14 Awesome Travel Words You’ve Never Heard

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Traveling can make even the best storyteller speechless. Get ready for a little vocab lesson where you’ll learn some travel words that describe your wanderlusting perfectly. Guaranteed you’ll wish there was an English equivalent!

14 Awesome Travel Words You've Never Heard

Have you ever tried to explain a travel experience and been at a loss for words?

Travel does that to us – it entangles us in its beauty, makes us feel a myriad of emotions we’ve never yet felt, and leaves us speechless and yearning for more. 

Lucky for us, there are some travel words that describe these beautiful achings perfectly. The thing is, they are words with no English equivalent. 

We had lots of fun pairing some of our favorite travel photos with definitions we think fit what we were feeling. So get ready to add some foreign words to your arsenal in this little travel vocab lesson!

1. Resfeber

Definition: The nervous feeling you get before a journey.

Yes, there’s a name for those jittery butterflies that flutter through your stomach as you pack your bags.

Resfeber Awesome Travel Words

2. Eleutheromania

Definition: An intense and irresistible desire for freedom.

Let’s be real, whether your traveling to NYC, Iceland or Tokyo, who doesn’t have this feeling?

Eleutheromania Awesome Travel Words

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3. Fernweh

Definition: Feeling homesick for a place you’ve never been.

I love this word because it puts a name to a feeling I’ve never before been able to describe. 

Psst! Looking for your next travel destination?? We’ve got you covered!

Fernweh Awesome Travel Words

4. Trouvaille

Definition: Something lovely discovered by chance.

Such a pretty word and such a beautiful idea. I don’t know about you, but I hear a sexy French accent in my mind.

Trouvaille Awesome Travel Words

Travel Photography Tip: If you’re curious how we got these photos, we used a lot (if not all) of our 32 Easy & Creative Travel Photography Tips to make these shots happen. Whether you’re a beginner or an expert, these tips will help you take incredible pictures!

5. Hygge

Definition: The cozy feeling of relaxing with friends while having a meal or drinks.

I need this word in my life. Every day. 

Hygge Awesome Travel Words

Feeling the wanderlust yet?! I know I am! Here’s a great place to start planning a trip

6. Sonder

Definition: The realization that each random passerby is living a life as vivid and complex as your own.

If we take the time to consider that each person in this world is living a life as important as our own, this world will be a much brighter place.

Sonder Awesome Travel Words

7. Onism

Definition: The awareness of how little of the world you’ll experience. 

How many lifetimes would it take to visit the every single place you’ve ever dreamed of? For me, it would take hundreds of lifetimes. I guess I’ll have to settle for just this one, and make the most of it!

Onism Awesome Travel Words

8. Livsnjutare

Definition: One who loves life deeply and lives it to the extreme.

Always strive to be this type of person. Does it matter that you can’t pronounce it? Nope, just be it.

Livsnjutare Awesome Travel Words

9. Waldeinsamkeit

Definition: The feeling of being alone in the woods.

This word brings to mind images of Hansel and Gretel wandering through the tangled paths of the Black Forest. Light streams through the thick trees, and the crisp air is scented with pine. Dreamy isn’t it? Walk alone in the woods and you might channel your inner fairy tale. 

Waldeinsamkeit Awesome Travel Words

10. Meraki

Definition: Putting a part of yourself into what you’re doing. 

Whether you are a cook, an artist, an athlete – or hell, even an accountant – do your work with your whole heart. This word really resonated with us during the summer of 2020 while we were hard at work pouring our souls into Van Conversion Academy

Meraki Awesome Travel Words

11. Numinous

Definition: The powerful, personal feeling of being overwhelmed and inspired.

What stirs this emotion in you? For me, it’s the feeling I get when I hike to an extraordinary view and I can look down to where I started. Or the feeling I get when listening to music live and the lyrics ring true for me. And it’s the feeling I get when I visit a place I’ve been dreaming of, and I see the streets and buildings in person for the first time.

Numinous Awesome Travel Words

12. Dérive

Definition: A spontaneous journey where the traveler lets the spirit of the landscape and architecture move them.

