Amiens is a city and commune in northern France, 120 km (75 mi) north of Paris and 100 km (62 mi) south-west of Lille. It is the capital of the Somme department in Picardy. The city had a population of 136,105 according to the 2006 census. Amiens lies on the basin of the Somme river more or less where its tributaries the Selle and Avre flow into it. The old town is situated in a swampy area at the bottom of the valley.
Amiens Cathedral (a World Heritage Site) is the tallest of the large 'classic' Gothic churches of the 13th century and is the largest in France of its kind. After a fire destroyed the former cathedral, the new nave was begun in 1220 – and finished in 1247. Amiens Cathedral is notable for the coherence of its plan, the beauty of its three-tier interior elevation, the particularly fine display of sculptures on the principal facade and in the south transept, and the labyrinth, and other inlays of its floor.