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    Iguazu-Falls, France, Argentina
    Aerial view of the city and palace of Versailles. The palace and its gardens were built for Louis XIV, the Sun King, it lies southwest of Paris.
    Image: ToucanWings

    Location map of France. Where in the world is France?
    Location map of France

    Flag of France
    Flag of France

    Destination France, a Nations Online Project country profile of the "Grande Nation."

    France is located on the western edge of Europe, bordered by the Bay of Biscay (North Atlantic Ocean) in the west, by the English Channel in the northwest, and by the North Sea in the north. France borders Belgium and Luxembourg in the northeast, Germany, Switzerland, and Italy in the east, the Mediterranean Sea, Monaco, Spain and Andorra in the south. In addition, France shares maritime borders with the United Kingdom.

    Metropolitan France, or Mainland France, covers an area of 551,695 km2; it includes the island of Corsica. Compared, it is more than twice the size of the United Kingdom or more than twice the size of the U.S. state of Colorado.

    France has a total population of 67 million people (in 2020), 64.8 million inhabitants in Metropolitan France (the European part of France plus Corsica), and about 2.2 million in its overseas regions (French Guiana, Guadeloupe, Martinique, Mayotte, and Reunion). Other major dependencies are French Polynesia and New Caledonia.

    The largest city and capital is Paris. Spoken language is French (official).
    French Republic | République fran?aise

    Since prehistoric times, the region that is known today as France has been the scene of trade, travel, and invasions. Three basic European ethnic stocks--Celtic, Latin, and Teutonic (Frankish)--have blended over the centuries to make up France's present population.

    Today France is one of the most modern countries in the world and is a leader among European nations.
    Since 1958, it has constructed a presidential democracy, resistant to the instabilities experienced in earlier parliamentary democracies. In recent years, its reconciliation and cooperation with Germany have proved central to the economic integration of Europe, including the advent of the euro in January 1999.
    Presently, France is at the forefront of European states seeking to exploit the momentum of monetary union to advance the creation of a more unified and capable European defense and security apparatus.
    France is the most visited country in the world, with 89.4 million foreign tourists in 2018.



    Country Profile

    Official Name:
    République fran?aise
    short form: France
    int'l long form: French Republic
    int'l short form: France

    ISO Country Code: FR - FRA - .fr

    Time Zone: Central European Time (CET)
    Local Time = UTC +1h
    Actual Time: Wed-Nov-11  13:28
    DST: March - October (UTC +2h)

    Country Calling Code: +33

    Capital City: Paris
    The Romans called her Lutetia.

    ...show more

    Official Sites of France

    Note: External links will open in a new browser window.

    French National Assembly building and Pont de la Concorde bridge, Paris
    View of the French National Assembly from the Quai des Tuileries, with the Pont de la Concorde bridge across the River Seine in Paris.
    Image: Jebulon

    Political System of France
    France's political system is that of a semi-presidential republic, defined by the Constitution. There is the separation of powers which consists of an executive branch, a legislative branch, and a judicial branch. The head of state and head of the executive is the President. The President and the government exercise executive power. The French Government consists of the Prime Minister and ministers. The Prime Minister is appointed by the President and is responsible to Parliament.

    Présidence de la République française
    The Elysée Palace - President of France.

    Official website of the French Government.

    The official website of the French administration. A portal to French government agencies and services. (in French)

    French Parliament
    The French Congress is made up of two chambers, the National Assembly (the lower house) and the Senate.
    Assemblée nationale
    The French National Assembly.

    Sénat français
    The French Senate.

    Ministère de l'Outre-Mer
    The Ministry for the French Overseas Departments of French Guiana, French Polynesia, Guadeloupe, Guyana, Martinique, New Caledonia, and Réunion. (in French)

    France Diplomatie - Ministère des Affaires Etrangères
    Information about France in various languages by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

    Diplomatic Missions
    French Mission to the United Nations
    France is one of the five permanent members of the UN Security Council.
    France in the United States
    Embassy of France in Washington, D.C.
    French Embassies and Consulates abroad (in French)
    List of French diplomatic missions around the world.
    Embassies and consulates in France
    List of foreign missions in France.

