.

Whether you’re traveling to Italy or studying the language, preparing your own “buonanotte” will let you end each day with a dash of dolce vita. So get ready to add some Italian flair to your goodbyes! In no time, you’ll be saying goodnight like a native.

How To Say Good Night In Italian?

Saying good night in Italian starts with knowing the right word. Next, you want to make sure you are pronouncing that word correctly. Finally, you should always practice saying it in different contexts. That’s the way you’ll get to the point where buonanotte rolls out of your mouth. Let’s do it!

Good Night Italian Translation

Buona notte! That’s the delightful Italian way to say “good night.” It carries a touch of romance and elegance in its sound, making it a charming phrase to bid farewell to before bedtime. 

Good Night In Italian Pronunciation 

The next thing you need to nail is the pronunciation. That way you’ll not only say good night like an Italian, but also sound like one.

Listen to this buonanotte audio clip to get it right.

Next, practice reading it. You can start with the handy American-English spelling, and then compare it to the Italian spelling. If you haven’t already, you should read this Italian alphabet pronunciation article.

Good night in ItalianPronunciationItalian spelling
Buonanotte pronunciation (if read by an English speaker) and spelling

two persons going to sleep wishing a buonanotte

Let’s Practice Saying Buonanotte

In the table below, you’ll find the Italian phrase, as well as the translation and the pronunciation if read by an English speaker. Happy practicing.

Goodnight in ItalianTranslationPronunciation
Buonanotte mammaGoodnight mumbwaw-nuh-NOT-teh MAHM-mah
Buonanotte papaGoodnight dadbwaw-nuh-NOT-teh PAH-pah
Buonanotte sorellinaGoodnight sisterbwaw-nuh-NOT-teh soh-rehl-LEE-nah
Buonanotte fratelloGoodnight brotherbwaw-nuh-NOT-teh frah-TEL-loh
Buonanotte nonnaGoodnight grandmabwaw-nuh-NOT-teh NON-nah
Buonanotte amicaGoodnight friendbwaw-nuh-NOT-teh ah-MEE-kah
Buonanotte maritoGoodnight husbandbwaw-nuh-NOT-teh mah-REE-toh
Buonanotte caro figlioGoodnight dear sonbwaw-nuh-NOT-teh KAH-roh FEE-lyoh
Buonanotte ziaGoodnight auntybwaw-nuh-NOT-teh TSEE-ah
Buonanotte bella della mammaGoodnight mum’s beautybwaw-nuh-NOT-teh BEH-lah DEHL-lah MAHM-mah
Buonanotte tesoroGoodnight my dearbwaw-nuh-NOT-teh teh-SOH-roh
Buonanotte dolcezzaGoodnight sweetiebwaw-nuh-NOT-teh dohl-CHEHT-tsah
Buonanotte CarloGoodnight Carlobwaw-nuh-NOT-teh KAHR-loh
Buonanotte FabianaGoodnight Fabianabwaw-nuh-NOT-teh fah-BYAH-nah
Buonanotte signor VenutoGoodnight Mr. Venutobwaw-nuh-NOT-teh SEE-nyoh-REH veh-NOO-toh
Buonanotte signora MatildaGoodnight Ms. Matildabwaw-nuh-NOT-teh SEE-nyor-rah mah-TEE-lah
Buonanotte examples

Now, it’s your turn. Who will you say buonanotte to?

good night in Italian

10 Phrases to Say Buona Notte like an Italian

It would be extremely boring if all we would say was buonanotte, every night, every day, etc etc. Thankfully, there are many more ways to wish someone a good night than just this one. Let’s learn the top 10 ways Italians like to say good night in Italian.

  1. Sogni d’oro (so-gni do-ro)
  2. Buona nanna (buo-na nan-na)
  3. Dormi bene (dor-mi be-ne)
  4. Buon riposo (buon ri-po-so)
  5. Notte (not-te)
  6. A domani (a do-ma-ni)
  7. Dolce notte (dol-ce not-te)
  8. Fai sogni meravigliosi (fa-i so-gni me-ra-vi-glio-si)
  9. Riposati (ri-po-sa-ti)
  10. A nanna (a nan-na)

