I believe, где is where? and куда is like, to where? or something like that I am not sure D:

4 Answers 4


Откуда ты идешь? (from) - I am going from my house.

Кудаты идешь? (to) - I am going to school.

Где эта школа? (location) - The school near your home.


ГДЕ = "Where" (the location) Где яблоко? (where is the apple?—in what location

КУДА = "To where" Куда ты положил яблоко? —where (to where) did you put the apple?

In English we have only "where", which can mean (to where (the action)) and (where(the location)).


It's deeply rooted in Russian grammar. Location without movement governs the locative, while location with movement uses the accusative.

Где -> no movement, locative
Куда -> movement, accusative

Something similar goes, for instance, in German:

wo -> no movement, dative
wohin -> movement, accusative

In English movement can be expressed directly with "where to", but often is indicated by other parts of the sentence, or not at all if that's implicitely clear. In Russian you simply must know whether there is movement or not, or else you won't be able to form a proper sentence.

Beside the need to use the proper case, "where" is not the only word that has two variants. For instance, "here" ("from here" / "to here") will also be said differently according to movement.

To show how strong a meaning these adverbs carry, these two sentences are common in Russian:

Где ты? -> where are you?
Куда Ты? -> where are you going?

While in English the meaning is carried by the verb, in Russian the adverb is sufficient.

  • As locative case is mostly outdated nowadays "где" is used usually along the prepositional case except a dozen of words. Probably, it's not a good idea to confuse the beginner with the archaic locative.
    – Matt
    Commented Aug 20, 2015 at 9:40
  • Sorry, that's how I was taught Russian here in France a few decades ago. We were told the locative whas a subcase of the pepositional, with a few exceptions as you said. I did not know the name had fallen in disuse since then.
    – kuroi neko
    Commented Aug 20, 2015 at 9:44
  • Well, it never has gone but has a limited recognition along with a few others. Here the most relevant topic on SE: russian.stackexchange.com/questions/404/…
    – Matt
    Commented Aug 20, 2015 at 9:53

Где means the place itself without action, and куда means direction or aim.

Not sure, I'm right, but it seems like you have to manipulate time to male this difference between где and куда in English.

Где maps simple time, and куда maps continuous and perfect:

  • Где эта улица? - Where is this street?
  • Где было молоко? - Where was the milk?
  • Куда ты идёшь? - Where are you going?
  • Куда ты положил молоко? - Where have you put the milk.

PS: There can be the other meanings of this words, I was answering only about specific case.

  • 1
    I would say "to where", "to what place" if I really wanted to stress the "куда" meaning in English.
    – VCH250
    Commented Aug 16, 2015 at 23:12
  • 1
    there are old english words: thence, hence, thither, hither which have similar meanings to the Russian "where(s)" with movement—отсюда, оттуда, сюда итд
    – VCH250
    Commented Aug 17, 2015 at 0:09

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.