Finding Humor in the Unusual: Weird Town Names Around the World

Photo Credit: Visit Deep Creek

Have you ever come across a town name that made you do a double-take? A name so strange and absurd that you had to wonder how it came to be? Well, look no further, because here is a compiled list of the weirdest town names from around the world that will have you scratching your head in confusion and chuckling in amusement.

Let’s start our tour in the United States, where apparently anything goes when it comes to town names. Interested in visiting Accident, Maryland? How about Belchertown, Massachusetts? Take a family trip to Intercourse, Pennsylvania? Or maybe you’re in the mood for some Truth or Consequences, New Mexico? If you’re looking to have some fun, head down to Celebration, Florida. Hygiene, Colorado sounds like a scary place to visit… who knows what you’ll find there. And, yes, these are all real town names, and they’re just the tip of the iceberg.

weird town names. Image of Hygiene, Colorado city
Photo Credit: 99.9 The Point

Moving on to our neighbors to the north, Canada has its fair share of weird town names, too. There’s Dildo, Newfoundland and Labrador, which, let’s face it, doesn’t sound like the most inviting place to visit. Then there’s Flin Flon, Manitoba, named after a character from a science fiction novel. And who can forget Saint-Louis-du-Ha! Ha!, Quebec? Yes, that’s two “Ha!”s, and apparently, it’s the only town in the world with a name like that. Imagine that!

However, the U.S. and Canada are not the only countries with some bizarre town names. Next stop, Europe! Let’s start with the small village of Fucking, Austria. Yes, you read that correctly. It’s pronounced “fooking,” but you can imagine the laughs tourists get when they first see the sign. Apparently, the name comes from a man named Focko, who settled in the area in the 6th century.  The town name caused so much trouble that it was officially changed to Fugging in 2021.

The small town of Condom, located in the southwest of France, has a name that is sure to raise a few eyebrows. Despite the uncomfortable name, Condom is a charming and picturesque town known for its Armagnac brandy, which can make for a very precarious situation after hours. Also in France, there is the town of Anus, which probably sounded very aristocratic to the French.

Photo Credit: Kiraransa.fr

If you’re feeling adventurous, head over to England, where you’ll find some  weird town names as well. How about Shitterton, Dorset? Or what about the village of Ugley in Essex, which has been voted the “most unfortunate” town name in the UK multiple times.

As far as Kill, Ireland is concerned, it would probably be wise to not upset the locals. In Norway, there’s Hell, a small village with a population of just over 1,000 people. It’s said that the name comes from an old Norse word that means “flat stone,” but it’s hard to ignore the irony of the town’s name.

In Germany, there’s a town called Kissing, which probably has a romantic atmosphere and attracts plenty of tourists looking to snap some pictures with their significant others.

Moving on to Oceania. In Australia, the town of Yorkeys Knob in Queensland is a paradise haven, drawing visitors because of its amazing beach. And if you’re in the mood for a more musical town name, head over to Binalong, New South Wales, where Australian poet Banjo Paterson spent most of his childhood.

If you’re feeling a little a bit mischievous, you can visit the town of Boggabilla, New South Wales, which sounds like a great place to pull some pranks. If you’re looking for a family vacation spot, you may want to skip the town of Blowhard, Victoria, Australia.

Papua New Guinea is a place where you may want to exercise caution while visiting. The town of Dead Chinaman says it all. Yikes!

Photo Credit: Newzealand.com

But the prize for the weirdest town name of all goes to Taumatawhakatangihangakoauauotamateaturipukakapikimaungahoronukupokaiwhenuakitanatahu, New Zealand. Yes, that’s the actual name of a place in New Zealand, and it holds the world record of the longest town name. It roughly translates to “the place where Tamatea, the man with the big knees, who slid, climbed, and swallowed mountains, known as the land-eater, played his flute to his loved one.” What’s the maximum character count for a website domain?

Next stop, the Middle East. The town of Batman, located in southeastern Turkey, shares its name with the famous DC Comics superhero, but don’t expect to see the Dark Knight patrolling the streets at night. It’s assumed he’s hiding in the shadows, but he is the shadows. The small town of Bam, Iran, may have a simple name, but it is bound to make anyone chuckle. It may not sound like a romantic destination, but it is well known for its dates.

And let’s not forget about Africa, where you can find some truly unique town names as well. In South Africa, there’s the charming town of Darling, located in the Western Cape of South Africa, which sounds like a place where Cupid hangs out.

Photo Credit: Reunion Tourism Office

The town of Le Tampon, located on Reunion Island, sounds like the name of a medical supply store. If you’re planning to visit and feeling a little cheeky, you could make a tampon joke…on second thought, toss that idea out the window.

The town of Kaabong, Uganda, may sound like a distant planet from a science fiction movie, but it’s actually a real place. The town of Shalaamboot, located in Somalia, is definitely a mouthful and sounds like a dance move that you do with boots on.

Ghat, Libya, may make you think of a body part or a typo. Either way, it is a town that will give you something to talk about for a long time and have you tell friends and family that you “Ghat a lot out of your visit.”

Lastly, Gogogogo, Madagascar, sounds like the perfect place to host NASCAR.

So there you have it, a handful of weird town names from around the world. Who knows, maybe one day you’ll find yourself visiting one of these towns.