The incidence of CNS tumors is subject to geographical and temporal variations which are poorly understood. The incidence of these tumors was studied in Gironde, a department of southwestern France with 1,058,911 inhabitants older than 16 years. We recorded any malignant or benign central nervous system (CNS) tumor diagnosed between May 1999 and April 2001 in adults living in Gironde. Three hundred and twenty-nine CNS tumors were diagnosed during the study period. The incidence of CNS tumors in adults was therefore 15.5 per 100,000. Overall, the incidence according to sex was 14.7 for males and 16.2 per 100,000 for females. The incidence rate increased according to age up to 80 years (3.7 per 100,000 for 20–29 years of age to 33.4 per 100,000 for 70–79 years of age) and reduced thereafter for gliomas. Our estimation of the incidence of CNS tumors ranks high among the earlier reports. Further analytic studies are ongoing.