Preposition of Place


A preposition of place is a preposition which is used to refer to a place where something or someone is located. There are only three prepositions of place, however they can be used to discuss an almost infinite number of places. Prepositions of Place are used to show the position or location of one thing with another. It answers the question "Where?"

Prepositions of place allow you to be very precise when talking about where an action takes place in stories or when discussing important details for communication purposes.
    • At – A preposition of place which is used to discuss a certain location/ point
    • In – A preposition of place which is used to discuss an fenced / enclosed space
    • On – A preposition of time which is used to discuss a surface
Prepositions of Place: 

In general, we use:
  • at for a POINT
  • in for an ENCLOSED SPACE
  • on for a SURFACE
 at Point            in Enclosed Space             on surface 
 at the corner   in the garden  on a ship
 at the top of the page  in my wallet  on the floor
 at the crossroads  in London  on the carpet
           at the end of the road           in a car  on the menu
 at home  in a boat  on a page
 at the entrance  in the newspaper             on a horse, on an elephant         

Below we have some more examples of Prepositions of Place:

In front of
  • A band plays their music in front of an audience.
  • The man standing in the line in front of me smells good.
Behind is the opposite of In front of. It means at the back (part) of something.
  • Who is that person behind the mask?
  • I slowly down because there was a police car behind me.
Between normally refers to something in the middle of two objects or things (or places).
  • The number 5 is between the number 4 and 6.
  • There is a sea between England and France.
Across From / Opposite
Across from and Opposite mean the same thing. It usually refers to something being in front of something else BUT there is normally something between them like a street or table. It is similar to saying that someone (or a place) is on the other side of something.
  • I live across from a supermarket (= it is on the other side of the road)
  • The chess players sat opposite each other before they began their game.(= They are in front of each other and there is a table between them)
Next to / Beside
Next to and Beside mean the same thing. It usually refers to a thing (or person) that is at the side of another thing.
  • He walked beside me as we went down the street.
  • In this part of town there isn't a footpath beside the road so you have to be careful.

Near / Close to
Near and Close to mean the same thing. It is similar to next to / beside but there is more of a distance between the two things.
  • The receptionist is near the front door.
  • Our house is close to a supermarket.
On means that something is in a position that is physically touching, covering or attached to something.
  • The clock on the wall is slow.
  • We were told not to walk on the grass.
Above / Over
Above and Over have a similar meaning. The both mean "at a higher position than X" but above normally refers to being directly (vertically) above you.
  • Planes normally fly above the clouds.
  • Our neighbours in the apartment above us are rally noisy.
Over can also mean: physically covering the surface of something and is often used with the word All as in All over.
  • There water all over the floor.
  • I accidentally spilled red wine all over the new carpet.
Over is often used as a Preposition of Movement too.

Under / Below
Under and Below have a similar meaning. They mean at a lower level. (Something is above it).
  • Your legs are under the table.
  • Miners work below the surface of the Earth.

Preposition of Place Examples

Prepositions of place give you the capability to tell others where something is located. In the following examples, the prepositions of place have been italicized for ease of identification.
  • The mall is located at the intersection of Main Street and Fifth Avenue.
  • When will you arrive at the headquarters?
  • We spent a quiet evening at home.
  • There was a "no smoking" sign on the wall.
  • Janet is waiting for you at the bus stop.
  • James waited for Jenni at the corner.
  • The shop is at the end of the street.
  • I’m growing chilies in my garden.
  • You are standing on my foot.
  • Marie was born in Paris, France.
  • My plane stopped at Dublin and Hawaii and arrived in Bangkok two hours late.
  • Do you live in Israel?
  • I was so tired that I took a nap in the car.
  • I have a meeting in New York.
  • Please place the bouquet on the table.
  • The author's name is on the cover of the book.
  • I really wish you would stop throwing your dirty clothes on the ground.
  • What’s on the menu this evening?
  • Do you work in an administrative center?
  • Pluto is in the Solar System.
  • There are no prices on this menu.
  • I live on the 7th floor at 57 Oxford Street in London.

List of Preposition of Place

Prepositions of place and direction




 above  higher than sth  The picture hangs above my recliner.
 across  from one side to the other side  You mustn't go across this river here.
 after  one follows the other
 After you.
 The cat ran after the mouse.
 around  in a circular way  We're sitting around the campfire.
 against  directed towards  The bird flew against the window.
 along  from one point to another; in a line  They're walking along the beach.
 among  in a group   I like being among birds.
 by  near  He lives in the house by the river.
 behind  at the back of  Our house is behind the church.
 below  lower than  Death Valley is 86 metres below sea level.
 between   is on each side           Our house is between the forest and the school.           
 beside  next to  Our house is beside the church.
 close to  near  Our house is close to the mall.
 down  from high to low  He came down the hill.
 from  the place where it starts  Do you come from Japan?
     in front of               the part that is in the direction it faces          Our house is in front of the mall.
 into  entering   You shouldn't go into the castle.
 inside  opposite of outside  You shouldn't stay inside the dorm.
 next to  beside  Our house is next to the temple.
 near  close to  Our house is near the temple.
 onto  moving to a place  The cat jumped onto the roof.
 out of  leaving  The cat jumped out of the window.
 off  away from  The cat jumped off the roof.
 opposite  on the other side  Our house is opposite the bakery.
 over  above  The cat jumped over the wall.
 outside  opposite of inside  Can you wait outside?
 past  going near  Go past the bank.
 round  in a circle  We're sitting round the campfire.
 through  going from one point to the other point  You shouldn't walk through the forest.
 towards  in the direction of  We ran towards the play store.
 to  towards  Can you come to me?
 to towards
 I like going to Dubai.
 up   from low to high  He went up the hill.
 under  below   The cat is under the table.

Preposition of Place Exercise

Put in the correct preposition. If no preposition is need put in 
  1. The teacher stands _________ the students.
  2. There is a ceiling _________ you.
  3. There is a halo _________ my head. ;)
  4. We put a sun umbrella _________ the table so we wouldn't get so hot.
  5. When the teacher writes on the whiteboard, the students are _________ him.
  6. There are mountains _________ Chile and Argentina.
  7. At a wedding, the bride stands _________ to the groom.
  8. Guards stand _________ to the entrance of the bank.
  9. Monsters live _________ your cupboard.
  10. A river flows _________ a bridge.
  11. How long can you stay _________ the water?
  12. He put the food _________ the table.
  13. I can see a spider _________ the ceiling.
  14. This building is _________ a subway station.
  15. We couldn't park the car _________ to the store.