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Paris facts: the capital of France

Since 508 A.D, Paris is the capital of France, the largest country of Western Europe with 550 000 km2 (the second in population with 66 millions inhabitants).

Paris has 2.275 million inhabitants (last census in 2011). She is the core of the Paris metropolitan area, known as Ile de France region (11.9 million people).

Paris is a modern and dynamic city with significant universities, cultural life, commercial, business, administrative, scientific and political activities.

Paris facts: history

From the Romans to today's Vth Republic, Paris has a rich 2000 year history. See details of Paris history.

The French Kings, who governed France, from 448 until 1848, commissioned many beautiful monuments, such as Versailles Palace and the Louvre Museum.

The Catholic Church and Parisians built many great churches, including Notre Dame and Sainte Chapelle.

Paris facts: a world city

Paris is a world capital of shopping and fashion. Chanel, Dior, Hermes, Louis Vuitton are the most prestigious among many top french fashion brands.

The French tradition of good food and wine still prevails in many restaurants, including gastronomic restaurants and excellent family style places.

All of this turns Paris into a unique tourist city.

Paris facts: the most visited city

In 2013, 47 million tourists visited Paris and the Paris region, including Disneyland Paris and Versailles. Paris remains year after year the most visited city in the world ahead of London and New York City.

The top Paris attractions are Notre Dame Cathedral (14.3), Disneyland Paris (14.2 million visitors in 2014), the Sacre Coeur (11), the Louvre Museum (9.2), Versailles Palace (7.5), the Eiffel Tower (7.1), Centre Pompidou (3.4) and the Cite des Sciences (2.3).

Geographical facts about Paris

Continent: Europe
Country: France
Region: Ile de France
Coordinates: 48:51:17N 2:20:12E
Altitude: 34 meters
Currency: Euro (EUR)
Language: French
Time Zone: Central European Time (CET)
Paris weather

Paris facts: topography

The city of Paris is 9 miles East to West, 6 miles North to South, giving it an area of 33.5 square miles, 86.7 square kilometers. Paris is 34 meters above sea level.

The Seine river flows through Paris from South West to South East. The North bank is the Right Bank, la Rive Droite. The South bank is the Left Bank, la Rive Gauche.

Paris facts: city administration

Paris is divided into 20 arrondissements numbered 1 to 20. The first arrondissement contains the Ile de la Cite, the Louvre and the Tuileries Gardens.

The other arrondissements spiral from there in a clockwise direction. A zip code such as 75004 indicates Paris, 4th arrondissement. See detailed map of Paris Arrondissements with top Paris sights. Paris has one main City Hall and 20 arrondissement city halls.

The capital of France in history

Under the Romans, the capital of France was Lyon (location). Paris became the capital of France in 508 under King Clovis (picture). After centuries with no unique capital, Paris retrieved its status under King Philippe Auguste (picture), who reigned between 1180 and 1223. See remains of the Philippe August Paris walls in the passageway between the Louvre parking and Museum

Paris remained the capital of France until today, with one four year interruption. During German occupation (WW2 , 1940-1944), the capital of France was Vichy.

Best Paris songs

Paris is also the romantic city of the world. Many singers romantically sang Paris during the last century.

Edith Piaf - Paris - 1949
Jacques Brel - Les Prenoms de Paris - 1961
Joe Dassin - Les Champs Elysees - 1969
Luis Mariano - Paris terre promise - 1952
Maurice Chevallier - Paris, je t'aime - 1930

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