Longest and Shortest Geographical Names in the World

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Learn about the longest and short names for geographical locations in the world.

What is the Longest Geographical Name in the World?

The full ceremonial name for the Thai city of Bangok is Krungthepmahanakhon Amonrattanakosin Mahintharayutthaya Mahadilokphop Noppharatratchathaniburirom Udomratchaniwetmahasathan Amonphimanawatansathit Sakkathattiyawitsanukamprasit.  At 163 letters, it’s the longest geographic place name.  The name translates into English as, “City of angels, great city of immortals, magnificent city of the nine gems, seat of the king, city of royal palaces, home of gods incarnate, erected by Visvakarman at Indra’s behest”.  


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The place with the longest single word is Taumata­whakatangihanga­koauau­o­tamatea­turi­pukakapiki­maunga­horo­nuku­pokai­whenua­kitanatahu.  At 85 letters, this Māori name for a hill in New Zealand is often truncated to Taumata.  The full name translates to “The summit where Tamatea, the man with the big knees, the climber of mountains, the land-swallower who travelled about, played his nose flute to his loved one”.  

Location of Taumata­whakatangihanga­koauau­o­tamatea­turi­pukakapiki­maunga­horo­nuku­pokai­whenua­kitanatahu in New Zealand.
Location of Taumata­whakatangihanga­koauau­o­tamatea­turi­pukakapiki­maunga­horo­nuku­pokai­whenua­kitanatahu in New Zealand.

The Shortest Geographical Place Names

There are at least 26 locations in the world that only have a single letter for its name.  There are seven different villages in Denmark, Sweden, and Norway with the name Å, which means river in Scandinavian languages.

Locations with the short place names:

  • A, a district in Kami-Amakusa city, Kumamoto, Japan
  • Å, a village in Meldal municipality, Sør-Trøndelag, Norway
  • Å, a village in Åfjord municipality, Sør-Trøndelag, Norway
  • Å, a village in Ibestad municipality, Troms, Norway
  • Å, a village in Lavangen municipality, Troms, Norway
  • Å, a village in Tranøy municipality, Troms, Norway
  • Å, a place in Funen, Denmark.
  • Å, a village in Norrköping municipality, Östergötland, Sweden
  • Ά, an eco-hippie community in Buenos Aires Province, Argentina
  • B, a village in central Ohio, United States
  • D, a river in Oregon, United States
  • E, a mountain in Hokkaidō, Japan
  • E, a river in the Highlands of Scotland
  • I, a town in Shandong Sheng, Dongshan county of Fujian province, China
  • Ì, Scottish Gaelic name for island of Iona, Scotland (also called Ì Chaluim Chille)
  • Ô, a castle near Mortrée, France
  • O, a river in Devon, England
  • O, a river in Toyama, Japan
  • Ö, a village in Sweden. Ö is Swedish for “island”.
  • Ø, a hill in Jutland, Denmark. Ø is Danish for “island”.
  • U, a place in Panama
  • U, a settlement on Pohnpei in the Caroline Islands, Federated States of Micronesia
  • Ú, a place in Madagascar
  • Y, a settlement in Alaska, United States
  • Y, a commune in the department of Somme, France.
  • Y, a river on the north of Russia.
The town of Å in the Lofoten islands. Photo: Sam Greenhalgh.
The town of Å in the Lofoten islands. Photo: Sam Greenhalgh.


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