If you like walking/trekking in the countryside, mountains or on the coast it is important that you know the vocabulary commonly used when doing this. It's essential that you know the vocabulary used to give directions, (e.g. 'go up the...', 'go along the...' etc...). This will help you to know where to go when walking.

But in addition to knowing phrases used for directions, you also need to know the names in English of the different things you'll use to walk on and you'll find when walking or travelling in the countryside (e.g. a farm, a path etc...). Knowing the names of these will help you to understand when people are giving you directions and also when you give directions to people in English.

In this first of two online exercises on countryside vocabulary for walking, you'll learn and remember the English names for things you will use to walk on and the names of things you can see and use when walking.

The vocabulary in this exercise is also useful for people who are only visiting the countryside and not going on long walks.

After you have done this exercise, I would recommend that you do the second part of this exercise to learn more vocabulary you'll need when walking in the countryside.

In both of these exercises, you will learn the names of things which are man-made (made by humans). To learn the English names of natural things you will find in the countryside, I recommend that you do the online exercises on 'Water landform names', 'Coastal landform names and the sea' or 'Mountain landform names'.


Exercise:

In the following conversation, Peter gives directions to his friend Juan on where he needs to go on a walking trip he is going to take in the countryside.

In this text, phrases used to give directions (e.g. 'go pass...', 'carry on until...' etc...) are used. If you don't know how to give directions in English well, I recommend that you do our exercise on the vocabulary used to give directions, before doing this exercise.

From the context, try to guess what the object or place the words in bold are. Then do the quiz at the end to check if you are right.

Juan:'We're going walking on Saturday around Malham in the Yorkshire Dales. You know the area really well, don't you?'

Peter:'Yes, I do. We often go walking around Malham in summer. Remember, Malham is a small village with only about 50 houses and no supermarket. So, buy any food or drinks for your walk before you arrive in the village.'

Juan:'Will do. Do you have any recommendations of where we can go?'

Peter:'It depends. Do you want to do a short walk or a long walk? There are different routes you can do around there. My favourite route takes 3 hours and it takes you up to the lake and back to the village. I think it's called the 'lake route'.'

Juan:'That sounds good. Do you know where I can find a copy of the route, so we don't get lost?'

Peter:'You can get a map with the route on it from the web. But to be honest, I don't think you need one. The route has signposts on it, wooden posts which point you in the direction of where you have to go in. The route also has markings, arrows and coloured lines are painted on the ground and on some of the trees which show you which route you are on and where you have to go. So, I think you won't get lost.'

Juan:'Ok. So, where does the lake route start from?'

Peter:'If you are at the car park at the edge of the village (the place where people leave their cars). You need to leave the car park and walk on the road which goes through the village. Go over the bridge that crosses the river. The route starts after the bridge. You have to leave the road here and start walking on a path (which is only for people to walk on, so no cars) that goes through a park on your right.'

Juan:'So, take the path on the right after the bridge.'

Peter:'Don't worry, it's easy to find. There's a signpost on the road pointing at the path which says 'lake route' on it and there's a bench which is used to sit on just in front of it.

At the end of the park, the path starts to go up a hill. So, you have to walk up some steps on the path for about 20 metres.'

Juan:'Steps?'

Peter:'Steps are like the stairs in a house that people use to go from downstairs to upstairs.'

Juan:'Ok. I know what they are.'

Peter:'Carry on walking on the path after the steps. After you've been walking for 2 minutes, the path reaches a stream.'

Juan:'How do I cross the stream? Do I have to walk through the water?'

Peter:'No. There's a footbridge you can use to walk over the stream. It's not very wide because it's only for people, not cars, to use. After crossing the footbridge, you have to leave the path and start walking on a track.'

Juan:'A track?'

Peter:'A track is like a big path, which both people and vehicles can use to travel on.'

Juan:'You get tracks on or near farms, don't you?'

Peter:'That's right.'


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Quiz:

Below is a photo/picture of each of the words in bold from the above text. Now choose the word from the question's selection box which you believe matches the photo/picture. Only use one word once. Click on the "Check answers" button at the bottom of the quiz to check your answers.

