• Vanshika

Words to use instead of travel - 25 aesthetic words from different origins not known to all!

Updated: Aug 7, 2020

Heya to all my lovely hodophiles- WHAT?!, alright alright, I know "hodophiles" isn't exactly English but come on, we should learn something new everyday and well, I learnt this new term today and now I am putting it to use!

I am pretty sure that you are also pretty tired and bored with the monotonous use of the same old words like travel, traveler, nomad, ocean lover, thrill-seeker, saunterer and the list goes on, right?! If yes, then I am sure you might also want to find a single word to describe a feeling that otherwise takes you two or three lines to express and sometimes, others still don't get it!

Worry no more- my vocabulary instincts and my travel instincts got you! Both got to work together to compile a list of 25 aesthetic and unique words that are also real fun to pronounce since they come from different origins!

You'll love these words, I promise and come on, you gotta agree, this is a great way to improve your vocabulary, not a better source than the game 'password', haha, but still!



1. Scwellenangst



Pronunciation-> sh-well-aangst


This is my favorite word, maybe because of the way its spoken, “shh-well-aangst” haha! This beautiful word literally translates to “threshold-anxiety”! It means fear/ anxiety of entering a new threshold or phase in life!


2. Eleutheromainia




Say it right-> el-lu-thero-may-nia


I came across this word while I was reading the book “Elsewhere” by Rosita Boland (which btw is a must read for all the hodophiles-what?? Jump to the 4th word, you will know)!

Also known as eleutherophilia, eleutheromania means a mania or frantic zeal for freedom, in simpler words, it means an intense desire for freedom. It is also used in medical context to signify an irrational disorder which I think all of us have in some degrees, within us- a mad or irresistable cravibg for freedom!


3. Cockaigne



Pronunciation-> caw-caine (like cocaine but with caw and not co)


This old french language term translates to land of abundance or luxury, its more like utopia but with a more precise meaning.


4. Hodophile




Say it right-> hoe-doe-file


Its just another word for a passionate traveller/ wanderer! It means a love for travel, roads and roaming from one beautiful place to another!


5. Fernweh




Pronunciation-> fern-way-h


I don’t know how many of you have heard it but it’s a German word that means wanderlust.

The first chapter of this book I am currently reading (Elsewhere by Rosita Boland) is titled “Ferweh” and it’s all about Wanderlust.

It means a farsickness, the opposite of homesickness, or a longing for distant places. Anybody who wants to understand the complete and deep meaning of this word should definitely give this book a read.

There is another word “Heimweh”, which is also a German word and it translates to “Homesickness” in English.


6. Trouvaille



Say it right-> True-vaa-el


It means a valuable discovery or a lucky find! It is written is way very similar to the word “travel”.


7. Hygge



Pronunciation-> hue-guh


It is a Danish word used when acknowledging a feeling or moment, whether alone or with friends, at home or out, ordinary or extraordinary as cosy, charming or special. A quality of cosiness and comfortable conviviality that engenders a feeling of contentment or well-being (regarded as a defining characteristic of Danish culture).


8. Quaquaversal




Say it right-> cu-ae-quaa-ver-sul


Going off in all directions from the centre. Dipping towards a center from all directions.

Travel towards an unknown centre!


9. Ecophobia



Pronunciation-> e-co-foe-b-ya


Ancint greek- “ECO”- Home and “PHOBIA” - Fear.

It means fear of one’s home. It also means a sense of powerlessness. Like you are powerless against nature.


10. Musafir



Say it right-> mu-sa-firr


Its a word in Persian, Urdu, Hindi and Arabic that means a guest or a traveller! Like a voyager.


11. Saudade



Pronunciation-> saa-oo-daad-uh


It is a recurring theme in Portuguese and Brazilian culture, art, literature and music.

It refers to a state of mind of meloncholy and nostalgia. A longing for something of some place.


12. Wabi-sabi



Say it right-> wah-bee-saa-bee

Don't confuse it with wasabi, lol!

In the Japanese tradition, wabi-sabi means impermanent, imperfect yet aesthetic and incomplete.


13. Flâneur



Pronunciation-> flaa-nuh-r(silent)


A wanderer who in too into exploring the things and people around. “Saunterer”, “stroller”, “ loafer” all translate to Flâneur which translates to a person who strolls around and observes the society.


14. Nefelibata



Say it right-> nay-fae-lee-baa-taa


This word is to describe who is living in her/his own dreamland or someone who lived in the clouds of their imagination.


15. Banjara



Say it right-> bun-jaa-rah


It a hindi word that refers to a nomad.


16. Kefi



Pronunciation-> kay-fee


Kefi accurately captures Greek culture!

The word roughly translates to: the spirit of joy, passion, euphoria, enthusiasm, exuberance, frenzy. It’s that overpowering emotion you have when you completely let go in the moment, release inhibitions, and allow yourself to joyfully feel the life pulsing through your body and soul.


17. Livsnjutare



Say it right-> live-sneh-hue-taa-ray


This swedish word means “an enjoyer or life” or a person who loves life deeply and is passionate about it.


18. Strumfrei



Pronunciation-> Shtom-fry


It literally translates to “storm-free”! The freedom of not being watched or the freedom of being alone or having a place to oneself!


19. Strikhedonia



Say it right-> stric- khe-doe-neea


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


20. Hiraeth



Pronunciation-> he-raa-eth


It is a Welsh word for a nostalgia or homesickness. An earnest longing or desire.


21. Gadabout



Say it right-> gad-about


A habitual pleasure seeker.


22. Volitant



Pronunciation-> wa-li-tuht


To be engangee or having a power of flight! Moving about.


23. Thalassophile



Say it right-> thala-so-feel