Articles with Geographical Names

We generally use either ‘the’ or ‘no article’ with geographical names in English. There isn’t a lot of logic! We just need to learn if we need ‘the’ or ‘no article’ for each kind of place.

Articles with Geographical Names
Articles with Geographical Names

We use ‘no article’ with:

  • Lakes: We visited Lake Geneva.
  • Mountains: I saw Mount Fuji from the aeroplane.
  • Continents: She loves living in Asia.
  • Most countries: She travelled to Chile last year. (But: The USA / the United States, the Netherlands, the Philippines, the United Kingdom / the UK.)
  • Counties, states, provinces, regions: They live in California.
  • Cities, towns, villages: He stayed in Paris for a week last year.
  • Islands: Bali is popular with Australian tourists.

We use ‘the’ with:

  • Rivers: The River Nile flows through Egypt.
  • Mountain ranges: We ski in the Alps every year.
  • Deserts: She travelled across the Sahara.
  • Oceans and seas: We sailed around the Mediterranean.
  • Groups of islands: They went to the Canary Islands.

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