Thirteen Interesting New Zealand Place Names
I like place names that roll off the tongue. Here are some from New Zealand that I enjoy saying.
1. Paekakariki – means perching place of the kakariki (green parrot). Pronounced pie-ka-ka-rekey
2. Paraparaumu – translates to scraps from an earth oven. Most people pronounce it Para-para-oo-moo
3. Wainuiomata – translates to faces streaming with water. It’s pronounced Why-nui-O-ma-ta
4. Papamoa – I couldn’t find a translation, but it’s pronounced pa-pa-mower
5. Whakarewarewa – it’s the short version of Te Whakarewarewatanga O Te Ope Taua A Wahiao and means The uprising of the warriors (war party) of Wahiao. Locals call it Whaka.
6. Turangawaewae – translates to a place to stand or footstool. (Two-runga-why-why)
7. Waikanae – translates to waters of the yellow-eyed mullet (fish). It’s pronounced Why-kah-nye
8. Waitakere – the names comes from a Maori chief. It’s pronounced Why-tack-ah-ree
9. Horowhenua – I couldn’t find a translation. It’s pronounced Hor-o-fen-u-a
10. Waimarama – Wai means water, marama has a number of meanings from lunar to deity, so it could be moonlight on the water, but I’m not sure of the translation. Pronounced Why-ma-ra-ma.
11. Wairarapa – translates to glistening waters, and it’s pronounced Whyra-ra-pa.
12. Tuakau – I went to school here and remember seeing parcels addressed to “To-a-cow”. No one is sure of the meaning, but it’s actually pronounced to-a-cow
13. Pukekohe – I lived here for part of my life. The translation is hill of the kohekohe (NZ Mahogany). It’s pronounced Pukee-ko-ee
What is your favorite place name—one that you like because it rolls off the tongue?