Definition of tour in US English:



  • 1A journey for pleasure in which several different places are visited.

    ‘three couples from Kansas on an airline tour of Alaska’
    • ‘They said that the sight of beer bars and go-go bars portray a poor image to chartered tours and families visiting the city and are just a disguise for the sex industry.’
    • ‘And that is why boat rides are an important part of the sight-seeing tours offered by many tour operators here.’
    • ‘In 1610 Hobbes went with Cavendish on a European tour and they visited France, Germany, and Italy.’
    • ‘The tour visits Ho Chi Minh City, Hanoi, Halong Bay, Hoi An, the Mekong Delta and a visit to the ancient archeological site at Hue.’
    • ‘The tours included visits to established resorts, emerging destinations and some still in need of development.’
    • ‘From the London launch, the tour visits Sheffield, Brighton, Cambridge, Manchester and Milton Keynes.’
    • ‘This takes them on a tour of sex tourism destinations, inevitably ending up in Thailand.’
    • ‘As of yesterday, 72 groups totaling 1,024 Chinese nationals have visited Taiwan for sightseeing tours.’
    • ‘There were also coach tours, visiting the shrines of France including Nevere and Lisieux.’
    • ‘And then we sell guided tours to visiting flyfishermen, even as we make them grind the barbs off their hooks and put the trout back in the river.’
    • ‘I'm sure it's more part of the real India than the places we're supposed to visit on the tour.’
    • ‘In the past, Japanese have visited North Korea on tours organized by small and medium-sized agencies.’
    • ‘There will be two full-day tours comprising a visit to the Giant's Causeway, Inishowen and a half-day tour of Derry City.’
    • ‘The highlights of the tour will be visits to Florence, Rome and Venice.’
    • ‘Next it was the pilgrimage part of our tour, as we visited the house where the virgin Mary spent the end of her life under the care of the Apostle John.’
    • ‘In the course of their stay in the capital, the group will go on a bus tour and visit some of Dublin's top attractions.’
    • ‘He estimates the vehicle has gone about a million miles on nine tours and three different motors.’
    • ‘There will then be coach tours visiting the shrines of France including Nevere and Lisieux returning from Paris by air.’
    • ‘The architecture was bold, but aged, like something most people visited on a tour in a different city.’
    • ‘Tschirnhaus began a European tour in 1674, visiting England where he met Wallis in Oxford and Collins in London.’
    excursion, journey, expedition, trip, jaunt, outing, day trip, junket, voyage, trek, safari
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    1. 1.1 A short trip to or through a place in order to view or inspect something.
      ‘a tour of the White House’
      • ‘Companies are jazzing up plant tours and store visits to build customer loyalty’
      • ‘At the al-Dawrah animal vaccination laboratory, journalists were again given a guided tour after the inspectors had left.’
      • ‘Even a short tour of the museum fills you with disgust and revulsion once you overcome your disbelief.’
      • ‘The result of such short tours is almost always a focus on the physical features of the club.’
      • ‘It is building up trust through station tours and visits to schools, social centres, mosques and temples.’
      • ‘Let's take a short tour of these layers, starting at the bottom.’
      • ‘The students then took a short tour of part of Dove House and afterwards joined the patients in the day room in a painting session.’
      • ‘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.’
      • ‘He was given a short tour of the premises by group chairman Jack Tordoff and his son John, the chief executive.’
      • ‘After a short tour of the ruins of the Cistercian Abbey, founded in 1132, he saw one of Europe's oldest surviving monastic mills.’
      • ‘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.’
      • ‘We gave them a short tour of the church (it is a small church, not much time was needed).’
      • ‘After a short tour of the hostel, however, he emerged and stopped to chat to the Union Jack-waving children.’
      • ‘Prince Charles then braved a steady drizzle as he was given a short tour of the monument which was decorated with an array of coloured flags and banners.’
      • ‘As she leads the short tour through her ice cream plant - you can almost see her mind cramming more into an already tight schedule.’
      • ‘Children from the Dutch School took a temple tour and visited the Buddha image carved on a rock cliff.’
      • ‘Spring is a popular time for garden tours and visits because many gardens simply look spectacular at this time of year.’
      • ‘The trips started with a tour of the Bog in Ballyshannon with lunch and tea on the Bog.’
      • ‘Observatory tours allow visitors to view the stars from a telescope positioned on the roof.’
      • ‘A grand opening is expected to take place, though the hall is already available for tours and visits, wedding ceremonies, receptions and conferences.’
      visit, inspection, guided tour, walk round, survey, walkabout, ramble
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  • 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’
    • ‘Gemma had studied for her A levels, whilst performing on tour.’
    • ‘There is also no future in sending exhausted teams on tour.’
    • ‘What they worry about most is that with two coaching teams, two separate and distinct teams will emerge on tour.’
    • ‘Why postpone it merely because the National team is on tour.’
    • ‘When it came for picking teams for tours abroad they were ignored.’
    • ‘On tour, performers say, they receive top-notch medical care and physical conditioning support.’
    • ‘The recovery in Durban capped the year, but a non-stop schedule on tour will hamper this team's development’
    • ‘The US Open champion said the pressure was different from playing on tour.’
    • ‘It's a masterpiece of theatre that's been finely honed by the troupe performing the play on tour across Britain.’
    • ‘She was, therefore, forced to accept anything offered, tours, pantomimes, weeks with repertory companies and variety tours.’
    • ‘Apart from strengthening the sub-continental ethos for the sport, the tours ensured a degree of improvement in the approach and technique.’
    • ‘The other constant is that teams at the end of their season find it increasingly difficult to perform successfully on tour.’
    • ‘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.’
    • ‘He cleared out his locker while the team were abroad on tour.’
    • ‘Rose also played against all the visiting international teams of International Women's Cricket Council as well as being a team member in overseas tours.’
    • ‘I would go so far as to say that one of the selectors should travel on tour with the team.’
    • ‘That's why I love going on tour with the footie team.’
    • ‘Both teams are currently on tour in Japan for a series of trial sessions and will return to Jakarta on Aug.24.’
    • ‘Is it the selection committee appointed by the Minister of Sports or the NOC who picks the team for foreign tours.’
    • ‘In the company at this time we have 120 dancers, half are here on tour and half are performing in Cuba.’
    1. 2.1the tour (in golf, tennis, and other sports) the annual round of events in which top professionals compete.
      • ‘Or: ‘What are the financial implications for the tour if the event is cancelled?’’
      • ‘Mac returned to Stanford as part of something called the Seibel Champions Tournament, his sport's version of golf's senior tour.’
      • ‘If the Boks win today, all the negatives from the previous games will be dismissed as small teething problems in the buildup to the big match of the tour.’
      • ‘He is also expected to pay back the tour by playing in events he wouldn't otherwise schedule.’
      • ‘When the Belgian women dominate the tour, women's tennis is boring so, just for a change, we had two Russians in the French Open final - and it was dreadful.’
      • ‘Five years after his retirement from the tour, Tanner ran a senior tennis event in Santa Barbara, California.’
      • ‘Ironically, Beaumont is the amateur on this professional tour.’
      • ‘There is Annika Sorenstam here, the number one on the ladies' professional golf tour, the LPGA.’
      • ‘He competed in the women's tennis tour in the 1970s after his sex-change operation.’
      • ‘He did admit to being rusty and said that it is difficult to come back to the tour with a matchplay event.’
      • ‘A lot of them were on the tour like me but there were many club professionals as well desperate to compete.’
      • ‘Some fear losing some of their best years on the college circuit, outside of the spotlight of the pro tennis tour.’
      • ‘One could readily imagine Woods not going out on the tour competing as assiduously as he does, but there he is.’
      • ‘I'm currently on my third full-time year on the professional women's bowling tour.’
      • ‘After all, the tour proceeded, no matches were cancelled, and the Springboks won every single game they played.’
      • ‘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.’
      • ‘The Australian's 62 was his lowest career round on the tour by three shots.’
      • ‘Among the batsmen, Jaffer boosted his aggregate with a knock of 218 against Warwickshire in the last match of the tour.’
      • ‘The Martin rink was preparing to compete on the fledgling professional curling tour at the Grand Slam of Curling.’
      circuit, ambit
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  • 3A period of duty on military or diplomatic service.