Italian ExpressionMeaningContextPronunciation
Sogni d’oroGolden dreams/sweet dreamsSweet and casualso-nyi DAW-ro
Buona nannaSleep wellgreat for kidsbwaw-nuh NAH-nah
Dormi beneSleep wellcasual and formalDOR-mee BEH-neh
Buon riposoHave a good restcasual and formalbwon ree-POH-so
NotteNightvery casualNOH-teh
A domaniSee you tommorowcasual and formalah do-MAH-nee
Dolce notteSweet nightsweetDOL-che NOH-teh
Fai sogni meravigliosiI wish you wonderful dreams/sweet dreamssweet and caringfai SOH-nyee meh-ra-vee-LYOH-zee
RiposatiRest upcasual and formalree-po-SA-tee
A nannaOff to sleepgreat for kidsah NAHN-nah
Other ways to say buonanotte in Italian

Buona Notte

Buona Notte, meaning “good night” in Italian, is one of the most common and widely used ways to bid someone farewell before they go to sleep. It is a simple and heartfelt phrase that conveys warm wishes for a restful and peaceful night. Whether spoken to friends, family, or even strangers, Buona Notte carries a sense of care and affection, making it a beloved phrase in Italian language.

Sogni d’oro

Sogni d’oro, literally translated to “golden dreams,” is an endearing and poetic way to wish someone sweet dreams in Italian. This phrase goes beyond the conventional “good night” and adds an element of charm, invoking images of precious dreams to be cherished throughout the night. It’s a lovely expression often used between close friends and loved ones, evoking a sense of beauty and warmth.

say buona nanna to your baby at bedtime

Buona nanna

Buona nanna is a tender and playful way to wish someone a “good night” specifically tailored to children. Parents and caregivers often use this phrase to tuck their little ones into bed, creating a cozy and nurturing atmosphere. The word “nanna” means “nap” or “sleep” for young children, and Buona nanna emphasizes the care and affection offered during this special time of the day.

Dormi bene

Dormi bene translates to “sleep well” in Italian and is a kind and caring way to bid someone good night. The phrase is simple yet powerful, offering genuine wishes for a peaceful and rejuvenating sleep. Dormi bene is suitable for friends, family, or acquaintances, making it a versatile expression for any bedtime farewell. Another way to say the same is fai una bella dormita.

Buon riposo

Buon riposo, which means “have a good rest,” is another thoughtful way to wish someone a restful night’s sleep. This expression is often used to convey care and consideration for someone who may be feeling tired or in need of relaxation. Buon riposo captures the essence of genuine concern and serves as a gentle reminder to take time for self-care and rejuvenation.


Notte is a simple and casual way to say “night” in Italian. While it may seem straightforward, the beauty of this word lies in its universal applicability. Notte can be used informally between friends or family members as a casual way to say good night. It is a versatile expression that carries a sense of warmth and familiarity.

say a domani before you go to sleep

A domani

A domani, meaning “see you tomorrow,” is a lovely phrase used when parting ways in the evening with the anticipation of meeting again the next day. This expression brings a sense of optimism and hope, especially when said to friends or colleagues, as it conveys the excitement of reconnecting soon.

Dolce notte

Dolce notte, or “sweet night,” is a poetic and affectionate way to wish someone a pleasant night’s rest. This phrase is often used to express genuine care and love for the recipient. Dolce notte creates an atmosphere of tenderness and is particularly popular in romantic contexts or when addressing loved ones.

Fai sogni meravigliosi

Fai sogni meravigliosi, meaning “have wonderful dreams,” is a heartfelt wish for delightful dreams during the night. This expression reflects the desire for the person to experience fantastic and magical dreams, bringing happiness and joy. It is a caring and warm sentiment, often shared between close friends or family members.


Riposati, which translates to “rest yourself,” is a caring and soothing way to encourage someone to take a break and relax. Whether said to a friend or family member, riposati conveys concern for their well-being and serves as a gentle reminder to prioritize sleep.

“Anche a te, sogni d’oro.” 7 Ways To Reply to Buonanotte

Let’s now look at all the different Italian phrases we can use to reply to good night. Make sure to practice them with the buonanotte synonyms above.

  1. Anche a te
  2. Altrettanto
  3. Spero che sia buona
  4. Speriamo di riposare
  5. Si, a domani.
  6. Anche a te amore mio.
  7. Grazie, anche a te.

