The 36 Communes
City of Perpignan
In the extreme south of France, on the border with Spain, between the Mediterranean Sea and the peaks of the Pyrenees, Perpignan enjoys an exceptional geographical location and a particularly enviable quality of life. The surface area of the commune is 6,807 hectares and its altitude varies between 8 and 100 metres.
Situated in the centre of the Roussillon plain. The town is bordered to the south by the Pyrenees, to the west by the Corbières region, to the east by the Mediterranean Sea, to the north by the Llabanère stream and to the south by the Réart river. The town is 13 km from the Mediterranean Sea by expressway, 25 km from the Spanish border and 85 km from the nearest ski resort. It is the most southerly of the large cities in mainland France.
It is the result of a rich, passionate and multicultural history. Formerly the continental capital of the Kingdom of Majorca, the city was annexed by the Kingdom of France in 1659. Its strong Catalan identity has not prevented the Mediterranean city from opening up to modernity. Daring architectural projects have been added to the historical heritage, such as the Théâtre de l'Archipel designed by the architect Jean Nouvel, or the Centre del Món.
Number of inhabitants
The city of Perpignan has approximately 120,606 inhabitants. Its inhabitants are called Perpignanais.
The Castillet, emblem of the city of Perpignan, is the former main gate of the city walls. The main body of the building, the great Castillet, built in brick and marble from Baixas, dates back to the Aragonese period. It was built from 1368 onwards and transformed under Louis XI, who added its current terrace and its brick turret crowned with a cupola. The second gate, the Notre-Dame gate, was built at the same time. In the 17th and 18th centuries the building was transformed into a prison. Today it houses the Casa Pairal museum on local history and ethnography. 142 steps must be climbed to reach the top of the monument.