Metz is a city in northeast France located at the confluence of the Moselle and the Seille rivers.

RegionGrand Est
 Mayor (2020–2026)François Grosdidier
Area41.94 km2 (16.19 sq mi)
Population (2017-01-01)116,429
 Density2,800/km2 (7,200/sq mi)
Time zoneUTC+01:00 (CET)
 Summer (DST)UTC+02:00 (CEST)

A basin of urban ecology,  Metz gained its nickname of The Green City,  as it has extensive open grounds and public gardens.


Metz is located on the banks of the Moselle and the Seille rivers, 43 km (26.7 mi) from the Schengen tripoint where the borders of France, Germany, and Luxembourg meet. The city was built in a place where many branches of the Moselle river creates several islands, which are encompassed within the urban planning.


The climate of Lorraine is a semi-continental climate. The summers are warm and humid, sometimes stormy, and the warmest month of the year is July. The winters are cold and snowy.

Cityscape and environmental policy

Metz contains a mishmash of architectural layers, bearing witness to centuries of history at the crossroads of different cultures, and features a number of architectural landmarks. The city possesses one of the largest Urban Conservation Areas in France.

The city is famous for its yellow limestone architecture, a result of the extensive use of Jaumont stone.


The Centre Pompidou-Metz, a symbol of modern MetzThe Music Box, a high-quality concert and recording studio venue dedicated to the modern forms of art music, in the Borny District.

From its Gallo-Roman past, the city preserves vestiges of the thermae (in the basement of the Golden Courtyard museum), parts of the aqueduct, and the Basilica of Saint-Pierre-aux-Nonnains.

Saint Louis’ square with its vaulted arcades and a Knights Templar chapel remains a major symbol of the city’s High Medieval heritage. The Gothic Saint-Stephen Cathedral, several churches and Hôtels, and two remarkable municipal granaries reflect the Late Middle Ages.

The city hall and the buildings surrounding the town square are by French architect Jacques-François Blondel, who was awarded the task of redesigning and modernizing the centre of Metz by the Royal Academy of Architecture in 1755 the context of the Enlightenment.

Military architecture

As a historic Garrison town, Metz has been heavily influenced by military architecture throughout its history. Defensive walls still visible today, incorporated into the design of public gardens along the Moselle and Seille rivers. A medieval bridge castle from the 13th century, named Germans’ Gate, today converted into a convention and exhibition centre, has become one of the landmarks of the city.

A hiking trail on the Saint-Quentin plateau passes through a former military training zone and ends at the now abandoned military forts, providing a vantage point from which to survey the city.[108][109]


Although the steel industry has historically dominated Moselle’s economy, Metz’s efforts at economic diversification have created a base in the sectors of commerce, tourism, information technology and the automotive industry.

In recent years, Metz municipality have promoted an ambitious policy of tourism development, including urban revitalization and refurbishment of buildings and public squares


Museums and exhibition halls

Some of the cultural venues in Metz, clockwise from top:

  • the Arsenal, the Golden Courtyard,
  • the Opera House,
  • the Saint-Jacques squareThe Museum
  • The Centre Pompidou-Metz 
  • Saint Stephen’s Cathedral 
  • Another of the city’s churches displays a complete set of stained glass windows by French modernist Jean Cocteau.

Entertainment and performing arts

Metz has several venues for the performing arts:

  • The Opera House of Metz
  • The Arsenal Concert Hall
  • The Trinitarians Club
  • The Music Box
  • The Braun Hall
  • the Koltès Theater


Local specialties include the quiche, the potée, the Lorrain pâ, and also suckling pig. Different recipes, such as jam, tart, charcuterie and fruit brandy, are made from the Mirabelle and Damson plums. Also, Metz is the cradle of some pastries like the Metz cheese pie and the Metz Balls (French: boulet de Metz), a ganache-stuffed biscuit coated with marzipan, caramel, and dark chocolate. Local beverages include Moselle wine and Amos beer.

The Covered Market of Metz is one of the oldest, most grandiose in France and is home to traditional local food producers and retailers.


High schools

Metz has numerous high schools, including the Fabert High School and the Lycée of Communication. The university is divided into two university centers, one in Metz (material sciences, technology, and management) and one in Nancy (biological sciences, health care, administration, and management).


Local transport

  • Public transport includes a bus rapid transit system, called Mettis.Mettis lanes A and B serve the city’s major facilities (e.g., city centre, university campus, and hospitals).
  • Metz Railway Station provides a direct rail service to Paris and Luxembourg. Metz is served by the Lorraine TGV railway station, for high speed trains going to Nantes, Rennes, Lille and Bordeaux (without stopping in Paris).
  • The Luxembourg International Airport is the nearest international airport, connected to Metz by Métrolor train.
  • The marina connects Metz to the cities of the Moselle valley via the Moselle river.

Main sights

Religious heritage

  • the Gothic Saint Stephen’s cathedral 
  • the Saint-Pierre-aux-Nonnains basilica
  • Saint Maximin’s church
  • the 13th century Romanesque Knights Templar’s chapel

Civil heritage

  • The opera house of Metz Metropole
  • The birthplaces of Paul Verlaine
  • The house of François Rabelais

Administrative heritage

  • the town square and its surrounding Neoclassical buildings
  • the Neoclassical courthouse
  • the Romanesque Revival Station-Palace and Central Post Office
  • the Northeast France defense headquarters


Municipal mediator
Monsieur le médiateur municipal Hôtel de Ville 1 place d’Armes-Blondel 57036 Metz
0 800 891 891