The Suisse romande (lit.: "Romance Switzerland") is a local name for the French-speaking districts of western Switzerland. The name Romandie (Romandy) is also used. The term "Suisse romand" is used to refer to Swiss French, the variety of French spoken in Switzerland. There are about 1.6 million French-speakers in Switzerland, about 20% of the total population.
The word "romand/romande" indicates the Latin or Roman origin of the French language and the general orientation of the region to the French-speaking cultural sphere and to Roman Law. It is used in contrast to "Suisse allemande" (German Switzerland) and "Suisse italienne" (Italian Switzerland), more commonly called "(le) Tessin" (Ticino).
The Suisse romande is not a precisely defined area, but in general includes the Cantons of Fribourg, Geneva, Jura, Neuchâtel, western Valais, Vaud and the northern part of Berne (known as the Jura Bernois or the Bernese Jura). The city of Geneva constitutes the largest urban area of the region.