I've seen various expressions such as "visita infaltable", "pelicula que hay que ver", "parada casi obligada". I was wondering if there was a "one size fits all" adjective for this? Or, is there a construction for these forms? Must-see, must-read, must-do. Thanks.

3 Answers 3


The best word that you can use to express that concept is imprescindible.

You'll frequently hear it most often alongside some other verb introduced with para, unless your sentence makes it already clear.

La visita al museo es imprescindible para los turistas.
Para los amantes del cine terror, aquella película es imprescindible.
El Quijote es un libro imprescindible (para leer, para tener, para entender).

You can also use the word with ser and an infinitive to create a sentence effectively saying "It's an absolute must to…":

Es imprescindible asistir a un concierto de Shakira una vez en la vida.


We have several ways to say something is a must:

Must-see / Must-visit

  • Tienes que ver/visitar
  • Has de ver
  • Visita Imprescindible
  • De visita obligada
  • No puedes dejar de ir a ver/visitar
  • No puedes perderte

Note: the last sentence "perderse" would be translated as missing.

I put on Italics the words (3 verbs, 2 nouns) that could be replaced by other verbs and nouns. For instance:


  • Tienes que leer
  • Has de leer
  • Lectura Imprescindible
  • De lectura obligada
  • No puedes dejar de leer


  • Has de tener
  • Debes tener
  • Imprescindible tenerlo


  • Tienes que comprarlo
  • Compra Imprescindible
  • De compra obligada


Summarizing. We use tener, deber and haber to say something is a must.

But these are less prioritary than Imprescindible. If something is really a must, then use Imprescindible.

Finally there are forms like de ... obligada or no puedes dejar de that are quite hard to translate. These are tipical where I live (Spain) but don't know about other countries.


You can use imperdible for anything not-to-be-missed. I'm from Argentina and its use in this sense is widespread, although this meaning may be somewhat new according to Fundéu:

Es un nuevo significado que ya se recoge en diccionarios como el Diccionario de uso del español, de Seco, Andrés y Ramos, con el significado de ‘[Cosa] que no se puede perder o dejar de disfrutar’ (la negrita en nuestra).

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