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United Kingdom Overview

The country of United Kingdom consists of islands of Great Britain and Northern Ireland. Great Britain is the largest of the British Isles and includes England, Scotland, and Wales. "United Kingdom" is short for "The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland". Great Britain is also widely, but incorrectly, used as a synonym for the UK.

During the nineteenth century, the United Kingdom had colonized a large number of countries. At its peak the British Empire extended one fourth of the World. In the second half of twentieth century, UK has emerged as a modern and prosperous nation after the dismantling of the empire.

UK is one of the five permanent member countries of the United Nations Security Council. It is also a founding member of NATO, and a strong ally of USA.

Personalities | Tourist Spots | UK States | Links

NameUnited Kingdom Population60,441,457
CapitalLondon CurrencyPounds
Area244,820 sq km per capita GDP$29,600
ContinentEurope Life Expectancy78.38 years
Head of statePrime Minister Anthony BLAIR Official Language(s)English

British Personalities

Winston Churchill was Prime Minister of the United Kingdom during the Second World War. Churchill's speeches were a great inspiration to the embattled United Kingdom. He won the 1953 Nobel Prize in literature.

Princess Diana is remembered for her warmth and her charity work. Since her marriage to Prince Charles, Princess Diana was the pre-eminent female celebrity of her generation: a fashion icon, an ideal of feminine beauty. Princess Diana is especially remembered for her work in AIDS issues and her campaign against land mines. Princess Diana died on Sunday, 31 August 1997 at the age of 36, following a car crash in Paris.
David Beckham is a famous English footballer. Beckham is one of the most famous sports personality in the world. Beckham is married to Spice Girl and media celebrity Victoria (née Adams). Known for his good looks, Beckham has wide international fan base. Due to his strong performance for England in 2002 World Cup Qualifiers, Beckham was voted the BBC Sports Personality of the Year for 2001.

Sebastian Coe is a famous British middle distance runner of the eighties, and a Conservative Party politician. Coe was the head of London's winning bid to host the 2012 Summer Olympics. Coe won four Olympic medals including golds in 1500 meters in 1980 and 1984 Olympics.

Ian Bothom is a legendary English cricketer. Botham is one of the best all-round cricketers of all time. Botham was the fastest (in terms of matches) to achieve the "doubles" of 1,000 runs and 100 wickets, 2,000 runs and 200 wickets, and 3,000 runs and 300 wickets. He was made BBC Sports Personality of the Year in 1981. Ian is also tireless fundraiser for Leukemia Research, having run. In October 1999, Bothom walked from John O’Groats to Land’s End in just 34 days, averaging 4.5 miles an hour.

Tourist spots in United Kingdom

London, the capital of United Kingdom, is known for its marvelous castles, and world-famous museums. Some of the most famous landmarks and tourist spots of London are The Tower of London, Buckingham Palace, The Big Ben, Trafalgar Square, London Eye and Madame Tussaud's Museum.

The Tower of London has been used as a site for a number of important functions for a millennium. It has been used as royal palace and fortress, prison and place of execution, mint, menagerie and jewel house. Big Ben is a 320 foot high Clock Tower and is named after the largest bell, weighing over 13 tons, and was cast in 1858.

Buckingham Palace is the Queen's official residence. Some areas of Buckingham Palace are opened to visitors on a regular basis. London Eye, sometimes called the Millennium Wheel, is the first-built and largest observation wheel in the world. The total weight of steel in the Eye is 1,700 tonnes.

Trafalgar Square is a square in central London that commemorates the Battle of Trafalgar. The Square has an enormous symbolic social and political location for visitors and Londoners alike. Madame Tussaud's Wax Museum has thousands of wax characters modeled.

Windsor Castle is an official residence of The Queen and is the largest occupied castle in the world. Visitors can walk around the State Apartments, extensive suites of rooms at the heart of the working palace. You can get to Windsor by taking a train from London Waterloo or London Paddington stations.

Edinburgh is the capital city of Scotland. Edinburgh is well known for the annual Edinburgh Festival, the largest performing arts festival in the world. Edinburgh Castle is an ancient stronghold on the Castle Rock in the center of the city of Edinburgh.

UK States

United Kingdom has 47 boroughs, 36 counties, 29 London boroughs, 12 cities and boroughs, 10 districts, 12 cities and 3 royal boroughs.

CIA Fact book - the UK page provides most authentic information about the people, geography, government and economy of United Kingdom.

Beautiful London has useful information for visitors to London.

Britannia.com has a lot of useful information for visitors to UK. Introduction to Prime Ministers has brief biographies all the UK prime ministers.

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