Italian ExpressionUse it to respond toPronunciationMeaning
Altrettanto.all the good night phrases above, except a nanna.ahl-treh-TAHN-tohSame to you.
Spero che sia buona.buona nanna, notte, dolce notte, buonanotte.SPEH-roh keh see-ah BWOH-nahI hope it will have a good one.
Speriamo di riposare.to all of them, except a nannaspeh-rah-ee-moh dee ree-poh-SAH-rehLet’s hope we rest.
Si, a domani.to all of themsee, ah do-MAH-neeYes, see you tomorrow.
Anche a te, amore mio.to all of them, if addressing someone in a romantic or sweet situation.AHN-keh ah teh ah-MOH-reh MEE-ohSame to you, love.
Grazie, anche a te.to all of them except “fai sogni meravigliosi,” “riposati,” “a nanna”GRAH-tsyeh, AHN-keh ah tehThanks, same to you.
Buonanotte replies

italian woman sleeping

If you aim to become conversational you shouldn’t stop at learning buonanotte and the multiple synonyms and reply expressions.

You should also explore more phrases related to sleeping, night, bedroom, and the weather as that often has an impact on sleep. Don’t worry, I am going to keep it simple and give you a small selection for now. Here you go.

“Andiamo a dormire?” – Should we go to sleep?

“Non hai sonno?” – Aren’t you tired?

“Hai sonno?” – Are you sleepy?

“Sei stanco?” – Are you tired?

“Sei pronta per andare a letto?” – Are you ready to go to bed?

“Non vai a letto?” – Aren’t you going to bed?

“Hai spento le luci?” – Did you turn off the lights?

“Hai acceso il termosifone?” – Did you turn on the heater?

“Hai acceso l’aria condizionata?” – Did you turn on the air conditioning?

“Hai chiuso la porta a chiave?” – Did you lock the door?

“I bimbi dormono?” – Are the kids sleeping?

“Hai fatto la sveglia?” – Did you set the alarm?

“Domani, a che ora ti svegli?” – What time do you wake up tomorrow?

“Che tempo farà domani?” – What will the weather be like tomorrow?

Common Phrases Said Around Sleeping Time In Italian

“Domani è un altro giorno” – Tomorrow is another day.

“Tutti a nanna” – Everyone to bed.

“Sognami” – Dream of me.

“Dormi come un ghiro” – Sleep like a dormouse.

“Copriti” – Cover yourself.

“Spegni le luci” – Turn off the lights.

“Accendi il termosifone” – Turn on the heater.

“Spegni il televisore” – Turn off the television.

“Fa freddo” – It’s cold.

“Fa caldo” – It’s hot.

“Ecco la coperta” – Here’s the blanket.

“Prendi una coperta, per favore” – Please take a blanket.

“Chiudi la porta” – Close the door.

“Non dimenticarti di fare la sveglia” – Don’t forget to set the alarm.

“Che silenzio” – What silence.

“I vicini stanno già dormendo” – The neighbors are already sleeping.

“Luca si è addormentato” – Luca fell asleep.

italian bedroom words

Learn These Italian Words About The Bedroom

Enrich your Italian vocabulary with these words, commonly used when talking about the bedroom and its furnishings in Italian.

1. Letto – Bed

2. Cuscino – Pillow

3. Coperta – Blanket

4. Lenzuola – Sheets

5. Materasso – Mattress

6. Armadio – Wardrobe

7. Comodino – Bedside table

8. Lampada – Lamp

9. Sveglia – Alarm clock

10. Tappeto – Rug

11. Specchio – Mirror

12. Finestra – Window

13. Tenda – Curtain

14. Scrivania – Desk

15. Poltrona – Armchair

16. Cassettiera – Dresser

17. Appendiabiti – Coat hanger

18. Ventilatore – Fan

19. Quadro – Painting

20. Piumone – Duvet/Comforter

Italian WordItalian SpellingEnglish Translation
Lenzuola[len-zu-o-la]Bed sheets
Comodino[co-mo-di-no]Bed side table
Sveglia[sve-gl-ia]Alarm clock
Appendiabiti[ap-pen-di-a-bi-ti]Coat hanger
20 handy Italian words to know about the bedroom

italian mum singing ninna nanna to baby

Ninna Nanna: A Sweet Italian Lullaby For Kids

Ninna Nanna Meaning

Ninna Nanna, derived from the Italian words “ninna” (lullaby) and “nanna” (sleep), is a beautiful and soothing term used to describe the cherished melodies sung to lull infants and young children to sleep. 

