Infobox French region
native_name = Région Rhône-Alpes
common_name = Rhône-Alpes
image_flag_size = 125px
image_logo_size = 145px
area = 43,698
area_scale = 10
Regional president = Jean-Jack Queyranne
population_rank = 2nd
population_census = 5,645,407
population_census_year = 1999
population_estimate = 6,058,000
population_estimate_year = 2007
population_density = 139
population_density_year = 2007
arrondissements = 25
cantons = 335
communes = 2,879
Ain Ardèche Drôme Isère Loire
Rhône-Alpes (Franco-Provençal : "Rôno-Arpes"; Occitan: "Ròse Aups") is one of the 26 regions of
France, located on the eastern border of the country, towards the south. The region was named after the Rhône Riverand the Alpsmountain range. Its capital, Lyon, is the second-largest metropolitan area in France after Paris.
Rhône-Alpes is located in the east of France. To the north are the French regions of
Bourgogne(Burgundy) and Franche-Comté, to the west it borders the region Auvergne, to the south it borders Languedoc-Roussillonand Provence-Alpes-Côte d'Azur. The east of the region contains the western part of the Alpsand borders Switzerlandand Italy. The highest peak is Mont Blanc. The central part of the region is taken up with the valley of the Rhône and the Saône. The confluence of these two rivers is at Lyon. The western part of the region contains the start of the Massif Centralmountain range. The region also borders or contains major lakes such as Lake Geneva("Lac Léman") and Lake Annecy. The Ardèche is home to the deepest gorge in Europe.
As with the rest of
France, French is the only official language of the region. 50 years ago, Franco-Provençal was widely spoken in the whole region. Many of the inhabitants of the south spoke varieties of Occitanalthough it is in steep decline in this region. There were a relatively large immigrant populations from Poland, Italy, Portugaland North Africa, amongst other places.
Rhône-Alpes is made up of the following "départements":
Ain(01). Capital: Bourg-en-Bresse
Ardèche(07). Capital: Privas
Drôme(26). Capital: Valence
Isère(38). Capital: Grenoble
Loire(42). Capital: Saint-Étienne
* Rhône (69). Capital:
Savoie(73). Capital: Chambéry
Haute-Savoie(74). Capital: Annecy
Rhône-Alpes is the only one region of France which contains 3 major cities in France. Indeed, it forms the triangle Lyon - Grenoble - Saint-Etienne. This triangle is the economic core of the region. These three urban areas are very complementary, and have smaller cities around, like satellites.
Lyon's area : 1,798,395 inhabitants (2008)
Grenoble's area : 560,222 inhabitants (2008)
Saint-Etienne's area : 321,703 inhabitants (1999)
* Valence's area : 164,334 inhabitants (2008)
Although there have been people in Rhône-Alpes since pre-historic times, the earliest recorded settlers of the region were the Gauls. Cities such as Lyon were founded by them and the region traded with both northern and southern Europe. Most of the area became part of Roman territory during the invasion of Gaul led by Julius Caesar and was at various times part of the regions of Lugdunensis and Gallia. Lyon itself became a major Roman city.
The region, excepting Savoy, was part of the Merovingian and Carolingian Kingdoms before becoming a royal territory under the Capetians. As it became a royal territory early on in French history, its history has not differed much from France since. (see
History of France)
Rhône-Alpes is a major European transit hub, linking northern France and Europe to the Mediterranean area. Millions travel along its
motorways in summertime from Paristo holidays at the sea. The E15 Euroroute (Britain to Spain) runs through the region. There are international airports at Lyon, Grenoble and Saint-Étienne and many other minor airports and airfields.The region is also a transport hub for the rail-network with the TGVrunning through Lyon from Paris and the north, to the Mediterranean. A trans-national, high-speed rail-link is under construction from Lyon to Turin.
Rhône-Alpes is a prosperous region, its economy second in size only to Île-de-France in France. This can be attributed to the diversity of the production in different sectors.
*Industry, in particular:
**Light engineering and high-tech
**Mechanical engineering in the area of
**Special machining in the area of
*Services, in particular:
**High-tech industries & nanotechnology, especially in
**Tourism with the Alps (for skiing), Lyon and Grenoble (for culture) and the Ardèche (
adventure sports/ camping) particularly popular
**Education, with major universities in Lyon and Grenoble
In the past
mining, especially coal miningwas an important sector, particularly around Saint-Étienne, although this has declined.
It should be noted that the area of the region that lies close to
Switzerlandhas an economy linked to that of Geneva. Indeed, this area forms a hinterlandfor the Geneva hub.
Rhône-Alpes is the home of several successful football teams, including
Olympique Lyonnais(current French Champions) and AS Saint-Étienne(one of the former clubs of Michel Platini). Another team has come in the french top-level in 2008 : Grenoble Foot 38.
