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Canton of Jura

Canton of Jura

Flag of the canton
Area:838 km²
The Canton of Jura is one of the 26 cantons of Switzerland in the northwestern part of Switzerland. The capital is Delémont. It shares borders with the canton of Basel-Landschaft, the canton of Bern, and the French département of Jura.


The canton of Jura lies in the northwest of Switzerland. It consists of parts of the Jura mountains in the south and the Jura plateau in the north. The Jura plateau is hilly and almost entirely limestone. The districts of Ajoie and Franches- Montagnes lie in that region.

To the north and the west of the canton lies France. The canton of Solothurn and Basel-Landschaft are to east of the canton, while the canton of Bern bounds the Jura to the south. The River Doubs and Birs drain the lands. The Doubs joins the Saône and then the Rhône, whereas the Birs is a tributary to the Rhine.

Location of the canton


The king of Burgundy donated much of the land that today makes up the canton of Jura to the Bishop of Basel in 999. The area was a sovereign state within the Holy Roman Empire for more than 800 years. After the Treaty of Westphalia in 1648 the Jura had close ties with the Swiss Confederation. In the Congress of Vienna the Jura was given to the canton of Bern. This act caused dissension. The Jura was French speaking and Roman Catholic, whereas the canton of Bern was mostly German speaking and Protestant. The people of the Jura region called for independence. After a long struggle, a constitution was accepted in 1977. In 1978 the split was made official when the Swiss people voted in favour of it, and in 1979 the Jura joined the Swiss Confederation as a full member.


Agriculture is important in the canton of Jura. Cattle breeding is significant, but there is also horse breeding. The main industries are watches, textiles and tobacco. There is growing a number of small and middle-sized business.


The population is almost entirely French speaking. The majority are Roman Catholic.

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