Better Geographic Portmanteaus

On December 18, 2016 · 2 Comments

Longtime readers of Twelve Mile Circle know that I love a good portmanteau, the smooshing together of two distinct words to form a new word that combines their meaning. These occur geographically too. The best example may be the adjoining towns of Mexicali and Calexico on the border between Mexico and the U.S. state of California. I discovered a much less elegant example a few months ago that I described in the Rise and Fall of Idahome. It combined the state of Idaho with home. That one seemed rather lame by comparison.

With that in mind, I wondered if I could come up with my own completely fictional geographic portmanteaus. I wanted my creations to be better than the real ones. And by "better," I meant much worse. Idahome would look positively inspired compared to mine. That would make them perfect. Those involving bad puns or Dad Jokes would receive double credit. A strange number of them involved food for some reason. I must be Hungary.

I discovered that I wasn’t particularly creative although I kind-of knew that already. Maybe some (all?) of you can do better.


    Oji zoo, Kobe, Japan
    Oji zoo, Kobe, Japan. Photo by pelican on Flickr (cc)

  • Chinapple: True Fact — China grows more apples than any other nation (37 million tonnes). However they import most of their pineapples.
  • Cubanana: "In Cuba, you have three types of bananas"
  • Denmarket: Where does a Dane shop?
  • Gabonbon: A place for west Africans that crave little chocolates.
  • Great Britangerine: A branding opportunity after citrus trees grow in the UK due to climate change.
  • Guatemalacarte: Examining a nation’s 22 departments and 334 municipalities one-by-one.
  • Iranaway: Mohammad Reza Shah Pahlavi, fled Iran in 1979. The Islamic Republic led by Ayatollah Khomeini took over from there.
  • Japanda: Now on exhibit at the Kobe Zoo.
  • Kenyahoo: Verizon might be balking at its pending purchase of Yahoo. What if Kenya stepped in?
  • Kuwaitandsee: Kuwait’s new tourism slogan.
  • Lebanonsense: Sectarian violence in Beirut
  • Madagascarface: A movie remake where the homicidal title character smuggles lemurs
  • Mexicocoa: Celebrating the Aztecs of Pre-Colombian Mexico and their chocolate beverages.
  • Panamama: Yo mama is such a geo-geek that she wants to take a freighter across Central America (where the Pacific Ocean entrance is further east than the Atlantic).
  • Perumor: Fake news in South America.
  • Singaporous: It’s easy getting in and out of the world’s only island city-state.
  • Sudandelion: Do dandelions even grow in Sudan?
  • Ukrainium: Russia knocked its neighbor upside the head and seized Crimea in 2014.


Ming dynasty urn
Ming dynasty urn. Photo by Peter Jackson on Flickr (cc)

  • Coloradoughnut: Duncan Doughnuts decided to franchise in the Mountain West.
  • Connecticutthroat: Be careful where you travel in New England; some places are more dangerous than others.
  • Iowall: The exact opposite of Idahome. In Iowa they try to keep people out.
  • Manitobama: The 44th President of the United States decided to relocate to Canada after leaving office.
  • Tasmaniac: Psychotic island-based Australians.
  • Tennesseesaw: A very low budget theme park in the Great Smoky Mountains with little chance of putting Dollywood out of business.
  • Wyomingdynasty: An antique dealer in Cheyenne specializing in Chinese porcelains crafted between 1368 and 1644.
  • Yukonquistadors: They plan to take over North America despite their limited population.


Bangkok. Photo by velo_city on Flickr (cc)

  • Amsterdamage: If the flood walls fail in the Netherlands.
  • Bangkokadoodledoo: A poultry market in Thailand.
  • Beijinglebells: The Christmas spirit sweeps China.
  • Bucharestaurant: Where to find goulash.
  • Cairomeo: Egyptian gigolo.
  • Columbustop: Where to catch public transportation in central Ohio.
  • Frankfurtunecookie: Diners at Chinese restaurants in Germany end their meal with this treat.
  • Gibraltarnished: Parts of The Rock need a makeover.
  • Hanoiying: Spending one day too many in Vietnam.
  • Kathmandudu: When Sherpa fail to clean up after walking their dogs.
  • Monacocacola: A wealthy city-state that sold its naming rights to a major corporation.
  • Nassauna: How to attract Finns to the Caribbean.
  • New Delhicatessen: An odd restaurant concept specializing in Matzo Kebabs.
  • Olympiano: A music recital in the capital city of Washington State.
  • Ottawaffle: Belgian restaurant in Canada.
  • Sacramentomato: The headquarters of the California Tomato Growers Association. Seriously, they’re really located in Sacramento.
  • Santa Festival: Santa Fe, New Mexico also decided to go all-out for the Christmas holiday this year.

On December 18, 2016 · 2 Comments

2 Responses to “Better Geographic Portmanteaus”

  1. Ross Finlayson says:

    You missed perhaps the most famous ‘state portmanteau’ of all: “Californication”

  2. Dave102 says:

    I had a friend who grow up in Northern California who said they really did call Sacramento “Sack-o-Tomatoes”.

    Also, London, Ontario, has a store in the main market hall called the “New Delhi Deli”

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