Exercise 1

Strange towns

Why is it strange?

Thames Town is an unusual English town. There’s a town square with beautiful buildings and there are some nice restaurants. There are streets with cafés and big, green parks where you can sit and relax. You can walk by the river in the centre of the town. So, what’s unusual? Well, there aren’t any English people apart from some tourists. Thames Town isn’t in England, it’s in China. And the buildings aren’t actually old. Thames Town is new – they finished it in 2006.

Thames Town is in Songjiang 30 km west of Shanghai, a big city in the east of China. It was part of the building project ‘One city, nine towns’. There’s also a German town with modern apartments and a river with bridges and a Spanish town with squares and windmills.

Who lives there?

A lot of the buildings are still empty because it’s very expensive to live there. But young Chinese people often go there and take photos when they get married. And, of course, lots of tourists visit because they can see so many different places in one day!

How can I get there?

It’s easy to get there. There isn’t a metro station in the town, but Songjiang New City metro station is only 4 km away – take Shanghai Metro Line 9 from the centre of Shanghai and then take a taxi or a bus. You can travel from China to ‘England’ in less than an hour!

A. Read the text and answer the questions.

1   How is Thames Town unusual?

2   Can you see other towns like this near Shanghai?

3   Why do people visit Thames Town?

4   What’s the best way to get there from Shanghai?


1   It’s an English town in China.

2   Yes, a German town and a Spanish town.

3   Young Chinese people often go there to take photos when they get married and lots of tourists visit because they can see so many different places in one day.

4   Take the Shanghai Metro Line 9 from the centre of Shanghai to Songjiang New City metro station and then take a taxi or bus.

Exercise 2


Travel the world without leaving home!

READ about different neighbourhoods from around the world. You can learn about real life in lots of different countries by looking at photos and reading about where people live – these are places tourists never go to!

And we want you to write about your neighbourhood. Tell us all about it and what you think of it.



MY neighbourhood’s about two kilometres from the centre of town. It’s easy for me to get into the centre of the city, but everything I need is in my neighbourhood so I don’t go into the centre very often. It’s near the City Museum and there are some beautiful old buildings here so it’s an interesting part of the city. There are lots of good restaurants in my neighbourhood and my apartment’s opposite a really good Thai restaurant, Siam Café. I love their food and it’s cheap so I eat there often.


MY neighbourhood’s about eight kilometres from the city centre, but there’s a metro train station near my house so it’s easy to get there. There aren’t any restaurants or bars in the area so it’s nice and quiet. About a kilometre away there’s a big shopping mall with a lot of shops. Opposite it, there’s a park and a sports centre. I go there three times a week to use the gym. My neighbourhood isn’t very exciting, but it’s a nice place to live.


A. Read Around the world online and answer the questions.

 What can you read about on this website?

 What does the website want you to do?

B. Read In my neighbourhood. Do Anita and Irena live in the same kind of neighbourhoods?

C. Underline the correct answers.

1   Anita / Irena lives close to the centre of the city.

2   Anita / Irena likes a neighbourhood that isn’t noisy.

3   Anita / Irena can often go shopping.

4   It’s easy for Anita / Irena to eat in a restaurant.

5   There’s a place where Anita / Irena can get some exercise near her home.



1   You can read about different neighbourhoods from around the world.

2   It wants you to write about your neighbourhood.


No, they don’t.


1 Anita   2 Irena   3 Irena   4 Anita   5 Irena

Exercise 3

From: Carrie

To: Jamila

Re: Hello

Hi Jamila!

How are you? Are you very busy at the moment? If not, let’s have a meal together soon – I want to try the new French restaurant in the square – what do you think?

You must go and see Isabel’s new apartment soon – it’s so cool! It’s in that really tall building near the station, and the view from her bedroom window is amazing, especially at night. You can see right across the city.

It’s quite small, but there’s a big mirror on the living room wall. That makes it look bigger. She has a lot of beautiful old furniture like two leather armchairs, an enormous bookcase and a big, red sofa from her aunt’s house. It’s so comfortable – just right when you want to chat all evening!

The kitchen is lovely too. It’s very modern. It’s great for Isabel, because she’s a fantastic cook.

There are two bedrooms, so her sister can stay with her when she wants. Do you know Isabel’s sister? She’s an actor, and she usually works at the theatre here once or twice a year.

Next time she comes, we can all go out together if you want.

Anyway, I hope you’re well, and do write and tell me all your news very soon!



A. Read Carrie’s email to Jamila. Are the sentences true or false?

1   Jamila often goes to Isabel’s apartment.

2   Carrie likes Isabel’s apartment.

3   Isabel’s sister lives with her.

B. Read the email again. Match 1–8 with a–h to make sentences.

1   Carrie wants to go

2   Isabel’s apartment is in

 You can see across the

4   A big mirror makes

 Isabel has her aunt’s

 Isabel’s kitchen

 There are two bedrooms

8   Isabel’s sister sometimes

a   city from Isabel’s bedroom.

b   in Isabel’s apartment.

c   a tall building.

d   is very modern.

e   Isabel’s living room look big.

f   red sofa in her living room.

g   stays in her apartment.

h   to a French restaurant.

C. Think about an apartment or house where you would like to live. Write a description of the rooms and the furniture.



True: 2; False: 1, 3


1 h   2 c   3 a   4 e   5 f   6 d   7 b   8 g

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