Definition of tour in English:

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Pronunciation: /to͝or/


1A journey for pleasure in which several different places are visited: three couples from Kansas on an airline tour of Alaska
More example sentences
  • As of yesterday, 72 groups totaling 1,024 Chinese nationals have visited Taiwan for sightseeing tours.
  • And that is why boat rides are an important part of the sight-seeing tours offered by many tour operators here.
  • He estimates the vehicle has gone about a million miles on nine tours and three different motors.
trip to/through, excursion to/through, journey to/through, expedition to/through, jaunt to/through, outing to/through;
trek to/through, safari to/through
archaic peregrination to/through
1.1A short trip to or through a place in order to view or inspect something: a tour of the White House
More example sentences
  • Eventually curiosity got the better of her and she hopped out for a very short tour of inspection, only to hasten back inside, leaving nothing but a few paw prints in the falling snow.
  • That venture, along with limited guided tours and day trips for schoolchildren, proved hugely popular and 2,500 people have visited the centre per week.
  • After a short tour of the ruins of the Cistercian Abbey, founded in 1132, he saw one of Europe's oldest surviving monastic mills.
visit, inspection, guided tour
2A journey made by performers or an athletic team, in which they perform or play in several different places: she joined the Royal Shakespeare Company on tour
More example sentences
  • This is the standard defence often used in trying to excuse otherwise often outrageous behaviour by sporting teams on tour or on pre season or post season trips.
  • On tour, performers say, they receive top-notch medical care and physical conditioning support.
  • Why postpone it merely because the National team is on tour.
2.1 (the tour) (In golf, tennis, and other sports) the annual round of events in which top professionals compete.
Example sentences
  • There is Annika Sorenstam here, the number one on the ladies' professional golf tour, the LPGA.
  • Landlord Oliver Cleary is expecting a dip in takings when 10 of his regulars jet off for their annual golf tour to Portugal next month.
  • Woods has chased titles and money with equal vigour since he broke onto the professional golf tour in 1996.
3 (also tour of duty) A period of duty on military or diplomatic service: he was haunted by his tour of duty in Vietnam
More example sentences
  • The military has repeatedly extended tours of duty for US soldiers and placed enormous strains on the Army Reserve and Army National Guard.
  • Furthermore, they also acquired sufficient skills through practical experience as part of their tours of duty in line units that were included in the course of studies.
  • New arrivals in-processed in Japan as others enjoyed rest and relaxation leave, or prepared to rotate home after completing their tours of duty.


[with object]
1Make a tour of (an area): he decided to tour France [no object]: they had toured in a little minivan
More example sentences
  • He last visited the island in November to tour earthquake-stricken areas in central Taiwan.
  • When I did my own tour of the boros today, I tried to imagine how exactly a president tours a disaster area.
  • The new Queen spent much of February touring the stricken areas to try to boost morale.
travel around, explore, discover, vacation in, visit
visit, go around/through, walk around/through, inspect
informal check out
1.1Take (a performer, production, etc.) on tour.
Example sentences
  • Young Hamlet is the latest touring professional production to be staged at Glusburn Institute.
  • He dropped out of high school in 1960 to dance in a European touring production of West Side Story.
  • UK readers will be able to make up their own minds next year when the company tours the production to London, Scotland and the regions.


Middle English (sense 3 of the noun): from Old French, 'turn', via Latin from Greek tornos 'lathe'. Sense 1 dates from the mid 17th century.

  • This was initially a word for a ‘turn’ or ‘spell of work’ (tour of duty) from an Old French word meaning ‘turn’, via Latin from Greek tornos ‘lathe’. The notion of visiting a number of places was associated with tour from the mid 17th century. Tournament and tourney (Middle English) where you turn round to confront each other are from the same source.

Words that rhyme with tour

abjure, adjure, allure, amour, assure, Bahawalpur, boor, Borobudur, Cavour, coiffure, conjure, couture, cure, dastur, de nos jours, doublure, dour, embouchure, endure, ensure, enure, gravure, immature, immure, impure, inure, Jaipur, Koh-i-noor, Kultur, liqueur, lure, manure, moor, Moore, Muir, mure, Nagpur, Namur, obscure, parkour, photogravure, plat du jour, Pompadour, procure, pure, rotogravure, Ruhr, Saussure, secure, simon-pure, spoor, Stour, sure, Tours, velour, Yom Kippur, you're

For editors and proofreaders

Syllabification: tour

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