Lyon is noted as a gastronomic center of France and specialities served in its traditional "
bouchons" include Lyon sausage, special salami(known here as "rosette"), tripeand quenelles. In the east of the region the food has an Alpine flavour with dishes such as fondue, raclettecommon, gratin dauphinoisand gratin savoyard. The region is also famous for its Bressepoultry and the many varieties of cheese including Tomme de Savoie, Bleu de Bresse, Reblochon, Saint-Marcellinand Vacherin.
Wines are also interesting in this region such as the very famous
Beaujolais, Côtes du Rhôneand Savoy wine.
Chartreuse liqueur is made in the region.
Situated between Paris and the Côte d’Azur, on the border with both Switzerland and Italy, and offering access to two international airports (Lyon and Geneva), impressive rail connections and a vast motorway network, the Rhône-Alpes region is literally at the crossroads of Europe.
Boasting 8 natural parks and peerless sites such as Mont Blanc and the Gorges de l’Ardèche, the Rhône-Alpes offers a wide range of different landscapes: mountains, vineyards and gentle valleys, fields of lavender and olive groves.
In the Rhône-Alpes, water is everywhere: from snow to glacier ice, rivers and streams to lakes…the Rhône-Alpes is where three of France’s biggest lakes can be found (Lake Geneva, Lac du Bourget and Lac d’Annecy).
Every form of sport is readily available, set against an impressive natural backdrop: hiking, mountain biking or even paragliding and canoeing… the Rhône-Alpes is not only the second most important golfing region in France with over 60 courses but it also has the largest ski area in the world and has hosted the Winter Olympics three times.
Enthusiasts of art and culture will not be disappointed by the region’s Villes d’Art: Lyon, which is classified by UNESCO as a World Heritage site, Annecy, Grenoble, Chambéry, and Saint Etienne.
And last but not least, connoisseurs of good food and wine will be spoilt for choice by the range of local specialities available to taste along with a Beaujolais or a Côtes du Rhône, and by the sheer number of famous restaurants (with Paul Bocuse at the top of the list) in the region.
* [http://www.cr-rhone-alpes.fr Regional Council website]
* [http://wikitravel.org/en/Rhône-Alpes Rhône-Alpes on Wikitravel]
* [http://photos-of-france.site.voila.fr/sudest1en.html Photos of Rhône-Alpes]
* [http://www.rhonealpes-tourisme.com Tourism Rhône-Alpes Official Travel Information]
Wikimedia Foundation. 2010.
Look at other dictionaries:
Rhone-Alpes — Rhône Alpes 45°30′N 5°20′E / 45.5, 5.333 … Wikipédia en Français
Rhone alpes — Rhône Alpes 45°30′N 5°20′E / 45.5, 5.333 … Wikipédia en Français
Rhône-alpes — 45°30′N 5°20′E / 45.5, 5.333 … Wikipédia en Français
Rhône Alpes — 45°30′N 5°20′E / 45.5, 5.333 … Wikipédia en Français
Rhone-Alpes — Rhône Alpes … Deutsch Wikipedia
Rhône-Alpes — Rhône Alpes … Deutsch Wikipedia
Rhône-Alpes — [rōn alp′, rōnälp′; ] Fr [ rōn ȧlp′] metropolitan region of SE France: 16,872 sq mi (43,698 sq km); pop. 5,351,000; chief city, Lyon * * * ▪ geographical area, France région of France encompassing the southeastern départements of Loire, Rhône,… … Universalium
Rhône-Alpes — région administrative française et rég. de la C.E. comprenant les dép. de l Ain, de l Ardèche, de la Drôme, de l Isère, de la Loire, du Rhône, de la Savoie et de la Haute Savoie; 43 738 km²; 5 446 004 hab.; ch. l. Lyon. Géogr. phys. et hum. Le N … Encyclopédie Universelle
Rhône-Alpes — [ro nalp], Region in Südfrankreich, umfasst die Départements Ain, Ardèche, Drôme, Isère, Loire, Rhône, Savoie und Haute Savoie, 43 698 km2, 5,64 Mio. Einwohner; Hauptstadt ist Lyon. Die Region hat Anteil an mehreren Großlandschaften: im Westen… … Universal-Lexikon
Rhône-Alpes — [[t]roʊnˈalp[/t]] n. geg a metropolitan region in SE France. 5,354,000; 16,872 sq. mi. (43,698 sq. km) … From formal English to slang
Rhône-Alpes — [rōn alp′, rōnälp′; ] Fr [ rōn ȧlp′] metropolitan region of SE France: 16,872 sq mi (43,698 sq km); pop. 5,351,000; chief city, Lyon … English World dictionary