Country Profile - France

Name: France

Location: Western Europe

Time: IST (-) 4 1/2 hrs

Capital: Paris

Language: French (official) 100%, rapidly declining regional dialects and languages (Provencal, Breton, Alsatian, Corsican, Catalan, Basque, Flemish).

Area: 543,965 sq kms

Population: 65,312,249 (July 2011 est.)

National Day: 14 Jul (Bastille Day)

Currency: Euro (EUR)

Climate: A temperate climate in the north; northeastern areas have a more continental climate with warm summers and colder winters. Rainfall is distributed throughout the year with some snow likely in winter. The Jura Mountains have an alpine climate. Lorraine, sheltered by bordering hills, has a relatively mild climate. Mediterranean climate in the south; mountains are cooler with heavy snows in winter. The Atlantic influences the climate of the western coastal areas from the Loire to the Basque region; the weather is temperate and relatively mild with rainfall distributed throughout the year. Summers can be very hot and sunny. Inland areas are also mild and the French slopes of the Pyrenees are reputed for their sunshine record.

Holidays: 1 Jan New Year's Day. 1 May Labour Day. 8 May Victory Day. 17 May Ascension. 14 Jul Bastille Day. 15 Aug Assumption. 1 Nov All Saints' Day. 11 Nov Remembrance Day. 25 Dec Christmas Day.

Airline Name: Air France (AF)Air Inter (IT)

International Airports: Charles de Gaulle (CDG) (Paris), Orly (ORY) (Paris), Lesquin (Lille) (LIL), Satolas (Lyons) (LYS), Marignane (Marseille) (MRS), Cote d’ Azure (Nice) (NCE), Blagnac (Toulouse) (TLS)