    INSEE - Institut National de la Statistique et des Etudes Economiques
    The National Institute of Statistics - France in facts and figures.

    Meteo France
    French and international weather and a lot of adverts.



    Maps of France

    France political map
    Map of France (click map to enlarge)
    Image: ? nationsonline.org


    Map of France
    Political Map of France.
    Google Earth Google Map France
    Searchable map and satellite view of France.
    Google Earth Google Map Paris
    Searchable map and satellite view of France's capital.
    Google Earth Google Map Eiffel Tower
    Satellite view of the Eiffel Tower.
    Google Earth Google Map Palace of Versailles
    Annotated map and satellite view of the Palace of Versailles.

    Cities: Bordeaux, Cannes, Lille, Lyon, Marseille, Montpellier, Nantes, Nice, Strasbourg, Toulouse

    Map of Europe
    Political Map of Europe.
    Map of the Mediterranean Sea
    Political Map of the Mediterranean Sea region.


    News of France


    Online News from France

    Agence France-Presse - news and photo agency.
    La Croix
    French general-interest Roman Catholic newspaper.
    National and international news. (in French)
    Les Echos
    Business and Finance Information. (in French)
    Le Figaro
    French daily with national and international news. (in French)
    Le Monde
    National and international news. (in French)
    great site Le Monde diplomatique
    International news and background information.
    Le Parisien
    National and international news. (in French)
    National and international news. (in French)
    Regional and national news. (in French)
    Paris Match
    Magazine Paris Match. (in French)
    La Tribune
    Business and Finance Information. (in French)

    France 24 
    French state-owned international news network.

    International News sources
    Le Temps
    Swiss Le Temps with articles about France. (in French)

    France | World | The Guardian
    UK newspaper with articles about France.


    Arts & Culture of France

    The Centre Georges Pompidou in Paris is an art museum in a high-tech architecture style building. There are offshoot branches of the museum in Metz, France, and Malaga, Spain.
    Image: Sean X Liu

    Arts & Culture

    Ministère de la Culture et de la Communication
    The homepage of the French Ministry of Culture. offers insight into French culture.

    great site Réunion des Musées Nationaux – Grand Palais
    The French cultural umbrella organization merged with the Grand Palais, France's exhibition hall in Paris.

    great site Musée du Louvre
    The Louvre museum.

    Centre Georges Pompidou
    Modern Art Museum in Paris.

    Public information library at the Georges Pompidou Centre (BPI)
    Paris first free public library at the Centre Georges Pompidou art complex.

    La bibliothèque nationale de France
    The National Library of France.

    royal Chateau de Versailles
    Reflections of the French Monarchy.

    Festival International du Film de Cannes
    Cannes International Film Festival, the Official Site.

    La Grotte de Lascaux
    The Cave of Lascaux.

    Jules Verne Museum
    The Jules Verne Museum in Nantes.

    French Museums
    List of Links to the most important French Museums.

    Asterix and Obelix Official Site.


    Business & Economy of France

    Barges on the Seine river, with the Central Business District of Paris in the background
    Barges on the Seine river between the Bois de Boulogne and Suresnes, La Défense, the Central Business District of Paris on the horizon.
    Image: Pline

    The French economy
    The French economy is a highly developed and free-market-orientated business model. The government has partially or fully privatized many large companies, including Air France, France Telecom (now Orange S.A.), Renault, and Thales (now Thales Group).
    Key sectors are the chemical industry (Air Liquide, Groupe Roullier), energy (France runs 58 nuclear plants operated by électricité de France (EDF), with a total capacity of 63.1 GWe.). Other chief branches are automotive (Peugeot, Renault), banking (BNP PARIBAS, Société Générale, Crédit Agricole), insurance (AXA), retail (Carrefour, Auchan), and the petroleum industry (Total S.A.).