    ‘he was haunted by his tour of duty in Vietnam’
    • ‘Most of the increase will come from an extension of the tours of duty for troops already stationed in Iraq.’
    • ‘The military has repeatedly extended tours of duty for US soldiers and placed enormous strains on the Army Reserve and Army National Guard.’
    • ‘The first episode focuses on a fictional Army unit as soldiers arrive in Iraq for their first tour of duty.’
    • ‘Additionally, she provides many details of the prejudices and adversity the women of the OSS encountered during their tours of duty.’
    • ‘In Vietnam, American forces consisted mainly of short-term draftees, who returned to civilian life after their tours of duty.’
    • ‘You've submitted your name for a tour of duty as medical aide on the TCS Durang.’
    • ‘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.’
    • ‘But the U.S. Army is stretched so thin that it's continually extending the tours of duty of soldiers in Iraq and Afghanistan, and morale is suffering.’
    • ‘Indeed, the commandos are about to undertake a six-month tour of duty in Northern Ireland.’
    • ‘New arrivals in-processed in Japan as others enjoyed rest and relaxation leave, or prepared to rotate home after completing their tours of duty.’
    • ‘Wing staff positions are available after completion of an initial tour of duty.’
    • ‘Military experts, many of them, say the longer tours of duty will only add to the already considerable strain on our military.’
    • ‘The game puts you squarely in the role of a new US Army GI starting his tour of duty in the Vietnam War.’
    • ‘During my tour of duty in Bosnia, my unit met an older gentleman who asked us for help.’
    • ‘Among the growing signs of strain on the US occupation is the increased reliance of the US military on National Guard soldiers and reservists to fill lengthy tours of duty in Iraq.’
    • ‘The Pentagon is extending their tour of duty, saying it's just part of the high cost of war.’
    • ‘A young man of my acquaintance just returned from a tour of duty with the U.S. Army in Afghanistan.’
    • ‘Five hundred men from the regiment's battalion are currently on a tour of duty in Afghanistan which began in April and will end in October.’
    • ‘He shows up at a pub and conscripts the patrons for a two-year tour of duty.’
    • ‘The Black Watch are on their second tour of duty in Iraq.’
    stint, stretch, spell, shift, turn, assignment, duty, period of service, period of enlistment
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[with object]
  • 1Make a tour of (an area)

