Scenery vocabulary

How to describe the landscape.

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). The coastline can be straignt, or it can havebays which are often semi-circular in shape.


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 theterrain (ground) is rocky, but the air is often pure. However, the valleys (low areas encircled by the mountains) are more fertile.


From the foothills of the mountains (the small hills nearest mountains), the scenery inland tends to be lessdramatic 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 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.)

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