Comarques of Catalonia

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
Present-day division of Catalonia in comarques

This is a list of the comarques (singular "comarca" Catalan pronunciation: [kuˈmarkə]) of Catalonia. A comarca is roughly equivalent to a US "county" or a UK "district". However, in the context of Catalonia, the term "county" can be a bit misleading, because in medieval Catalonia, the most important rulers were counts, notably the Counts of Barcelona and of Urgell. Comarques have no particular relation to the "counties" that were ruled by counts.


Although today the comarques are officially recognized, for centuries they had existed unofficially, with citizens identifying with a particular comarca in the same way that people in other parts of the world might identify with a particular region.

In some cases, comarques consist of rural areas and many small villages centering around an important town, where the people of the region traditionally go to shop or to sell their goods. This is the case of comarques such as the Pla d'Estany, centered on the town of Banyoles, or the Ripollès, centered on the town of Ripoll. In other cases, comarques are larger areas with many important population centers that have traditionally been considered part of the same region, as in the case of the Empordà or Vallès.

The current official division of Catalonia into comarques originates in an order of the semi-autonomous Catalan government under the Spanish Republic in 1936. It was superseded after the 1939 victory of Francisco Franco's forces in the Spanish Civil War, but restored in 1987 by the re-established Generalitat of Catalonia. Since the definition of comarques is traditionally a non-official and sometimes ambiguous, many new proposals have been made since the comarques were first officially designated as different towns attempt to adjust the official comarques with what they consider to be their traditional comarca. As a result, some revisions to the official division were made in 1988, adding Pla de l'Estany, Pla d'Urgell and Alta Ribagorça in 1990, when some borders were adjusted. As of 2004 there was discussion of possibly further subdividing some of the comarques. [1]

See also lists of municipalities for the Catalan provinces of Barcelona, Girona, Lleida, Tarragona.

The articles in naming[edit]

Because the Catalan language has a relatively complex set of rules for the form of the definite article, and because (in Catalan) the names of comarques (except for Osona) typically take the definite article in any position except as the subject of a sentence, the following list indicates the appropriate form of the definite article for each comarca. Because Val d'Aran is an Aranese-speaking area, it is often written as "era Val d'Aran", using the Aranese definite article.

List of comarques[edit]

Comarca Capital Population Area (km²)
l'Alt Camp Valls 45,189 544.7
l'Alt Empordà Figueres 140,428 1,357.5
l'Alt Penedès Vilafranca del Penedès 105,670 592.4
l'Alt Urgell La Seu d'Urgell 22,008 1,446.9
l'Alta Ribagorça Pont de Suert 4,284 426.8
l'Anoia Igualada 118,509 866.6
el Bages Manresa 185,865 1,295.2
el Baix Camp Reus 191,947 695.3
el Baix Ebre Tortosa 82,634 987.9
el Baix Empordà La Bisbal d'Empordà 133,116 700.5
el Baix Llobregat Sant Feliu de Llobregat 803,705 486.5
el Baix Penedès El Vendrell 101,115 295.5
el Barcelonès Barcelona 2,246,280 143.1
el Berguedà Berga 41,540 1,182.5
la Cerdanya Puigcerdà 18,783 546.4
la Conca de Barberà Montblanc 21,290 648.9
el Garraf Vilanova i la Geltrú 146,469 184.1
les Garrigues Les Borges Blanques 20,306 799.7
la Garrotxa Olot 55,597 734.2
el Gironès Girona 182,916 575.5
el Maresme Mataró 434,897 396.9
el Moianès (after May 24, 2015) Moià 12,878 335.19
el Montsià Amposta 72,261 708.7
la Noguera Balaguer 40,231 1,733.0
Osona Vic 154,204 1,263.8
el Pallars Jussà Tremp 14,374 1,290.0
el Pallars Sobirà Sort 7,548 1,355.2
el Pla de l'Estany Banyoles 31,169 262.7
el Pla d'Urgell Mollerussa 37,265 304.5
el Priorat Falset 10,087 496.2
la Ribera d'Ebre Móra d'Ebre 23,889 825.3
el Ripollès Ripoll 26,393 958.7
la Segarra Cervera 23,191 721.2
el Segrià Lleida 207,633 1,393.7
la Selva Santa Coloma de Farners 172,280 995.5
el Solsonès Solsona 13,808 998.6
el Tarragonès Tarragona 250,142 317.1
la Terra Alta Gandesa 12,847 740.0
l'Urgell Tàrrega 37,396 586.2
era Val d'Aran Vielha e Mijaran 10,192 620.5
el Vallès Occidental Sabadell, Terrassa 892,260 580.7
el Vallès Oriental Granollers 399,900 851.9

Comarcal revisions[edit]

The following municipalities changed comarca in 1990, mostly following local referendums:

Municipality Former comarca Current comarca
Alfarràs Noguera Segrià
Arbolí Priorat Baix Camp
Bonastre Tarragonès Baix Penedès
Caldes de Montbui Vallès Occidental Vallès Oriental
Castellet i la Gornal Garraf Alt Penedès
Esplugues de Llobregat Barcelonès Baix Llobregat
Els Garidells Tarragonès Alt Camp
Masllorenç Alt Camp Baix Penedès
La Molsosa Anoia Solsonès
Montesquiu Ripollès Osona
Montornès de Segarra Urgell Segarra
Olesa de Bonesvalls Garraf Alt Penedès
La Portella Noguera Segrià
Santa Maria de Besora Ripollès Osona
Sant Jaume d'Enveja Baix Ebre Montsià
Sant Just Desvern Barcelonès Baix Llobregat
Sant Quirze de Besora Ripollès Osona
Vallfogona de Riucorb Segarra Conca de Barberà
Vidrà Ripollès Osona

The following municipalities will move to the new comarca of Moianès in May 2015:[1]

Municipality Former comarca
Calders Bages
Castellcir Vallès Oriental
Castellterçol Vallès Oriental
Collsuspina Osona
Granera Vallès Oriental
L'Estany Bages
Moià Bages
Monistrol de Calders Bages
Sant Quirze Safaja Vallès Oriental
Santa Maria d'Oló Bages

Historical comarques[edit]

There are some other comarques which are often referred as historical comarques of Catalonia, because their present territory was part of the former Principality of Catalonia, but they are not currently within the Autonomous Community of Catalonia.

Comarca Capital Current status
el Rosselló (Roussillon) Perpinyà (Perpignan) Northern Catalonia / Part of France
l'Alta Cerdanya Font-romeu (Font-Romeu-Odeillo-Via) Northern Catalonia / Part of France
el Capcir Els Angles (Les Angles) Northern Catalonia / Part of France
el Vallespir Ceret (Céret) Northern Catalonia / Part of France
el Conflent Prada de Conflent (Prades) Northern Catalonia / Part of France

Administration and government[edit]

In the Autonomous Community of Catalonia, the comarca exists as a local government area, and has a representative consell comarcal (comarcal council).

See also[edit]


External links[edit]

  • (Catalan) The Institut d'Estadística de Catalunya is an excellent source of statistical information for Catalonia, down to the level of individual municipalities. It is also our source for which municipalities are in which comarca. Parts of the site are in English and Spanish, although most of it is in Catalan.
  • (Catalan) Comarcàlia - Information about the various comarques in a variety of languages, including English. Includes good maps down to the level of individual municipalities (or, as they choose to translate, "boroughs").
  • (Catalan) History of present comarcal division. Catalonia, La Franja and Northern Catalonia.