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1. An extended tour or sightseeing trip in, through, or across any country or region. Originally used in specific reference to the major cities of Europe, the trip was considered a necessary part of well-bred gentlemen's upbringing. It was later extended to travel in general. I've been saving up all year long for my grand tour through France.
2. By extension, a comprehensive, guided tour, inspection, or survey. This is your first time seeing our new house, right? Let me give you the grand tour! The general insisted on a grand tour of all the sites that are still operational.
Farlex Dictionary of Idioms. © 2015 Farlex, Inc, all rights reserved.
A comprehensive tour, survey, or inspection. For example, They took me on a grand tour of their new house, or The new chairman will want to make a grand tour of all the branches. Starting in the late 1600s this term was used for a tour of the major European cities, considered essential to a well-bred man's education. In the mid-1800s it was extended to more general use.
The American Heritage® Dictionary of Idioms by Christine Ammer. Copyright © 2003, 1997 by The Christine Ammer 1992 Trust. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
grand tour, the
A thorough inspection of any building, facility, business enterprise, or the like. The term comes from the custom, begun in the seventeenth century, of sending the son of a well-to-do family on an extended tour of the European Continent for the purpose of completing his education. Later the custom was extended to daughters as well. In time the term was transferred to other kinds of tour.
See also: grand
The Dictionary of Clichés by Christine Ammer Copyright © 2013 by Christine Ammer