Try Our Apps


The Best Internet Slang


[plahy-uh] /ˈplaɪ ə/
Western U.S. the sandy, salty, or mud-caked flat floor of a desert basin having interior drainage, usually occupied by a shallow lake during or after prolonged, heavy rains.
Compare dry lake.
Origin of playa
1850-55, Americanism; < Spanish: shore < Late Latin plagia; see plage Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2017.
Cite This Source
Examples from the Web for playa
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • This famous engagement was thenceforth known as the Battle of playa Honda.

    The Philippine Islands John Foreman
  • "Maka him grow an' dance an' playa fid, lika yo' bear," he said, sullenly.

    The Arkansaw Bear Albert Bigelow Paine
  • My woman say no coulda do thatta if playa all day on bricka walks.


    Ernest Vincent Wright
  • I ascended one, and we proceeded slowly along the playa or strand.

    The Bible in Spain George Borrow
  • Russell used to pay me a regular visit to the Fonda de la playa.

    Romantic Spain John Augustus O'Shea
  • A brackish lagoon surrounded by mangroves and coconut groves, located just east of playa Azul.

  • The river vista everywhere includes a rapid and small patches of playa or flood plain on the inside of the river curves.

British Dictionary definitions for playa


/ˈplɑːjə; Spanish ˈplaja/
(in the US) a temporary lake, or its dry often salty bed, in a desert basin
Word Origin
Spanish: shore, from Late Latin plagia, from Greek plagios slanting, from plagos side; compare French plage beach
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
Cite This Source
Contemporary definitions for playa

a colloquial spelling for player, in the sense of a person who is involved and influential in an activity


Are you a playa?

Usage Note

slang's 21st Century Lexicon
Copyright © 2003-2014, LLC
Cite This Source
playa in Science
A dry lake bed at the bottom of a desert basin, sometimes temporarily covered with water. Playas have no vegetation and are among the flattest geographical features in the world. Also called sink.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary
Copyright © 2002. Published by Houghton Mifflin. All rights reserved.
Cite This Source

Word of the Day

Difficulty index for playa

Most English speakers likely know this word

Word Value for playa

Scrabble Words With Friends

Nearby words for playa