a strong, innate desire to rove or travel about.

Origin of wanderlust

1850–55; < German, equivalent to wander(n) to wander + Lust desire; see lust
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for wanderlust

Contemporary Examples of wanderlust

Historical Examples of wanderlust

  • We found every place splendid in those weeks as we let the wanderlust carry us on.

    The Harbor

    Ernest Poole

  • Perhaps a trip like this would have satisfied his wanderlust.


    Edna Ferber

  • He fell silent and trudged on beside her, the wanderlust in his eyes.


    Jean Webster

  • She's the party with the wilful disposition and the late case of wanderlust.

    Torchy As A Pa

    Sewell Ford

  • The old French Aydelot blood had something of the wanderlust in it.

    Winning the Wilderness

    Margaret Hill McCarter

British Dictionary definitions for wanderlust



a great desire to travel and rove about

Word Origin for wanderlust

German, literally: wander desire
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

Word Origin and History for wanderlust

1902, from German Wanderlust, literally "desire for wandering" (see wander + lust).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

wanderlust in Culture


A German word for the irresistibly strong desire to travel or wander.

The New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.