Imagine a beach: a quiet place, with only the noise of the sea and the gulls in the background. It’s a hot day. There is just the sea, the sun, and the beach: a little paradise.

A beach


Read the article (you can also listen to the audio while you read). Then go to Task and do the activity.

Audio icon Download audio 2.19MB (right click & save)

A beach

By John Russell

Imagine a beach; a quiet place, with only the noise of the sea and the gulls in the background. There are boats floating near the shore and a few people swimming in the water next to them. It’s a hot day, and there are some people lying on the sand enjoying the sunshine and slowly going brown. There are no shops, no people making noises, no loud music, everything is peaceful. There is just the sea, the sun, and the beach; a little paradise.

Where is it?

The beach is on the south coast of Scotland, near a little town called Gatehouse of Fleet in the county of Dumfries and Galloway. 22 years ago my family and I found this place for the first time and we have never really left it. Every year in the summer while other people go on holiday to foreign countries and exotic places, we go to our private paradise and relax. There is a little campsite with tents and caravans next to the beach, and this becomes our home for one month every year.

Growing up

For a child a beach is a wonderful place. Here I found lots of space to run and play on the sand or to swim in the water. Being a campsite there were always lots of other families with children to play with. Another of my favourite activities was climbing on the rocks and cliffs around the beach. Rock pools were very educational places where I used to study the little fish and sea animals. Silence was also important; at school I was always surrounded by people and noise but the beach gave me the chance to be on my own and think, or read, away from anyone else.


Although the sea can be beautiful, this beach is sometimes a dangerous place to be. When the weather is bad there are often storms with strong winds. When this happens the waves can get up to 2-3 metres high – definitely not weather for swimming. Every year some of the boats anchored on the beach are lost because the sea is so rough. I remember holding down our tent to stop the wind blowing it away on many occasions! However, if the waves weren’t too high all the children (and some adults) used to go swimming in life jackets, as it was very exciting.

An interesting hobby

Sailing is a very serious activity in the UK, and this beach is no different. There are large racing boats for three or more people, smaller boats (such as the Topper) for just one or two people, fishing boats and windsurfers. In fact people on this beach are willing to try any type of water-sport; water skiing, speed boating, even the recent sport of sail surfing is becoming popular. Over the years my family has had 4 different boats, from a small Topper to a large Caprice for racing. We have sailed, raced, and fished off the boats, and have even capsized in bad weather a few times.


If this beach had been next to a town or near a popular tourist area I don’t think we would have continued going there. But its location is very beautiful indeed. It’s in the middle of green countryside with many different types of plants and flowers, and in the background the hills of Galloway can be seen. Lots of photographers and artists come to the area (also known as the Solway) because they can capture such beautiful scenery.

A refuge

Even after 22 years, the beach is still a sanctuary for me. It’s a place away from the rest of the world where I can forget about life’s problems, and just relax. In today’s modern, busy world, everyone should have a place like this.


anchor (v.): to make something or someone stay in one position by fastening them firmly.

campsite (n.): a piece of land where people on holiday can camp, usually with toilets and places for washing.

capsize (v.): to (cause a boat or ship to) turn upside down accidentally while on water.

capture (v.): to record or take a picture of something using a camera.

caravan (n.): a wheeled vehicle for living or travelling in, especially for holidays, which contains beds and cooking equipment and can be pulled by a car.

cliff (n.): a high area of rock with a very steep side, often on a coast.

float (v.): to stay on the surface of a liquid and not sink.

gulls (n.): a sea bird with black and white or grey and white feathers.

life jacket (n.): a piece of equipment, like a jacket without sleeves, which is filled with air or light material and designed to help someone float if they fall into water.

paradise (n.): a place or condition of great happiness where everything is exactly as you would like it to be.

refuge (n.): (a place which gives) protection or shelter from danger, trouble, unhappiness, etc.

rock pool (n.): a small area of sea water contained by the rocks around it.

sanctuary (n.): protection or a safe place.

tent (n.): a shelter made of cloth, which you can fold up and carry with you and which is supported by poles and ropes.

water-sport (n.): sports which take place on or in water





The article's excelent. It's so good to have so place. In 2010 I visited place like this in my country. There was a blue sea and a lot of herbs with their amazing flavors.

Thanks to British Council and I found a real place to learn English deeply which keep me motivate to learn English and having fun. The most favorite part is the Elementary Podcast. I love BC Learn English. :-D

Hello nyeinthant,

We're very glad to hear that you find our website so useful. That's what we're here for!

All the best,
The LearnEnglish Team

The first time I went to the beach was in 2013. I had never seen beach,sea, and sea birds before. My grandparents,uncle,aunt,my cousins and I went to a half-wild island to spend a summer holiday. I deeply fell in love with the little paradise.

nice story

Hi I am a new member in the team and also I am so pleasant to join you. Thank you for sharing a lot of new information.
about 15 days ago i went to the beach with my high-school friends which name is Khuwsgul and where is located Khuwsgul province, Mongolia. That beach is very pure like a glass. Also there are many adventure activities such as riding horse, herding sheep and coat and so on.
first day, we were in the ger which is Mongolian traditional accommodation and following days in the tent.
i am very satisfied and relaxed because of breathing pure air and seeing beautiful scenery. i never forget that moment and it will be the most invaluable moment of my life.

I totally agree with the article. I'm from Myanmar and here there are lot of beaches like this. Me and my friends always went to Chaung Tha Beach once a year. That place is surrounded by coconut trees, can watch a wonderfull sunset, beautiful place to rest and I won't forget about that memories.

My first article, I hope improve my English. Very nice text, reading come in my mind the image of the Brazilian Beachs too, my reference.

This is a very nice article to read. It's good when people have warm childhood memories to share and a place where to go to have a rest.
I also love visiting the seaside. I used to be taken there when I was a child and I keep coming there now, as an adult. This year, when I went to the seaside, the sea was very rough and there were red flags everywhere warning not to swim. But I still had great time. I went for a very long walk by the sea, watching the waves, the sky and the gulls. On one beach there were some sportspeople doing windsurfing even in this stormy weather. When I got tired from my long walk I had a quick dip in the sea too. I didn't go deep, just a few steps, but the waves beat me down, they rolled and jumped over me. The water in the swa was salty and warm, but back on the beach, the wind was very stingy and cold, I was shivering relentlessly. There was a small outdoor cafe, I ordered a cup of hot tea with a drop of alcohol to make myself warm. I felt refreshed, relaxed and happy. When going back I was thinking that people don't need much to be happy, or do they? Why are so many of them who are fighting and hating and suffering?

ႈI am a new one. I am glad to join with this team. I also have a place like this. Last two or three months ago, I went to Ngapli beach with my colleagues. There is situated in Rakhaing State, Myanmar. But It is so far to go there. It is a wonderful quiet place with a scenery. We took a photo on the rock, on the sand with the sea background. And we are swimming about two or three hours. The water in the sea is clean as a glass. I am really satisfied and relaxed there. I can't never forget that moment. These are as much as I can say. On the next time, I will try to write more.