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Lourdes
Lourdes with the Sanctuary of Our Lady
Lourdes with the Sanctuary of Our Lady
Coat of arms of Lourdes
Coat of arms
Country France
Region Occitanie
Department Hautes-Pyrénées
Arrondissement Argelès-Gazost
Canton Lourdes-1 and
Lourdes-2
Intercommunality Le Pays de Lourdes
Area
1
36.94 km2 (14.26 sq mi)
Population
 (2014)
14,361
 • Density 388.77/km2 (1,006.90/sq mi)
Demonym(s) Lourdais
Time zone UTC+01:00 (CET)
 • Summer (DST) UTC+02:00 (CEST)
INSEE/Postal code
65286 /65100
Elevation 343–960 m (1,125–3,150 ft)
(avg. 652 m or 2,139 ft)
Website www.lourdes.fr
1 French Land Register data, which excludes lakes, ponds, glaciers > 1 km2 (0.386 sq mi or 247 acres) and river estuaries.
Lourdes cathedral cave side 1
The majority of visitors are pilgrims who fill the public spaces of the Domain

Lourdes (Occitan: Lorda) is a town and commune in the southwest of the Hautes-Pyrénées department. It is in the first Pyrenean foothills in the Occitanie region, in southwestern France.

Lourdes was originally a small unremarkable market town lying in the foothills of the Pyrenees. At that time the most prominent feature was the fortified castle which rises up from the centre of the town on a rock. Following the claims that there were apparitions of Our Lady of Lourdes to Bernadette Soubirous in 1858, Lourdes has developed into a major place of Christian pilgrimage.

Today Lourdes has a population of around 15,000 inhabitants but is able to take in some 5,000,000 pilgrims and tourists every season. Lourdes has the second greatest number of hotels in France after Paris with about 270 establishments.

It is the joint seat of the diocese of Tarbes-et-Lourdes.

Geography

Lourdes is overlooked from the south by the Pyrenean peaks of Aneto, Montaigu, and Vignemale (3,298m), while around the town there are three summits reaching up to 1,000 m, which are known as the Béout, the Petit Jer and the Grand Jer.

It has an area of 36.94 km2 (14 sq mi) and its average altitude is 550 m (1,800 ft); at the city hall, the altitude is 400 m (1,300 ft).

Lourdes and its neighboring communes
Map of the commune de Lourdes

Population

The inhabitants of Lourdes are known, in French, as Lourdais (women: Lourdaises).

Lourdes has a population, in 2014, of 14,361, and its population density is of 388.8 inhabitants/km2.

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