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Prefecture building of the Gard department, in Nîmes
Prefecture building of the Gard department, in Nîmes
Flag of Gard
Coat of arms of Gard
Coat of arms
Location of Gard in France
Location of Gard in France
Coordinates: 44°7′41″N 4°4′54″E / 44.12806°N 4.08167°E / 44.12806; 4.08167Coordinates: 44°7′41″N 4°4′54″E / 44.12806°N 4.08167°E / 44.12806; 4.08167
Country France
Region Occitanie
Prefecture Nîmes
Subprefectures Alès
Le Vigan
 • President of the General Council Jean Denat (PS)
 • Total 5,853 km2 (2,260 sq mi)
 • Total 742,006
 • Rank 32nd
 • Density 130/km2 (330/sq mi)
Time zone UTC+1 (CET)
 • Summer (DST) UTC+2 (CEST)
Department number 30
Arrondissements 3
Cantons 23
Communes 353
^1 French Land Register data, which exclude estuaries, and lakes, ponds, and glaciers larger than 1 km2

Gard (French pronunciation: ​[ɡaʁ]; Occitan: Gard [gaɾ]) is a department in southern France in the Occitanie region.

The department is named after the River Gardon, and the Occitan name of the river has been replacing the French name of the department in recent decades, even among French speakers.


See also: History of Gard [fr]
The Gard area was settled by the Romans in classical times. It was crossed by the Via Domitia, which was constructed in 118 BC.

Gard is one of the original 83 departments created during the French Revolution on March 4, 1790. It was created from the ancient province of Languedoc.

It was originally intended to include the canton of Ganges in the department which would have been geographically logical, but Ganges was transferred to the neighbouring department of Hérault at the outset. In return, Gard received from Hérault the fishing port of Aigues Mortes which gave the department its own outlet to the Gulf of Lion.

During the middle of the nineteenth century the prefecture, traditionally a centre of commerce with a manufacturing sector focused on textiles, was an early beneficiary of railway development, becoming an important railway junction. Several luxurious hotels were built, and the improved market access provided by the railways also encouraged, initially, a rapid growth in wine growing: however, many of the department's viticulturalists were ruined by the arrival in 1872 of phylloxera.


Signpost welcoming travellers into the Gard, at Beaucaire

Gard is part of the region of Occitanie and is surrounded by the departments of Hérault, Lozère, Aveyron, Bouches-du-Rhône, Vaucluse, and Ardèche. The highest point in the department is the Mont Aigoual. Serious flooding has occurred in the department in recent years.


The President of the General Council is Denis Bouad of the Socialist Party (PS).

Party Seats
The Republicans (LR) 12
Socialist Party (PS) 10
Union of Democrats and Independents (UDI) 7
French Communist Party (PCF) 6
Miscellaneous left (DVG) 4
National Front (FN) 4
Europe Ecology – The Greens (EELV) 2
Miscellaneous right (DVD) 1

In the closely contested first round of the 2012 French presidential election, Gard was the only department to vote for the National Front candidate Marine Le Pen by a slim plurality, with 25.51% of the vote. The incumbent President Nicolas Sarkozy of the Union for a Popular Movement party received 24.86% of the vote, while Socialist candidate François Hollande received 24.11% of the vote share.[1]

Current National Assembly Representatives

Constituency Member[2] Party
Gard's 1st constituency Françoise Dumas La République En Marche!
Gard's 2nd constituency Gilbert Collard National Rally
Gard's 3rd constituency Anthony Cellier La République En Marche!
Gard's 4th constituency Annie Chapelier La République En Marche!
Gard's 5th constituency Olivier Gaillard La République En Marche!
Gard's 6th constituency Philippe Berta MoDem


The inhabitants of Gard are called "Gardois". In 2012, the population of Gard was 694,323 with 8 towns having more than 10,000 inhabitants :

Town Population
Nîmes 146 709
Alès 41 031
Bagnols-sur-Cèze 18 375
Beaucaire 15 860
Saint-Gilles 13 646
Villeneuve-lès-Avignon 12 232
Vauvert 11 261
Pont-Saint-Esprit 10 651

See also


  1. ^ "Résultats Gard - Présidentielle 2012 - 1er et 2nd tour". Le Retrieved 1 April 2018.
  2. ^

Tourism and points of interest

Gard contains a part of the Cévennes National Park.

There are important Roman architectural remains in Nîmes, as well as the famous Roman aqueduct, the Pont du Gard.

Gard is also home to the source of Perrier, a carbonated mineral water sold both in France and internationally on a large scale. The spring and facility are located just south-east of the commune of Vergèze.

External links

  • Wikisource "Gard" . Encyclopædia Britannica. 11 (11th ed.). 1911.
  • (in French) Prefecture website
  • (in French) General Council website
  • (in French) Welcome to the Gard
  • (in English) Welcome to the Gard
  • (English and French) The Regordane Way or St Gilles Trail
  • Map of the department
  • (in French) Guide Gard

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