Wales is probably my favorite nation in Great Britain. I've been there before and (Stefan voice) it has everything: Gorgeous castles by the sea, rolling green countryside, amazing members of my family (hi, Patty, Mark, Jessie and Morgan!), and a language that's so difficult to pronounce it was probably designed for the sole purpose of scaring off foreign invaders. Though most people in Wales speak English, the country is officially bilingual, and street signs and town names are all incredibly lengthy as befitting the light-on-vowels, Celtic-derived language. Still, somehow a British weatherman nailed a long Welsh town name, the lengthiest name of a town in all of Britain: The 58-letter "Llanfairpwllgwyngyllgogerychwyrndrobwllllantysiliogogogoch."
Even people who live in the town — which was given the long name, translated as "Saint Mary's Church in the hollow of the white hazel near to the rapid whirlpool of Llantysilio of the red cave," as an early publicity stunt in the 1860s — usually shorten the name when speaking it aloud, calling it the (frankly also difficult) Llanfairpwllgwyngyll, Llanfairpwll, or Lianfair PG. But that's not good enough for the brave-hearted Liam Dutton. Watch him breeze through it below:
The Internet is freaking out about this guy, of course, because his nonchalance is astonishing.
But Llanfairpwllgwyngyllgogerychwyrndrobwllllantysiliogogogoch isn't the only difficult-to-pronounce town name out there. I present to you some of the strangest, most difficult place names in the world. If you can figure out these, maybe you should be a weatherman.
The longest official place name in the world, the 85-letter Taumatawhakatangihangakoauauotamateapokaiwhenuakitanatahu, is the name of a lovely little hill in New Zealand. It literally means: "The summit where Tamatea, the man with the big knees, the slider, climber of mountains, the land-swallower who travelled about, played his nose flute to his loved one." Aww...
2. Lake Chargoggagoggmanchauggagoggchaubunagungamaugg
This Massachusetts lake is known by some as "Webster Lake" (can you blame them?). The official name is actually Lake Chaubunagungamaug, from Nipmuc, an Algonquian language. In the 20s, a local newspaper editor made up the longer name in a hilarious act we'd today call "cultural appropriation." The name stuck, though, and many residents of the town consider the longer version the correct one.
A town in Hungary. I didn't even know some of those accent signs existed.
Curious about what the name of this Mexican city means? Joke's on you — the origin of this one comes from "Nuevo San Juan Parangaricutiro."
This Australian hill is literally translated as "where the devil urinates." Which is great.
6. Houston Street
Oh, you don't live in New York City? Good luck.