Alsace can be described as the 4th-smallest out of 26 'regions of France'. Also, it's the smallest one; as far as 'metropolitan France' is concerned. Alsace's climate is of semi-continental type; with hot summers and dry, cold winters. This place receives scanty rainfall. Population as per census conducted in January 2008 was 1836000. The name 'Alsace' has been derived from 'Germanic Ell-sass'; which means 'Seated on the hill'.