Definition of walkabout in US English:

walkabout

noun

British
  • 1An informal stroll among a crowd conducted by an important visitor.

    • ‘The traditional walkabout saw the Fine Gael leader mix and mingle with the locals with consummate ease.’
    • ‘He failed to show up for a scheduled walkabout at the London Stock Exchange this week, leaving half a dozen of his candidates to get drenched by a thunderstorm.’
    • ‘Earlier, more than 20,000 people welcomed the royal couple to a shopping mall in Solihull as they staged an impromptu walkabout.’
    • ‘They will attend a service at the Minster before taking a walkabout along Duncombe Place to the Assembly Rooms, where the couple will see a special exhibition about York's history.’
    • ‘After the service the Queen and Duke went on a walkabout in the castle grounds and chatted to the large crowd of well-wishers.’
    • ‘On his way to Napier today for a lunchtime walkabout Dr Brash said the vandalism ‘showed how far standards had slipped in the education system under Labour’.’
    • ‘She laughed and joked with well-wishers during a walkabout after signing a charter to mark the official launch of the city's new super-university.’
    • ‘Not for him the public walkabouts among adoring throngs that marked Bill Clinton's jovial foreign jaunts.’
    • ‘The prime minister has been embarking on a hectic schedule of overseas trips, summits, policy initiatives, walkabouts and social engagements.’
    • ‘The 28-year-old star gave the 2,000-strong crowd a treat with a five-minute walkabout before the screening of Gangs of New York.’
    • ‘The Queen Mother was someone who made sure her people came first, and officials had a job keeping her away from unofficial walkabouts.’
    • ‘Former US President Bill Clinton stunned shoppers with an impromptu walkabout yesterday, after enjoying a Yorkshire pub lunch.’
    • ‘There will be no ceremonial drive down the Mall with the Queen, no Lord Mayor's Banquet at the Guildhall, no walkabouts to meet the people.’
    • ‘At countless walkabouts, official openings, celebrations and her own garden parties, she has demonstrated that she is as friendly as she is regal.’
    • ‘On a walkabout in Brent East, he accused Mr Blair of insulting the intelligence of electors by warning that voting Lib Dem would produce a Tory government.’
    • ‘But security concerns are paramount and there was no question of a royal walkabout in Nigeria's teeming slums.’
    • ‘He did recover his composure and went on an hour-long walkabout with the Leicester Square crowds, signing autographs and chatting on mobile phones in customary fashion.’
    • ‘By noon the prince will be meeting residents, schoolchildren and groups on a traditional royal walkabout.’
    • ‘But the glamorous trio still made time for a half-hour walkabout to greet the 4,000 screaming fans who had packed Leicester Square.’
    • ‘William Hague was right about one thing: reality bites - but even he has started cancelling his walkabouts.’
    1. 1.1Australian A journey on foot undertaken by an Australian Aboriginal in order to live in the traditional manner.
      • ‘Their journey coincides with that of an Aborigine boy on his walkabout - a 10-day ritual where boys are left to fend for themselves, an event that initiates their entrance into adulthood.’
      • ‘On the way, they are helped by an aboriginal boy on his walkabout.’
      • ‘Lavanya was thrilled to meet and interact with them - she talks about stolen generations, displacement, lost souls, land issues, heritage, dreamtimes and walkabouts.’
      • ‘There was walkabout land with food, a billabong.’
      • ‘One of the key attractions for many international visitors is the romance and mystique attached to Aboriginal culture, dreamtimes and walkabouts, learning a little more about the oldest civilization in the world.’
      visit, inspection, guided tour, walk round, survey, ramble
      View synonyms
    2. 1.2 A walking tour.
      • ‘Thanks to the careful plantings of prairie flora and the presence of herons, hawks, and opossum, though, you'd think you were out on a great 17th-century walkabout of your own.’
      • ‘That short cut has saved me at least five minutes during my morning walkabout of the web.’
      • ‘There is student theatre, film festival, winter school, tours, walkabouts and a children's festival.’
      • ‘A little north of us is a trig point at 1913 feet, but as in all lead mining areas off route walkabouts are inadvisable.’
      • ‘Took him into town earlier for a bit of a walkabout.’
      • ‘But fan activities will start Thursday, June 17 with the return of the popular pit walkabout.’
      • ‘They can do this by attending one of the walkabouts and participating in further events and activities that are being planned over the coming months.’
      • ‘During one walkabout, our gal picked up an old rusty horseshoe.’
      • ‘Guided tours, walkabouts, seminars and art classes conducted by artists are all ways in which he hopes to achieve this.’
      • ‘On Saturday a workshop at 11.15 am will discuss jobs, training and enterprise, landscape and transport, and from 2pm there will be walkabouts in the town.’
      • ‘They near Paris, and she, drawn to the big lights, goes for a walkabout.’
      • ‘Aside from working with the people of the area, he used to encourage other social workers, activists, or just ordinary visitors to join what can only be described as extended walkabouts through the scattered groups of villages in the area.’
      • ‘I took a dozen of my top managers to Argentina, to the windswept mountains of Patagonia, for a walkabout.’
      • ‘Celebrations will run throughout the day and include exhibitions, performances, walkabouts of the new school buildings, culminating with a formal opening ceremony followed by a concert and a public party.’
      • ‘After sunset, walkabout is taboo, for every camp has nocturnal visitors - at Savuti, elephant and hyena; at Eagle Island, buffalo and baboon.’
      • ‘In response to numerous requests, a repeat Bruff town walkabout will take place this Thursday, August 12, at 7.30 pm, assembling at The Grove, Bruff.’
      • ‘On a walkabout of his exhibition with him recently, it was clear Kentridge enjoys talking about his work, offering valuable insight into how he works and the thinking behind his pieces, as any artist would.’
      • ‘Historians are being invited to step into East Yorkshire's past at Beverley's local history book fair, followed by a week of lectures and walkabouts.’
      • ‘I hope you've enjoyed this little walkabout around St. Annes on Sea, my home town, fifteen miles from Preston on the A584 and much nicer than Blackpool.’
      • ‘I adore Australia, and I once had a fantastic walkabout in the outback.’