    Business France
    The official website for international business development.

    The French economy is diversified across all sectors. The government has partially or fully privatized many large companies, including Air France, France Telecom (now Orange S.A.), Renault, and Thales (now Thales Group). But the French government still maintains a strong presence in some sectors, particularly in power (EDF), public transport (SNCF), and the defense industries.

    Banque de France
    The French Central Bank.
    Bourse de Paris
    Association of French Stock Exchanges (Euronext France).

    Assemblée des Chambres Fran?aises de Commerce et d'Industrie (ACFCI)
    Chambers of Commerce and Industry of France.
    CCIP - Chambre de Commerce et d'Industrie de Paris
    Chamber of Commerce and Industry Paris.


    Air France
    The French Airline.

    Aéroports de Paris
    Official site for Orly and Roissy (Charles de Gaulle) airports.
    Côte d'Azur International Airport
    The third-largest airport in France in terms of passengers.
    Marseille Provence Airport
    Marseille-Marignane Airport is the fifth busiest French airport by passenger traffic.
    Saint-Exupéry International Airport
    Lyon's international airport.

    High-speed passenger train linking London, Paris, and Brussels.
    The French Railroad.
    A very fast French train.

    French products
    Typical French vehicles.
    Typical French cars.
    More typical French cars.

    Fashion & Cosmetics
    Christian Dior
    Fashion & Fragrance.
    Christian Lacroix
    International Fashion Magazine.
    Jean-Paul Gaultier
    Parfums Givenchy.
    Le monde de Lancôme.
    Louis Vuitton
    Luxury Accessories.
    Internet Fashion Magazine.
    Prêt à porter Paris
    Virtual Catwalk.
    International Fashion Magazine.
    Yves Saint Laurent
    Haute couture.
    Christian Louboutin
    French fashion designer whose footwear?
    French high fashion luxury goods manufacturer
    Christian Dior
    French luxury goods company

    Wines & Champagne
    Château Lafite Rothschild
    Château-Margaux Moët & Chandon
    Dom Pérignon.
    Champagne from the épernay region.
    Champagne Pommery
    Another Champagne house located in Reims.
    Louis Roederer Champagne
    The producer of champagne based in Reims, France, was founded in 1776.
    The oldest established Champagne house.
    The Counts of Champagne.
    Veuve Clicquot Ponsardin
    More Champagne.

    Arts de la table.
    French yogurt.
    French Table Water from évian-les-Bains.


    Tourism in France

    Chateau de Chambord castle in Loir-et-Cher department in France
    Chateau de Chambord, the castle in French Renaissance architecture style, is situated in the Loir-et-Cher department in the Loire Valley region of France.
    Image: Daniel Jolivet

    Destination France - Travel and Tour Guides


    Discover France:
    France is the most visited country in the world and maintains the third largest income in the world from more than 89.4 million foreign tourists (in 2018).

    Ministry for Europe and Foreign Affairs
    The site of the French Ministry provides travel and tourism information.

    The official website of the French tourism bureau offers comprehensive information for vacation, accommodation and leisure activities in France. (English version of the French Government Tourist Office)

    France’s official wine tourism portal.

    Beyond the French Riviera
    Travel in the Provence beyond the Côte d'Azur and French Riviera.

    A guide to tourist destinations in France.

    The official website of Paris. (in French)

    Paris Convention and Visitors Bureau
    The official travel and tourism guide to Paris.

    Paris Magazine. (in French)

    The Eiffel Tower
    The official site of Eiffel Tower.

    More Cities of France:
     Paris (the City of Light)

    Cities in France
    List of links to official French city tourist sites.


