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Revision as of 21:18, 8 November 2019


France is not just France. There are also many oversea regions, covering 5 continents and tens of time zones. You probably don't know them, but, even these regions are quite autonomous, they are entirely part of France.

Metropolitan France

Metropolitan France is de facto including 96 '

départements' and 22 regions, but officially 13 since 2016 that not many people consider. The 22 regions are :

  • Aquitaine, Poitou-Charentes, Limousin which have merged into Nouvelle-Aquitaine (South-West)
  • Languedoc-Roussillon, Midi-Pyrénées which have merged into Occitanie (South-Center)
  • Provence-Alpes-Côte-d'Azur (South-East)
  • Auvergne, Rhône-Alpes which merged into Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes (East-Center)
  • Corsica (Extreme South-East, the only region which is an island)
  • Burgundy, Franche-Comté which merged into Burgundy-Franche-Comté (East-Center)
  • Centre, renamed into Centre-Val-de-Loire (Center)
  • Pays-de-la-Loire (West-Center)
  • Brittany (North-West)
  • Île-de-France (Center, region of Paris)
  • Lower Normandy and Higher Normandy which have merged into Normandy (North-Center)
  • Champagne-Ardenne, Lorraine and Alsace which have merged into Grand Est (North-East)
  • Nord-Pas-de-Calais, Picardy which have merged into Hauts-de-France (North)

Overseas 'départements'

There are actually 5 overseas 'départements', 4 in America and 2 in Africa. Their particularity is that they are both regions and 'départements'. They have more autonomy than the 'départements' of the Metropolitan France but lesser than the French overseas territories. They are :


  • Guadeloupe : An island between Atlantic Ocean and Caribbean Sea, and next to Martinique.
  • Martinique : An island between Atlantic Ocean and Caribbean Sea, and next to Guadeloupe.
  • Saint-Pierre-et-Miquelon : A very small land near Atlantic Ocean and Québec Province in Canada.
  • French Guyana : The biggest French 'département', where the European Lancement Rocket Base is located. It makes France have common borders with Brazil and Surinam.


  • Réunion : A volcanic island, the most populated of French overseas 'départements', with around 1M inhabitants, located next to Madagascar and Mayotte.
  • Mayotte : A small island located next to Madagascar and La Réunion.

Overseas territories

There are many French overseas territories, located all over the world. They are :

  • Saint-Barthélémy and Saint-Martin, two islands next to Caribbean Sea