ex·​cur·​sion | \ik-ˈskər-zhən \

Definition of excursion 

1a : a going out or forth : expedition

b(1) : a usually brief pleasure trip

(2) : a trip at special reduced rates

2 : deviation from a direct, definite, or proper course especially : digression needless excursions into abstruse theory

3 : a movement outward and back or from a mean position or axis also : the distance traversed : amplitude the excursion of a piston

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Examples of excursion in a Sentence

They went on a brief excursion to the coast. our weekend excursions have encompassed virtually all parts of our home state

Recent Examples on the Web

This excursion is standard first lady diplomacy — a way of encouraging friendly relations between the US and the countries hosting Melania and her entourage. Gaby Del Valle, Vox, "Melania Trump wore an Out of Africa-esque outfit during a trip to Kenya, complete with a pith helmet.," 5 Oct. 2018 Since their whirlwind romance began in May, Nick and Priyanka have been very comfortable putting their love on display for all to see, and Tuesday’s excursion was no different. Dan Barna, Teen Vogue, "Nick Jonas, Priyanka Chopra, Joe Jonas, and Sophie Turner Double Dated at the U.S. Open," 5 Sep. 2018 More doable excursions were everywhere: a short hike up Upper Table Rock Trail; a play at the Oregon Shakespeare Festival in Ashland, 30 minutes away; a visit to the optical illusions of The Oregon Vortex. Jada Yuan, New York Times, "Place 13 of 52: On the Water, and Off, the Rogue River in Oregon Charms," 22 May 2018 This excursion is doable in a day with or without a guide. Daily Intelligencer, "Authentic Ways to Experience 5 Caribbean Islands," 23 Apr. 2018 Today's excursion will be the fourth spacewalk of the year so far, and will be the 209th spacewalk at the International Space Station since the orbital outpost was launched in 1998. NBC News, "NASA astronauts to embark on 6.5-hour spacewalk," 28 Mar. 2018 Family excursions were never to amusement parks nor the beach, but to antique shows, historic homes and museums. Hartford Courant, courant.com, "Carol S. Hileman," 27 Feb. 2018 Oh, yeah, and a zoo excursion wouldn't be complete without a stop at the gift shop. Amy Schwabe, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "Paper made from elephant dung and other things you didn't know about the Milwaukee Zoo," 4 Sep. 2017 Train companies sold excursion fares for thousands of people to attend these spectacle lynchings. Gaby Del Valle, Vox, "The Sears catalog brought city goods to the country. It also unintentionally combatted white supremacy.," 19 Oct. 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'excursion.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of excursion

circa 1587, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for excursion

Latin excursion-, excursio, from excurrere

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Statistics for excursion

Last Updated

30 Nov 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for excursion

The first known use of excursion was circa 1587

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More Definitions for excursion



English Language Learners Definition of excursion

: a short trip especially for pleasure


ex·​cur·​sion | \ik-ˈskər-zhən \

Kids Definition of excursion

1 : a brief trip for pleasure

2 : a trip at special reduced rates


ex·​cur·​sion | \ik-ˈskər-zhən \

Medical Definition of excursion 

1a : a movement outward and back or from a mean position or axis excursion of the femur

b : the distance traversed

2 : one complete movement of expansion and contraction of the lungs and their membranes (as in breathing)

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