Phrases

  • go walkabout

    • 1(of an Australian Aboriginal) wander into the bush away from white society in order to live in the traditional manner.

      • ‘At 16 make all children go walkabout in the Bush learning traditional skills and to do without modern technology for a year.’
      • ‘So they go walkabout with the Aborigine for what must be months but, just like the characters, we are unable to gauge time.’
      • ‘Even today aborigines in the outback habitually go walkabout to experience what they call the ‘songlines’, singing the old songs and tunes and thereby continuing the very essence of creation.’
      1. 1.1Wander around from place to place in a protracted or leisurely way.
        • ‘Then he was dropped by the Roosters to Premier League for going walkabout and missing training.’
        • ‘When Mano Negra imploded, Chao went walkabout with a guitar and a tape recorder and, in 1998, the fruits of his efforts appeared as Clandestino.’
        • ‘Well, he told me there is a problem with crayfish, they go walkabout.’
        • ‘After a concert in Los Angeles, he went walkabout and was found beaten up in a gutter.’
        • ‘If he wasn't trying to dig an escape tunnel, he was going walkabout after finding an open gate in the house's garden.’
        • ‘Soprano Sarah Crane and baritone Shaun Brown join forces with pianist Bernadette Groot as they go walkabout with songs of travel, dreaming, love and seeking high adventure.’
        • ‘I've adopted the use of a small kitchen timer, set at forty minutes, to save me from sitting too long hunched over the manuscript and, when it pings, I put my pencil down, get up, stretch, and go walkabout.’
        • ‘I've lived in the same house for 10 years now and I'm still redelivering mail to neighbours, wondering as I go walkabout who has received mine and what they may do with it.’
        • ‘But in recent years, other chunks of the service industry have gone walkabout, as telecommunications costs have collapsed.’
        • ‘They also tend to go mental walkabout when they feel they have done enough to win the game.’

Pronunciation

walkabout

/ˈwôkəˌbout//ˈwɔkəˌbaʊt/