When the answer is correct, two icons will appear next to the question which you can press/click on. In the first icon, , you can find extra information about the word/phrase (e.g. when, where and how to use etc...). In the second, , is where you can listen to the word/phrase and do a pronunciation test (to make sure you can say it correctly).


1. office exercise photo

This is called a              

Road:
(noun) This is the name in English for a place that people use to travel/move on. A 'road' is built to be used by vehicles (cars, lorries etc...), but can also be used by people walking or cycling as well.

When people in English-speaking countries use the word 'road', they refer to the thing which vehicles travel on which is covered with a hard surface (called 'tarmac' in English).

In the countryside there is another type of place which both vehicles and people can travel/move on which isn't covered with tarmac. These types of 'roads' are called 'tracks' instead 'roads' in English.

In English we use the verbs 'go/walk/drive along/up/down' and 'follow' to say to use a 'road'.

For example:

'Then go along the road until you reach a bridge.'

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Road:

Pronunciation Speaking Test:
To check your pronunciation of this word/phrase, first click on the microphone icon () below. Then allow the browser to record your voice and then say the above word/phrase. Although this test is good, it sometimes does not recognise some of the words/phrases.

       

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2. office exercise photo

These are called              

Steps:
(noun) This is a structure built to help people walk up and down paths on steep slopes (e.g. on mountains or hills). In English, if this structure is outside they are called 'steps', but if they are inside (e.g. in a house), they are called 'stairs'.

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Steps:

Pronunciation Speaking Test:
To check your pronunciation of this word/phrase, first click on the microphone icon () below. Then allow the browser to record your voice and then say the above word/phrase. Although this test is good, it sometimes does not recognise some of the words/phrases.

       

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3. office exercise photo

This is called a              

Bridge:
(noun) This is a structure which is built over a river, stream, road etc..., so people can cross it. Normally, 'bridges' can be used by both people and vehicles (cars, lorries etc...), but if the bridge is narrow and can only be used by people walking (or cycling), it is called a 'footbridge' instead.

In English we use the verbs 'go/walk over' and 'go/walk across' to say to use a bridge.

For example:

'Then go across the footbridge.'

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Bridge:

Pronunciation Speaking Test:
To check your pronunciation of this word/phrase, first click on the microphone icon () below. Then allow the browser to record your voice and then say the above word/phrase. Although this test is good, it sometimes does not recognise some of the words/phrases.

       

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4. office exercise photo

This is called a              

Track:
(noun) This is the name in English for a place that people use to travel/move on. Unlike a 'path', it can be used by both vehicles (cars, lorries etc...) and people (to walk or cycle on). But unlike a 'road', it is not covered with a hard surface (called 'tarmac' in English). You normally only find 'tracks' in the countryside.

In English we use the verbs 'go/walk/drive along/up/down' and 'follow' to say to use a 'track'.

For example:

'Then follow the track until you reach a bridge.'

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Track:

Pronunciation Speaking Test:
To check your pronunciation of this word/phrase, first click on the microphone icon () below. Then allow the browser to record your voice and then say the above word/phrase. Although this test is good, it sometimes does not recognise some of the words/phrases.

       

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5. office exercise photo

This is called a              

Footbridge:
(noun) This is a type of bridge which is narrow and can only be used by people walking (or cycling).

In English we use the verbs 'go/walk over' and 'go/walk across' to say to use a bridge or ‘footbridge’.

For example:

'Then go across the footbridge.'

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Footbridge:

Pronunciation Speaking Test:
To check your pronunciation of this word/phrase, first click on the microphone icon () below. Then allow the browser to record your voice and then say the above word/phrase. Although this test is good, it sometimes does not recognise some of the words/phrases.

       

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6. office exercise photo

These are called              

Signposts:
(noun) These are are metal or wooden structures which help people follow a 'route' when walking/trekking or cycling. They give people directional information (in what direction people have to go when following a route or where a path or track goes to). 'signposts' normally not only say where a path or track goes to, but give information how long it will take to get there (the distance or the amount time it takes).

