Landes (French pronunciation: [lɑ̃d]; Gascon and Occitan: Lanas [ˈlanəs]) is a department in the Nouvelle-Aquitaine region of Southwestern France. Located on the Atlantic coast, it had a population of 405,010 as of 2016. Its prefecture is Mont-de-Marsan.
Location of Landes in France
|• President of the Departmental Council||Xavier Fortinon (PS)|
|• Total||9,243 km2 (3,569 sq mi)|
|• Density||44/km2 (110/sq mi)|
|Time zone||UTC+1 (CET)|
|• Summer (DST)||UTC+2 (CEST)|
|^1 French Land Register data, which exclude estuaries and lakes, ponds and glaciers larger than 1 km2|
During the first part of the 19th century large parts of the department were covered with poorly drained heathland (lande in French) which is the origin of its name. The vegetation covered rich soil and was periodically burned off, leaving excellent pasturage for sheep, which around 1850 are thought to have numbered between 900,000 and 1,000,000 in this area. The sheep were managed by shepherds who moved around on stilts and became proficient at covering long distances thus supported. Most of the sheep departed during the second half of the nineteenth century when systematic development of large pine plantations transformed the landscape and the local economy.
One of the most famous citizens of the Landes was the nineteenth-century French economist Frédéric Bastiat.
The Nobel Prize–winning novelist François Mauriac set his novels in the Landes.
The Landes is part of the current region of Nouvelle-Aquitaine and is surrounded by the departments of Gironde, Lot-et-Garonne, Gers and Pyrénées-Atlantiques, as well as the Atlantic Ocean on the west. With an area stretching over more than 9000 km², Landes is, after Gironde, the second largest department of the metropolitan French territory.
It is well known for the Côte d'Argent beach which is Europe's longest and attracts many surfers to Mimizan and Soorts-Hossegor each year. It is also home to a château called Château de Gaujacq that was built in 1686.
A view of Soorts-Hossegor
Population development since 1801:
Departmental Council of LandesEdit
|Union of the Republican Right and Independents||10|
|Landes's 1st constituency||Fabien Lainé||MoDem|
|Landes's 2nd constituency||Lionel Causse||La République En Marche!|
|Landes's 3rd constituency||Boris Vallaud||Socialist Party|
Landes is known for its large pine forest which is the raw material for a timber and resin industries in the region. The forest was planted in the early nineteenth century to prevent erosion of the region's sandy soil by the sea.
Landes is famous for its seaside resorts and natural spots, such as:
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Landes.|