With a gentle and tender tone, these enchanting lullabies have been passed down through generations, embodying the warmth and care of parents and caregivers. The evocative power of Ninna Nanna lies in its ability to create a peaceful atmosphere, comforting little ones as they drift into dreamland. 

The magic of “Ninna Nanna” lies in its ability to transcend generations, passing on this heartwarming tradition from parents to their precious kids. It’s like a special bond that’s formed through music and love! These lullabies are not just about bedtime; they become a part of our cultural heritage, spreading warmth and affection.

Ninna Nanna Song & Lyrics

Have you ever listened to this sweet Italian lullaby? Here comes one of the many versions; feel free to use it for your little ones.

Ninna Nanna Italian Lullaby

Ninna Nanna Lyrics

Ninna nanna, ninna oh,
questo bimbo a chi lo do?

Lo darò alla Befana
Che lo tiene una settimana

Lo darò all’Uomo Nero
Che lo tiene un anno intero

Lo darò all’Uomo Bianco
Che lo tiene finché è stanco

Lo darò al Saggio Folletto
Che lo renda un Bimbo perfetto!

Lo darò alla sua mamma
Ed il bimbo fa la nanna.

Ninna nanna, ninna oh,
questo bimbo a chi lo do?

Ninna nanna, ninna oh,
Lo terrò stretto al mio cuor

Fai la ninna fai la nanna
Dolce amore della Mamma

Sei la stella di Papa
Fai la ninna nanna-a
Fai la ninna fai la nanna

Dormi dormi adesso un pò
Fai la ninna fai la nanna

Dormi piccolo tesor
Dormi dormi dormi un pò

Here’s the translation:

Lullaby, lullaby, lullaby oh, to whom shall I give this child?
I’ll give him to Befana, who’ll keep him for a week.
I’ll give him to the Black Man, who’ll keep him for a whole year.

I’ll give him to the White Man, who’ll keep him until he’s tired.
I’ll give him to the Wise Elf, to make him a perfect child!
I’ll give him to his mama. And the baby falls asleep.

Lullaby, lullaby, lullaby oh, to whom shall I give this child?
Lullaby, lullaby, lullaby oh, I’ll hold him close to my heart.
Sing lullabies, rock to sleep. Sweet love of a mother.

You’re Daddy’s little star. Sleep, sleep now.
Sing lullabies, rock to sleep. Sleep now, little treasure.
Sleep, sleep, sleep a little.

Wish A Buona Notte In These Regional Dialects

In the diverse regions of Italy, saying “buona notte” takes on a unique and charming twist as it features local dialects. 

In Trentino, nestled in the Alpine region, the warm-hearted locals bid a fond “Buna not” to wish a peaceful night. Traveling eastward to Fruili Venezia Giulia, we encounter “buine gnot”, a delightful expression evoking the region’s cultural heritage. In Lombardia, amidst the bustling cityscapes, “buna nocc” rolls off the tongue with a touch of elegance. Venturing further south to Emilia Romagna, “bona nòti” welcomes the night with its captivating melody. 

In the heart of Lazio, the enchanting and timeless “bona notte” resonates, leaving a sense of comfort and tranquility. Journeying to Toscana, a region renowned for its art and beauty, the fun “basta così” softly wishes a restful night. Finally, on the captivating island of Sicily, “bona notti” bids sweet dreams under the gentle Mediterranean moonlight. 

Each regional variation of “buona notte” reflects the distinctive spirit of its locale, celebrating the diversity and unity that make Italy’s nighttime wishes as enchanting as its culture.

rome asleep at night

Famous Italian Quotes about La Notte

Over the years, Italian poets, writers, and thinkers have always found comfort and inspiration in the calming darkness. Their wise words tell us that the night isn’t just a road to morning; it’s the perfect opportunity to explore our feelings and thoughts. So, let’s enjoy these precious quotes and take a moment to ponder ourselves during the quiet twilight hours. 

“La notte porta consiglio. A condizione che si dorma.”

Translation: The night brings counsel. Provided you sleep.

Roberto Gervaso, La volpe e l’uva, 1989

“Di notte, anche il paesaggio riposa.”

Translation: At night, even the landscape rests.

Fausto Gianfranceschi, Aforismi del dissenso, 2012

Non esiste notte tanto lunga, da impedire al sole di risorgere.

