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10 Lesser-Known Travelling Words You Need To Know


Modified: December 27, 2023

by Tabinda M.

Featured Image 1 - 10 Lesser-Known Travelling Words You Need To Know

Travelling can leave us enchanted, inspired, awed and sometimes even speechless. Sometimes words just aren’t enough to explain the myriad of emotions you experience before, during and after having traveled to a foreign land. Just like a photo can’t fully capture the beauty of a place unless you are actually there witnessing it, words fall short when it comes to describing a specific feeling or emotion you get from your travelling adventure. The English language is severely lacking when it comes to describing our emotions and feelings after a great trip. Wanderlust is a great word, but it’s become a sort of a cliché over the years.


Luckily, travel words from other languages come to the rescue by providing us with cool words with unusual pronunciations that capture the emotion and feeling of travelling perfectly! Here’s a list of 10 cool travel words that you can use to describe your travelling experience and feelings.




Man standing on top of mountain beside cairn stones

Photo by Simon English on Unsplash


Meaning: The awareness of how little of the world you’ll get to experience in a lifetime.


Onism makes the top of the travel-related cool words list. Travellers and adventurers have probably felt this for sure. Even if you aren’t a traveller, knowing how little of this world you’ll get to experience in your life is something everyone can relate to on some level. The world is full of beautiful places and magnificent sights every traveller wishes they could experience and see at least once in their lifetime. Onism is a perfect word to describe the feeling of missing out on all these beautiful places the world has to offer.




Travelling accessories sitting  atop a map

Photo by Pixabay


Meaning: The feeling of nervousness and anticipation before the journey.


You’re about to embark on a new journey, a brand new travel adventure and you feel this nervous energy with you as you’re figuring out how to pack your travel bag and plan your travel itinerary. Resfeber perfectly sums up the excitement, nervousness, and anxiety you feel in anticipation of your journey. Even if you’re a seasoned traveller or have been travelling for a while, it still feels exciting and a little scary to set out on a brand new adventure. Next time you feel nervous before a journey, Resfeber is the word you’re looking for.





Person standing beside road doing hand sign

Photo by Atlas Green on Unsplash


Meaning: Wandering alone. A traveller or an adventurer who enjoys tripping solo.


Travelling alone may be overwhelming for some, but others get pleasure out of taking a journey alone. Solo travel adventures can be fun especially because you get to enjoy a lot of freedom. You get to be alone with your thoughts and that can be an enlightening experience to a certain extent. Being alone with your thoughts gives you the time to reflect and look within and that is something a Solivagant particularly enjoys.





Woman in forest holding tree

Photo by Jeffrey Wegrzyn on Unsplash


Meaning: The feeling of solitude in the woods/ forest.


Another cool travel word for all the solo travelers out there. Waldeinsamkeit has German origins and describes the feeling of solitude and peace you feel when wandering alone in the woods. If you thought there wasn’t a word for that, Waldeinsamkeit just proved you wrong. The woods can be a great place for roaming around, feeling close to nature and letting your mind wander. Waldeinsamkeit may be a mouthful, but it captures this peaceful feeling of being alone in the woods accurately.




Woman with her backpack hiking in the woods

Photo by Pixabay


Meaning: A traveller who likes tripping for pleasure.


Believe it or not, Gadabout is an English Language word that means someone who likes travelling for pleasure. Travelling can be a wholesome experience for all but if you’re one of those people who are always on the road for an adventure simply for the hell of it, congratulations, you’re a Gadabout! Frankly, being a Gadabout is something we all should aspire to. Travelling can be fun and even more so when you’re always open to new adventures no matter how crazy they sound.



Yoko Meshi


Two men chatting and laughing white sitting on chairs

Photo by Helena Lopes on Unsplash


Meaning: The anxiety and stress you feel while attempting to speak a foreign language.


Who knew there was a word for that? When you’re travelling to a new country, it’s natural to want to try to learn the native language of that region. And even if you don’t plan on learning the language, it’s normal to pick up a few foreign words and add them to your vocabulary unconsciously. But when you’re out there, say in a shopping mall, trying to communicate with the shopkeeper, not being able to speak the language properly can be stressful and embarrassing. Yoko Meshi is a cool travel word that perfectly describes that feeling.




Travelling accessories including lack camera near sunglasses and bag

Photo by Anete Lūsiņa on Unsplash


Meaning: A spontaneous or unplanned journey on which a traveller embarks by leaving their life behind and being guided by the landscape and architecture of the new place.


Dérive perfectly sums up the feeling of exploring a new city without a concrete plan in mind. If you’re more of a wanderer as opposed to a planner, you’re likely to find yourself strolling the streets of a new city aimlessly, using the architecture and the beauty of the place as guidance.




Yellow Volkswagen van travelling on road

Photo by Dino Reichmuth on Unsplash


Meaning: Someone who loves roads and travelling on them.


Beautiful roads and pathways can be an obsession for some. And if you love roads and travelling on them, you might be a hodophile. Road trips can be a great way to take in the beauty of the landscapes you pass through. After all, driving around on long foreign roads with good music to keep you company is something we’d all say yes to without the slightest hesitation.




Woman smiling staring at the sky

Photo by Kinga Cichewicz on Unsplash


Meaning: Feeling content and happy while travelling.


Eudaimonia has Greek origins and describes the feeling you experience when you’re travelling and everything is going great. A lot of times you’re on a trip and you pause and think how wonderful everything is and how much you’re enjoying the journey overall. Eudaimonia is the word that captures the essence of this emotional state while travelling.




Blue tent under milky way

Photo by Şahin Yeşilyaprak on Unsplash


Meaning: A profound realization of the beauty and mystery of the universe that triggers an emotional response.


Everyone, at some point in their lives, has thought about how beautiful, mysterious and magical it is that this universe exists. Yūgen is a word that describes this humbling experience. The word has Japanese origins and refers to an important concept in the study of aesthetics in Japan. For travellers, this word perfectly describes how humbling it can be to marvel at the beauty of this universe and feel extremely fortunate just to witness it.


Having these travel words in your vocabulary can be an advantage. They can come in handy, not only when you’re trying to find the right words to describe a certain feeling, say while writing in your travel journal, but also when you just want a cool caption for that brilliant Instagram photo you took on your recent trip – the possibilities are endless.