Top 10 Strange Place Names in NZ and Australia

What’s in a name? Well I’m sure the occupants of Gross Avenue would like to assure you, not much.

The street is just one of the weird and wonderful monickers given to Australian and New Zealand roads and towns.

Our Open2view photographers will have seen their fair share of noteworthy street names while shooting properties on both sides of the Tasman.

Some place titles are regarded affectionately by locals and give tourists a quick chuckle as they drive through, while others can be outright offensive…

A plan to change the names of Nigger Hill and Niggerhead in the South Island to the less offensive alternatives, Tawhai Hill and Kānuka Hills respectively, has stirred up 61 objections. Alternative names are due to go out for public consultation this month.

But putting the offensive titles to one side, let’s take a look at some of the best place names hailing from our shores.

10. Cape Foulwind, New Zealand

I dread to think what stench was pungent enough to earn this West Coast headland this unfortunate name.

9. Disappointment Hill, Australia

The story goes that explorer Fran Hann climbed the Western Australian hill in 1903 to find no water and was disappointed. It doesn’t sound like things have improved that much for the hill since.

8. Come By Chance, Australia

come-by-chance

The small country town with the unusual name is situated on the Baradine Creek in northern New South Wales.

7. Lois Lane, Australia

Australia is home to a host of streets bearing the name of the fictional reporter and Superman’s love interest.

6. Gross Ave, Australia

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Two Aussie streets carry this title – one in Queensland and one in New South Wales. In fact, Australia is actually littered with “Gross” streets and roads.

5. Little Wart and The Pimple, New Zealand

These hills are located in Otago and Marlborough respectively.

4. Fashion Parade, Australia

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Strike a pose. This Melbourne street has actually very little connection with the catwalk.

3. Snuffle Nose, New Zealand

Snuffle Nose is a point in Canterbury with a delightful sounding name.

2. Nowhere Else, Australia

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There’s nowhere else quite like this Tasmanian town … except there’s a place in South Australia which bears the same name.

1. Taumata whakatangi hangakoauau o tamatea turi pukakapiki maunga horo nuku pokai whenua kitanatahu, New Zealand

taumata-whakatangi-hangakoauau

We couldn’t do this list without giving a shout out to the world’s longest place name. At 85 letters long, this Hawke’s Bay hill holds the world record. Now take a deep breath and see if you can pronounce it.

Honorary Mention: Matata, New Zealand

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What other gems have you come across in your travels around New Zealand and Australia? Let us know in the comments below or on our AU and NZ Facebook pages.

 

Ten gorgeous swimming pools to spend your summer in

Our friends at realestate.com.au recently had a look at what search terms were most popular on their site. Lo and behold – even though it’s winter (and will be for another agonising 48 hours), the most popular keyword with house hunters was “pool”.

Could it be that Aussies have fallen head over heels for 8 balls and cue tips? Not really, it’s more about our love for cold water on scorching hot days.

Queenslanders, according to Catherine Cashmore of National Property Buyers, would never consider buying a house without a swimming pool. While Melbournians are less fussed, with summer months getting longer and warmer pools are fast becoming more popular.

And why not? They’re not only the perfect remedy for a heatwave (I originally wrote ‘tonic’ but don’t drink the water, for goodness sakes), but they also look fantastic. At least, the ones on Open2view do. We thought we’d see what came up when typing “pool” into our search engine. Below are ten of the best pools for sale in Australia right now.

Unless you’re reading this in a few months, in which case they’re probably all been sold. Click on any image to start the slideshow.

How will Sydney look by 2050?

Jetsons

Hmm, maybe not.

We recently stumbled upon this Sydney Morning Herald article written last last year. Seeing as it’s looking at what Sydney could look like in 2050, it’s still relevant enough to discuss.

According to Alec Tzannes, dean of the Faculty of Built Environment at the University of New South Wales, a lot in Sydney is going to change between now and 2050. Families will be smaller, public transport more expansive, and the city will lead the world “in finance and education and core values, as reflected in our laws and our equitable society.” It will be, in short, “a place where global leaders want to be.”

Exciting stuff; no wonder the population is projected to grow by 3.2 million to 7.5 million people in the next four decades. But where are all these new people going to go?

We’re going to be living closer to each other, for starters. Terrace houses were built in Sydney’s inner suburbs during the 19th century, and have proven popular with Sydneysiders who like living close to the CBD.

Many, including the Committee for Sydney and McKell Institute, have suggested building modern day versions throughout the city. The latter group argues that terrace houses are ideal to “infill middle-ring Sydney suburbs – those that are still dominated by the freestanding home on a quarter acre block.” Said Tim Williams, “it [the terrace] is the most attractive useful form of city housing ever invented yet we’ve made it almost impossible to build.”

Our city cannot live in terraces alone, however, as the Herald article goes on to explain:

A mix of densities and housing types with a range of affordability will support diverse populations, so, for example, health and aged-care workers, teachers and tradespeople can live closer to those who buy their services.

The stock of housing will be “far more distinctive to accommodate many different ways of living”, Tzannes says. Apartment buildings will be mixed-use, accommodating schools, services and other work environments as well as individual dwellings, perhaps topped by rooftop gardens.

Does this suggest further urban sprawl? It seems the vision is for a greater number of community hubs, rather than the CBD being the only heart of the city:

The “values of separation and individuality are still there” but there is “much greater social behaviour to do with communal living”, supported by larger areas of communal open space, he says. “We can all get a higher standard of living by not miniaturising life. Instead of a backyard you have a park. Instead of a [backyard] pool you have a community pool.”

So picture this for Sydney: a CBD still where it is but with five smaller centres in Wollongong, Newcastle, Penrith, Parramatta and Liverpool, all serving as hubs for their surrounding suburbs, which will likely have more small and terraced housing.

How does that sound to you? Is it achievable, or will we end up with something nightmarishly close to Los Angeles instead?

Which reminds us: Time has put together something – aptly – called Timelapse, an interactive look at how the world’s cities have grown between 1984 and 2012.

Here’s how Sydney looked then:

Sydney timelapse 1984

And how it looks now:

Sydney timelapse 2012

It’s worth having a play with; sometimes the past is the best predictor of the future.