The city is famous worldwide for the running of the bulls during the San Fermin festival, which is held annually from July 6 to 14. This festival was brought to literary renown with the 1926 publication of Ernest Hemingways novel The Sun Also Rises.
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After the 2011 municipal elections, there are 27 councillors in Pamplona Municipality: eleven of Navarrese Peoples Union (Union del Pueblo Navarro), seven of Nafarroa Bai, three of Spanish Socialist Workers Party, three of Bildu, two of Peoples Party, and one of Izquierda-Ezkerra.
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Pamplona is located in the middle of Navarre in a rounded valley, known as the Basin of Pamplona, that links the mountainous North with the Ebro valley. It is 92 km (57 mi) from the city of San Sebastian, 117 km (73 mi) from Bilbao, 735 km (457 mi) from Paris and 407 km (253 mi) from Madrid. The climate and landscape of the basin is a transition between those two main Navarrese geographical regions. Its central position at crossroads has served as a commercial link between those very different natural parts of Navarre.
The historical centre of Pamplona is on the left bank of the Arga, a tributary of the Ebro. The city has developed on both sides of the river.
In the winter of 75–74 BC, the area served as a camp for the Roman general Pompey in the war against Sertorius. He is considered to be the founder of Pompaelo, which became Pamplona, in modern Spanish. Actually it was the chief town of the Vascones, and they called it Iruna, the city. Roman Pompaelo was located in the province of Hispania Tarraconensis, on the Ab Asturica Burdigalam, the road from Burdigala (modern Bordeaux) to Asturica (modern Astorga); it was a civitas stipendiaria in the jurisdiction of the conventus of Caesaraugusta (modern Zaragoza).
Pamplona has shifted in a few decades from a little administrative and even rural town to a medium-size city of industry and services. The industry sector is diversified although the most important activity is related to automobile industry. Volkswagen manufactures Polo model in its factory of Landaben and there are many auxiliary industries that work for Volkswagen and other companies. Other remarkable industries are building materials, metalworking and food processing. Renewable energy technologies are also an increasing economic sector (wind turbines manufacturing and generation) and neighboring Sarriguren is the seat of the National Centre for Renewable Energies (CENER) and of Acciona Energia.
Education and culture
The city is home to two universities: the above-mentioned University of Navarre, a corporate work of Opus Dei founded in 1952, which is ranked as the best private university in Spain, and the Public University of Navarre, established by the Government of Navarre in 1987. There is also a local branch of the UNED (Universidad Nacional de Educacion a Distancia).
The two most important museums in Pamplona are the Museo de Navarra, devoted to the archaeological and artistic heritage of Navarre, and the Museo Diocesano of religious art, located in the cathedral. Pamplona is the first Spanish city in the French way of the Way of Saint James. Since 2004, Pamplona venues Punto de Vista International Documentary Film Festival, the most important Spanish documentary film festival.
Several notable churches, most of its 16th- to 18th-century fortified system and other civil architecture buildings belong to the historic-artistic heritage of Pamplona.