Australia’s weird place names – Part 3

COME to Australia and it might not just be the snakes, spiders, weather and roads you have to battle with. Pronouncing the names of places is hard enough with tongue twisters like Chinkapook and Gooloogong on the menu.

This is the final installment in this three part series of weird Australian place names. Also check out Part 1 and Part 2.

Pic: nswrail.net

Binnaway, NSW

If you’ve been to this small town in central New South Wales you’ve certainly been away. Although these days it’s not as
isolated as it once was and even has a population of about 500 people. It was once a major railway centre with over 20 steam engines ferrying timber and grain through from rural NSW to the coast. The town was possibly named from an Aboriginal word “binniaway” meaning peppermint tree. It’s famous for being the location for the popular 1956 Australian film The Shiralee.

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Pic: Mattinbgn, wikipedia

Chinkapook, VIC

This small town in Victoria, 67km from Swan Hill comes from an Aboriginal word meaning waterhole. Now if you thought that was funny enough apparently the Post Office that opened in 1910 was called Christmas Tank. It was renamed Chinkapook in 1914. The other claim to fame for old Chinkapook is its mice plague that destroyed some of Australian poet John Shaw Neilson’s notebooks.

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Pic: bettinaglobal / Flickr

Eggs and Bacon Bay, TAS

While you might well expect a good breakfast at this town in Tasmania, the name actually has a historical tie to the name rather than a current one. Still you might find a good cafe in town. Anyway the name might be where one Lady Jane Franklin back in the 18th Century once had eggs and bacon for breakfast. She was the governor’s wife.

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Gooloogong main street. Pic: Mattinbgn, wikipedia

Gooloogong, NSW

Like a lot of Aboriginal names, this one likes its double Os. Located in the Lachlan Valley in New South Wales, the town took its name from the original cattle station named Gool-a-gong that was established in the 1820s. Apparently locals from the town are called Gooloogongians.

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Edge of the World. Pic: wandering-australia.com

Edge of the World, TAS

It’s not really a town but a lookout, but in Tasmania you can travel to the edge of the world, and come back again. The lookout is the most western point of Tasmania and is certainly a remote and windswept part of the world.