    The Historic Fortified City of Carcassonne  France
    Aerial-view of the medieval citadel of Carcassonne in the Occitanie region of Southern France. The Historic Fortified City of Carcassonne is a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
    Image: Chensiyuan

    UNESCO World Heritage Sites in France
    There are 45 UNESCO World Heritage Sites in France (see the List)

    World Heritage Site Decorated Cave of Pont d’Arc
    Cave paintings in the Cave of Pont d’Arc, France
    Artistic creation of the Aurignacian people in the Cave of Pont d’Arc.
    Image: ? SRA DRAC RA

    The Decorated Cave of Pont d’Arc, known as Grotte Chauvet-Pont d’Arc, is located in a limestone cliff of the Ardèche River in Southern France.
    The site contains the earliest and best preserved known cave paintings in the world. The pictorial drawings were carbon-dated to as early as the Aurignacian period (30,000 to 32,000 BP). The cave was closed off by a rock fall approximately 20,000 years BP and remained sealed until its rediscovery in 1994.

    World Heritage Site Gulf of Porto
    Cave paintings in the Cave of Pont d’Arc, France
    Gulf of Porto, the Calanches of Piana, Corsica.
    Image: ? SRA DRAC RA

    Gulf of Porto: Calanche of Piana, Gulf of Girolata, Scandola Reserve.

    The Gulf of Porto is part of the Réserve Naturelle de Scandola which occupies the Scandola peninsula at the north-western coast of Corsica. The vegetation of the nature reserve is scrubland populated by seagulls, cormorants and sea eagles. The clear waters of the gulfs, with their islets and inaccessible caves, host a rich marine life.

    World Heritage Site Chartres Cathedral
    Chartres Cathedral interior, Chartres, France
    Chartres Cathedral interior.
    Image: Denis Doukhan

    The cathedral of Notre-Dame d'Chartres is considered to be the high point of French Gothic art and one of the most authentic and complete works of religious architecture of the early 13th century. The Roman Catholic church is located in the city of Chartres in northwestern France, about 90 km (56 mi) by road southwest of Paris. The cathedral is famous for its architectural innovations, its numerous sculptures and its more than 150 stained glass windows.



    Education in France

    Campus and mainbuilding of the école Polytechnique
    Campus and mainbuilding of the école Polytechnique in Palaiseau in the southern suburbs of Paris.
    Image: école Polytechnique

    Grandes écoles and Universities

    Campus France
    Campus France is a public organization which promotes French higher education and vocational training for foreigners.

    ENA - École Nationale d'Administration
    The National School of Administration is a French grande école, created in 1945 by French President, Charles de Gaulle.

    École Centrale Paris
    école Centrale Paris was the first grande école. In 2015, école Centrale Paris merged with Supélec to form CentraleSupélec, a constituent institute of the University of Paris-Saclay.

    École Polytechnique
    école Polytechnique is one of the most prestigious engineering schools in France.

    Ecole Supérieure de Commerce de Paris - ESSEC
    Selective French business school with campuses in Paris, Berlin, London, Madrid, Turin, and Warsaw.

    Institut d'Etudes Politiques de Paris
    Sciences Po is a recognized university for politics and international studies in Paris.

    Université de Montpellier
    The University of Montpellier was the first faculty of medicine in France and is one of the oldest universities in Europe, founded in 1220 (in French)

    Université Paris I Panthéon-Sorbonne
    Paris1 is a multidisciplinary university established in 1971 - following the division of the University of Paris (founded: c. 1150).
    Université Panthéon-Assas
    Paris II Assas is a research university specialized in law and economics in Paris.

    What is a French Grande école?
    About the French elite education by the Grandes Ecoles.
    List of universities and colleges in France
    by Wikipedia.

    Science & Research
    French National Centre for Scientific Research (CNRS)
    CNRS is a French state research organization and the largest fundamental science agency in Europe.
    The French Space Agency (CNES)
    CNES is the French government space agency.
    Sophia Antipolis Science Park
    The technology park or more a high-tech cluster near Cannes/Nice.


