Paris is located in a low-lying, bowl-shaped basin in
the north-center of France. The city lines both sides of the Seine River
for a length of approximately 8 miles, some 90 miles southeast of the point
[about 230 miles by water], at
Le Havre, where the Seine flows into the
Many western European capitals are within one to two
days drive from Paris. It is located 250 miles south of London, 188 miles
Bruxelles, 654 miles west-southwest of Berlin, 322 miles
Geneve, 891 miles north-northwest of Rome and 815 miles north
By design, Paris is the transportation hub of
France. The Parisian metropolis is served by the A1, A4, A6, A10, A13, A14
and A15 Auto Routes that radiate out to the rest of France. It is also the
heart of a system of Routes Nationaux that feed all the areas of France. It
is often said that all French roads begin from a point just outside the
Gothic portals of Notre-Dame.
Central Paris is the host to 6 major rail-road
passenger stations, accounting for more than 500 million passengers. The
lines of the national railroad system [SNCF] also fan out, in all
directions, from Paris. The city is also France’s 4th largest water port
Le Havre and
Dunkerque], with the navigable Seine
connecting directly to the English Channel and, via a network of canals,
with the navigable Loire, Meuse, Rhine, Rhone and Scheldt rivers. Much of
the goods, going to and from the city, move by water.
The population of the Ville-de-Paris [a French département] was approximately 2,115,700 in 1999. It is one of the world’s
most crowded cities with about 53,000 people per square mile, ranking it as
the 4th most densely populated city in the world after Manila, Shanghai and
Cairo. The region of Île-de-France, in which Paris is located, had a
population of about 11 million that same year.
Paris is one of Europe’s largest metropolitan areas,
Île-de-France is the most populous of the 22 French regions. The city
is confined to a 22 mile-long oval perimeter that measures 5.5 miles from
north to south and 7.5 miles from east to west. The Département of the
Ville-de-Paris, one of the eight departments of the Île-de-France
administrative Region, is in the center of the region.
The climate is moderate and is lacking in extremes.
The average temperature is 66 degrees Fahrenheit. The average annual rain
amounts to 23 inches, and is evenly distributed over the year.
about Early Paris