    ‘he decided to tour France’
    no object ‘they had toured in a little minivan’
    • ‘Thousands welcomed him with streamers and posters wishing him a happy birthday as he toured slum areas.’
    • ‘They plan to tour the area and study what the city has done well and what could be improved.’
    • ‘The new Queen spent much of February touring the stricken areas to try to boost morale.’
    • ‘And then he headed to Florida to tour areas that are devastated by those recent hurricanes.’
    • ‘When I did my own tour of the boros today, I tried to imagine how exactly a president tours a disaster area.’
    • ‘The logical solution was to hire an air-conditioned taxi for the day and tour the main sites in comfort.’
    • ‘In the morning you can tour the fields and talk with them about extensive grazing rotations.’
    • ‘The following entry is a long account of what touring the site was like, including some pictures.’
    • ‘Delegates toured the sites of Oldham's major community success stories as part of their visit yesterday.’
    • ‘Friday and Saturday you tour ranches, riding, eating and dancing and seeing the Host Ranch's horses.’
    • ‘He said the site has visitors from around the world, with a party of Norwegian university lecturers set to tour the site tomorrow.’
    • ‘Committee members have already toured the hospital site, the Lakeside centre and the new Erith health centre.’
    • ‘Also make sure your have toured the site enough to be in a position to offer suggestions.’
    • ‘He last visited the island in November to tour earthquake-stricken areas in central Taiwan.’
    • ‘A voice absurd for its lack of sincerity repeats, ‘You are welcome’ as the camera tours the inverted landscape of a city.’
    • ‘One day, the four of us were touring the park when my son caught sight of a red squirrel barrelling up a tree.’
    • ‘Entrance will be also be free and volunteers will tour the site urging people to make donations.’
    • ‘The men are part of a group of journalists invited to tour various farms, to inspect South Africa's land reform programme.’
    • ‘On Wednesday, members will tour the site before going to The Guildhall for a presentation about the scheme.’
    • ‘Every museum director and curator embarking on a new building project should be required to tour these rooms.’
    travel round, travel through, journey through, go on a trip through, go on an excursion in, explore, voyage around, trek around, sightsee in, holiday in, cruise, range over, roam in, rove through, wander through, globetrot
    visit, go round, go around, walk round, drive round, see, explore, inspect, review, survey, scrutinize, reconnoitre
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    1. 1.1 Take (a performer, production, etc.) on tour.
      • ‘Marina life comes to Orkney next week with a week long touring extravaganza from Deep Sea World.’
      • ‘With the turn to realism, Shakespeare lost his prominence except for touring foreign actors.’
      • ‘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.’
      • ‘He dropped out of high school in 1960 to dance in a European touring production of West Side Story.’
      • ‘Instead it intends to revive two of its most popular productions and touring them around the country.’
      • ‘Young Hamlet is the latest touring professional production to be staged at Glusburn Institute.’
      • ‘An actress is convicted of the murder of another actress in the same touring company.’
      • ‘It's mostly local groups but we'd like to see touring performing arts using it.’
      • ‘There will be links to overseas programming and performances from touring artists.’
      • ‘He says Calgary will see the finished product next spring, when he tours the show to the children's festival.’


Middle English (in tour (sense 3 of the noun); also denoting a circular movement): from Old French, ‘turn’, via Latin from Greek tornos ‘lathe’. Sense 1 dates from the mid 17th century.