Stirling is one of the 32 council areas of Scotland, and has a population of about 91,000 (2012 estimate). It was created under the Local Government etc (Scotland) Act 1994 with the boundaries of the Stirling district of the former Central local government region, and it covers most of the former county of Stirling (except Falkirk) and the south-western portion of the former county of Perth. Both counties were abolished for local government purposes under the Local Government (Scotland) Act 1973.
The administrative centre of the area is the city of Stirling.
The area borders the council areas of Clackmannanshire (to the east), North Lanarkshire (to the south), Falkirk (to the south east), Perth and Kinross (to the north and north east), Argyll and Bute (to the north and north west), and both East and West Dunbartonshire to Stirling's southwest.
The majority of the population of the area is located in its southeast corner, in the city of Stirling and in the surrounding lowland communities: Bridge of Allan and Dunblane to the north, Bannockburn to the immediate south, and the three former coal mining communities of Cowie, Fallin, and Plean, known collectively as the "Eastern Villages".
The remaining 30 percent of the region's population is sparsely distributed across the rural, mainly highland, expanse in the north of the region. The southern half of this rural area comprises the flat western floodplain of the River Forth, bounded on the south by the Touch Hills and the Campsie Fells. North of the glen lie the Trossachs mountains, and the northern half of the region is generally mountainous in character.