English Vocabulary: The Natural World

Nature, in the broadest sense, is the natural, physical, or material world or universe ...


“Nature” can refer to the phenomena of the physical world, and also to life in general. The study of nature is a large part of science. Although humans are part of nature, human activity is often understood as a separate category from other natural phenomena.

Landscapes Vocabulary

  • cliff

A large area of rock or a mountain with a very steep side, often at the edge of the sea or a river

  • coast

The area where the land meets the sea

  • forest

A large area of land that is covered with trees

  • desert

A large area of land where it is always very dry, there are few plants, and there is a lot of sand or rocks

  • hill

An area of land that is higher than the land around it, like a mountain but smaller

  • island

A piece of land completely surrounded by water

  • valley

An area of lower land between two lines of hills or mountains, usually with a river flowing through it

  • jungle

A thick tropical forest with many large plants growing very close together

  • waterfall

A place where water from a river or stream falls down over a cliff or rock

  • farmland

Land used for farming

  • beach

An area of sand or small stones at the edge of the sea or a lake

  • river

A natural and continuous flow of water in a long line across a country into the sea

  • bridge

a structure built over a river, road, ...

  • meadow

A field with wild grass and flowers

  • bay

A part of the sea that is partly enclosed by a curve in the land

  • park

A large open area with grass and trees, especially in a town, where people can walk, play games, ...

  • volcano

A mountain with a large hole at the top, through which lava is sometimes forced out

  • path

A track that has been made deliberately or made by many people walking over the same ground

Natural Substances Vocabulary

  • sand

A substance consisting of very small pieces of rocks and minerals, that forms beaches and

  • stone

A hard solid mineral substance

  • water

the clear liquid without colour, smell, or taste that falls as rain and that is used for drinking, washing, ...

  • mine

a deep hole or holes in the ground that people dig so that they can remove coal, gold, tin, ...

  • seashell

The empty shell of a small sea creature

  • mushroom

One of several kinds of fungus with stems and round tops, some of which can be eaten

  • tree

A very tall plant that has branches and leaves, and lives for many years

  • leaf

One of the flat green parts of a plant that are joined to its stem or branches

  • grass

A very common plant with thin leaves that covers the ground in fields and gardens and is often eaten by animals

  • flower

A coloured or white part that a plant or tree produces before fruit or seeds

Weather Vocabulary

  • cloud

A white or grey mass in the sky that forms from very small drops of water

  • sun
  • moon
  • star

A large ball of burning gas in space that can be seen at night as a point of light in the sky

  • rain

Water that falls in small drops from clouds in the sky

  • lightning

A powerful flash of light in the sky caused by electricity and usually followed by thunder

  • rainbow

A large curve of different colours that can appear in the sky when there is both sun and rain

Natural Disaster Vocabulary


  • tsunami

A very large wave, caused by extreme conditions such as an earthquake, which can cause a lot of damage when it reaches land

  • tornado

An extremely violent storm consisting of air that spins very quickly and causes a lot of damage

  • flood

A very large amount of water that covers an area that is usually dry

  • storm

A period of very bad weather when there is a lot of rain or snow, strong winds, and often lightning

  • earthquake

A sudden shaking of the Earth’s surface that often causes a lot of damage

  • ice storm

A type of winter storm characterized by freezing rain, in some parts of the United States, as a silver thaw.

  • hurricane

A storm that has very strong fast winds and that moves over water

  • volcanic eruption

A volcanic eruption occurs when hot materials are thrown out of a volcano.


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English Vocabulary: The Natural World

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