Essential UK Tourist Information

The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland is a country in Europe. It is commonly known as the United Kingdom (UK).

It consists of four countries; England, Scotland, Wales, and Northern Ireland. Their capitals are London, Edinburgh, Cardiff, and Belfast.

England has 48 ceremonial (or geographic) counties. It is divided into nine regions; East, East Midlands, London, North East, North West, South East, South West, West Midlands, and Yorkshire and the Humber.


The official currency of the UK is the pound sterling (more commonly known as the pound).

Further information about money in the UK, including current exchange rates can be found here.


The UK uses Greenwich Mean Time (GMT)/Coordinated Universal Time (UTC).

Daylight Saving Time (DST) is observed between late March and late October.

The current time in the UK plus time differences between the UK and major cities around the world can be found here.

Climate and Weather

The UK has a temperate climate with cool summers and mild winters. Extreme weather is rare.

Additional information and 5-day forecasts for major cities and towns can be found here.

Public Holidays (Bank Holidays)

Government offices, banks, and many businesses close on public holidays (known as bank holidays in the UK).

Bank holidays holidays differ for England and Wales, Scotland, and Northern Ireland.


The standard nominal voltage in the UK is 230V. Plugs are Type G (three flat prongs).

More information about the UK electricity supply and plugs can be found here.


The UK has an excellent telephone service. Most households and businesses have landlines. The number of mobile phones in active use is greater than the total population.

There is a set numbering plan for phone numbers within the UK. Find out more about this and how to call UK mobiles and landlines here.

Follow this link to find out how to make an international call from the UK.


The current population of the UK is over 66 million. Most of the population live in England. The populations of Wales, Scotland, and Northern Ireland are much smaller.


Despite falling numbers, Christians remain the largest religious group in the UK.

According to the most recent census (2011), 59 per cent of the population identified themselves as Christian.

Muslims are the second largest religious group; comprising 5 per cent of the population. We offer prayer times for our Muslim residents and visitors.

25 per cent of the population stated they did not have any religion.