The Île-de-France is the compact region immediately surrounding the capital of France, Paris. As such, the region includes the now far-flung suburbs of the Paris metropolis, together with several large surrounding towns that form part of the larger conurbanation.
Paris, the cosmopolitan capital of France, is - with 2.2 million people living in the dense central city and almost 12 million people living in the whole metropolitan area - one of the largest agglomerations in Europe.
Saint Denis is a suburb just north of Paris. The martyred saint was said to have been beheaded in Paris, yet miraculously picked up his own head, washed it and walked nearly ten kilometers north to his future namesake village.