Travel tips

Published on February 3rd, 2014 | by Geckos Tales Team


24 words that describe travel better than you ever thought possible

Read time: a bit over 2 minutes

We love travelling and we love words, so imagine our surprise when we came across a massive treasure chest of words that describe how we feel before, during and after we travel better than anything we’ve ever seen, ever.

These literary gems make ‘wanderlust’ look like an overrated show pony. Which it is.  Travel brochures of the future will be littered with the likes of resfeber, eudaimonia and fernweh. At least, they will if we have anything to do with it.

1. Trouvaille (n.) 

Origin: French

Something lovely discovered by chance; a windfall

2. Dérive (n.)

Origin: Latin/French

Lit. “drift”; a spontaneous journey where the traveller leaves their life behind for a time to let the spirit of the landscape and architecture attract and move them

3. Numinous (adj.)

Origin: Latin

Describing an experience that makes you fearful yet fascinated, awed yet attracted- the powerful, personal feeling of being overwhelmed and inspired

4. Cockaigne (n.)

Origin: French, medieval trope

An imaginary land of luxury and idleness

5. Schwellenangst (n.)

Origin: German

Fear of embarking on something new; fear of crossing a threshold

6. Strikhedonia (n.)

Origin: Greek

The pleasure of being able to say “to hell with it”

7. Resfeber (n.)

Origin: Swedish

The restless race of the traveller’s heart before the journey begins, when anxiety and anticipation are tangled together; a ‘travel fever’ that can manifest as an illness

8. Vagary (n.)

Origin: Latin

An unpredictable instance, a wandering journey; a whimsical, wild or unusual idea, desire, or action

9. Eudaimonia (n.)

Origin: Greek

Lit. “human flourishing”; a contented state of being happy, healthy and prosperous

10. Quaquaversal (adj.)

Origin: Latin

Moving or happening in every direction instantaneously

11. Novaturient (adj.)

Origin: Latin

Desiring or seeking powerful change in one’s life, behavior, or situation

12. Sehnsucht (n.)

Origin: German

“The inconsolable longing in the human heart for we know now what”; a yearning for a far, familiar, non-earthly land one can identify as one’s home

13. Ecophobia (n.)

Origin: English

A fear or dislike of one’s home

14. Eleutheromania (n.)

Origin: Greek

An intense and irresistible desire for freedom

15. Livsnjutare (n.)

Origin: Swedish

One who loves life deeply and lives it to the extreme

16. Solivagant (adj.)

Origin: Latin

Wandering alone

17. Saudade (n.)

Origin: Portugese

A nostalgic longing to be near again to something or someone that is distant, or that has been loved and then lost; “the love that remains”

18. Eunoia (n.)

Origin: Greek

Beautiful thinking; a well mind

19. Sturmfrei (adj.)

Origin: Germany

Lit. “stormfree”; the freedom of not being watched by a parent or superior; being alone at a place and having the ability to do what you want

20. Yoko meshi (n.)

Origin: Japan

The peculiar stress of speaking a foreign language (literally means ‘a meal eaten sideways’)

21. Selcouth (adj.)

Origin: English

Unfamiliar, rare, strange, and yet marvelous

22. Fernweh (n.)

Origin: German

An ache for distance places; the craving for travel

23. Yūgen (n.)

Origin: Japan

An awareness of the universe that triggers emotional responses too deep and mysterious for words

24. Commuovere (v.)

Origin: Italian

To stir, to touch, to move to tears

Tags: , , , , , ,

About the Author

We run awesome trips around the world. But when we're not on the road, we're sitting here and writing loads of travel-related insights, tips, information and advice. Geckos Tales is your go-to source for whenever you need to find something out about pretty much anything.

Back to Top ↑