Translation: There is no night so long as to prevent the sun from rising.


Italian Proverbs about Italian Nights

If you enjoyed the Italian quotes earlier, you’re in for a treat with these classic yet amusing proverbs. 

  1. “Chi gira di notte scommette con la morte.“

Translation: He who wanders at night gambles with death.

  1. “Chi va a letto a pancia piena tutta la notte si dimena.“

Translation: Those who go to bed with a full stomach toss and turn all night.

  1. “Chi va a dormire a pancia vuota, passa la notte senza posa.” 

Translation: Those who go to bed on an empty stomach spend the night restlessly.

  1. “Guai e peli crescono anche di notte.“

Translation: Troubles and hairs grow even at night.

  1. “I buoni pensieri vengono di notte.“

Translation: Good thoughts come during the night.

  1. “La notte porta consiglio.“

Translation: The night brings counsel.

  1. “La notte è madre dei pensieri e la mattina del lavoro.“

Translation: The night is the mother of thoughts, and the morning of work.

  1. “La notte è fatta per amare”. 

Translation: The night is made for love.

romantic couple good night phrases in italian

Romantic Good Night Quotes To Wish Sweet Dreams In Italian (written by me)

I thought we could conclude this article with a few beautiful buonanotte messages I wrote. I hope they inspire your nights. Feel free to share them with loved ones.

To Wife

“Dolce Notte Amore Mio. Mi addormenterò pensando quanto sia fortunato di averti.”

Translation: Good night my love. I will fall asleep thinking about how luck I am to have you.

To Child

“Buona nanna piccola stella. Sogna tante belle fate, farfalle, e luoghi incantati.” 

Translation: Good night little star. Dream about lots of beautiful fairies, butterflies, and enchanted places.

To A Sick Loved One

“Riposati amore mio. Domani e’ un altro giorno, e tutto passera’.” 

Translation: Rest well, my love. Tomorrow is another day, and everything will be fine.

Before A Big Day

“Metti i pensieri da parte e dormi serena. Tutto andra’ bene, ne sono sicuro.” 

Translation: Put all thoughts aside and sleep peacefully. All will go well, I am sure.

Final Thoughts

It’s time for me to bid you goodbye, or shall I say buon riposo? We’ve explored the many delightful ways to say “buonanotte” in authentic Italian fashion. From “dormi bene” to “sogni d’oro,” each word is waiting to be shared.

And if you want to keep them to yourself, you can always whisper one before you go to sleep.

Let the magic of “buonanotte” remind you to face each new day with renewed passion. As the Italian proverb goes: “La notte porta consiglio” (the night brings advice).

As you continue to learn Italian, you’ll soon realize there’s so much more to explore. Sure, “buona notte” is a great place to start—it’s fun to surprise friends and family with a charming good night. But why stop there?

Picture yourself saying “buongiorno” next time, or maybe something even more enchanting—you get to decide!

If you are ready to explore more, check out my article about “buongiorno” aka good morning in Italian.

Frequently Asked Questions

How do Italians greet each other at night?

Italians commonly greet each other at night by saying “Buonanotte.”

Is it buonanotte or buona notte?

The correct form is “Buonanotte.”

Is Buona Notte formal or informal?

“Buonanotte” is generally considered an informal way of saying “good night” in Italian.

What is the difference between Bene and buona?

“Bene” means “well” or “good,” while “buona” means “good” or “nice.” “Bene” is used as an adverb to describe how something is done, while “buona” is an adjective used to describe feminine nouns like “notte” (night).

What gender is Notte in Italian?

“Notte” is a feminine noun in Italian.

What is the Italian word for sleeping?

The Italian word for sleeping is “dormire.”

Can I use “buonanotte” with friends and family?

Yes, “buonanotte” is commonly used with friends and family as a way to wish them a good night.

Is there a specific time to use “buonanotte”?

“Buonanotte” is typically used in the late evening and night, as a way to wish someone a good night’s rest.

Are there any alternatives to “buonanotte” in Italian?

Yes, you can also use phrases like “notte” or “dormi bene” to wish someone a good night.

Is there a shorter or more casual way to say “good night” in Italian?

“Buonanotte” is already a relatively casual and common way to say “good night” in Italian, but you can say “notte” for a shortened version.

Alessia Spampinato