Lonely Planet Writer

French get into pickle picking new names for regions amid concern that changes may be confusing

Many newly-combined French regions are in the process of voting for new names, after a law change in January brought the total number of regions from 22 down to 13.

Names changes to French regions causes controversy.
Names changes to French regions causes controversy. Image by Richard Akerman / CC BY 2.0

Choosing new names has proved difficult in many case, with rows breaking out about the implications of some of the new picks. Nord-Pas-de-Calais-Picardie, soon to be known as Hauts-de-France, has been criticised for sounding like ‘l’hauteur’, meaning arrogance. Alsace-Champagne-Ardenne could end up as Austrasie, which residents are concerned will be confused with Australie, the French for Australia. Read more: thelocal.fr