land·​fall | \ ˈlan(d)-ˌfȯl How to pronounce landfall (audio) \

Definition of landfall

1 : a sighting of land after a voyage or flight
2 : a reaching of land (as by a traveler, craft, or storm)
3 : the land first sighted on a voyage or flight

Examples of landfall in a Sentence

From the deck of the boat, we saw our first landfall.

Recent Examples on the Web

That's when Michael will make landfall along the northern Gulf coast, likely over the Florida Panhandle. Eric Berger, Ars Technica, "Hurricane Michael is a rare, but not unprecedented, October storm," 8 Oct. 2018 Models show the storm making landfall along the north Gulf Coast between the Florida Panhandle and Louisiana. Jenny Staletovich, miamiherald, "Brace for heavy rain, because forecasters have upped the odds for a tropical depression | Miami Herald," 25 May 2018 When Hurricane Harvey made landfall along the Texas Coast in August, researchers worried that colorful colonies of corals 100 miles south of the Texas-Louisiana border would be devastated. Sara Sneath,, "Gulf of Mexico coral reef dodges bullet from Hurricane Harvey, scientists report," 29 Mar. 2018 The storm intensified rapidly, going from a Category 1 on the morning of Oct. 8 to a Category 5 at landfall just over 48 hours later. Erin Ailworth, WSJ, "Scientists Upgrade October’s Hurricane Michael to Category 5 Storm," 19 Apr. 2019 What remains, more than two weeks after the cyclone made landfall, is a sodden landscape of disconnectedness and grief. Cara Anna, The Seattle Times, "‘It’s not safe anywhere:’ Mozambique cyclone scattered lives," 30 Mar. 2019 The storm is forecasted to make landfall Thursday or very early Friday morning, and already, communities along the coast are evacuating in preparation. Brian Resnick, Vox, "Hurricane Florence: where the storm is and where it’s heading," 11 Sep. 2018 Most recently was Hurricane Andrew, which made landfall south of Miami in August 1992 and caused over $25 billion in damage. Sarah Mearhoff, Teen Vogue, "Hurricane Florence Spurred Evacuation Orders for 1 Million People," 11 Sep. 2018 Mark Bowen, the Bay County Emergency management director, said at a Sunday afternoon news conference that the concern isn’t with storm surge due to the timing of landfall and the tides. Rebecca Santana, The Seattle Times, "Storm Alberto gains strength approaching northern Gulf Coast," 27 May 2018

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

See More

First Known Use of landfall

1627, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about landfall

Dictionary Entries near landfall








Statistics for landfall

Last Updated

21 May 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for landfall

The first known use of landfall was in 1627

See more words from the same year

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for landfall



English Language Learners Definition of landfall

: the land that is first seen or reached after a journey by sea or air

More from Merriam-Webster on landfall

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with landfall

Britannica English: Translation of landfall for Arabic Speakers

Comments on landfall

What made you want to look up landfall? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


to mark by some ceremony or observation

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Challenging Vocabulary Quiz Returns!

  • stylized drawing of woman pole vaulting across gap to get trophy
  • Which is a synonym of fuliginous?
Spell It

Can you spell these 10 commonly misspelled words?


Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!