Pays de la Loire has been created at the end of the 20th century as a zone of influence for Nantes which is its capital. Nanetes is what some would call a “balancing metropolis”. The region Pays de la Loire was created artificially especially to be of use to Nanetes, just as Rhone-Alpes was created for Lyon.
Pays de la Loire is composed of several historical provinces as Wikipedia states:
- a part of Brittany, with its old capital Nantes contained within the Loire-Atlantique department. This is only 20% of Brittany. The other 80% of Brittany make up the region of Brittany
- Anjou: is largely contained within the Maine-et-Loire department. The whole of the former province of Anjou is contained inside Pays de la Loire.
- Maine: is now divided between the Mayenne and Sarthe departments. The whole of the former province of Maine is contained inside Pays de la Loire.
- a part of Poitou: is contained within the Vendée department. Most of the old province of Poitou is inside the Poitou-Charentes region.
- a part of Perche: is within the northeast of Sarthe department. The rest of Perche is inside the Basse-Normandie and Centre regions.
- a small part of Touraine: southeast of Maine-et-Loire department. Most of the former province of Touraine is inside the Centre region.
The name of the region Pays de la Loire was choose as a result of the geographical position it occupies, and it can be translated as Lands of the Loire River.
Many famous castles of the Loire Valley are situated in the Centre region unlike what the names states. These actually are a representation of the great monuments such as the castles of Mayenne, Angers, Laval, and maybe the most famous one the Chateau des Ducs de Bretagne in Nantes.
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Top Photograph Source: http://www.aboutfrenchproperty.com/pays-de-la-loire