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Visiter vs rendre visite à = To visit a place vs a person

Look at these sentences:

J'ai visité Paris.
I visited Paris.

Il a visité le Musée d'Orsay.
He visited the Museum of Orsay.

J'ai rendu visite à ma soeur.
I visited / went to see my sister.

Il rend visite à ses parents.
He's paying a visit to his parents.

Notice that the verb visiter is used with places.  

When visiting people (friends and family) the expression rendre visite à quelqu'un is used and never visiter alone. (This is similar to the English "to pay a visit to someone".)

 

Learn more about these related French grammar topics

Examples and resources

rendre visite à


Je vais rendre visite à mes cousins.
I'm going to visit my cousins.


J'ai rendu visite à ma soeur.
I visited / went to see my sister.


Il rend visite à ses parents.
He's paying a visit to his parents.


J'ai rendu visite à ma grand-mère.
I visited my grandmother yesterday.


visiter


Je vais visiter Londres.
I'm going to visit London.


Il a visité le Musée d'Orsay.
He visited the Museum of Orsay.


J'ai visité Paris.
I visited Paris.


Q&A

stephen

Kwiziq community member

28 May 2018

3 replies

I understood that the second and third consecutive verbs were in the infinitive

Chris

Kwiziq community member

28 May 2018

28/05/18

I don't get your question. Can you rephrase it? -- Chris.

stephen

Kwiziq community member

28 May 2018

28/05/18

My answer contained ´vais rendre visiter’, I was told the second and third consecutive verbs should be in the infinitive.

Cécile

Kwiziq language super star

29 May 2018

29/05/18

Hi Stephen,


The expression is rendre visite à quelqu'un (to visit someone) and visite is a noun not a verb in this instance.. Think of to pay someone a visit in English.


Hope this helps!

Frank

Kwiziq community member

21 February 2018

2 replies

I was taught "faire une visite" and it was in textbooks. What happened to this expression?

Chris

Kwiziq community member

21 February 2018

21/02/18

There are several ways in French to express that you visited someone.


Marie rend visite à sa copine. -- Marie pays a visit to her friend.
Marie vas voir sa copine. -- Marie goes to see her friend.


Personally, I am not sure about "faire une visite". I guess it is OK but I don't know for sure. Aurélie would have to chime in on that.


-- Chris.

Chris

Kwiziq community member

21 February 2018

21/02/18

Correction of a typo: "Marie va voir..." (not vas voir).


Sorry about that.....


-- Chris.

Lisa

Kwiziq community member

7 August 2017

2 replies

Can you say rendre visite chez someone

Or does it have to be à not chez...

Ron

Kwiziq community member

8 August 2017

8/08/17

Bonjour Lisa,
Une très bonne question.
If I am understanding your question correctly, the use of chez vs à is the query. Chez indicates someones place, i.e. chez ma sœur, chez Marc, etc.; while à indicates a person, i.e. à ma sœur, à mon père, etc. It appears to me that given the definitions in the lesson:
»Notice that the verb visiter is used with places.
When visiting people (friends and family) the expression rendre visite à quelqu'un is used and never visiter alone. (This is similar to the English "to pay a visit to someone".)«
that using chez . . . one would use visiter instead of rendre visite,.
Bonne chance,

Lisa

Kwiziq community member

9 August 2017

9/08/17

Merci buckets!

zsuzsa

Kwiziq community member

4 November 2016

2 replies

Bonjour,

zsuzsa

Kwiziq community member

4 November 2016

4/11/16

Bonjour,
I think I've found a small mistake in the following sentence:

J'ai rendu visite à ma grand-mère.
I visited my grandmother yesterday.

'Hier' is missing from the French sentence.
Merci, bonne journée!

Daniel

Kwiziq community member

29 December 2017

29/12/17

They haven't fix it yet :)
Thinking...