Great Britain is not large. It takes just six hours in a fast train from London to Edinburgh, the capital of Scotland. Great Britain lies not far from continent of Europe. It is separated from the continent by the North Sea and English Channel." Great Britain" has several different names. Some people say "Britain" or "the United Kingdom", or just "UK". There are four different countries in the United Kingdom: England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland. Britain is only a small country, but every part is different. Scotland is a land of mountains, lakes and romantic castles. The winters are cold, with plenty of snow, but the summers are often warm and sunny. Most farmers keep sheep and there are many small factories, which make fine sweaters from their wool.
Northern Ireland has its problems but it has beauty too. In the warm wet climate, the grass grows a brilliant green, and much of the land is farming country. Wales is a special place, a country of mountains and pretty valleys. But Wales has plenty of industry too, with many factories and coal mines. The Midlands, known as the heart of England is the largest industrial part in the country. The most important industrial cities are Manchester, Sheffield, Liverpool, which is one of Britain’s big parts, and Birmingham. The two famous Midlands cities, Stratford on Avon and Oxford are connected with English culture: Stratford is the birthplace of great William Shakespeare and Oxford is famous for its university.