This kind of journey is my favorite. The kind where you don’t have any really solid plans. The kind where you wander into cute coffeehouses and picnic in parks. The kind where the day is yours to do with it as you’d like.

Derive Awesome Travel Words

13. Forelsket

Definition: The euphoria you experience when you are first falling in love.

I’d like to think that this word could refer to a person or a place, as both give me butterflies. Find out how traveling makes your relationships stronger

Forelsket Awesome Travel Words

14. Yu yi

Definition: The desire to feel things just as intensely as you did when you were younger — before expectations, before memory, before words.

One reason travel is so addicting is that you’re able to experience a place for the first time. You see colors more vividly, and see everything with a fresh set of eyes.

Yu yi Awesome Travel Words

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We want to hear from you!

Have you heard any of these travel words before? Which is your favorite? Do you have one to add to the list? We’d love to hear from you in the comments below!

Comments (28) on “14 Awesome Travel Words You’ve Never Heard

  1. joquim.krahejacorphomes@gmail.com says:

    I personally believe that all travelers must pick inspiring travel quotes in their mind. It helps to enjoy the trip. I always do the same for me. By the way, I wish you all a good holidays/travels for this 2021, if pandemics let us for sure!

  2. clairemcw53@gmail.com says:

    The world ‘hygge’ reminded me of a dinner party I had few years ago out in my garden under the blooming wisteria with a few friends, one of whom was battling glioblastoma brain cancer. At one point he looked around at all the sites of the flowers, his friends, the candlelight and the food and was just soaking it in. He had this contented smile on his face, and I felt grateful I had created what I now know is a hygge moment.

  3. emmy.boden@gmail.com says:

    I’m Swedish and speak both Danish and Norwegian. "Hygge" isn’t just about spending "cosy" time with friends over a meal or drink. It’s acknowledging a feeling or moment, whether alone or with friends, at home or out, ordinary or extraordinary as cosy, charming or special. It describes a feeling of cozy contentment and well-being through enjoying the simple things in life.
    In Swedish we use "livsnjutare" for anyone who enjoys life in an over-indulgent way so the translation you’ve provided is close enough. 🙂
    I’ve always like the word "hodophile" – someone who loves to travel.

  4. RandomPotato says:

    As a Chinese person, I’ve never seen anyone using the term ‘yu yi’ like that, and further searches on google left me even more confused because ‘玉衣’ (yu yi) simply means jade burial suit and that’s about it. There isn’t really some deeper interpretation to it. The closest term I could think of would perhaps be ‘如意'(ru yi), but this term means something like ‘according to your wish’…
    Either way keep up the great work!

    • bwzweber@gmail.com says:

      Hi Vijay, you can use the word Meraki all you want (it’s of Greek origin). If you are looking to purchase our images, please use our contact us form and we can discuss pricing. Cheers!

  5. helenacm@solution4u.com says:

    Where is the source of the meaning of Yu Yi? I got tipped off by a comment of a Chinese person that said that this was not the meaning. So I am searching around and can’t find anything. I love this meaning. I just want to find its origins since I am putting that definition as part of a slogan (not your exact same words) thanks!

  6. chocodonut44@gmail.com says:

    I just love the word Livsnjutare! I don’t know how, but it gives me a feeling of peace. And i feel I can relate to it, even though I can’t pronounce it!
    Apart from these, I like Dérive, Trouvaille and Fernweh.

    • bwzweber@gmail.com says:

      So many fun words, huh?! (We can’t pronounce many of them either! Hehe) I love how other languages have words for feelings that have no translation in English!

    • bwzweber@gmail.com says:

      We’ll encourage you to pin them on Pinterest and share the article on Social Media like Facebook and Twitter. But the images are ours and if you would like to purchase them, please email us at hello@twowanderingsoles.com and we can figure something out.

  7. tub86023@temple.edu says:

    I have heard of fernweh before, but all of your other words are brand new to me. And how perfect are they? I love other languages and how sometimes they have just the perfect word. No translation would do it justice!

    • ktdieder@gmail.com says:

      Aren’t they fun?! Fernweh has been one of my favorite words for some time now because it so accurately describes a pretty complex feeling. It was so fun putting together this list and I’m glad you enjoyed it 🙂

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