A settlement is a place where people live. They are all different sizes:
- hamlets are are tiny settlements - they are just a collection of houses, perhaps centered around a few farms and maybe without even a shop;
- villages are small settlements - several hundred people live in them and they have: a few shops, a place of worship and maybe a school too;
- towns are medium-sized settlements - thousands of people live in them and they have a shopping centre and factories;
- cities are large settlements - they usually have lots of amenities and sometimes a cathedral too (megacities have over 10 million people living in them).
Rural areas are places in the countryisde with few buildings; urban areas are settlements with lots of buildings in them.
Transport links, services and entertainment facilities are better in urban areas because more people live in them.
Different settlements are important for different things and each has a special function:
- a holiday resort has lots of attractions and shops for tourists to visit and relax in;
- a market town has a regular market for local farmers to sell their produce at;
- a port has a harbour for ships to dock at to collect and deliver cargo;
- an industrial town has lots of factories and businesses in it.