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Counties: Berkshire, Buckinghamshire, Hampshire,
Kent, Isle of Wight, Surrey,
The Southeast is more densely populated than any other part of England.
A mixture of lowlands and chains of small hills. To the far north west are the Cotswold Hills, while the Chilterns extend from Oxfordshire across Buckinghamshire into Hertfordshire.
A horseshoe-shaped ring of chalk hills known as the Downs run down to the sea through Kent and Sussex. The South Downs reach the coast near Brighton, the North Downs at Dover, where they end in the famous white cliffs, which are the first sight of England for travellers by sea from continental Europe.
Important towns and cities
Oxford is the largest city in the region and is home to one of Britain's oldest universities.
The M25, the motorway which rings London, is linked by other motorways with the Channel ports of Dover, Southhampton and Portsmouth. Dover is England's busiest port. Ferries carry passengers and freight to and from the continent of Europe. The terminus for the Channel Tunnel, which opened in 1994 and links English mainland with the rest of Europe, is at Folkestone.
There are several busy seaside resorts in the Southeast, including Margate, Worthing, Brighton and Eastbourne. The cathedral cities of Canterbury and Winchester also attract many visitors each year.
Other important towns include Reading and Windsor in Berkshire.
Heathrow Airport is located 15 miles west of Central London. It is the UK’s largest airport and Europe’s busiest airport for passenger traffic. It also handles more international traffic than any other airport in the world.
Gatwick Airport, the UK's second busiest airport, is about 15 miles south west of London.
Industry and farming
The Southeast has mainly light industries and is also home to the largest oil refinery at Fawley, near Southhampton. There are hovercraft factories on the Isle of Wight. Kent has paper mills, shipyards, and a nuclear power station at Dungeness. Away from the towns, there are hundreds of small farms, with orchards and fruit farms. Kent, known as the 'Garden of England', is famous for its apples and for hops, used in brewing beer. Lamberhurst is known for its vineyards and produces English wines.
Industry in Berkshire centres around Bracknell, Maidenhead, Reading and Slough, with electronics concentrated in Milton Keynes. Hertforshire is known for engineering, mostly at St Albans, Hatfield, Letchworth and Watford. The Oxford suburb of Cowly has huge car factories and was the birthplace of the classic Morris Minor.