Lets start by clarifying the difference between the three: Great Britain is the largest island consisting of England, Scotland, Wales and the surrounding smaller islands such as Shetland, Orkney and the Isle of Wight. The concept of United Kingdom originally constituted a union between Great Britain and Ireland in 1801, which forced Ireland to dissolve its parliament. Since Ireland’s independence in 1921, the United Kingdom has comprised of Great Britain and Northern Ireland.
Another way of putting it is, that the country of England is part of Great Britain, which is part of the United Kingdom.
The UK is a constitutional monarchy, which includes England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland. Four countries with a common history, but a culture that has always been different and extraordinary throughout the years.
Weather and Climate
Best time to visit the UK is from May to September.
The UK can be discovered all year-round. London, Edinburgh and other big cities have many indoor activities, that are best to be visited from November to April, off-season.
The climate is a mild maritime weather, influenced by the Gulf Stream continuation of the North Atlantic Current. A migrant low pressure from the Atlantic Ocean makes the weather changeable, but with the southwest wind prevailing.
Precipitation is distributed evenly throughout the year, with the most in the winter. Regionally, there are large differences in rainfall distribution; the western, mountainous regions of the country get the most rainfall. For example north-west Scotland has about 2.500 mm. (98 in.) while the eastern lowlands has only about 500 mm. (20 in.) precipitation per year.
The average temperature in January for the whole country is between 3-5°C (37-41°F), the warmest in Cornwall with 7°C (44°F), and the coldest in the northern mountains with 0°C (32°F). In July, average temperatures in southern England is between 17-19°C (62-66°F), while it is 10-13°C (50-56°F) in the north.
Average daytime temperature in July; Belfast 20°C (68°F), Cardiff 22°C (72°F), Edinburgh 20°C (68°F), London 23°C (73°F).
Average of precipitation in July; Belfast 66 mm. (2,6 in.), Cardiff 78 mm. (3,1 in.), Edinburgh 65 mm. (2,6 in.), London 35 mm. (1,4 in.)
Great Britain can be divided into two natural geographical regions. The south-eastern part has hilly and flat lowlands with a smooth coastline. The north-western part is a carved and lobed coastline with a mountainous hinterland.
Movement in Earth’s prehistoric time predominantly caused the mountainous part. Oldest are the mountains of Scotland (Highlands and the Southern Uplands), North Wales (Snowdonia) and north-west England at the Cumbrian Mountains and Lake District. The highest mountains is Ben Nevis in Scotland with 1.343 metres (4.406 ft.). Snowdon in Wales is 1.085 metres (3.560 ft.), Scafell Pike in England is 977 metres (3.205 ft.) and Slieve Donard in Northern Ireland is 848 metres (2.782 ft.). The mountainous areas have many lakes, especially in Scotland, and the vegetation cover is low and sparingly with peat and heather moorland and few forests.
The rivers in the UK are many and branching out from the predominant north-south watershed on the mainland. The rivers Forth 47 km. (29 miles), Tyne 118 km. (74 miles), Tees 113 km. (70 miles), Trent 297 km. (185 miles), Great Ouse 230 km. (142 miles) and the River Thames 346 km. (214 miles) run east to the North Sea. The rivers Clyde 176 km. (110 miles), Eden 145 km. (90 miles), Mersey 113 km. (70 miles) and the longest of them all, Severn 354 km. (219 miles) run to the west.
Lake, Loch, Lough, Llyn. Lakes in the United Kingdom are many, so are the names for lake. Loch is Scottish, Lough is Northern Irish and Llyn is Welsh. The biggest lake is Lough Neagh 383 sq. Km. (148 sq. Miles), the deepest is Loch Morar 310 metres (1.017 ft.), the longest is Loch Awe 41 km. (26 miles) and the most famous is Loch Ness, which has the most volume of water.
5 things United Kingdom is known for, outside United Kingdom
- William Shakespeare (Poet and playwright, 1564-1616)
- Charles Darwin (Naturalist and geologist, 1809-1882)
- Whiskey (Distilled beverage, started around 15th century)
- Pubs (Public house, there are about 60.000 bars in the UK)
- Stonehenge (Prehistoric monument, constructed between 3.000 BC and 2.000 BC)