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Facts about England

England is an island country located in western Europe. It is part of the United Kingdom (which includes England, Scotland, Wales, and Northern Ireland). Scotland lies to the north and Wales to the west. England is separated from Europe by the English Channel to the east.


England has been inhabited by people for thousands of years. The earliest modern humans date from the Upper Palaeolithic era – with permanent settlements beginning around 6,000 years ago. Many groups invaded and settled in England over the millennia. In 1066, William of Normandy invaded and conquered England bringing a French (Norman) influence, especially upon the English language.


Today, England is a thriving democratic monarchy with incredible lush countryside and natural wonders, monuments and ancient ruins, picture-postcard towns and villages, and dynamic modern cities. We document and celebrate it here on this page, in our blog, and in the explore-the-world-from-home guides to England (published March 2020) and the Guide to London (published November 2020).

Check out more facts about England below.

The Vital Stats:
  • Population: 56 million (2019)

  • Area: 130,279 sq km

  • Sovereign State: United Kingdom

  • Capital: London

  • Largest City: London

  • National Language: English

  • Say Hello: Hello, Hi!

  • Currency: Pound Sterling (£)

  • Driving Side: Left

  • Anthem: God Save the Queen (UK)

  • Time Zone: UTC (Greenwich Mean Time)

The Flag of England


Our 'Top Spots' Map of England


Fun Facts about England

  • The Osmington White Horse in Dorset is a chalk figure carved into the hillside. It is from 1808 and depicts King George III. The oldest chalk hill figure is the very modern looking Uffington White Horse in Oxfordshire (pictured) which is about 3,000 years old!

  • At Stonehenge, each of the massive outside ring of standing stones are about 4 metres tall and weigh around 25 tons.

  • The Tower of London has been home to many animals over the centuries. Incredibly in the 1250’s a polar bear was also a resident! The bear was presented to King Henry III by King Haakon of Norway and it was taken for daily swims in the Thames.


The Uffington White Horse chalk figure on a hill in Oxfordshire

  • The British drink more than 60 billion cups of tea a year! That means they consume more tea per capita than anyone else in the world!

  • French was the official language of England from 1066 to 1362! Although French was used by the royal court and aristocracy, most people still spoke English during this time.

  • Every year in Brockworth, Gloucestershire, there is a cheese rolling competition, in which people chase a wheel of cheese down a hill!!

  • The Channel Tunnel (or Chunnel) is a tunnel that runs underneath the English Channel and connects the English city of Dover to the French city of Calais. It is just over 50 kilometres long!

  • Over two billion books of the English mystery writer Agatha Christie have been sold worldwide! Her play, the Mousetrap is also the longest-running play in the world – it’s been running since 1952!

sample recipe and activity from the

England: Explore-the-World-from-Home Guide

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