How To Run Python On Mac Terminal

Python is a versatile and widely used programming language that comes pre-installed on macOS. In this tutorial, we will learn how to run Python directly in your Mac terminal.

Step 1: Open Terminal

To start, open the Terminal app on your Mac. You can find it in the Applications/Utilities folder or by searching for it using Spotlight (Cmd + Spacebar).

Step 2: Check Python Version

macOS comes with Python 2.7 pre-installed, but it’s recommended to use Python 3 since Python 2 is no longer supported. To check the Python version installed on your system, enter the following command in Terminal:

python --version

If you see Python 3.x.x, then you’re good to go. However, if you see Python 2.7.x or don’t have Python 3 installed, follow the instructions in the next section to install Python 3.

Step 3: Install Python 3 (if needed)

To install Python 3, we recommend using Homebrew, which is a package manager for macOS. First, install Homebrew by running the following command in Terminal:

/bin/bash -c "$(curl -fsSL"

Once Homebrew is installed, you can install Python 3 by entering the following command:

brew install python

After the installation is complete, you can check your Python version again using the python3 --version command.

Step 4: Run Python in Terminal

To run Python directly in Terminal, just type python3 and hit Enter. This will start the Python interpreter, and you’ll see the following output:

Python 3.x.x (default, date and time, [Clang/GCC] on darwin)
Type "help", "copyright", "credits" or "license" for more information.

You can now enter Python commands and see their output directly in Terminal. For example, you can perform an addition by typing 2 + 3 and pressing Enter:

>>> 2 + 3

To exit the Python interpreter, press Ctrl + Z (or type exit() and press Enter).

Step 5: Run Python Scripts

To run a Python script in Terminal, navigate to the directory containing the script using the cd command. For example, if your script is located in the Documents/PythonScripts folder, you’d enter:

cd ~/Documents/PythonScripts

Once you’re in the correct directory, run the script using the python3 command followed by the script’s file name. If your script is named, the command would be:


Your script will now run, and you’ll see its output in Terminal.


Running Python on Mac Terminal is simple and straightforward. With just a few commands, you can start using Python directly in your terminal or execute Python scripts. Happy coding!