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Saintes-Maries-de-la-Mer facts for kids

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Vue aériene des Saintes Maries de la Mer
Aerial view of Saintes-Maries-de-la-Mer
Coat of arms of Saintes-Maries-de-la-Mer
Coat of arms
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Coordinates: 43°27′10″N 4°25′43″E / 43.4528°N 4.4286°E / 43.4528; 4.4286Coordinates: 43°27′10″N 4°25′43″E / 43.4528°N 4.4286°E / 43.4528; 4.4286
Country France
Region Provence-Alpes-Côte d'Azur
Department Bouches-du-Rhône
Arrondissement Arles
Canton Arles
Intercommunality CA Arles-Crau-Camargue-Montagnette
374.61 km2 (144.64 sq mi)
 (Jan. 2018)
 • Density 5.7580/km2 (14.913/sq mi)
Time zone UTC+01:00 (CET)
 • Summer (DST) UTC+02:00 (CEST)
INSEE/Postal code
13096 /13460
Elevation 0–6 m (0–20 ft)
(avg. 4 m or 13 ft)
1 French Land Register data, which excludes lakes, ponds, glaciers > 1 km2 (0.386 sq mi or 247 acres) and river estuaries.

Saintes-Maries-de-la-Mer is the capital of the Camargue in the south of France. It is a commune in the Bouches-du-Rhône department by the Mediterranean Sea. Its 2012 population was 2,495, though it can swell to 500,000 during the summer holidays. It covers the second-largest area of all communes in Metropolitan France, smaller only than that of neighbouring Arles.


The town is situated in the Rhône River delta, about 1 km east of the mouth of the Petit Rhône distributary. The commune comprises alluvial land and marshland, and includes the Étang de Vaccarès, a large lagoon. The main industry is tourism. Agriculture is also significant, and ranchers have raised horses and cattle unique to the Camargue; some of the bulls are used for bull-fighting and for the course camarguaise. There is bus service to Arles, 38 km away.

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