United Kingdom
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About the United Kingdom

The UK, or to give it its full title, The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, comprises the countries of England, Wales, Scotland and the province of Northern Ireland.

Once the seat of a worldwide empire, the UK is still a major player on the world stage, despite its relatively small size compared to the likes of the United States and Russia. It is one of the permanent members of the UN Security Council and has the worlds 5th largest economy by GDP.

The UK is also a major tourist destination, attracting over 27million tourists every year with its combination of spectacular scenery and historic sights. The British royal family is also a big attraction, with Buckingham Palace a must on any international tourist itinerary. The changing of the guard and grand symbolic parades, rich in colour and tradition, are very much a part of the pomp and ceremony of life in and around Buckingham Palace, and these days you can even take a guided tour inside.

The rest of London has a host of famous sights, from Tower Bridge to the historic Houses of Parliament, as well as world class theatres, top quality shopping and many historic buildings, including an authentic replica of Shakespeare’s Globe Theatre on the banks of the Thames.

Head out of London and there is a wealth of choice for things to do. Spend a day at the beach on the countless sandy coves of Britain’s sunny south coast. Head for the hills in Wales or the spectacular Lake District National Park. Explore the many historic castles and country houses dotted across the country. Or you can really stretch your horizons with a trip up to the magnificent mountains and whiskey distilleries of Scotland.

Britain’s history is everywhere you turn, from the Roman cities of York, Bath and Chester, to the border castles between Wales and England. Hadrian’s Wall in the North of England is a spectacular feat of Roman engineering, and large sections of this amazing border line still stand to this day.

Despite its large population, the UK still has vast areas of open countryside to explore, with friendly villages where life has changed little in decades. And when you do venture into the cities, you’ll find modern hotels and plenty for tourists to do, from the Beatles tours of Liverpool to the dreaming spires of academic Oxford. The UK also has some high quality amusement parks, such as Alton Towers, and lots of unusual attractions such as the ancient stone circle of Stonehenge and the Jurassic coast of South West England.

In short, the UK really does have something for everyone, from history to hospitality, culture to countryside, putting it firmly on the list of must-visit countries for almost every traveller.

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Quick facts

Population: 63 Million
 
Currency: GB Pound Sterling
 
Capital: London
 
Languages: English
 
Religions: Christian 72%

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