In addition to 'signposts', 'markings' (painted symbols on the ground, trees, rocks etc...) are also used to help people follow a route.

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Signposts:

Pronunciation Speaking Test:
To check your pronunciation of this word/phrase, first click on the microphone icon () below. Then allow the browser to record your voice and then say the above word/phrase. Although this test is good, it sometimes does not recognise some of the words/phrases.

       

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7. office exercise photo

This is called a              

Path:
(noun) Can also be called a 'trail'. This is the name in English for a place that people use to travel/move on. A 'path' is different to either a 'road' or a 'track' because it is narrow and was built to be used by people walking (or cycling) on.

In English we use the verbs 'go/walk along/up/down' and 'follow' to say to use a path.

For example:

'Then go along the path until you reach a bridge.'

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Path:

Pronunciation Speaking Test:
To check your pronunciation of this word/phrase, first click on the microphone icon () below. Then allow the browser to record your voice and then say the above word/phrase. Although this test is good, it sometimes does not recognise some of the words/phrases.

       

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8. office exercise photo

This is called a              

Route:
(noun) This word has different meanings in English, but when it used for walking/trekking it means a fixed/set way to follow to go from one place to another. When people go walking/trekking in the countryside they normally follow 'routes'. And these 'routes' are normally marked on maps to show people where to go.

If the 'route' is popular, there will also be 'markings' and 'signposts' on the the actual 'route' to show people where they have to go.

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Route:

Pronunciation Speaking Test:
To check your pronunciation of this word/phrase, first click on the microphone icon () below. Then allow the browser to record your voice and then say the above word/phrase. Although this test is good, it sometimes does not recognise some of the words/phrases.

       

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9. office exercise photo

This is called a              

Bench:
(noun) This is a type of long seat which people can sit on. 'benches' are commonly found in both urban areas and in popular places and walking routes in the countryside.

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Bench:

Pronunciation Speaking Test:
To check your pronunciation of this word/phrase, first click on the microphone icon () below. Then allow the browser to record your voice and then say the above word/phrase. Although this test is good, it sometimes does not recognise some of the words/phrases.

       

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10. office exercise photo

This is called a              

Village:
(noun) This is a small settlement commonly found in the countryside. In English, a place is called a 'village' if the population is from around a hundred people to around five thousand and the place has at least one shop/store. If the population is bigger, the place is often (but not always) called a town.

If a place only has a few houses (four to ten), it should be called a 'hamlet', but most people in English normally call these places a 'very small village' instead.

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Village:

Pronunciation Speaking Test:
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11. office exercise photo

This is called a              

Car park:
(noun) This is called a 'parking lot' in American English. It is an area where people can park their car. The name for the places in a 'car park' where people park their cars, are called 'spaces'.

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Car park:

Pronunciation Speaking Test:
To check your pronunciation of this word/phrase, first click on the microphone icon () below. Then allow the browser to record your voice and then say the above word/phrase. Although this test is good, it sometimes does not recognise some of the words/phrases.

       

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12. office exercise photo

These are called              

Markings:
(noun) These are painted symbols to help people follow a 'route' when walking/trekking or cycling. They are used to inform people where they are and where to go (to stop getting lost).

'markings' on walking/trekking routes are normally 'arrows' pointing where people have to go or 'lines' telling people which route they are on. They can be found on the painted on the ground (e.g. on a path) on trees or on rocks next to the path or track.

In addition to 'markings', 'signposts' are also used to help people follow a route. 'signposts' are metal or wooden structures which like 'markings' give directions and information (e.g. distance, where a path goes to etc...) where people have to or can go.

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Markings:

Pronunciation Speaking Test:
To check your pronunciation of this word/phrase, first click on the microphone icon () below. Then allow the browser to record your voice and then say the above word/phrase. Although this test is good, it sometimes does not recognise some of the words/phrases.

       

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Now do the second part of this exercise to learn more vocabulary you'll need when walking in the countryside.




Practice

Now that you understand the new vocabulary, practise it by creating your own sentences with the new words/phrases.

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