At the end of 2011 the region had 2,610,890 residents and the highest population growth of all regions in France in the 10 years up to 2009(the latest census dates).
The influx means that nearly half of all residents were not born here.
Research chief for the National statistics body Insee Roger Rabier said that of the 49% of “outsiders” 35% were born elsewhere in France and 14% were born outside of France.
He added: “There are, essentially, three reasons people come: work - because even though the region has high unemployment it is very strong on creating jobs; others are brought in for their studies, while the remainder find it an ideal place to pass their retirement.
“The majority are young and active workers, mostly couples, with only 20% of them retired.”
There has been a 14% increase in population since 1999 and it tops the growth charts, ahead of second-placed neighbours, Midi-Pyrenees.
The majority of incomers (135,500) chose to settle in Herault, while 78,800 opted for Gard. Pyrenees-Orientales attracted some 53,100 newcomers, compared to 44,200 in the Aude - only 3,650 new arrivals chose to make their home in land-locked Lozere over the past decade.