Installing Python on macOS

Quickstart (TL;DR)

Visit the official Python website ( and download the installer for the latest version of Python (currently, 3.6.2; otherwise, whatever higher numbered version that’s available.)

Detailed Instructions

  1. Visit the official Python website (, and navigate to the Downloads navigation button and click on Python “3.x.y”, where x and y are the major and minor versions of Python (e.g. 3.6.2). It should be the latest version. This will download the Python software installer for your Mac.

  2. Launch the Python installer, likely located in your Downloads folder. The file will be named something like python-3.6.2-macosx10.6.pkg (depending on the version downloaded).


    You will be greeted with a series of installation screens. All default selections are suitable here.

    ../_images/install-macos-3.png ../_images/install-macos-4.png ../_images/install-macos-5.png ../_images/install-macos-6.png ../_images/install-macos-7.png

    When ready, click “Install”.

  3. You can access the Python applications in your Applications folder (e.g. “Python 3.6”).

  4. You likely want to run This will open the interpreter window, ready to receive “live” Python code. The program code entered here isn’t saved.


If you wish to create and run a saved program, you’ll want to create a new file.