Episode 10 - My favourite places to visit in the UK
Updated: Feb 3
Hey everyone! My name’s Amy and I created The British English Language Podcast for intermediate level students to help in understanding the English language spoken with a British accent. You probably already know that there are lots of different accents spoken by people living in different parts of the UK. Someone from the North of England, for example, sounds very different to someone in the South of England. And people from Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland all have very distinct accents too. I grew up in the countryside in the middle of England and my English accent is very neutral.
If you visit my website - www.britishenglishlanguage.com you’ll find the transcriptions for these episodes, so don’t worry - if my British accent is difficult to understand, you can read the text whilst listening and then you won’t miss anything.
This episode is a special episode today as I’m recording outside in nature here in Ibiza! You’ll probably be able to hear the birds and other animals in the background and I hope you enjoy listening to them as much as I do!
Episode 10 - My favourite places to visit in the UK
I love Wales, it’s a charming little country. It’s located on the western side of England and has a total population of just over three million. Wales has its own unique Celtic culture and even its own language! The north of Wales is a mountainous area with lakes and glacial landforms, and there you can find the highest mountain of England and Wales - Mount Snowdon. The south of Wales is where the capital city - Cardiff - is located, and the beaches of South Wales are a very popular summer holiday destination for many British people. West Wales is just gorgeous and, if I had to choose, I think it would be my favourite part of Wales. There’s a particularly special area called Pembrokeshire which is lush, green, natural landscape with pristine beaches and cute stone cottages everywhere. I feel like Pembrokeshire is very peaceful. It's not very easy to reach because you need to drive through Welsh valleys and along small country roads so fewer people visit the beaches of West Wales. The entire coast of Pembrokeshire is a dedicated National Park so you can imagine the nature and the beauty that exists as it’s been well protected and preserved. I visited Pembrokeshire for my 31st birthday in June 2017. I stayed in one of the most adorable Airbnbs I’ve ever found! A tiny stone cave built into the side of a small hill near the Preseli Hills. I could see an ancient stone circle and wild horses with their foals (baby horses) outside the bedroom window! Wales is famous for raining a lot and unfortunately it rained during my visit but, luckily, this didn’t take the magic away from my experience. It was such a lovely little trip and I hope to visit West Wales again one day. When you visit the UK I highly recommend visiting Wales and if you’d like an experience like the one I’ve described then I’ve included the link of this Airbnb on the transcription at the end.
Bristol is definitely my favourite city in England! It’s the 8th largest city in the UK with a population of almost half a million within the city itself. Bristol is located in the south west of England, with South Wales to the west and London 120 miles (190km) to the east.
The river Avon runs through the city centre and there’s lots of life and activity on the water every day. I spend a lot of time on the water when I’m in Bristol and for me this is the best way to experience the city. One of my favourite things to do is travel through the city centre by boat or by kayak, watching people enjoying their weekends in the riverside restaurants and bars. I also go with friends by boat from Bristol to the countryside to enjoy a summer swim in the cleaner waters of the nature.
The music scene in Bristol is, in my opinion, the best in the UK. The music of Bristol is more alternative and, what we call in English, underground. Underground music is non-commercial/non-pop music, which is often played in small, more intimate venues. It attracts people who like to be individual and not conform to the norms of society. 1990s bands Massive Attack and Portishead are both from Bristol. The music scene as well as Bristol’s art scene have been influenced by the city’s multiculturalism, political activism, as well as the punk, reggae, hip hop, hippie and new age movements.
So, something else I love to do in Bristol is tour the city searching for amazing street art. Bristol is famous for its street art. Probably the most famous street artist in the world is Banksy. Banksy is from Bristol so there are lots of his murals (wall paintings) all over the city. If you haven’t heard of Banksy he became active in the 1990s making street art with dark humour and political and social messages. Something else cool about Banksy is that he’s anonymous - meaning that nobody knows who he is! He has kept his identity a secret for decades! Banksy’s graffiti can be found in many cities all over the world. I recommend checking him out, maybe you can find some of his art in your city too!
I absolutely adore the London markets! I think they’re some of the best markets in the world! I first discovered the famous North London market - Camden Market - when I was 19 years old. I would visit on the weekends, whilst studying at university in Oxford, as it’s a short 90 minute bus ride to London from Oxford. Camden Market is where I fell in love with vintage fashion. I loved the atmosphere and vibrancy of this scene so much that when I was 22 I decided to sell vintage clothing at the largest market in the UK - Portobello Market. Portobello Market is located in the West London area of Notting Hill. It has existed since the 19th century, making it one of the oldest markets in London. It’s famous for the hundreds of antique shops and stalls which open every Saturday. It attracts thousands of tourists every year and I can see why. It’s a colourful, quirky and cool place to be. I really enjoyed my years selling vintage clothes in London, I had some of the most interesting and fun experiences of my life and made some good friends and grew a lot as a person.
Although I’ve spent most of my life living in England, unfortunately I haven’t explored as much of the UK as I would’ve liked. I would love so much to explore the wild, mountainous landscapes of Scotland, for example. And what about you guys? I’d love to hear about your experiences visiting the UK. Or, if you haven’t visited yet, which parts would you like to visit? Please send me a message by using the contact form on my website - www.britishenglishlanguage.com, I would be really happy to hear from you!
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Thank you so much for listening to this episode of The British English Language Podcast! I hope you enjoyed it and I look forward to seeing you next time!