Tour vs Travel
Tour and Travel are two words that appear alike but strictly speaking there is some difference between the two words. Tour is normally taken with an intention of enjoyment and relaxation. On the other hand travel is an uncountable noun. Hence it cannot be used with an indefinite article.
Look at the sentence ‘Ms. Jasmine’s hobbies are travel, philately and music’. In this sentence the word ‘travel’ is used without a definite article. It is interesting to note that the word ‘travel’ is used as ‘travels’ simply to indicate several trips taken in a tour and to indicate a long trip as in the sentence ‘I am happy to see you back from your travels’. This kind of usage of the word ‘travel’ is of course rare.
On the other hand tour implies some kind of purpose too as in expressions educational tour, sports tour, music tour and the like. In each of the examples mentioned above a kind of purpose is meant. In a music tour the musicians or the instrumentalists travel from one place to another in a country to perform or give music recitals and enthrall the audiences in those places. All through the tour music is the only purpose. At the same time the musicians can take a few travels to near by places to enjoy and relax.
It is interesting to note that the word ‘traveling’ is sometimes used as a substitute for the word ‘travel’ as in the sentence ‘Robert likes traveling’. The meaning does not change of course here. In the sentence given above the gerund ‘ing’ in the word ‘traveling’ conveys the same meaning as that of ‘travel’. A tour normally takes a long time to complete whereas a travel can be short too. Many travels can take place within a tour.