rec·​re·​a·​tion | \ ˌre-krē-ˈā-shən How to pronounce recreation (audio) \

Definition of recreation

: refreshment of strength and spirits after work also : a means of refreshment or diversion : hobby

Examples of recreation in a Sentence

The fields next to the school are used for recreation. decided to take a bike tour of the island for recreation and relaxation
Recent Examples on the Web Klein was previously on the Cook County Elementary District 130 Board, the school district that serves Crestwood, and also was on Crestwood’s recreation board and planning and zoning commission. Mike Nolan,, 24 Nov. 2021 Several recreation destinations are close by such as Mount Aire, Mountain Dell Golf Course and Little Dell Reservoir. Brian Maffly, The Salt Lake Tribune, 24 Nov. 2021 Bel-Air was revealed on Tuesday, setting the tone for a dramatic recreation of the beloved '90s series The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air. Kelly Wynne,, 23 Nov. 2021 That’s the price of an annual America the Beautiful pass, which gives unlimited admission to all federal recreation lands that charge admission fees. Jill Cassidy, The Arizona Republic, 23 Nov. 2021 After taking a break from basketball following the end of his NBA career in 1975, Kojis played in San Diego recreation leagues and in pickup games until his early 60s. San Diego Union-Tribune, 22 Nov. 2021 Many members’ concerns on Monday again revolved around the deal’s potential impact to the general fund, which is the central pot of money that funds basic city services like police, fire, EMS and recreation. Courtney Astolfi, cleveland, 22 Nov. 2021 This idiot revolution wasn’t a revolution at all, just recreation to liven an otherwise dull winter afternoon. Timothy Noah, The New Republic, 18 Nov. 2021 Keller insists, though, that exact recreation of the real world isn’t necessary to have a natural and intuitive experience in VR. Lauren Goode, Wired, 16 Nov. 2021

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'recreation.' 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 recreation

15th century, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for recreation

Middle English recreacioun "act of refreshment, action of amusing," borrowed from Anglo-French & Late Latin; Anglo-French, borrowed from Late Latin recreātiōn-, recreātiō "spiritual refreshment, amusement, new birth," going back to Latin, "act of restoring," from recreāre "to make new, restore, revive" (from re- re- + creāre "to bring into being, beget, give birth to") + -tiōn-, -tiō, suffix of verbal action — more at create entry 1

Learn More About recreation

Time Traveler for recreation

Time Traveler

The first known use of recreation was in the 15th century

See more words from the same century

Dictionary Entries Near recreation




See More Nearby Entries 

Statistics for recreation

Last Updated

27 Nov 2021

Cite this Entry

“Recreation.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 29 Nov. 2021.

Style: MLA
MLACheck Mark Icon ChicagoCheck Mark Icon APACheck Mark Icon Merriam-WebsterCheck Mark Icon

More Definitions for recreation



English Language Learners Definition of recreation

: something people do to relax or have fun : activities done for enjoyment


rec·​re·​a·​tion | \ ˌrek-rē-ˈā-shən How to pronounce recreation (audio) \

Kids Definition of recreation

: something done for fun and relaxation We bike for recreation.

More from Merriam-Webster on recreation

Nglish: Translation of recreation for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of recreation for Arabic Speakers Encyclopedia article about recreation


Test Your Vocabulary

Difficult Spelling Words Quiz

  • alphabet pasta spelling help
  • Which is the correct spelling?
True or False

Test your knowledge - and maybe learn something 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!