Main Difference – Donde vs. Adonde
Donde and adonde are two words that are used in the Spanish language to indicate the concept of where. These two forms are often very confusing and many Spanish learners as well native speakers do not always clearly distinguish the difference between donde and adonde. The main difference between donde and adonde is that donde can be translated into English as where while adonde can be translated as to where or where to. Consequently, donde refers to a location whereas adonde refers to a direction.
What Does Donde Mean
Donde functions as a relative pronoun that follows a noun or a preposition. It is equivalent to where in the English language. In some cases, donde can be also translated as which or in which. It is important to note that donde is always used to refer to a location. When compared to adonde, donde indicates the location of a stationary object as it does not indicate any movement. Therefore, it can be seen with verbs that do not imply any movement. For example,
Es la casa donde nació mi padre.
(It’s the house where my father was born.)
Las escrituras son el espejo donde vemos el alma.
(The scriptures are the mirror in which we see the soul.)
In both these examples, donde is used to indicate a location and does not indicate any movement.
Dónde can be defined as the interrogative form of donde. Dónde can be used in questions, indirect questions and exclamations.
¿De dónde eres tú?
(Where are you from?)
¿dónde estuviste anoche?
(Where were you last night?)
What Does Adonde Mean
Adonde is a variant of donde. Adonde can be loosely translated into English as to where or where to. Adonde indicates a movement. It is typically followed by a location or a verb that indicate motion. For example, consider the phrase,
el lugar adonde se dirigían – the place they were going to or the place to which they were heading
Here, adonde is followed by the verb dirigir which indicates a movement.
Adónde is the interrogative form of adonde. It is used to form questions.
(where are we going?)
Difference Between Donde and Adonde
Donde can be translated as where
Adonde can be translated as to where
Donde functions as a relative pronoun.
Adonde functions as a relative adverb.
Donde refers to a location
Adonde refers to the direction.
Donde is generally followed by a noun or a preposition.
Adonde is generally followed by a location and a verb of motion.
Dónde is the interrogative form of donde.
Adónde is the interrogative form of adonde.
Dónde is generally used to ask where someone or something is
Adónde is generally used to ask where someone is going.