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Scenery Vocabulary

How to describe the landscape with interesting scenery vocabulary.

The coast

Often at the edge of the sea there are cliffs (high mountains), which give a great view over the sea. But they can also be dangerous, especially if they are eroded, when rocks and earth fall away into the sea. Most people prefer sandy beaches rather than pebble beaches (beaches with small stones). Sometimes, behind sandy beaches you can see sand dunes – areas of sand that the wind blows into small hills. Often, different types of grasses grow in the sand dunes.

The coastline can be straight, or it can have bays which are often semi-circular in shape. It's often possible to walk along the coastline, along a coastal path.

Mountains

Mountain ranges are spectacular as you can often see snow-capped peaks against the skyline. From the top of a mountain (the summit or the peak), there are breathtaking views. Not much grows on mountains, as generally the terrain (ground) is rocky, but the air is often pure. However, the valleys (low areas encircled by the mountains) are more fertile. Where the mountains are steep, farmers often create terraces – they create a series of level areas linked by steps so that they can grow crops even on mountains and hills.

Inland

From the foothills of the mountains (the small hills nearest mountains), the scenery inland tends to be less dramatic with rolling hills and open countryside. You can find more farmland, but also forests or woods (smaller forests). The land is generally irrigated by rivers or lakes (areas of water which are enclosed) and streams (narrow paths of water).

In the UK, between fields you can often see hedges (or hedgerows) – a natural barrier created by small trees and plants which grow close together. Often hedges are hundreds of years old, and they provide shelter for birds and other wildlife.

In some countries, there are vast areas of open, flat land called plains (or prairies) which are used to grow various crops such as wheat (the grain used to make flour for bread.)

Scenery Vocabulary Quiz

Level: Pre-intermediate and above

1. Where I live there are lots of hills. Between these, there are __
2. I don't live near a river, but we have a small __ outside the house.
3. The mountain __ is covered in snow.
4. There's a small __ near here. You can hear lots of birds in the trees and it's very peaceful.
5. Be careful when you walk along these __ as there's a very sharp drop into the sea!
6. When it rains, the fields become __
7. Do you prefer a __ beach or a sandy beach?
8. The coastline isn't straight, and there are a number of small __
9. We enjoyed walking through the __ next to the river.
10. In the middle of the village there's a small __ where you can see ducks and other water birds.



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