Valais


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Valais

(välā`), Ger. Wallis, canton (1993 pop. 262,400), 2,021 sq mi (5,234 sq km), S Switzerland. SionSion
, Ger. Sitten, town (1993 pop. 25,300), capital of Valais canton, SW Switzerland, on the Rhône River. An ancient town, Sion is now a wine and horticultural market center. There are hydroelectric plants and coal mines nearby.
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 is the capital. Bordering on France and Italy, the Valais extends from the Bernese Alps in the north to the Pennine Alps in the south, with the fertile upper Rhône valley between them. It has some of the highest peaks (Matterhorn, Dufourspitze, Dom, and Weisshorn) in Switzerland. It is a transportation hub, with an airport and 10 railways, which support an extensive tourist trade. Mainly a livestock-raising and agricultural canton, it is also known for its fine wines. The Valais has a well-developed hydroelectric system, which produces about 15% of Switzerland's power, and its industries produce metal products and chemicals. Zermatt is the largest of its numerous resorts and winter sports centers. Most of the population is French-speaking and Roman Catholic. Taken by the Romans in 57 B.C., the region later passed to the Burgundians and to the Franks. In 999, Rudolf III of Burgundy made the bishop of Sion lord of Valais, but the country later split, with the Lower Valais passing to Savoy. In 1475, the bishop of Sion and the communes of the Upper Valais, which had gained considerable autonomy, defeated the duke of Savoy, and from then until 1798 the Lower Valais was held in subjection by the Upper Valais. Made a canton of the Helvetic RepublicHelvetic Republic
, 1798–1803, Swiss state established under French auspices. In Sept., 1797, several exiled Swiss leaders in France (notably Frédéric César de La Harpe) formally urged the French Revolutionary government (the Directory) to help in
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 in 1798, an independent republic in 1802, and a French department in 1810, the Valais became a canton of the Swiss Confederation in 1815.

Valais

a canton of S Switzerland: includes the entire valley of the upper Rh?ne and the highest peaks in Switzerland; produces a quarter of Switzerland's hydroelectricity. Capital: Sion. Pop.: 281 000 (2002 est.). Area: 5231 sq. km (2020 sq. miles)
References in periodicals archive ?
WITH signposted cycling routes, challenging and panoramic mountain passes, and adventurous alpine and valley roads, the Swiss region of Valais has great potential to develop into a well-known cycling destination like the Dolomites.
"Even the wedding cake featured edible life-sized Valais lambs."
Having recently been awarded the patronage of the Canton du Valais, one of 26 in Switzerland, SISD is laying the foundation for the introduction for the Swiss Baccalaureate in the UAE and the wider region.
Indeed when the 2016 Tour de France came through Valais from Bern, Steve was one of those who took the fight to eventual stage victor, Ilnur Zakarin as the race soared brutally over the Col De Forclaz before topping out at the lofty Emmosson Dam.
Valais police said the preserved bodies, bearing identity papers, had been discovered by a worker on Tsanfleuron glacier above Les Diablerets ski resort at 8,600ft.
In an overnight statement, Valais cantonal police said that two bodies bearing identity papers had been discovered last week by a worker on Tsanfleuron glacier near a ski lift above Les Diablerets resort at an altitude of 2,615 metres (8,600 feet).
Hosted by the UK Valais Blacknose Sheep Society (VBSSUK), the event saw more than 150 animals being shown, with breeders competing across 13 classes, the winners of which were each presented with a traditional Swiss bell.
The Valais Blacknose remains incredibly rare, with only 12,000 sheep registered in the breed's native country.
Crans-Montana is a ski resort in southwestern Switzerland, in the heart of the Swiss Alps in the French-speaking part of the canton of Valais. It is located on a plateau above Sierre at an elevation of about 1,500m above sea level, allowing a good view over the Valais Alps and Weisshorn.
The car-free village sits in the shadow of Europe's most picturesque peak, which, at 4,478 metres, offers the highest summer skiing in the Alps -- and fine views of the Valais region's verdant valleys -- at the Klein Matterhorn snowpark.
Olivia Wood will be carrying on the family tradition when she enters the Young Sheep Handler class with Eros who is a rare Valais Blacknose Sheep, dubbed 'the cutest sheep in the world'.
The Libya-owned energy group said in January it was planning to close the refinery due to "severe market pressures," but the Canton of Valais said it had convinced Tamoil to give a sale one last chance before finalising the closure.