A mini travel guide to the UK
About the country
The United Kingdom, also known as England or Great Britain is the country which once ruled nearly the entire world. The glory might have been lost but the people are still proud of their country and heritage and the travel and tourisim industries are among the best in the world. The United Kingdom is an EU member and enjoys a fantastic economic climate. The country consists of England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland. The country is full of scenic locales and energetic cities. The capital city of the UK is London.
A city beyond compare, the UK represents itself as an icon of diversity with people from all walks of life blended into its culture. It is also home to many architectural marvels such as Buckingham Palace, London Bridge and more modern fare such as Canary Wharf. While areas like York and Durham capture the bygone era of country life, Liverpool and Newcastle are modern industrial marvels. Don’t forget the scenic Lake District and Edinburgh still attracts people from all over the world.
Population & Languages
The population is around 61 million and the official language is English. Other regional languages spoken are Welsh, Scottish Gaelic, and Irish.
The voltage is 230-240 V and the frequency is 50 Hz. The type of plug used is rectangular blade.
It is located in Western Europe and consists of islands including the northern one-sixth of Ireland. It is 22 miles from the French border and linked by the chunnel or channel tunnel. You will love rolling lowlands and low mountainous terrain.
It has a moderate climate but lots of rain with around half of the year being overcast. The lowest temperatures never go below -15 degrees C (5 degrees F) and in summer the average maximum is 34 degrees C (93.2 degrees F). It also gets snow in winter and early spring.
The handshake is customary when you are meeting somebody for the first time. When visiting someoneís house a small gift like flowers or chocolates is customary. Waiting until everyone is served before eating is also a key social etiquette. Tipping is usually 10-15% in hotels, restaurants and taxis. Smoking and non-smoking areas are clearly designated but like most industrialized countries there is a shift afoot to limit smoking in public areas.
Places to see
London: Buckingham Palace, Hampton Court Palace, Kensington Palace, Whitehall Palace and the Tower of London
Scotland: The Bannockburn Heritage Centre and Ben Lawers Mountains
Wales: Aberdulais Falls, King Arthur’s Labyrinth, Dolaucothi Gold Mines, Great Orme Mines, Portmeirion Village, Rhossili Visitor Centre, Taff Valley Activity Centre and TechinQuest
By Air : The domestic airlines is British Airways which also connects almost all major world destinations. Almost all airlines connect UK through London which is hub for all international flights between east to west and west to east. Heathrow and Gatwick are international airports of London.
By Sea : Since UK is surrounded by water from almost all sides it has many ports. There are many ferry services operating between the rest of Europe and the UK.
By Rail : Trains connect Ferries at Dover, Folkestone, Newhaven, Portsmouth and Weymouth, sailing for Belgium, France, Germany and Spain (you need to board at Victoria Station in London); and at Harwich, sailing for Germany, The Netherlands and Scandinavia (you need to board at Liverpool Street). Eurostar train connects London with Brussels and Paris through channel tunnel.
By Road : Vehicles can enter the UK through the channel tunnel. Cars and motorcycles, coaches, minibuses, caravans, campervans and other vehicles over 1.85m (6.07ft) can also use channel tunnel.
Shopping-Duty Free Items
- Up to 3200 cigarettes
- 400 cigarillos or 200 cigars
- 1 liter spirit over 22% or 2 liter wine, 32 liter beer
- Gifts up to £145
Narcotics, firearms, ammunition, weapons, most meat and dairy products, eggs, plants, endangered species, fireworks and alcoholic beverages that contain more than sixty per cent alcohol.
There aren’t many places in the world that rivals England, it has to be a must see if you are planning a trip to Europe.
Photo by whatscapes