Lot (department) facts for kids

Kids Encyclopedia Facts
Cahors - Préfecture du Lot
Prefecture building of the Lot department, in Cahors
Flag of Lot
Coat of arms
Coat of arms
Location of Lot in France
Location of Lot in France
Country France
Region Occitanie
Département 4 March 1790
 • Total 5,216.5 km2 (2,014.1 sq mi)
Population (2013)
 • Total 173,758
 • Density 33.3093/km2 (86.2707/sq mi)
Demonym(s) Lotois
Time zone CET (UTC+1)
 • Summer (DST) CEST (UTC+2)
ISO 3166 code FR-46
Arrondissements 3
Cantons 17
Communes 326
Website http://www.lot.fr

Lot (Occitan: Òlt) is a French department located in the Occitanie region of southern France named after the Lot river. Its prefecture and largest city is Cahors.


Lot is one of the original 83 departments created during the French Revolution on 4 March 1790. It was created from the old province of Quercy.

The new department had six districts: Cahors, Martel, Gourdon, Figeac, Montauban and Lazorte. The capital (now prefecture) was Cahors.

In 1808, some of the original southeastern cantons were separated from it to form the department of Tarn-et-Garonne. It originally extended much farther to the south and included the city of Montauban.


Lot is part of the Occitanie region and has an area of 5,216.5 km2 (2,014.1 sq mi).

The department borders with 6 other departments in 3 regions:

The Lot river crosses the department from east to west with numerous meanders. The Dordogne river flows through the northern part of the department.

There are seven natural regions in the department:

  1. The Segala (northeast) occupies the eastern border of the Lot department. It is the part of the Massif Central that gets into the department and here is found the highest point of the Lot department in Labastide-du-Haut-Mont, with 783 m (2,569 ft) high.
  2. The Limargue (center east) separates the Segala from the Causses of Quercy. This narrow strip of land is found between the valleys of the Dordogne and Lot rivers. It is known as Terrefort around the city of Figeac.
  3. The Causses of Quency are several limestone plateaus crossed by the valleys of the Dordogne, Lot and Aveyron rivers. From north to south, they are the Causse of Martel, the Causse of Gramat and the Causse of Limogne.
  4. The Bouriane (west). This area is covered with an abundant vegetation and is very different from the near arid plateaus of the Causses.
  5. The Quercy Blanc (south) is formed by small white limestone plateaus along valleys where cereals, oilseeds (plants grown to produce vegetable oils), melons, plums and tobacco are grown.
  6. The Valley of the Lot river (south), with many vineyards and vegetable crops.
  7. The Valley of the Dordogne river (north), with its walnut groves and meadows.


The department is managed by the General Council of the Lot in Cahors. Lot is part of the region of Occitanie.

Administrative divisions

There are 3 arrondissements (districts), 17 cantons and 326 communes (municipalities) in Lot.

Arrondissement Capital Population
461 Cahors Cahors 76,204 2,179.3 35.0 129
462 Figeac Figeac 54,016 1,550.3 34.8 116
463 Gourdon Gourdon 43,538 1,486.9 29.3 81

The following is a list of the 17 cantons of the Lotdepartment, following the French canton reorganisation which came into effect in March 2015:

  1. Cahors-1
  2. Cahors-2
  3. Cahors-3
  4. Causse et Bouriane
  5. Causse et Vallées
  6. Cère et Ségala
  7. Figeac-1
  8. Figeac-2
  9. Gourdon
  10. Gramat
  11. Lacapelle-Marival
  12. Luzech
  13. Marches du Sud-Quercy
  14. Martel
  15. Puy-l'Évêque
  16. Saint-Céré
  17. Souillac


The inhabitants of Lot are known, in French, as Lotois (women: Lotoises).

Lot has a population, in 2013, of 173,758, for a population density of 33.3 inhabitants/km2. The arrondissement of Cahors, with 76,204 inhabitants, is by far the largest. The other two, Figeac and Gourdon, have respectively 54,016 and 43,538 inhabitants.

The city with more people living in it is the capital, Cahors (19,616). The subprefectures of Figeac and Gourdon have, respectively, 9,826 and 4,316 inhabitants.

The 10 most important cities in the department are:

Le Célé
Célé river at Marcilhac
City Population
Cahors 19,616 Cahors
Figeac 9,826 Figeac
Gourdon 4,316 Gourdon
Gramat 3,596 Gourdon
Saint-Céré 3,531 Figeac
Souillac 3,491 Gourdon
Pradines 3,474 Cahors
Prayssac 2,523 Cahors
Puy-l'Évêque 2,032 Cahors
Biars-sur-Cère 1,985 Figeac


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Lot (department) Facts for Kids. Kiddle Encyclopedia.