    Environment & Nature

    Lake Gentau in the Pyrénées-Atlantiques
    Lake Gentau in the Pyrénées-Atlantiques of France.
    Image: Cptcv

    French National Parks
    Calanques National Park
    The park is located in Bouches-du-Rh?ne, between Marseille, Cassis, and La Ciotat in Southern France.
    Cévennes National Park
    A French NP in the mountainous area of the Cévennes. The Causses and the Cévennes, Mediterranean agro-pastoral Cultural Landscape is a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
    Ecrins National Park
    A National Park in the Dauphiné Alps south of the city of Grenoble.
    Mercantour National Park
    Mercantour NP is situated in the Maritime Alps. Within the park lies the Vallée des Merveilles, the valley is famous for the largest number of outdoor Bronze Age rock paintings in Europe.
    Port-Cros National Park
    A NP on the island of Port-Cros, east of Toulon.
    Pyrénées National Park
    A French national park along the border of France and Spain in the Pyrénées mountains.
    Vanoise National Park
    A French national park in the French Alps.

    French Environmental Organizations
    Agir pour l'environnement
    Action for the Environment is a French organization for mobilizing citizens to protect the environment.

    Europe écologie Les Verts
    The Green party of France.

    International Group for the Environment, Renewable Energy, and Solidarity.

    Réseau Action Climat
    RAC-F is the French representative of Climate Action Network International (CAN-I)

    Sortir du Nucléaire
    is an organization which regularly campaigns against the use of nuclear power in France and in the world. The website of the French federation of anti-nuclear groups offers also a map of the 58 nuclear power plants and other nuclear installations in France.


    France History

    Liberty Leading the People. Painting by Eugène Delacroix
    Liberty Leading the People. The romantic history painting commemorates the French Revolution of 1830. Musée du Louvre.
    Painting: Eugène Delacroix (1798–1863)

    Archives nationales France

    The French national archives.

    History of France
    France's history at a glance.

    Commander Bonaparte's home page.

    Creating French Culture
    The relationship between power and culture in French history.
    (A Library of Congress Exhibition with treasures from the Bibliothèque nationale de France)

    French Revolution
    Causes, Facts, and a Summary by the Encyclopaedia Britannica.

    French Revolution - The UK National Archives
    How did the British react to July 1789?



    Cliffs of Bonifacio on Corsica
    Cliffs of Bonifacio, a town at the southern tip of the island of Corsica, France.
    Image: JustinPoulsen

    Corsica (French name Corse) is a mountainous Mediterranean island 200 km southeast of Nice on the French mainland, 100 km west of Italy, and just north of the Italian island of Sardinia. The 4th-largest Mediterranean island is part of France since 1768, but still has a distinct Italian culture.
    340,000 people live on Corsica (in 2020); major towns are Ajaccio, Bastia, Calvi, Corte, and Sartène. The island was the birthplace of Napoleon I.

    Cullettivita di Corsica - Collectivité de Corse
    Official website of the island.

    Island Guides
    Official website for tourism in France.

    Corsica Guide
    Corsica Directory.
    Go to Corsica
    Complete guide for staying and leisure, hundreds of accommodation links.
    Corsica travel and holidays magazine

    Pascal Paoli University of Corsica
    The French university in Corte is the only university on the island of Corsica.



    Overseas Departments of France: Guadeloupe | Martinique | French Guiana | Réunion
    Overseas Countries: French Polynesia | New Caledonia

    Other Countries in Western Europe
    Austria | Belgium | Germany | Liechtenstein | Luxembourg | Monaco | Netherlands | Switzerland

    Countries in the Mediterranean:
    Albania | Algeria | Bosnia and Herzegovina | Croatia | Cyprus | Egypt | Gaza Strip | Greece | Israel | Italy | Lebanon | Libya | Malta | Monaco | Montenegro | Morocco | Portugal | Slovenia | Spain | Syria | Tunisia | Turkey