Places With Two Combined Names in Their Official Names

W hen my mind wanders, that can be potentially dangerous.

After having written an article on protecting yourself from scammers when reserving lodging via Airbnb, I saw this article from the Michael W Travels… weblog pertaining to what could be considered the worst Airbnb place.

When I was done reading the article, I then scrolled down to the bottom where Michael lists all of the destinations to which he has been, as I know he just returned from Romania and Bulgaria. That list included Trinidad and Tobago — as well as Antigua and Barbuda.

I started to think to myself of all of the places I know which have two combined names in their official names: Turks and Caicos; Bosnia and Herzegovina; São Tomé and Príncipe — and Newfoundland and Labrador, which is my personal favorite.

On December 6, 2001, an amendment was created to the Constitution of Canada to change the official name of the province to Newfoundland and Labrador. Before then, the name of the province was simply Newfoundland; while the region of the province on the mainland of Canada was known as Labrador — a part of Newfoundland.

To this day, I still do not completely understand why this region — with a clear and distinct separation of the island from the mainland carved out by the Strait of Belle Isle — was not simply divided into two separate provinces: Newfoundland for the island; and Labrador for the mainland portion.

I then thought about Carolina, Dakota and Virginia…er…I mean…North Carolina and South Carolina, North Dakota and South Dakota, Virginia and West Virginia — all of which are separate states. Should they be combined? Should they have different names? Why is Virginia not called East Virginia?

After that, I wondered about what other places in the world have two combined names in their official names — and I got more than I bargained for with this Wikipedia article.

Now, you might probably be saying, “Wikipedia?!? Come on!!!”…

…but it provoked thought for me. Sure, I already knew about such places which did not immediately come to my mind — such as Saint Pierre and Miquelon; Saint Kitts and Nevis; and Saint Vincent and the Grenadines…

…hmm…Saint Vincent and the Grenadines…that sounds like the name of that new band which has the latest number one hit song in the world.

I have not heard of Heard and McDonald Islands. I have been to Senegal and I have known of Gambia; but I have never seen the name Senegambia. I knew that Czechoslovakia was split into the Czech Republic and Slovakia; yet I have been to the Czech Republic but not to Slovakia.

I never realized that there were two countries with the sole name of Guinea; but that Guinea-Bissau is purportedly named that to differentiate it from the other Guinea — never mind that there is a Papua New Guinea, which itself is supposedly two names; and Equatorial Guinea.

There are even places with three combined names — such as Mongmong-Toto-Maite in Guam. I never heard of Mongmong-Toto-Maite.

So — if I visit one of these places with two combined names, can I count that as being in two places? I suppose that the answer is: it depends.

Have you ever thought about — or better yet, visited — places which have two or more combined names?

One thought on “Places With Two Combined Names in Their Official Names”

  1. It’s not on the list, but I’ll be visiting Garmish-Partenkirchen, Germany in a few weeks. Apparently 2 towns were combined by Hitler for the Olympics. I’ve already noted that those on the Partenkirchen side are offended if you leave their town off of the full name, so I’ll have to master that entire mouthful before I go.

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